Navigating the US: Getting Around in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh is a Pennsylvania city nestled where the Monongahela and Allegheny Rivers meet to form the Ohio River. The ‘Burg, as it’s affectionately called by locals, is home to the Steelers nation and the infamous Pittsburghese English dialect, is a hodgepodge of culture, influenced strongly by the immigrants that settled there. The street system is a bit confusing, making getting around in Pittsburgh difficult but don’t worry—we’ve got just the information for you!
Recommended Modes of Transportation
- Port Authority—Consisting of bus, light rail, and incline service systems, the network of Port Authority is probably the best way to get around Pittsburgh. Busses go almost anywhere in the city and the surrounding Allegheny County, meaning tourists can get almost everywhere. The light rail connects downtown to the southside of the city. If you’re having trouble deciding which route is best to get you where you need to go, make sure you check out Port Authority’s Trip Planner.
- By taxi—Taxi is probably the easiest way to get around the city if you don’t know the roads well, though it can be a bit on the expensive side. Be aware though—they can be difficult to hail outside of the Downtown, South Side, and Oakland areas. For more information, you can contact Yellow Cab at (412) 321-8100.
- By car—Driving yourself around Pittsburgh is probably the least convenient way to travel. The roads can be confusing, though the Belt System helps. This system can be seen in the five different color-coded routes along main roads that form a unique system of ring routes around the ‘Burgh and its surrounding areas. They’re marked by signs showing a colored circle. Find more information on the Belt System website.
Major Highways and Roadways to Know
The major arteries of the city are Parkways East, West, and North. The Pennsylvania Turnpike is also an important highway, connecting Pittsburgh to Harrisburg and Philadelphia, while Interstate 79 takes travelers to Erie in the north and Morgantown, West Virginia in the south.
Alternative Ways of Seeing the City
- By boat—Because two rivers cut through the city, one of the best ways to get around is by boat. Gateway Clipper and Pittsburgh Cruise Lines offer shuttle services to sports events at Heinz Field and PNC Park.
- By bicycle—There are multiple different bike trails throughout the city, running along the rivers. This makes biking a great way to get around in Pittsburgh, though riding on the street might be a bit on the dangerous side. If you decide to use bikes as your main mode of transportation, make sure you’re careful of the narrow and hilly streets!
- Just Ducky Tours—This amphibious tour will take you through the city both by land and by water, showing you a variety of sights and attractions. For tickets, just check out the tour’s website!
- Pittsburgh Steelers—This city bleeds black and gold, so if you’re in town and into football, stopping by Heinz Field for a Steelers game is a must—unless you’re a Bengals, Browns, or Ravens fan, that is.
- The Carnegie Museums—In a single building, you can get your fix of multiple different museums, including the Carnegie Museum of Natural History and the Carnegie Museum of Art. These museums offer a wide array of cultural experiences, making them a great place to go if you’re in Pittsburgh for a visit.
- Mount Washington—If you want a really unique experience, be sure to take either the Monongahela or Duquesne Inclines up to the top of Mount Washington, providing you with spectacular views of the entire city. It’s the perfect day trip, especially in autumn with the beautifully colored foliage.
For more information on getting around in Pittsburgh and the attractions it offers, check out these websites: