Set within Glasgow University, this museum showcases the once private collection of former student and 18th-century anatomist and physician, Dr. William Hunter. Among the eclectic assortment of objects and art are pickled organs, Roman artifacts from the Antonine Wall, and a collection of works by James McNeill Whistler.
Scotland’s oldest public museum, the Hunterian is home to one of the country’s largest collections outside the National Museums. Visitors can browse exhibits covering the history of medicine in the west of Scotland and examine rare coins, paleontological specimens, and archaeological finds from the Roman-era Antonine Wall, which ran coast-to-coast across Scotland.
The art gallery features the world’s largest permanent display of the work of James McNeill Whistler, as well as pieces by Rubens, Rembrandt, and the Glasgow Boys. Free student-led tours, lasting around 30 minutes, take place regularly and are available on a drop-in basis.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Hunterian Museum is a must for art lovers, architecture enthusiasts, and history buffs.
- Temporary exhibitions, talks, and other special events are occasionally held at the museum.
- The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is mostly wheelchair accessible, though access in the Mackintosh House is limited.
How to Get There
The Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery is located within Glasgow University Gilmorehill Campus, about 2 miles (3 kilometers) west of the city center. Ride the subway to Hillhead station, which is five to 10 minutes away on foot, or take the 4 or 4A bus from the city center to University Avenue.
When to Get There
The museum is open Tuesday–Sunday. Because of its off-the-beaten-tourist-track setting, the museum is rarely crowded, so visitors can go at any time and still have plenty of space to explore. For those who want to see the Mackintosh House as part of a guided tour, plan your trip for a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday morning. In the afternoon and weekends, tours of the house are self-guided.
The Mackintosh House
Visitors to the Hunterian Art Gallery can also pay a visit to the Mackintosh House, situated within the museum. A recreation of part of the home of the influential Glaswegian architect and designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the exhibit features original fixtures and features. Mackintosh’s original Victorian home was demolished in the 1960s. Guided tours of the Mackintosh House are available on weekday mornings.