A Weekend Trip to Pittsburgh, PA

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One of the Aztec Gold Bridges in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania

Earlier this year we visited friends in Pittsburgh and joined them for a concert so we were able to enjoy the city for the weekend.  Here's just a few things that we would recommend.

1.  Visit the Andy Warhol Museum

I'd seen a lot of the "famous" Andy Warhol art at various museums before but this is a comprehensive and chronological collection of his art, film, and other projects.  Definitely a collection and a perspective you won't see anywhere else. 

2. Stroll through Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

I have visited my share of Botanical Gardens and Conservatories (including Kew Gardens outside London and the New York Botanical Gardens) because I love plants and flowers but this was an impressive collection that I did not expect. The compact size of these gardens makes it doable in just a couple of hours but it is an impressive collection of conservatories with a few outdoor spaces mixed in depending on the weather.  We timed it for the Spring Flower Show which was a welcome treat. 

3. Feed the Birds at the National Aviary 

Just kidding, you don't have to feed them, but you can feed Lorikeets for an extra charge.  This was an amazing aviary near downtown complete with Penguins, Eagle, and Tropical Birds including Flamingos. 

4.  Visit the Zoo

We didn't get a chance to do this on our short visit but two of our Uber drivers recommended it so I have it on our list for a return visit. 

You know we like to eat and finding places that are open, good, close by and that you can get into when you're hungry is a never ending challenge with travel but can be some of the most memorable parts of your trip so here's a few recommendations.  As always, checking opening hours and days and see if you need to book a reservation. 

5.  Brunch at The Speckled Egg 

Housed inside the renovated Union Trust Building downtown, which has been gorgeously restored, is this adorable eatery serving sandwiches, brunch, cocktails, and coffee.  Reserve a table in advance if you can or order a cocktail or coffee while you wait. 

6. Enjoy Dinner at Monterey Bay Fish Grotto

Our friends recommended this restaurant for both the views at the food (which I must say living at the beach we were a little skeptical of seafood in Pittsburgh) but both the view and the food did not disappoint.  Try to make a reservation in advance but we got really lucky and got a great table by going early. Try one of their advetureous cocktails. 

The view from Monterey Bay Fish Grotto

7. Ride the Duquesne Incline if you're headed up to the Fish Grotto

We would plan to do this to get to the restaurant if we had planned ahead.  Since heading to the restaurant was a last minute decision and we needed to get there quickly to try and get a table but riding the Incline would be a fun way to get there. 

8. Stop in for a drink (and a bite to eat) at The Porch at Schenley

Within walking distance to the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens we had lunch here before heading to the airport.  There was a wait but you can join the waitlist from Google but we were able to grab a seat at the bar.  We got one of the skillet cinnamon rolls (get them early before they give out), a pizza, and a few local beers. 

Beer Tap Selection at The Porch at Schenley

9. Grab drinks at Southern Tier Brewery

Southern Tier Brewery on the North Shore Pittsburgh

We headed here before our concert and got to try a flight of some local brews.  They also have plenty of appetizers and merch as well. 

10. Catch a game by the River 

Both the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Steelers play within walking distance of each other (I won't name the stadiums because they are likely to change names in the future) and have phenomenal venues by the river. Unfortunately we were to early for baseball and too late for football but catching a game at either (in nice weather) would be fun.  There are plenty of bars and restaurants close by to enjoy before and after the game. 

11.  Walk across the bridges

The Aztec Gold bridges and the river make a wonderful backdrop for photos.  We walked to The Speckled Egg from our hotel so we got some great photos and enjoyed the architecture downtown as we walked. There are three Aztec Gold Bridges and 23 Bridges total. 

Where to stay

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Our friends recommended that we stay in the North Shore area and so staying loyal to our Marriott Brand we stayed at the Residence Inn.  This would be a fantastic location for catching a game and not having to worry about parking (Also the Springhill Suites or the Holiday Inn) but for a view I think I would book Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel just across the river. We would also be more likely to get room upgrades there but the Residence Inn and Springhill Suites do include breakfast. 



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