Don’t worry if you’re not sure what to do while travelling to Pittsburgh.
Just because it’s not as infamous as Chicago or NYC, doesn’t mean it isn’t a fun, exciting city which is bound to take you by surprise. The truth is there’s something for just about anyone in this sports-loving, historic, nature-filled, artful Steel City.
The one thing you have to check out, in my opinion, whether you’re an art nerd or not, is the Andy Warhol Museum. It’s not just filled with the artist’s iconic pop art paintings, there’s also rooms with pieces you wouldn’t expect, like the playful Silver Clouds exhibit.
There’s also something called the Sound Series, which is a collection of intimate concerts that take place in the museum and around the city throughout the year.
The museum also has a fantastic, nichey gift shop that makes the whole trip worthwhile just to visit the shop. You can find one-of-a-kind Campbell’s soup and Brillo pad themed plushies, as well as other nick knacks, books, and random unexpected items.
What Do I Like Best About Pittsburgh?
Almost everyone I’ve met who isn’t from here says that they’re so pleasantly surprised by our kindness. The people of Pittsburgh have our issues and our tempers.
Pittsburghers are not afraid to speak their mind- loudly. However, almost anywhere you go, whether it’s walking around Oakland, or checking out shops in the Strip District, you’re bound to find lots of people who won’t hesitate to smile and say hi.
In general we’re a very social city. And it’s a pretty safe one too. Not all areas are perfect, but the majority of towns and streets are bright. You’re more likely to get invited to have a cup of coffee in someone’s kitchen than to experience any rudeness.
The Best Walk In Pittsburgh
There are so many paths and places to hike in and around Pittsburgh, since we’re right in the Allegheny mountains. We even have a major trail: The Great Allegheny Passage, which connects to the Appalachian Trail, as well as a few others.
The most convenient, quaint, and scenic walking path would have to be the Three Rivers Heritage Trail. The trail is on the North Shore. It’s the only real walking path in the heart of the city. So no matter where you’re staying or how busy you are, you’re bound to be able to come down to this path at some point during your stay.
The Three Rivers Heritage Trail is a long trail that connects to the Great Allegheny Passage. A great place to start your walk is right on the North Shore where the Monongahela and Allegheny Rivers merge into the Ohio River. You then walk along the North Shore.
It’s so close to the city, and you can get a nice skyline view of the city’s skyscrapers and bridges. You can also get close to the natural beauty of the rivers, and see the ducks and fish swimming in it (if it’s not during winter, of course, when it’ll be frozen). It’s truly perfect for anyone who loves both city and nature.
Best Restaurants In Pittsburgh
Best Steakhouse: Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse
Amazing food, large portions, and a lovely ambiance. Perfect for a fancy date night, or a good spot for dinner with the family.
Best Diner: Pamela’s
Such an adorable 60’s style diner, serving everything you would expect, with a Pittsburgh twist- like Kielbasa and Eggs, Pittsburgh Hash (hashbrowns served with Kielbasa, Sauerkraut, and Swiss), and more. Plus tons of crepes, omelettes, and a full-on lunch menu to boot with an option for any taste palette.
Best Eastern Cuisine: Nicky’s Thai Kitchen
Easily one of the most interesting and beautiful dining experiences I’ve ever had, Nicky’s Thai Kitchen has gorgeous Eastern decor, and even a large, luscious outdoor eating area with a beautiful fountain, which feels like you’re eating in the center of a garden. The food is also incredible, and if you like spicy food, all the better.
Best Vegetarian/ Mexican Food: Condado Tacos
Fantastic food, with a build-your-own tacos option, as well as tons of vegan and vegetarian options here.
Best Bar/ Pub: Barrel Junction
Just awesome bar food, killer fries, and great burgers and wings.
The Best Music/ Festival
Easily the best Pittsburgh Festival for arts and music would have to be the Three Rivers Arts Festival. It’s held each June around the same time as the annual Pride Parade (so if you’re interested in seeing that as well, its easy to come down and check both out at the same time).
There’s always tons of outdoor arts vendors, and live music throughout the festival area. Some musicians that have played in the past are Ella Fitzgerald, Steven Reich, Ray Charles, and Phillip Glass.
The Best Nightlife in Pittsburgh
One of the best spots for nightlife would have to be the South Side Flats. There is seemingly an endless sidewalk full of bars and clubs.
There’s places to eat, drink and party on East Carson Street from the 10th street bridge all the way down to the Birmingham Bridge. Perfect if you just want to stay in one spot and not worry about getting rides between locations.
Best Day Trip Out Of Pittsburgh
Easily the best place to go for a day trip outside the city, as long as it’s between April and September, is Kennywood Park. It’s only about 20 minutes outside the city, and it’s an awesome place for a date, to hangout with friends, and especially if it’s a family affair.
At Kennywood Park there are tons of roller coasters. These include historic rides like The Jackrabbit and The Racer, as well as thrilling new rides. The Black Widow swings you almost 150 feet into the air, travelling at top speeds of almost 70 mph.
There are also water rides, indoor rides, and an entire kids park section. It’s also home to the famous potato patch fries, which I would highly recommend trying at least once in your life.
If you’re planning on going outside the normal season the park also has Phantom Fright Nights. These are held on weekends during October, and a Holiday Lights show in November and December.
Something Not Many Travelers Would Know About Pittsburgh
A fun fact is that Pittsburgh is home to the very first T-Rex skeleton ever discovered. It is currently on display in the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.
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