5 Awesome Reasons You Should Visit Pittsburgh
When most people think of Pittsburgh, PA they think blue collar. That’s not wrong by any stretch. Pittsburgh is definitely one of the most blue collar cities in America. However, I also believe that’s what gives it so much charm. Not only that, but it’s so much more than a blue collar town. My wife and I have been visiting this city for years. This is due to the fact that we love to travel up there to see live sports. However, rooting for the home team isn’t the only reason we like to go there. Pittsburgh has become one of our favorite cities to visit. Sure, it helps that it’s only two and a half hours away. However, there is so much more that factors in. If you’ve never considered visiting Pittsburgh, then allow me to give you a few reasons to put it in your travel plans for the future. Here are a few reasons why I love this city!
Beautiful Sports Stadiums
As a diehard sports fan, this one has to go first. Even if you’re not a huge sports fan, it may still be worth your time to visit facilities like PNC Park or Heinz Field for a ballgame. I’ve traveled to a lot of sports stadiums around the country. I’ve been to some very memorable stadiums, but Pittsburgh might be the overall best place to see a game. Whether it’s a Pirates, Penguins, or Steelers game, you are bound to have a fun, quality experience. Not only that, but they are usually very family oriented environments filled with good people. You can tell they put a lot of love into the gameday experience in Pittsburgh. I can’t recommend this city enough just for this reason alone. Pittsburgh is very well known for being a tight knit sports town that loves their teams. That fact is very evident just by visiting the home of Pittsburgh’s big three professional franchises.
Mount Washington is a gem that is located right outside of the city. It’s close enough that you can oversee the entire downtown area from above. It makes for some very pretty pictures if you bring your finest camera with you. Some people may even choose to ride the incline that rides down the mountain in order to give you an even more unique view of the city (I have to admit that I haven’t gotten up the courage to do this yet!). If that’s not enough, you may also find a great place to eat up here in the process. My recommendation is the Bigham Tavern. They have an awesome tongue in cheek slogan “Go Bigham, Or Go Home” that lives up to its name as well. They have some of the best food I’ve tried in the Pittsburgh area. The drive up to Mount Washington also gives you pretty scenery and some more of the beautiful architecture you’ll become accustomed to just from driving around the downtown area.
Speaking of architecture, Pittsburgh has some of the most beautiful churches and old buildings you’ll see on this part of the country. Not only are the buildings well maintained, they are filled with history. This isn’t even scraping the surface on the bridges of Pittsburgh. The yellow steel bridges that help you get around the area really set it apart from any other city I’ve been to. It really gives you a sense that you’ve gone back to another era without feeling like you’ve left the modern era. I’ve been around enough to know that this isn’t an easy thing to pull off successfully. Pittsburgh has done this extremely well. Pittsburgh is a surprisingly picturesque city to tour. My recommendation is to bring a camera, spend some of your time driving around the whole area, and also spend a good amount of time walking around. There are so many beautiful things to see in this city.
Big City, Small Town Feel
Let’s face it, visiting a big city isn’t always easy. Especially for those of us who aren’t used to the hustle and bustle of a big city. However, Pittsburgh has a great feel to it. It’s filled with enough people and happenings that you won’t mistake it for a smaller city/town, but not too much that you will feel overwhelmed. The blue collar nature of the city also makes you feel right at home. The people of Pittsburgh are every bit as down to earth as you might expect from a city that has steel bridges dispersed all over the city. I’ve never lived in Pittsburgh, but I have felt at home every time I’ve visited. It helps that the old time architecture and overall layout make it feel like you are in a slightly different era. From my experience, you tend to not see such old time architecture unless you visit a smaller town. When you combine that with the friendliness of the city, you get the sense that you are visiting more of a small town and less of a big city.
Friendly City To Visit
I’ve never lived in Pittsburgh, but I have felt at home every time I’ve visited. I wouldn’t go as far as to say Pittsburgh is a perfect city where everybody is 100 percent friendly at all times, but it is definitely one of the best I’ve come across in that regard. Especially for a major American city. For that reason alone, this is a city that’s worth revisiting. From going to a ballgame to visiting one of their awesome restaurants, you are bound to be welcomed with a friendly attitude in this city. One constant I’ve found in Pittsburgh is that most people pretty down to earth. It is far away from the hurry up and go of major cities like New York City, Chicago, or Washington, D.C. If you’re looking to get away from the politics of the aforementioned cities and just want to bond with good, hardworking people, then Pittsburgh is one of the best places in America to visit.
Some Bonus Reasons To Visit The ‘Burgh
The points outlined here should be good enough for you to endure the high cost of flying or driving into Pittsburgh in order to bask in its blue collar beauty. However, If what I mentioned wasn’t quite enough, then let me give you a few more quick reasons to visit. First of all, places like the Heinz Museum not only give you a glimpse at Pittsburgh’s history, they do it with fun relics that will make you realize just how important this city is. Pittsburgh is also home to some excellent restaurants. One excellent rarity is a place called Lidia’s. Pittsburgh is the home of one of the few restaurants owned by renown Italian Celebrity chef Lidia Bastianich. My wife and I have eaten here a few times and it always gets a 5 star rating from us.
If the high cost of flying and/or high cost of the PA Turnpike has you down, then consider staying at the Double Tree in Green Tree, which is located just outside of the downtown area. My wife and I have stayed here more times than we can count and it has always been very good to us. It is fully equipped with a restaurant, swimming/hot tub area, and much more. If being close to the action is important, then you are bound to find some good hotels in the downtown area as well. If you’re lucky, you may even get a scenic view of the Allegheny River, a beautiful yellow bridge, or maybe one of Pittsburgh’s gorgeous sports stadiums.
Regardless of what your reasons are for visiting, you will be surprised by how great of a city Pittsburgh is. It’s one of my favorite places to visit in America. Not only is this due to the fact that I only live a few hours away, it’s also because of what a great city it is. On the surface, Pittsburgh may not seem like a very interesting place to visit. I felt the same way when my wife and I planned to visit Minneapolis for the first time. However, sometimes it is cities like these that actually have the most to offer just because they exceed your expectations.
Looking for more travel ideas in the United States? Then check out this piece I wrote about traveling to New York City!