A Glasgow Fair Holiday Destination

Dear blog reader

Now that we have reached the end of another Summer, I thought we would look at Glasgow Fair Holiday destinations in the past, including of course Shandon.

For those who are unaware, the ‘Glasgow Fair Holiday’ was traditionally the last 2 weeks in July when many Glasgow businesses closed down for the entire two weeks to enable their workers to go away on holiday, often ‘doon the watter’ to Clyde or Ayrshire coastal resorts.




Once more the Glasgow fair holidays are at hand, and as the Glasgow Fair Week seems to be getting general over an annually increasing area, there are few questions that will be more frequently asked this week than this – ‘where shall we go?’.

When we have regard to the enormous development which the holiday has attained of late, it would seem that the more elaborate and tempting offers of the railway companies and the steamship proprietors, which are almost bewildering in their multiplicity, are not, after all, too numerous.

The problem where to go for a holiday is only to be solved by a consideration of the personal equation of the holiday-maker. It is quite true that whilst the seaside suits many, it does not agree with all, and while an inland residence admirably suits one man, a bracing sea-coast aloe will suit another. These are not mere ‘fads’ or fancies – they represent a very decided and determined feature of the constitution of the holiday maker in each case.

This being so, it is unwise to attempt to lay down laws for spending a holiday, such as will be applicable to all sorts of conditions and types of people. General principles may be laid down and acted upon, but those who are wise will adapt themselves each to his own, or her own, individual constitution and will not in this matter attempt to argue from generals to specials when they lay to heart the momentous question of their annual trip.

We have much reason to congratulate ourselves on the many opportunities that we have of spending a holiday at this season, and at a cheap rate, away from our hot streets, now that the warm days of summer are a weariness to the flesh. There are scores of places on the Clyde, both at what may be called the nearer and farther coast, where we can have any quantity of ozone, and yet never feel that we have left behind us any of ‘the comforts of the Saltmarket’.

Both the west and east coasts of Scotland have many quiet retreats likely to escape detection for a year or so to come. And very few of the pretty places that are inland are able to blush unseen for any length of time. Bridge of Allan is perhaps too hot for this season: Shandon and Rothesay do for both summer and winter: while Grantown-on-Spey, smelling of pines, and Strathpeffer or Pitlochry are just as good in their several ways as anything in foreign parts.

A trip to the Isle of Man, to Ireland, to Stornoway, to St Kilda, or even to Norway are now among the most tempting of the holiday attractions. They are all within easy reach, and the fare is comparatively cheap. Even Norway is only some two days’ sail, and its fjords and magnificent mountain scenery, almost equalling that of Switzerland, are getting more popular every year.

A sea trip is good for both mind and body. Its enforced rest, in this busy age, even when in our holidays we are apt to do and to see too much, is one of its very best features. Even if the sea should show itself a little unkindly the trip may be of some use, as it will induce a devout thankfulness on the part of the traveller for his own home. But whilst we cannot be too thankful that we have so many and such cheap inducements to go out of Scotland for a holiday, still it is well to remember that we have at home spots which for health and beauty are not to be surpassed by those of any other country.

Constant travelling rarely suits anyone who is not a commercial traveller, or who is not otherwise accustomed to it. And it might not be inappropriate to remind some at this season that the true enjoyment of our leisure time does not consist in scouring the country, but in settling down for a brief period simply amid new associations and new health conditions.

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