Things to Do in North Side Pittsburgh: Unmissable Attractions & Activities

Things to Do North Side Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh's North Side has abundant activities, sights, and experiences. Often known for its iconic sports venues like Acrisure Stadium and PNC Park, the North Side also offers a variety of world-class museums, award-winning attractions, and hidden gems waiting to be discovered.

Unique Attractions

Mattress Factory

The Mattress Factory is a contemporary art museum in Pittsburgh's North Side. This museum focuses on site-specific installations created by artists from all around the world. It provides a unique experience where visitors can immerse themselves in the artwork, exploring and interacting with the installations. The museum also offers various educational programs and workshops, inspiring creativity in the community.

The Andy Warhol Museum

Another gem in the North Side of Pittsburgh is the Andy Warhol Museum. This museum houses the most extensive collection of Warhol's art, from paintings and sculptures to photographs and films. The museum also hosts rotating exhibitions and special events dedicated to preserving the artist's legacy. This museum is a must-visit attraction for art enthusiasts interested in understanding Warhol's life and work.


Randyland is a public art display created by local artist Randy Gilson. This colorful, whimsical attraction is known for its vibrant murals, sculptures, and installations. Randyland stands as a symbol of creativity, community, and revitalization in an old historic building in Allegheny City. Visitors to Randyland can expect an interactive, joyful experience that encourages participation in the artistic process.

Bicycle Heaven

For those passionate about cycling, Bicycle Heaven is the place to be. This unique attraction is a museum and a bicycle shop boasting an extensive collection of vintage and classic bicycles. The museum's exhibits span over a century of bicycle history, showcasing various models, accessories, and memorabilia. With its knowledgeable staff and interactive displays, Bicycle Heaven will captivate both cycling enthusiasts and casual visitors.

Music and Nightlife

Regarding music and nightlife in North Side Pittsburgh, visitors can explore various options. With a wide array of clubs, bars, and live music venues, there's something for everyone in this vibrant city area.

Stage AE

Stage AE is a premier live music venue in Pittsburgh, known for hosting popular concerts and events. This venue offers music fans a unique experience with indoor and outdoor spaces. Some notable acts performed on this stage include world-renowned artists and bands. Check out their schedule to find upcoming performances that suit your music tastes.

Deutschtown Music Festival

The Deutschtown Music Festival is an annual event that showcases an array of local and national talent. This free festival spanning multiple days is perfect for those on a budget who still want to enjoy live music. With various stages and genres represented, there's sure to be something for everyone at this famous celebration of music.

Rivers Casino

The Rivers Casino offers plenty of nightlife options for guests. In addition to the gaming, guests can enjoy:

  • Live music: The casino occasionally features live performances, adding an extra layer of entertainment for visitors
  • Bars & Clubs: With an array of bars and clubs on-site, there's a spot for everyone, from casual spots to relax to high-energy environments perfect for dancing
  • Fireworks: Regular fireworks displays over the river provide a stunning visual treat for guests, adding to the overall excitement and atmosphere

Kid-Friendly Spots

Children's Museum

The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh is an engaging destination for kids of all ages, delighting and inspiring them to take off on fantastic flights of imagination. This museum offers hands-on experiences, allowing children to splash in a river, hammer a nail, and design a puppet. It caters to everyone, from toddlers to teens, providing innovative activities and exhibits for families to enjoy together.

Carnegie Science Center

The Carnegie Science Center is another family-friendly attraction on Pittsburgh's North Side. With a focus on interactive learning, the center features fascinating exhibits and programs spanning various science fields. Some popular exhibits include:

  • SpacePlace: An immersive space experience
  • H2Oh!: A water-themed exhibit
  • Roboworld: Dedicated to robots and robotics
  • Highmark SportsWorks: Exploring the science behind sports

The Carnegie Science Center also boasts a planetarium and a large-screen cinema, offering an enjoyable and educational experience for the entire family.

National Aviary

Located in the North Side neighborhood, the National Aviary is a must-visit for kids who love birds and wildlife. Home to over 500 birds representing more than 150 species, this popular destination offers themed rooms and daily shows. Visitors can get up close and personal with various birds, from penguins to parrots.

The National Aviary provides an array of interactive experiences, including:

  • Birdly: A virtual reality bird flight simulation
  • Flamingo Trek: Walk among friendly flamingos
  • Sky Deck: Watch live raptor training sessions

Water Steps

The Water Steps offer a delightful and refreshing experience, particularly during the warmer months. This unique attraction consists of cascading waterfalls and shallow pools designed for visual appeal and interactive enjoyment. Visitors, especially children, love to play and splash in the gently flowing waters, making it an ideal spot for families seeking fun and free activities in the city.

