Meandering In: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Credit: Alexandria Wyckoff

Located at the junction of three rivers – the Ohio, Allegheny, and Monongahela – Pittsburgh is a blend between the Gilded Age and modern times. Once an early 20th century industrial capital, this “Steel City” has that neighborhood feel while still being a bustling metropolis. 

Best Time to Visit

Late spring (May/June), or late summer and early fall (September/October) so you will miss not only the colder months of winter, but the muggy summers as well

Related: Meandering In: Oswego, New York

Places to Go and See

Carnegie Institute Museum of Natural History & Art

Credit: Alexandria Wyckoff

Founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1896, this museum is a home to not only history spanning thousands of years, but a large variety of art pieces as well. In the history section, explore around 22 million specimens including one of the finest paleontological collections in the world.

  • Hours: Mon-Sun 10-5, Thurs 10-8
  • Best Time: Anytime; indoors
  • Price: $25

Heinz Field

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Now known as the Acrisure Stadium, Heinz Field is the stadium that hosts the Pittsburgh Steelers in the North Shore Neighborhood. Come to watch a game in one of the classic yellow seats, or enjoy many of the other concerts and events within the stadium’s walls.

  • Hours: Depends on Steelers schedule
  • Best Time: Summer or during football season
  • Price: Varies

PNC Park

Credit: Joshua Peacock

Home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, this stadium is the perfect place to go and watch a baseball game on a sunny day. If you’re not a huge baseball fan don’t worry, they also have several other concerts and events that happen within the stadium’s walls that you can enjoy.

  • Hours: Depends on Pirates schedule
  • Best Time: Summer or during baseball season
  • Price: Varies

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Fort Pitt Museum

Credit: Kevin Myers

If you are a history buff the Fort Pitt museum should go on your bucket list for Pittsburgh. Showing the pivotal role Western Pennsylvania had during the French & Indian War, the American Revolution, and the creation of the city itself through artifacts and interactive exhibits, there is much to explore about this northern city. If you come during the summer, you can even see colonial re-enactors show how life was like during the 1700s.

  • Hours: Mon-Sun 10-5
  • Best Time: Anytime; indoors
  • Price: $10

Point State Park

Credit: Walter Martin

On the tip of the “Golden Triangle” lies Point State Park, commemorating and preserving the history of the area during the French and Indian War. Named a National Historic Landmark, come and enjoy a spot of green in the city of steel and explore the history of this area.

  • Hours: Sunrise to sunset
  • Best Time: Warm sunny day
  • Price: Free, though parking may have a fee

Carnegie Pittsburgh Library

Credit: Kevin Albright

Endorsed by Andrew Carnegie in 1881, the Carnegie Library system has stretched across the world, but its biggest impact was in the city of Pittsburgh. Carnegie always believed that libraries would not only bring the community together but elevate their understanding of the world, and his idea continues on today with nineteen separate libraries in the central Pittsburgh area.

  • Hours: Depends on the location (19 separate libraries)
  • Best Time: Anytime; indoors
  • Price: Free to explore, fee for out-of-state library card registration

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Hidden Gems

Duquesne Incline

Credit: Alexandria Wyckoff

First built and operated in May of 1877, the Duquesne Incline is one of the few remaining inclines still running in the country. A perfect way to get from one elevation to another, the incline has impressive views that will show you exactly why Pittsburgh is so memorable.

  • Hours: Mon-Sat 5:30 am-12:30 am, Sun & Holidays 7 am-12:30 am
  • Best Time: Clear day
  • Price: $2.50 one way, $5 round trip

East Liberty Presbyterian Church

Credit: Cbaile19

Though the first building erected in 1819 no longer stands on the site, the current 1935 church is full of history. You can join a worship group while you’re traveling, or just opt for a tour of the gothic themed cathedral.

  • Hours: 24 Hrs a day, but there are special times for sermons
  • Best Time: Anytime; indoors
  • Price: Free

The Phipps Conservatory

Credit: Dllu

Opened in 1893, the Phipps Conservatory stretches across fifteen acres, with a fourteen room glass house, and twenty three separate gardens, each highlighting their own species. Come and enjoy nature, or attend one of the many exhibitions or shows amongst the flora.

  • Hours: Mon-Thurs 9:30-5, Fri 9:30-10, Sat-Sun 9:30-5
  • Best Time: Anytime
  • Price: $21.95

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Cathedral of Learning at the University of Pittsburgh

Credit: Maria Oswalt

Commissioned in 1921, this building was not only created by the construction companies, but by the community as well by donating steel, bricks, glass, and other materials to the project. Now listed as the second tallest educational building in the world, and internationally known for its Nationality Classrooms, there is much to explore in this Gothic Revival skyscraper.

