North Side is an area of Pittsburgh, just across the Allegheny River from Downtown. In years past it was the independent city of Allegheny, but has long been incorporated into the City of Pittsburgh itself.
From Downtown there are several bridges you can use to cross the Allegheny River. The most direct is I-279 (the Fort Duquesne Bridge), a freeway bridge that will connect directly to the stadium area and with other freeways heading north. Another fast option is the I-579 bridge, another freeway which takes you directly from the Downtown area into North Side. From Downtown directly there are three bridges which carry street traffic - the 6th St. Bridge (also known as the Roberto Clemente Bridge), 7th St. Bridge (or the Andy Warhol Bridge), and 9th St. Bridge (or the Rachel Carson Bridge). All three are nearly identical historic steel suspension bridges of an interesting design. Bear in mind that the 6th St. Bridge is closed to vehicular traffic during Pirates and Steelers games.
To the west of Downtown is the West End Bridge, which crosses the Ohio River and connects to the South Side area. To the east of Downtown are two bridges which link the North Side to the Strip District - the 16th St. Bridge and the 31st St. Bridge.
By public transit
From Downtown, any of the 11, 16, and 500 Port Authority bus routes are good, frequent routes which will bring you directly to the North Side. The 54C will get you directly from the Strip.
Due to the proximity of most North Side attractions to Downtown, it is quite easy to get from there into North Side by walking. Four bridges - the I-279, 6th St., 7th St., and 9th St. Bridges - have pedestrian walkways. During Pirates and Steelers games, the 6th St. Bridge is closed to vehicular traffic, making it a pedestrian bridge.
Allegheny Commons, south of North Avenue between Brighton Road and Cedar Avenue, +1 412 330-2569, . Daily 6AM-11PM. Pittsburgh's oldest park, the commons is a historic and very lovely park with lush green lawns, sculptures, and a small lake among its many shady trees. Free.
National Aviary, Allegheny Commons West, +1 412 323-7235, . 10AM-5PM every day of the year except Christmas. The only "national" aviary in the entire country, this small but splendid place has lots of exotic birds to enjoy - eagles, penguins, lorikeets, parrots, flamingos, etc. A couple of exhibits allow you to stroll through with birds flying around you, and the aviary offers a constant program of feeding times and bird shows to enjoy throughout the day, bringing you even closer to their lovely birds. $10 adults, $9 seniors (60+), $8.50 children (2-12), free for under 2.
Andy Warhol Museum, 117 Sandusky Street, +1 412 237-8300, . Tu-Su 10AM-5PM (Fridays open until 10PM), closed on Mondays and major holidays. Seven floors of the art of Andy Warhol - the official museum for one of America's greatest pop artists. $12 adults, $9 seniors, $8 students/children.
Carnegie Science Center, 1 Allegheny Avenue, +1 412 237-3400, . Su-F 10AM-5PM, Sa 10AM-7PM. A great place to learn about science, this huge museum (four floors!) has exhibits aimed toward both children and adults dealing with many aspects of science and technology. Some of the highlight exhibits include a model railroad village, an aqarium, a robot exhibit, and numerous theaters and stages for science demonstrations. In the large-screen theater, you can see unusual films in a unique setting that surrounds you with both picture and sound. Another attraction is a World War II submarine, the USS Requin, moored in the Ohio River just aside of the Science Center itself. $14 adults, $10 children/seniors (some exhibits extra).
Children's Museum of Pittsburgh, 10 Childrens Way, +1 412 322-5058, . M-Sa 10AM-5PM, Su Noon-5PM. $10 adults, $9 children/teens/seniors, children under 2 free.
Mansions. Years ago, when it was the city of Allegheny, the North Side was home to many wealthy businessmen including Andrew Carnegie among many others. Their mansions remain, now perhaps subdivided into apartment units.
Mattress Factory, 500 Sampsonia Way, +1 412 231-3169, . The Mattress Factory is a museum of contemporary art that exhibits room-sized works called installations.
Mexican War Streets, . These streets are so called because they were named for the battles and generals of that war by the original developer in 1848. Today they are notable for fine examples of the restoration of old urban homes.
North Shore Riverfront Park. Situated along the Ohio and Allegheny Rivers, this park offers a chance to get close to the rivers and enjoy excellent, unobstructed views of downtown. A trail runs the length of the park, which stretches from the Carnegie Science Center to beyond downtown, and there are numerous lawns and public artworks, as well as boat tie-ups and facilities for canoes and kayakers. The Water Steps, just west of PNC Park, is a large interactive fountain which children often play in during the summer.
Riverview Park, on Riverview Avenue just off Perrysville Avenue, . A large wooded and hilly park with an extensive network of trails, a swimming pool, a playground, and great views of Pittsburgh.
Allegheny Observatory, 159 Riverview Avenue, +1 412 321-2400, . Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the University of Pittsburgh's Neoclassical observatory, completed in 1912, was home to several historically significant astronomers such as Samuel Langley and John Brashear. The observatory is still actively engaged in conducting astronomical research. Free tours of the observatory are offered from April through the end of October with an advanced reservation.
PNC Park, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates
Heinz Field, North Shore Drive (off Allegheny Avenue or I-279), +1 412 323-1200, . Games afternoons and evenings; call for schedule. Heinz Field, the home of one of the greatest NFL franchises of all time and the heart of the fiercely loyal Steeler Nation, is where the Pittsburgh Steelers football team play their home games. The stadium is also the home of the University of Pittsburgh Panthers football team . The stadium is massive and a "Great Hall" on the east side of the stadium holds a collection of Steelers and Pittsburgh Panthers memorabilia. Be aware that all Steelers home games sell out, so if you want to go, try to get your tickets early or on a resale website, or scalp.
PNC Park, 115 Federal Street, +1 412 323-5000, . Games afternoon and evenings; call for schedule. The Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team, known locally as the "Buccos", play their home games here. The Pirates may not be the winning baseball team they once were, but they manage to keep a loyal fan base and their ballpark is widely considered one of the most beautiful in the major league, with a stunning view of downtown past the outfield. $9-$210 (bleachers to club seats).
Kayak Pittsburgh, on the Allegheny River next to PNC Park, +1 412 779-2929, . Open during summer months, M-F 11AM-Dusk, Sa-Su: 10AM-Dusk. Kayak on the Pittsburgh rivers. Solo kayaks $15/hour, $8/additional half-hour; tandem kayaks $20/hour, $10/additional half-hour.
Manchester Craftmen's Guild (MCG Jazz), 1815 Metropolitan St, 15233 (Chateau Street, to Beaver Ave, right onto North Franklin St, right onto Metropolitan Street), ☎ +1 412 322-0800, . Great live jazz from some of today's living legends and an eclectic gallery featuring renowned contemporary artists and student showcases.Concert tickets: $39.50, gallery: Free.
Max's Allegheny Tavern, 537 Suismon Street, +1 412 231-1899, . M-Th 11AM-11PM, F-Sa 11AM-midnight, Su 9:30AM-10PM. A restaurant serving German food with a long history. $20-30 (dinner).
Penn Brewery, 800 Vinial St, Pittsburgh 15212, ☎ 412-237-9400, . PAT Route 6A Penn Brewery is an authentic German beer hall and restaurant in a beautiful historic old brewery building. Great beer, great food, and some evenings great music (Wednesday nights features the Joe Grkman band). Also hosts an annual Oktoberfest.
Inn On the Mexican War Streets, 604 W North Ave, ☎ +1 412 231-6544, .
SpringHill Suites Pittsburgh North Shore, 223 Federal Street, ☎ +1 412 323-9005, .
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