Looking for an interesting neighborhood to hang out in on your trip to Pittsburgh? The Strip District is a top contender. With great shopping, nightlife, restaurants, and must-see attractions lining its historic streets, this historic area is one of the city’s must-see quarters.
Pittsburgh’s Strip District sprawls about half a square mile in Downtown Pittsburgh around Railroad Street/Waterfront Place, Smallman Street, Penn Avenue, and Liberty Avenue. The area’s converted warehouses now house everything from world-class entertainment at the Pittsburgh Opera and hipster-approved tasting at the Wigle Whiskey Distillery to some of the city’s top eateries & bars and street food vendors.
Ready to take your Pittsburgh holiday to new heights? From what to see & do to where to eat, drink & stay, this complete Pittsburgh Strip District travel guide has all the info you need…
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What to see & do in Pittsburgh’s Strip District
Senator John Heinz History Center
Looking for a local museum to fill your days? The Senator John Heinz History Center in the Strip District is an affiliate of the Smithsonian—and it’s easy to see why. From old photographs of the city published in the New York Times to storytelling exhibits celebrating Pennsylvania’s past, there’s plenty to see and do at this popular Pittsburgh museum.
Traveling to the Senator John Heinz History Center with kids? They’ll love playing their way through the museum’s interactive discovery zone and standing at the base of an 11-foot ketchup bottle in the Heinz exhibit. Made of real bottles reflecting changes throughout the brand’s history, this quirky attraction is popular with adults as well.
For a high-class evening of entertainment in the Strip District, buy some tickets for a Pittsburgh Opera performance at the Blitz Opera Factory. Full of glitz, glamour, and high-stakes musical storytelling, the shows are sure to leave your jaw on the floor.
Princesses, knights, pirates, and betrayals are all part of a typical night at the Pittsburgh Opera. For the ultimate experience, though, treat yourself and spring for balcony box seats. You’ll enjoy a fantastic view of the performance and feel like real-life royalty.
Strip District Terminal
For a laid-back, “go where the wind blows you” kind of afternoon, head to the Strip District Terminal. This uber-cool converted warehouse started as a produce-focused farmer’s market in 1929, but these days it’s so much more.
Truthfully, there’s not much you can’t do at the Strip District Terminal. Go on an impromptu shopping spree at a handful of local outlets, sit down for a pint at the microbrewery, experience the future of mini golf at the tech-focused Puttshack, and satisfy your cravings at the food hall. The space even has weekly trivia nights if you want to embrace your competitive side!
Wigle Whiskey Distillery
If you fancy yourself to be something of a whiskey connoisseur, a visit to the Wigle Whiskey Distillery is a must while in Downtown Pittsburgh. Pop into the tasting room for a flight of premium ryes, bourbons, and specialty blends—and a burger from the kitchen.
But don’t stop there. Even though whiskey is where the Wigle Whiskey Distillery got its start—and remains its specialty—the distillery has since expanded to produce other craft spirits, including rum, gin, brandy, and liqueurs.
To kick your experience up a notch, book a behind-the-scenes Wigle Whiskey Distillery tour. During this one-hour adventure, you’ll learn the wacky history of Pittsburgh’s Whiskey Rebellion, be let in on the secrets of whiskey-making, and wet your whistle during a private, guided tasting.
Three Rivers Heritage Trail
Want to take a nice afternoon stroll in the city center? Check out the Three Rivers Heritage Trail. This 33-mile network of paved waterfront pathways is also an accessible option for wheelchairs or young families with strollers.
Whether you choose to walk, jog or ride rental bikes along the Three Rivers Heritage Trail, you’ll discover several of Pittsburgh’s top attractions along the way. The path runs alongside the city’s three prominent rivers—the Allegheny River, the Ohio River, and the Monongahela River—over some of Pittsburgh’s most photographed bridges and straight through Point State Park.
The Clemente Museum
Are there any baseball lovers in your travel crew? Looking to keep the excitement going after a game at Pittsburgh Park Stadium? Pop into The Clemente Museum. This attraction is dedicated to its namesake, Roberto Clemente, a Pittsburgh Pirates legend, and is considered the world’s largest collection of baseball memorabilia.