  • Hours: During school hours
  • Best Time: Anytime
  • Price: Free

Mt. Washington

Credit: Allie_Caulfield

One of the most visited neighborhoods in Pittsburgh is Mt. Washington, a blend between millionaires and everyday people. Take a walk down “Restaurant Row” and have some incredible food, or just walk around and see Pittsburgh in an entirely different way.

  • Hours: Sunrise to sunset
  • Best Time: Warm sunny day
  • Price: Free

Top Restaurants

Kavsar Uzbek Halal Restaurant

Credit: Tamara Malaniy

If you’re tired of having either pizza or Chinese food, try some take out or delivery from Kavsar Uzbek Halal Restaurant. This establishment is hidden away on the hills of Pittsburgh, but has a large selection of regional Uzbek and Russian specialties, with each dish presenting a completely new set of flavors for you to try.

  • Hours: Mon-Sun 12-9:30
  • Featured Food: Kasvar Boat Potato & Cheese / Hanum

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Cilantro & Ajo

Started in 2015 after leaving their home country of Venezuela, the owners of Cilantro & Ajo opened their doors and a food truck to bring their treasured recipes to Pittsburgh’s streets. Now a huge part of the city, this Venezuelan restaurant is a testament not only to perseverance but pride of their home country.

  • Hours: Tues-Thurs 11:30-8, Fri-Sat 11:30-9, Sun 11:30-6
  • Featured Food: Chicken Empanadas / Yuca Frita
  • Featured Drink: Venezuelan Pop Frescolita / Brown Lemonade

Grandview Bakery

Serving over one hundred items on their menu, and providing seasonal treats to enjoy, Grandview Bakery is a hot spot for locals and tourists alike. Some of their pastries include cookies, cakes, cupcakes, brownies, bars, and pies.

  • Hours: Mon 7:30-6, Tues-Sat 7:30-7, Sun 8:30-3
  • Featured Food: Buckeyes / German Chocolate Bar

40 North at Alphabet City

With a name that pays homage to both the past and present locations, 40 North looks to provide an excellent casual dining experience. Opening in 2006, there are locations not only in Pittsburgh but New Jersey as well.

  • Hours: Dinner Wed-Thus 5-9, Fri-Sat 5-10, Sun 5-9; Lunch Wed-Fri 11-2; Brunch Sun 10-2
  • Featured Food: Pan Fried Rainbow Trout / Roasted Half Chicken
  • Featured Drink: Cave Aged / Along Came a Cider

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Alta Via Ristorante

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Alta Via (@altaviapgh) • Instagram photos and videos

If you’re looking for Italian, go no further than Alta Via. With handmade pastas and seasonally sourced ingredients, there is always something new to enjoy at this modern restaurant.

  • Hours: Sun 11-8, Mon-Thurs 11:30-9, Fri-Sat 11:30-10
  • Featured Food: Orecchiette / Veal Porterhouse
  • Featured Drink: Gin Daisy / White Lotus


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Apteka (@aptekapgh) • Instagram photos and videos

If you are vegan or vegetarian, this restaurant is perfect for you, as Apteka sells themselves as a “vegetable restaurant.” Deriving recipes from Central and Eastern European cuisine, either head to the bar or sit at a table and try some delicious food.

  • Hours: Fri-Sun 5-10
  • Featured Food: Kotlet Selerowy / Kluski Śląskie
  • Featured Drink: Znachor / Nasza Gorzka

Top Hotels:

Joinery Hotel Pittsburgh, Curio Collection by Hilton

  • ~$100/night
  • Featured Amenities: Free WiFi, Bicycle Rentals, In-house Bar, Fitness Center, Extra Charge Breakfast, Baggage Storage
  • Hotel Information: Check in 4pm, Check out 11am, Extra Charge Parking

Pittsburgh Sheraton Station Square

  • Featured Amenities: Free WiFi, Indoor Pool, Fitness Center, Pet-friendly, In-house Restaurant, Business Center
  • Hotel Information: Check in 4pm, Check out 11am, Extra Charge Parking

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The Westin Pittsburgh

  • ~$200/night
  • Featured Amenities: Free WiFi, Golf, In-house Restaurant, Fitness Center, Pet Friendly, Coffee Maker
  • Hotel Information: Check in 4pm, Check out 12pm, Extra Charge Parking

Fairmont Pittsburgh

  • ~$250/night
  • Featured Amenities: Free WiFi, Golf, Casino, Fitness Center, Spa, Free Bicycle Rental
  • Hotel Information: Check in 3pm, Check out 12pm, Extra Charge Parking

Whether you’re looking for a dive into Pittsburgh’s history, and want to see it’s beautiful present, take a trip to the city of Pittsburgh and explore the winding streets and bridges of the Steel City.