I generally like to have a look behind the scenes of a venue or a sports ground during a stadium tour. After I had visited Ibrox Park in Glasgow quite a while ago, I made use of a stay in the Scottish city in February 2023 and visited their national holy ground of soccer. Hampden Park is used for all Scottish national team home matches as well as the cup finals. Furthermore, the stadium also hosts the Scottish Football Museum, which has also been part of my visit (review later). It is also driving the stadium tours. Here are my tour impressions.
Hampden Park Stadium – Location & Admission
Hampden Park is located South of Central Glasgow. The easiest way to get there from the heart of the city is by bus. The tour starts at the main gate on the South side of the stadium, so that the Hampden Park bus stop is the right choice. Kingswood Drive, the stop before, is fine as well. Bus line 75 connects to the city center, both bus stops also cover lines 74, 90 and 100. If you arrive by car, you can make use of the large parking lot in front of the stadium.
Roughly, the operating tomes of the Hampden Park tour is Thursday to Sunday at the time of writing. However, due to events, bank holidays and similar influences, this may shift, so that I strongly recommend to book a ticket online before and thus be sure that you got a slot. The tours obviously come with a time slot. They typically incept at 11:00, 12:30, 14:00 and 15:00. Adult admission for the stadium tour only is 8 GBP. If you want to have a visit of the museum as well (before or after your visit), the combined ticket is 14 GBP and saves you 2 GBP. The total duration of the tour is one hour.
Hampden Park Stadium – The Tour
The reception at Hampden Park already had lists of pre-booked visitors, so that the check-in was really easy. Quite in time, our tour guide took us on the tour, which started at the access road for the team buses and technical equipment and then headed right into the cabin of the Scottish national team – or the home team in case of cup finals and similar events (if not a Glasgow team is playing).
The guide was very friendly and knowledgeable. Unfortunately, his Scottish accent was very strong (I am tempted to rather call it “terrible”). Even though I am rather fluent in English and also am a bit of used to Scottish English, I very quickly gave up to fully understand him and just got a fraction. As also quite a bunch of British people in my group struggled a lot with him, I just have to downgrade this in my rating. It is a tourist attraction, so you do have to go for guides which give visitors a chance to understand the person.
As the stadium is having the highest rating for European soccer grounds, the two main cabins are equivalent in size and functionality. We also had a look into the official’s cabin, before we headed into a large warm-up room with artificial turf. If you are interested, you can do some speed shooting there and later receive a certificate about your achievement. As said, the Western Locker Room is not too spectacular any more, as the layout is equivalent.
Inside the Stadium
After that, it was time to get to the ground. The shape of the stadium is quite interesting. In contrast to many modern soccer grounds, the layout is oval – even though Hampden Park does not feature an athletics track or similar facilities. The rather flat angle of the stands also feels very special. After exploring the benches and the ground extensively, we also went up to the place where the cup winner is receiving the trophy and the seats for the Royal Family.
Hampden Park Stadium – Services
The tour started and finished at Club Hampden, which is a business lounge area during matches and events, but operates as an ordinary cafe during non-event openings. There was no souvenir shop or similar.
Hampden Park Stadium – My View
Visiting Hampden Park as part of a stadium tour was definitely an interesting expeirence. The home ground of the Scottish team is not as fancy as other places, but it got a nice touch. The tour showed you what you would expect of a one hour one. Especially the speed shooting thing took quite a lot of time. Maybe some more press, VIP etc. facilities would be cool. The accent of the guide was unbearable, though. I am even tempted to use the term “respectless”.
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