4 Fun Things To Do In Downtown Pittsburgh

4 Fun Things To Do In Downtown Pittsburgh

There are a lot of things to do in downtown Pittsburgh, but here are the four uniquely Pittsburgh things you can do any time of year.

Ride an incline up Mt. Washington

While not technically in downtown Pittsburgh, right across the river is the Duquesne Incline. At 140 years old, it’s one of the oldest inclines in the United States, and has been in use for all but one of those years. It used to carry coal miners and equipment up and down “Coal Hill,” but now it’s a popular tourist attraction and method of transportation for Pittsburghers who live in Mt. Washington.

A round trip ticket costs just a few dollars. When you get off at the top, stop at the viewing platform for the best view of Pittsburgh. While you’re up there, walk around historic Mt. Washington, an old neighborhood full of cute shops and restaurants.

We recommend the Duquesne Incline because it has a small museum in the station and is tourist friendly, but if you want to see the oldest continuously operating funicular in the United States, go down the street to the Monongahela Incline. You can get to it from downtown for free by taking the “T” (our subway system) to the Station Square stop. Of all the things to do in downtown Pittsburgh, this is certainly the most unique.

Take in some culture in the Cultural District

100+ years ago, the people of Pittsburgh, as well as titans such as Heinz, Mellon and Carnegie used to come to this part of the city to enjoy the latest theater productions. The neighborhood became Pittsburgh’s red light district in the 1970’s but has been restored to its former glory and is now known as the Cultural District.

The following theaters show popular music acts, plays, and musicals every day of the week.   

Additionally, the Cultural District is home to some of Pittsburgh’s hottest restaurants, including…

Learn about Pittsburgh at the Heinz History Museum

For those who want to learn about Pittsburgh, the Heinz History Museum has something for everyone. Check out their exhibits on the French & Indian War, early Pittsburgh, the steel industry, Pittsburgh sports, the technology that’s come out of Pittsburgh, and much more.

The museum has a great gift shop and cafe, and is conveniently located close to the Strip District, which has a ton of great shops and restaurants.

Take a free walking tour of downtown Pittsburgh

A walking tour is a great way to see the sights of downtown Pittsburgh with a knowledgeable local who can tell you things you wouldn’t otherwise learn. And because you decide the price for this walking tour, it can fit into anyone’s budget.

Free Pittsburgh Walking Tours will take you by the Cultural District, show you the inclines, and you’ll get to see a lot of what’s covered at the Heinz History Museum up close and in person. Click here to learn more and reserve your spot for free.

Want more things to do in downtown Pittsburgh?

Check out Pittsburgh City Paper’s event calendar.

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So, I grew up in a suburb of Pittsburgh and thought I knew the city. Russel helped me to discover new reasons to move and miss Pittsburgh. (I now live in Scottsdale, AZ). He is open to answering questions and exploring ideas you have from seeing the greatness of this city. Check this tour our, tip him well...crafts like this is what makes this country and city GREAT! Have fun!

Anita L.Scottsdale, AZ

On our first trip to Pittsburgh we found this tour and jumped at the opportunity at a guided tour of the city! We met Russell and walked through the business district for an hour and learned about some of the history, development and architecture of the area. Proceeded to a three hour driving tour and visited the Strip District, Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh University, Oakland and took a trip up one of the inclines. Russell was a fantastic guide. He offered many historical and interesting facts about the early and current days living in Pittsburgh. I recommend this tour to anyone wanting a thorough tour of the city. Thanks again to Russell.

Cori S.Toronto, Canada

Was surprised at first to find a free or “pay what you can” tour for my fiancé and I. This was such an awesome experience and gave us more than enough knowledge to walk away with. Saw some of the oldest and historic places in DT and dove into the true spirit of Pittsburgh. Duration of the tour was perfect as well. I would definitely recommend for anyone in the area looking for any type of tour! Russell was very professional and informative the entire time! 10 of 10 would recommend!

Bryce S.
Bryce S.Raleigh, North Carolina

This tour was the perfect way to spend an afternoon. If you're looking for a comprehensive Pittsburgh experience then look no further! Russell is knowledgeable and passionate. I especially appreciated the thoughtful answers he gave to all my questions! 10/10 would do again.

Stephanie L.Burke, Virginia

This 90-minute walking tour is informative, fun, and a perfect thing to do if you want to get to know this interesting city a bit more. Russell kept the energy up, provided a history lesson, included many fun facts, and took me past many buildings and sights I would have otherwise ignored. A perfect introduction to Pittsburgh. Thank you Russell!

Amelia M.Baden, Switzerland

Russell has given me an unforgettable time in Pittsburg. I enjoyed the best views, learned a lot about Pittsburg, saw great places, waved Amish and visited the wonderful Fallingwater. I can only recommend his tours to everyone that is planning to visit Pittsburgh. Ask for an individual tour, especially if you have little time and would like to see as many as you can. Thanks, Thanks, Thanks Russell for the great days and beautiful music

Nikola M.Frankfurt, Germany

What a brilliant tour guide! Never done one of these and we were in such capable hands. Our guide was so knowledgeable and easy to listen to, you could tell the passion was true. Would thouroughly recommend to anyone visiting Pittsburgh; this tour is a must

Rob S.London

Having never been to Pittsburgh, I was hoping to find an experience where I’d get the most bang for my buck-luckily, Free Pittsburgh Tours delivered! The tour guide was knowledgeable, quirky, and totally entertaining. He was also flexible to the personal needs of the group, which was greatly appreciated. I would definitely recommend this tour for any age group wanting to see Pittsburgh from a different point of view!!

Katelyn V.Colorado