In honor of the best MLB player of his time, The Clemente Museum showcases everything from bats and balls to jerseys and a giant mural of his likeness. The museum welcomes guests through guided tours only; you’ll need to plan/book ahead if you want to visit. It’s a must-see for any baseball mega-fan!
Where to eat & drink
Pamela’s Diner touts the “best breakfast in Da ‘Burg,” from classic meat and eggs and homemade hash to specials like strawberry hotcakes for brunch-goers with a sweet tooth. There are five locations across the city, but luckily, there’s one right here in the Strip District, in all its bubblegum pink and baby blue retro glory.
Chowing down on one of 25 giant sandwiches at Primanti Bros. Restaurant and Bar is a staple of the Pittsburgh travel experience. From a classic Reuben to an experimental fish & cheese, there’s a perfect handheld for everyone. Of course, you could get wings, loaded fries, or a chopped salad at Primanti Bros., too. But if you’re coming all the way here, you’re probably going for the sandwiches—just trust the reviews on this one!
Eleven is the Strip District’s industrial chic beauty. The converted warehouse boasts a sophisticated interior and a second-story patio with a more laid-back atmosphere and a separate tavern menu. This casual dining experience could feature anything from fresh oysters to soft pretzels. The contemporary dinner service includes highlights like lamb osso bucco, saffron Scottish salmon gnocchi, and lemon creme brulee for dessert.
Microbrew lovers assemble! The BeerHive serves all your favorite pub fare, like wings, fried pickles, smash burgers, and nachos. The main draw to this bar, though, is, of course, the extensive rotating draught list. That’s not to mention a selection of over 85 cans/bottles from craft brewers around the country—and even the world! If you’re serious about your beer, this is where you’ll want to end up during happy hour.
Bar Marco knows two things better than just about anyone: good Italian food and fine wine. The two-course menu is an ever-changing wonder of small plates and pasta, always accompanied by their signature homemade sourdough focaccia. Change your pour up with pairings for each course, or order a couple of bottles for the table-—anything goes at this wine bar.
Before leaving Bar Marco, be sure to pop into the bottle shop and stock up for the remainder of the trip. Or pack a special bottle in your suitcase and break it out on your next special occasion to bring back that good-memory feeling.
Exposed brick, industrial features, and live music give CADENCE+ Cellars Speakeasy a jazzy prohibition-era feel. Nonetheless, this restaurant maintains a bright and airy atmosphere thanks to its main-level location and large windows.
And do you know what pairs exceptionally well with a speakeasy-style cocktail? A sophisticated plate of grub. Even if you’re not in the mood for a lot of food, order one of their feature grazing boards. Yum!
Where to stay
Although there’s only a handful of accommodation options in the Strip District, the neighborhood is one of the most popular areas to stay in Pittsburgh thanks to its “cool factor.” Here are a few ideas to start your lodging search…
One thing you’ll immediately notice about the Hampton Inn & Suites Pittsburgh Downtown is how spacious the guest rooms are. With in-suite living spaces and ample room to dance, read, work, and relax, you’ll never feel cooped up here. This hotel is also a great value pick, with a prime location, free breakfast, and free parking. Score!
Looking for a hotel that takes your every need at heart? The Homewood Suites by Hilton Pittsburgh Downtown has done everything it can to bestow that home-away-from-home feeling. With an indoor pool for lazing the day away and an outdoor firepit lounge for conversations that stretch into the wee hours of the morning, this hotel knows it’s those in-between moments when memories are really made. Suites even have dining tables and kitchenettes (which can be a huge money-saving feature if you’re willing to prep a few quick snacks or meals). Don’t worry about breakfast, though: That’s on the house.
Imagine waking up in the AC Hotel by Marriott Pittsburgh Downtown’s guest rooms—featuring modern minimalist design with streamlined furniture and relaxing neutral tones—and heading on down to a complimentary European breakfast service. What a way to start the morning! The hotel keeps the pampering going all day long with its spa-inspired approach to the guest experience. Not only are full-size artisanal bath products stocked in every room, but you’ll find several hydration stations located throughout the hotel and a lavender sachet station in the lobby for an aromatherapy turndown.