Must-Visit Museums in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Got some extra time on your trip to Pennsylvania? Expand your mind by visiting all the best museums in Pittsburgh! The area serves up a big slice of history from the French and Indian War and has vibrant neighborhoods full of diversity. This has shaped a city with a museum for every type of interest. Delve into quirky artwork, discover the wonders of science, and get to know local heroes.

Seek inspiration in top art institutions like The Andy Warhol Museum and Carnegie Museum of Art, or check out quirky hidden gems like Mattress Factory and Randyland. Look back at Pennsylvania history at the Ford Pitt Museum and The Frick Pittsburgh. Tune into the world around you with a stroll through Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens or a visit to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

Ready to get stuck into this city’s buzzing museum scene? Decide which ones to add to your vacation plan with this complete Pittsburgh museums guide!

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The Andy Warhol Museum

Everyone can appreciate a bit of pop art! Learn about the genre’s superstar at The Andy Warhol Museum. The famed art museum is dedicated to the local artist’s story and legacy with the world’s largest collection of Warhol art and archives.

As well as housing his fantastic pieces, the exhibitions at The Andy Warhol Museum give you a deep insight into his creative vision. Of the seven floors of gallery and studio space, five are devoted to Andy Warhol’s life and work.

The Andy Warhol Museum

Did you know that Pittsburgh was Warhol’s childhood home? With information and early sketches, you can explore his relationship with the city and how it shaped the artist he became. Each floor will take you through a different stage of the artist’s life with a combination of mixed media pieces and personal items.

One of the most popular places to visit in Pittsburgh, The Andy Warhol Museum is located in the North Shore area. This sporty neighborhood is full of stadiums like Heinz Field and a lively choice of sports bars, brewpubs, and steakhouses.

Senator John Heinz History Center

Delve into Western Pennsylvania’s past at the Senator John Heinz History Center. It’s the largest history museum in Pennsylvania, taking you on a journey from Native American settlements all the way up to the present day. Even if you’re not a history nerd, you can’t help but get pulled in by the engaging and interactive exhibits at this top-notch institution.

Senator John Heinz History Center

Explore all aspects of life in western Pennsylvania at the Senator John Heinz History Center. Discover incredible local genius like Dr. Jonas Salk’s polio vaccine. There’s also a recording of the first radio broadcast in the Pittsburgh innovation exhibit. Head to the Heinz exhibit and check out the collections of fun memorabilia, including a giant ketchup bottle made of Heinz Ketchup bottles.

After your visit, take some time to hang out in Pittsburgh’s trendy Strip District. Converted warehouses are home to foodie hot spots, funky independent stores, and wonderful local artwork.

Carnegie Museum of Art

History and art lovers will have a fantastic time at the Carnegie Museum of Art. Andrew Carnegie founded the museum in 1895, leaving it with a rich and exciting heritage. Over 30,000 objects will take you on a journey across genres, eras, and perspectives.

Carnegie envisioned creating a collection of the “Old Masters of Tomorrow.” Explore greats like Monet and Van Gogh and modern innovations by Anton Rooskens and Ellsworth Kelly.

Carnegie Museum of Art

As great as the art collection is, the Carnegie Museum of Art building is the real masterpiece. It demonstrates endless examples of creativity and innovation, from the opulent marble of the 1907 Grand Staircase to the sleek modernist design of the 1974 expansion.

To get an extra architecture fix, head to the Hall or Architecture, where you can admire over 140 casts of architectural masterpieces. Or head to the Hall of Sculpture. Modeled after Athens’s Parthenon temple, the hall features a fantastic collection of reproduced Egyptian, Greek, and Roman sculptures.

Fort Pitt Museum

Delve into the conflicts that shaped Western Pennsylvania at the Fort Pitt Museum. Explore the French and Indian War, the American Revolution, and the founding of the city of Pittsburgh. A historic location, engaging exhibits, and an indoor/outdoor setting make this history museum a fun and educational day out for the whole family.

Fort Pitt Museum

Located on the western edge of the Golden Triangle, Fort Pitt Museum was once a key site in the French and Indian War. Explore detailed information about how fighters continued to use it in the American Revolution, the Whiskey Rebellion, and Pittsburgh’s founding.

Don’t worry: The Ford Pitt Museum is informative, but it’s far from boring. Life-like figures and 18th-century artifacts help to bring the stories to life. In the summer, one of the best seasons to visit Pittsburgh, you can take it a step further and watch live re-enactments of life in the 1700s.

The Frick Pittsburgh

Whether you like nature, design, or historic charm, you’ll find it all at The Frick Pittsburgh. This complex of museums, historic houses, and gardens offers an emporium of activities. The collection of historic buildings includes the Frick Art Museum, the 1897 Playhouse, and the 1882 Clayton House.

The Frick Pittsburgh

The main attraction at The Frick Pittsburgh is Clayton House, a Gilded Age mansion that was once the home of the Frick family. A visit will pull you into the year 1892. Uncover the turbulent stories of the era, like wealth disparity and social unrest. The Frick family had their own struggles to contend with at this time. Learn about their heart-wrenching battles with violence and grief.

Get some fresh air in the stunning greenhouse and gardens, once key producers of flowers, tropical plants, and produce for the Clayton House. The sustainable agriculture grown here is used for food in the onsite café.

Carnegie Museum of Natural History

Get stuck into nature’s wonders at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Andrew Carnegie founded it in 1896, setting the stage for a wonderful history of research, education, and conservation. But don’t worry: This museum won’t be a snooze fest! Hands-on activities and interactive exhibits will get you excited about the natural world.

Are you dinosaur mad? Carnegie Museum of Natural History has fossils from one of the best palaeontological collections in the world. Jump back to prehistoric times and watch huge skeletons in reconstructions of their natural habitats.

Fast forward to present times and explore the African Savannah and the ice caps of the Arctic. Life-sized sculptures and detailed dioramas immerse you in exotic new worlds.

Wildlife isn’t the only thing to discover at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Gems and minerals are a beautiful and essential part of our natural world. Discover over 1,300 specimens from around the world in vibrant colors and sparkling shapes.


Randyland is one of the most unusual Pittsburgh museums. But it’s a must-see during your visit! Artists, upcyclers, and lovers of the weird and wonderful should all add this art museum and public art landmark to their Pittsburgh trip itinerary. 

You can’t help but be pulled in by the colorful exterior of Randyland. Hundreds of colors and unconventional décor transport you into a bizarre fairy-tale land.


Randy Gilson, a local community activist started Randyland in 1995. He bought some run-down buildings on the North Side and began transforming them into a whimsical art center. Today, it’s one of Pittsburgh’s most photographed places on Instagram.

Step inside to wander a world of psychedelic installations. Found objects like plants, plastic animals, and construction materials serve a new, colorful purpose. Walk under a canopy of plastic fruit or admire a 24-foot-tall glass Madonna sculpture.

Carnegie Science Center

Uncover your inner Einstein at the Carnegie Science Center. This hands-on science museum is a great day out for adults and children alike. You’ll be having so much fun you won’t even notice all the new science knowledge you picked up along the way.

You’ll find an incredible choice of exhibitions at the Carnegie Science Center. Uncover what’s going on under your skin in the BodyWorks zone. This human body exhibition teaches you about your muscles, bones, cardiovascular systems, digestive system, nervous system, and brain. Look at what’s inside your throat and do mind-bending challenges to trick your brain.

Why not make a spark in the Energy Zone? Connect your own circuits and manage energy in a mini house. Find out where water is going to and coming from in the H2Oh! collection or launch into space in the immersive Mars exhibit.

Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum

Honor our nation’s heroes at the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum. It’s a wonderful attraction for history lovers and patriots. The military memorial pays tribute to all service men and women and houses over 9,100 military artifacts.

Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum

The grand architecture of the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum is a fitting tribute to everyone who has served in our military, spanning all conflicts and generations. Step into the smooth marble of the Beaux-Arts building. Imposing columns and delicate craftsmanship reflect the gravity of their sacrifice.

The museum gives you a chance to explore over 150 years of American history. Walk through an exciting journey, from the Civil War to the conflicts in Afghanistan. Photographs and objects tell the stories of American service personnel. Browse the uniforms, medals, firearms, and equipment used by our heroes. Whether you’re interested in WWI or the Vietnam War, the museum will help to bring the event to life.

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is a quiet sanctuary in the heart of the city. Whether you’re a budding botanist, interested in sustainable architecture, or just want to escape into nature, this is a wonderful spot to relax and unwind. The 15-acre plot includes a 14-room glasshouse and 23 different gardens demonstrating the very best green thumbs.

Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens

Many would say orchids are the supermodels of the plant world. Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens have a wonderful selection of award-winning orchids on display year-round in the orchid room. The gardens also house a quirky selection of bonsai trees and a huge collection of exotic plants.

With exhibits changing throughout the seasons, you’ll get a unique experience at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens with every visit. Savor the scent of blooming chrysanthemums in the fall flower show, or learn how to deal with seasonal pests.

Mattress Factory

Immerse yourself in the artwork at Mattress Factory, both metaphorically and physically. Its installations, video, and performance art are all site-specific, so you’re in for a one-of-a-kind experience. The museum takes on established and emerging artists and propels them to fame, with previous works appearing in The New York Times and Art in America.

A trip to the Mattress Factory is an invitation to incredible sensory experiences. Get lost in the colorful repetition of Yayoi Kusama or interact with Ann Hamilton’s eerie fabric panels. With a mixture of permanent and temporary exhibits, treat the Mattress Factory as a personal playground where you can unlock new ideas and creative potential.

Make sure to check the schedule before you go. As well as the exciting works on offer, the Mattress Factory hosts regular community events and festivals.

The Clemente Museum

Sports lovers will have a brilliant time at The Clemente Museum. The museum is dedicated to the life and legacy of Roberto Clemente, an iconic Major League Baseball right fielder. The super cool location is in the former Engine House No. 25. The fantastic restoration maintained some of its classic historic firehouse features.

Inside The Clemente Museum, you’ll find the world’s largest of Roberto Clemente artifacts. Delve into the superstar’s passion for the game, his personal life, his relationship with his teammates, and his humanitarian causes. Photographs and memorabilia take you through key moments in Roberto Clemente’s life.

Even if you’re not a sports fan, the story of Roberto’s trials and successes is sure to inspire you. Admire how the Pittsburgh Pirates legend overcame racial prejudice and used sport to empower young people.


Ryan O'Rourke is a seasoned traveler and the founder & editor of Treksplorer, a fiercely independent guide to mid-range luxury travel for busy people. With over 20 years of extensive travel experience, Ryan has journeyed through over 50 countries, uncovering hidden gems and sharing firsthand, unsponsored insights on what to see & do and where to eat, drink & stay. Backed by his travel experience and in-depth research, Ryan’s travel advice and writing has been featured in publications like the Huffington Post and Matador Network. You can connect with Ryan on Twitter/X at @rtorourke.

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