Pittsburgh Neighborhoods

Pittsburgh Travel Blog

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Pittsburgh is largely a city of many neighborhoods, and it can be kind of confusing if you don’t know the area.  I am going to attempt here to give a bit of info on the major neighborhoods.  I am not going to go into detail about the suburbs (therefore, if the neighborhood isn’t listed, it is probably a suburb).


Strip District: (http://www.neighborsinthestrip.com/)  The Strip District is home to many of the specialty foods shops in Pittsburgh, and the Heinz History Center, which spotlights local history.  On Saturdays, the area comes alive, welcoming sellers to set up kiosks on the street.  This district has some of the city’s favorite restaurants, such as Eleven, Rolland’s Seafood, Boomerang BBQ, Kaya and Spaghetti Warehouse.  In the evenings, the Strip District is home to the majority of Pittsburgh’s nightclubs.  There is a relatively high turnaround rate for the clubs as they constantly reinvent themselves, so I won’t mention any by name, but if you are looking to dance, the Strip is the only place to go. 


Waterfront/Homestead: Once the home to Pittsburgh’s steel industry, the area was reclaimed and turned into a small shopping district.  Many mainstream shops can be found here along with a large cinema and many restaurants.  There isn’t much that is unique here, but it does provide a comfortable area to run errands and grab a bite.  The area has had a bit of problems with crime in the past few years, but extra policing seems to be doing the trick.


Southside:  (http://www.southsidepittsburgh.com/)  The southside is one of the more eclectic neighborhoods in Pittsburgh.  It is a mix of coffee shops, hip clothing stores, restaurants and bars.  The area is a popular living area for young people, making the area busy at all times (parking is a big problem).  The bars tend to be pretty laid back, focused on beer and targeted towards the college crowd.  


Downtown:  (http://www.downtownpittsburgh.com/)  Downtown Pittsburgh has a dual life: home to the major corporations during the day, and home to the culture scene at night.  At one time, the area had most of the major stores, but those days have gone and there isn’t much left in the area for shopping.  In the evenings, the Benedum Center, Byham Theater and Heinz Hall, host various dance, theater, opera, and musical tours.  Four times a year, the area hosts a Gallery Crawl, spotlighting the arts scene (www.pgharts.com).  The downtown is also home to Duquesne and Point Park Universities and Mellon Arena, home of the Pittsburgh Penguins. 


Northside: The Northside is a neighborhood in flux.  Longtime home of Penn Brewery, Carnegie Science Center and the Andy Warhol museum, the area has gotten a facelift with the building of PNC Park (Pittsburgh Pirates) and Heinz Field (Pittsburgh Steelers).  A new crop of bars and restaurants has popped up to cater to the expansion, focusing mostly on the sports scene.


Oakland/Shadyside/Squirrel Hill: (http://www.shadysideshops.com/home.html,  http://www.squirrelhill.biz/) Oakland is home to the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University, and these areas are mostly a residential area for students.  The area is filled with coffee shops, lower budget restaurants and a small shopping district on Walnut Street in Shadyside.  Shadyside has a small bar scene, including a few of the gay-friendly bars in the area.  Oakland is also home to the Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History.

Bloomfield/Lawrenceville: (http://www.shoppingbloomfield.com/)  Originally the Italian neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Bloomfield continues to have the majority of the best Italian restaurants and groceries in the city.  Additionally, it also has a blooming arts scene, thanks to having some of the edgier galleries in town.  Lawrenceville hosts the annual Art All Night exhibition, solidifying this neighborhood in the arts scene.

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