Once the center of the steel industry, this large Pennsylvania city is situated at the confluence of the Monongahela and Allegheny Rivers (which then form the Ohio River) and is made up of 5 unique districts which offer visitors diverse and interesting sightseeing opportunities.
WHAT TO DO
Before visiting this industrial Pennsylvania city, it is important to understand the Pittsburgh Wayfinder System, which divides the city into 5 areas.
Downtown: The urban center of the city is located at the meeting of the two rivers. Here you can catch an opera in the cultural district, stroll the beautiful 36-acre Point Park and visit Revolutionary historical spot Fort Pitt.
East End-South: The Oakland neighborhood in this area is the main attraction for visitors and home to Pittsburgh's two major universities--University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon. You can visit the impressive Cathedral of Learning, perouse museums, or ride the carousel in Schenley Park.
East-End North: In this diverse and unique district you can shop for fresh veggies, fish, meat and cheese in the chef's dream area of the Strip District; visit boutiques, art galleries and restaurants in Lawerenceville neighborhood; or eat a big bowl of pasta among the quaint row houses in Bloomfield, known as Pittsburgh's Little Italy.
North Side: Just across the river from downtown, the North Side is home to Pittsburgh's best museums (Carnegie Space Center, Andy Warhol Museum, National Aviary) as well as the sports arenas for the NFL Steelers and Pittsburgh Pirates.
South Side: This hilly region boasts amazing views of the city as well as the most restaurants and bars of any other district. Here former steel mills have been transformed into shopping areas. The former mill workers who lived in this area of the city where mostly Eastern European, which has lent to the look and feel of this area of the city.
Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) is located about 20 miles outside of the city. All the major U.S. airlines serve this city, so finding a cheap flight to Pittsburgh shouldn't be a problem. Cab rides from the airport into town will run you about $35. If you are driving to the airport, reserve your airport parking in advance to save both time and money.
WHERE TO STAY
There are a plethora of hotels in Pittsburgh to choose from. With everything from chains to luxury boutique hotels to budget options, Pittsburgh has it all. There are also a few hostels in Pittsburgh where those looking to save a few bucks can stay in either private rooms or in dorm-style accommodations.