Travel Guide | Pennsylvania

College Tourist Student Guide to Pittsburgh

Where to go and the sights to see

With beautiful architecture, delicious food and genuinely nice locals, Pittsburgh is a great place to visit and explore what the city has to offer. Pittsburgh is known as one of the most industrialized cities of the United States. Found in the southeastern part of Pennsylvania, it is the second largest city in the state of Pennsylvania with a metro city population of over 2 million. It is known as both “the Steel City” and the “City of Bridges” because it is home to a record of 446 bridges, and is the 22 largest urban area of the United States. Pittsburgh was named in honor of William Pitt the Elder.

In 2013, the Economist Intelligence Unit voted Pittsburgh is the best place to live in the United States. Even more, in a 2012 survey researchers found that residents of the Pittsburgh area rated their happiness at a 7.8 out of 10, while the national average is a 7.4. Many people know Pittsburgh as the home of champion sports teams including the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Penguins and Pittsburgh Pirates, but sports teams are just a beginning. Pittsburgh is known for creating many successful and famous food, media and industrial companies.

With so many historical and famous sights to see, Pittsburgh is the perfect place for any college tourist to visit.



What to See:

Andy Warhol Museum: Located near downtown Pittsburgh, where Warhol was born and raised, the collection includes hundreds of Warhol’s original paintings, sculptures, prints and videos. The museum consists of seven floors with different materials to exhibit and display a glimpse into Warhol’s life. Students who bring their valid student ID’s can admit into the museum for $10.

Amusement Parks: Pittsburgh is home of the famous amusement parks. If tourists are looking for a day full of riding rollercoasters, Kennywood is the place to go. Located in West Mifflin, a suburb of Pittsburgh, the park has an assortment of rollercoasters and rides perfect for any age. Kennywood’s most famous rollercoaster is the Phantom’s Revenge.

Sandcastle Waterpark is located on a piece of land along the banks of the Monongahela River in Homestead and is owned by the same company as Kennywood. The park has 14 waterslides, multiple swimming pools and many other attractions.

The South Side: Located in downtown Pittsburgh, all of East Carson Street packed with hip and urban clothing stores, restaurants, bars and clubs. The Southside is home to some of the most popular restaurants in Pittsburgh including Nakama, a Japanese steakhouse and sushi bar. Travel down East Carson, and visitors can shop in South Side works, which holds more popular chain restaurants such as the Cheesecake Factory, and stores like Forever 21 and Urban Outfitters.

The Strip: Every Saturday many Pittsburgh locals tour the warehouse district for delicious food, drinks and great deals on merchandise. The street is packed with vendors, small shops and grocery stores selling different items such as fresh produce, pastries, kitchen appliances and sporting merchandise. It is worth taking a trip just for the food alone, the strip has small cafes with some of the best coffee, donuts and biscotti.

The Duquesne Incline: See the best view of downtown Pittsburgh while riding a century old cable car on an incline. This attraction is open year round, and was voted one of the top ten sites in the world for viewing a cityscape by USA TODAY. Perfect for any tourist wanting to get the best view of the city, and the fare is only $5.00 round trip!




Big Mac Museum: to see something strange and unusual any tourist can take a trip to the Big Mac Museum, located in North Huntington east of Pittsburgh off Route 30. The museum is filled with McDonald’s memorabilia and collectibles, and is home of the world’s biggest Big Mac replica. There is even a McDonald’s restaurant located within the museum for anyone who gets hungry.

Fun for Free:

Take a trip to Mount Washington, and see the famous view of downtown Pittsburgh! Mount Washington is a neighborhood in Pittsburgh’s south city area at the top of a steep hill overlooking the Pittsburgh Skyline.

What to Eat:

Café IO: a restaurant and deli located on Beverly Road in Mt.Lebanon, a suburb of Pittsburgh. Very small and locally owned restaurant with well-priced and delicious food. Café IO has the best fish tacos and sweet potato fries.

Katana: located on West Liberty Avenue, a delicious Sushi, Hibachi and Chinese food restaurant, with amazingly fresh and affordable sushi. On weekdays katana has all-you-can-eat sushi for $25 a person.

Six Penn Kitchen: American bistro restaurant in the cultural district in Pittsburgh. Although slightly more expensive for students on a budget, they create seasonal dishes with mostly local ingredients, and it is a very popular restaurant in Pittsburgh.

Try This:

Arguably the most famous sandwich of Pittsburgh is the Primanti Brothers Sandwiches. Primanti’s is a local Pittsburgh chain known for making large sandwiches with coleslaw, fries and a choice of meat.

After Dark:

Station Square: located down in the southside, Station Square is packed with many different bars, clubs and restaurants to choose from. Station Square consists of places like The Hardrock Café and Whim nightclub. Many locals and tourists will be seen in Station Square to see what the nightlife has to offer.

Stage AE: is a concert venue located in the North Shore of Pittsburgh with concerts going on almost every night. Many popular artists and bands play in Stage AE throughout the summer.


The T: An extended light rail line that travels all throughout Pittsburgh for a small fee. While it is sometimes difficult to figure out which lines go to what areas, the T is the easiest and cheapest way to get around Pittsburgh.

Local Knowledge:

Pittsburgh has an official language called “Pittsburghese”. This is the traditional dialect spoken by many residents of Pittsburgh. The group is referred to as “Yinzers”.


Makenzie Piatt

Ohio University | 9 stories

I'm a sophomore broadcast journalism student studying at Ohio University. I am studying abroad for my very first time this summer to Barcelona, Spain. I hope sharing my experiences of my travel abroad will encourage others to explore the world!

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