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The 10 Greatest Cities in the World

POSTED ON 30 October 2017

New York

Here at Airport Park and Ride, I’m forever finding more ways to be of assistance when it comes to making the most of your holidays.

Due to the fact that it could be argued that British weather is mostly awful, and has been for the last 30 years I’ve been around, at least – now is the perfect time to be planning a wonderful city break to get you away from the miserable Glasgow winter weather – because, let’s face it, we can’t even do winter properly. And, who wants to deal with 6 months of nothing but wind and rain when they could be off exploring one of the world’s greatest cities?

And remember, before jetting off from Glasgow Airport to explore one of these fantastic destinations, make your life easier by booking your airport parking at Glasgow Airport with Airport Park and Ride.

So, with no further ado, and in no particular order, here is, yet another – because on this blog, what I say goes – definitive list. This time, it’s the 10 greatest cities in the world.

Rome, Italy

You have to visit the Eternal City.

Rome has everything that any great city could possibly need; an abundance of awesome architecture – of many styles and eras, heaps of history, religion, food, – fantastically simple Italian food as well – romance, literature, art and plenty of politics.

For its combination of beauty and history, Rome isn’t so much a part of the list of the 10 greatest cities in the world as a prerequisite when even contemplating writing one.

The Colosseum, the Spanish Steps and the house where Keats lived and died, the Pantheon, the Roman Forum, St. Peter’s Basilica. . . the list goes on and on, in a similar fashion to my digressions in these blogs, but much more interesting. . . if somewhat less amusing.

You have to visit the Eternal City.

Udaipur, India

Renowned for its beautiful lakes, stunning temples, tranquil gardens, myriad fortresses, palaces and breathtakingly romantic scenery, Udaipur is truly one of the jewels of India.

Udaipur was founded in the 1500s, when the Mughal emperor seized the city of Chittorgarh, and Udai Singh was compelled to flee and establish the city.

Udaipur quickly gained wealth and notoriety and remained the capital of the kingdom of Mewar until India gained independence from the British in 1947.

With its abundance of history, scenery, places to visit and explore, and truly wonderful weather, Udaipur must be on any traveller’s list of cities to discover.

Barcelona, Spain

Awe-inspiring architecture (despite the fact that the most awe-inspiring piece of architecture in Barcelona isn’t yet finished – I’m looking at you, Sagrada Familia), a hefty dose of history, nonstop culture, boundless nightlife, fantastic food; Barcelona has it all. They have a football team that’s slightly above average, as well.

Art galleries, museums, parks? Got them all. Bars and restaurants with great food and wine? You bet.

Barcelona even has a beach. In fact, it virtually forces its way on to the list of the 10 greatest cities in the world by sheer weight of numbers in terms of things to do and see. The weather can be alright, too.

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town has got practically everything you could possibly want from one of the best, most interesting cities in the world.

The weather is incredible, the views are better. Cape Town has an energetic, exciting atmosphere and, if you want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city itself for a while, the beaches are of the untouched, white sanded variety.

While you’re there, go for a stroll (or take a cable car) up Table Mountain, you can explore what is believed to be South Africa’s oldest building – the Castle of Good Hope, or even visit the Two Oceans Aquarium – which shows off the stunning array of local marine life.

And the time zone Cape Town is in is only an hour ahead of us, so there’s no need to worry about the struggles of jet lag. Cape Town is fully deserving of its place amongst the 10 greatest cities in the world.

Florence, Italy

Florence is the capital of the Italian region of Tuscany, and is perhaps the most beautiful city in Italy, as well.

The skyline of Firenze is dominated by the ginormous and glorious Duomo di Firenze, which was the world’s largest dome until 1881; if you fancy taking in the most breath taking views of the entire stunning Renaissance city, then climb the 463 steps of the Duomo, you won’t be disappointed.

In addition to the Duomo, there’s the Uffizi, the Mercato Centrale, the Galleria dell’Accademia, the Boboli Gardens, the wine, the restaurants, the ice cream; all of which combine to create a truly beautiful city of culture and atmosphere, that has strong roots in its Medici past.

Florence, Italy’s second entry on this list, thoroughly deserves its spot on the list of the 10 greatest cities in the world.

To put it simply: Florence is a must visit.

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

San Miguel de Allende is Mexico’s hidden gem; a colonial-era city, tucked away in Mexico’s central highlands, it also just happens to be a thriving arts centre, known for its architecture, cultural festivals, and beauty.

In the centre of the city you will find the stunning Gothic style Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel church, with its wonderful pink tower rising above the main plaza; the beautiful, leafy El Jardin.

Take a wander around the lovely cobbled streets of the city centre and you’ll find that this hidden gem of a city has a wealth of hidden gems of its own; historic houses, in the Spanish colonial style and traditional restaurants serving delicious Mexican food abound.

One of the best is the Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar – which not only provides great views and great food, but is also ranked as one of the best city hotels in all of Mexico.

With its combination of history, culture, scenery and beautiful weather, San Miguel de Allende is well deserving of its place on the list.

New York, United States of America

As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be a gangster.

In New York, you can be. In fact, in New York, you can be anything; it’s like the Kinder Bueno of cities.

As the backdrop to literally thousands of films and quite possibly the most recognisable city in the world, New York has a way of making everyone, even those who haven’t been there, feel like they know it. And when you are there, it makes you feel instantly at home, instantly accepted.

Despite expectations being high for visitors to New York, the city invariably exceeds the expectations of tourists – first timers and return visitors alike.

With its iconic skyline, the art and culture, the people and the history – despite it being the youngest city on this list. . . New York has everything.

And for the foodies out there, in 2017 New York has 77 Michelin starred restaurants to choose from, with a huge diversity in cuisine, not just among them, but in its thousands of other eateries, too.

It is arguably the greatest city on the planet, and easily makes its place on this list.

Mumbai, India

I personally fell in love with Mumbai, as Bombay, before I had even been, and despite the fact that it wasn’t Bombay anymore by this point; thanks solely to a book called Shantaram, by Gregory David Roberts. Read it. Please, read it.

And, before you even go to Mumbai, the aforementioned book will make you fall in love with the place more than I ever could.

However, I’ll try.

A thriving metropolis, situated on India’s west coast, Mumbai is home to the iconic Gateway of India, built by the British Raj. Standing guard on the waterfront at Mumbai Harbour, it offers a beautiful echo of India’s colonial past.

India’s largest city, Mumbai is a city of dreamers and a melting pot of culture. Slums abut thriving shopping areas, smells of spices and flowers abound and mix with the myriad scents of humanity; then there are the colours, the noises, the architecture, the food, the temples, the beaches, the people…

Even the traffic has a certain manic beauty to it.

The one thing that I challenge any visitor to Mumbai to do, is come home not absolutely in love with the place and its completely unique character.

Oslo, Norway

Everything that makes Norway both beautiful and brilliant is refined, focused and infused within the country’s small, yet wonderful and eccentric (indeed: wonderfully eccentric) capital.

Fjords within the shortest of drives; mountains; lakes; the dockside opera house; bars; restaurants in Gronland; a chance to trace the steps of Harry Hole. Oslo is a city of many faces. And every one of them is pretty amazing; there really is something for everyone.

Even the weather of Oslo provides something for everyone, with the hot days and long, warm evenings of summer, and the crisp, cold, snow-clad days and frozen, dark nights of winter both on offer in this magnificent and wholly underrated city.

If you’ve never been to Scandinavia, Oslo is a great place to start your explorations from. It is, quite simply, beautiful.

Manchester, England

Unlike its louder, malodorous, more frantic southern counterpart, London, Manchester is (in my opinion, and I’m right) the best city in the UK and one of the greatest cities in the world.

Manchester has Old Trafford, the “Theatre of Dreams” – one of the best football stadiums in the world, home to world’s most famous football team, Manchester United; the city really needs no further explanation or reason for why it is such a great place, but, for the disbelievers amongst you, I’ll continue, anyway.

The National Football Museum is in Manchester. Then there’s the Museum of Science and Industry, the fantastic nightlife with such a diversity of places to drink and eat, the Lowry, the food, the atmosphere, the friendly people. I could go on, and on, and on…

But for the purposes of brevity, I won’t.

Visit Manchester, you won’t be disappointed.

The city of industry is thoroughly deserving of its place as one of the 10 greatest cities in the world.

Glasgow Airport Parking

Whichever of these fantastic cities tickles your fancy, when you need airport parking at Glasgow Airport before you fly, log on to www.airportparkandride.com for the best airport parking in Glasgow. We’re Park Mark approved, too, so you know your car will be safe with us.

And, it will save you the hassle of trains and taxis. Our experienced and friendly bus drivers will drop you right outside the terminal at Glasgow Airport and meet you back at the terminal, upon your return, to deliver you back to your airport car park and your car as quickly as possible.

Book your airport parking at Glasgow Airport here.