Sporting Events

PNC Park

PNC Park, located in North Side Pittsburgh, is the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball team. This beautiful stadium offers stunning views of the city skyline and the Allegheny River. Apart from hosting Major League Baseball games, PNC Park also holds concerts and other special events. Here's a quick overview of PNC Park:

  • Opened: April 9, 2001
  • Capacity: 38,747
  • Address: 115 Federal St, Pittsburgh, PA 15212

Visitors can appreciate the action on the field and the various amenities offered in the ballpark, such as a variety of food options and a fun atmosphere, perfect for an enjoyable day out with friends or family.

Acrisure Stadium

Acrisure Stadium, formerly known as Heinz Field, is another great attraction in North Side Pittsburgh. As the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team and the University of Pittsburgh Panthers college football team, Acrisure Stadium is the place for sports enthusiasts. This venue offers more than just football games; it hosts yearly concerts, festivals, and other events. Here are some critical details about Acrisure Stadium:

  • Opened: August 18, 2001
  • Capacity: 68,400
  • Address: 100 Art Rooney Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15212

With its state-of-the-art facilities, Acrisure Stadium delivers a remarkable experience for all visitors. Check the schedules for PNC Park and Acrisure Stadium to plan your visit to North Side Pittsburgh and be part of the exciting sports events and entertainment lineup.

Outstanding Breweries and Restaurants

Southern Tier

Southern Tier is a popular brewery located on the North Side of Pittsburgh. Known for its wide assortment of craft beers, visitors can enjoy a refreshing beverage while taking in the city's scenic views. The brewery also offers a mouth-watering food menu featuring tasty bites such as their signature burgers, salads, and sandwiches that perfectly complement their beer selections.

Penn Brewery

Penn Brewery is a historic brewery in the North Side. The brewery, operating since 1986, is housed in a restored 19th-century building. With a reputation for producing authentic German-style beers, visitors can enjoy the atmosphere as they indulge in traditional dishes like schnitzels, wursts, and pierogies crafted to pair perfectly with the various beers available. Penn Brewery also offers a lovely outdoor Biergarten for a delightful al fresco experience.

Federal Galley

Finding its home in the North Side, Federal Galley is a unique food hall and beer garden. This modern eatery offers a carefully curated selection of four restaurant concepts under one roof. The diverse food options provide something for everyone, making it an ideal destination for large groups or adventurous foodies. The beer garden section adds to the lively atmosphere, boasting a rotating selection of local and craft brews that will entice beer enthusiasts.

Nicky's Thai Kitchen

For those craving exotic flavors, Nicky's Thai Kitchen delivers. This highly-rated restaurant in the North Side is known for its authentic Thai dishes, ranging from rich curries to zesty salads. The cozy and inviting ambiance makes this restaurant an excellent choice for a refined dining experience. With vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available, Nicky's Thai Kitchen caters to various tastes and dietary preferences.

Fig & Ash

Fig & Ash is a relatively new North Side food scene addition. This contemporary wood-fired eatery focuses on farm-to-table techniques, bringing seasonal and fresh ingredients to each dish. The menu showcases a delicious combination of Mediterranean-inspired offerings and classic American favorites, leaving diners with a satisfying culinary experience. Fig & Ash also provides a curated wine list and an enticing cocktail menu, ensuring visitors have the perfect accompaniment for their meal.

Exploring North Side on Foot or Bike

The North Side of Pittsburgh offers a variety of outdoor activities for both locals and tourists. Exploring the area on foot or bike allows visitors to experience this city's unique attractions and picturesque landscapes fully.

Kayak Pittsburgh

Kayak Pittsburgh is a fantastic way to explore the North Side's waterways. This popular activity allows participants to rent kayaks and venture out onto the Allegheny River or the Ohio River, taking in the city's beautiful sights from a unique perspective. Both first-time kayakers and seasoned paddlers can enjoy this experience, as guidance and safety equipment are provided. Conveniently located near the North Shore Trail, Kayak Pittsburgh is an ideal starting point for a day of outdoor adventure.

North Shore Trail

The North Shore Trail is an excellent spot for those who prefer to explore on foot or by bike. This section of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail spans approximately 7 miles. It offers a pleasant, well-maintained path along the banks of the Allegheny and Ohio rivers.

While traversing the North Shore Trail, visitors can access various recreational areas, picnic spots, and scenic overlooks. The trail is also famous for running and bicycling, making it an excellent destination for fitness enthusiasts. Guided tours are available for those looking to learn more about the area to provide deeper insight into the history and natural beauty of Pittsburgh's North Side.

Discovering the North Side

Mexican War Streets

The Mexican War Streets neighborhood, a historic district in Pittsburgh's North Side, offers visitors an experience steeped in history and culture. Take a stroll through tree-lined streets while admiring the beautifully restored 19th-century homes.


Deutschtown is a vibrant neighborhood with a rich German heritage. Its proximity to downtown Pittsburgh and the Allegheny River makes it an attractive destination for visitors. Explore the East Ohio Street business district, where local shops, eateries, and bars are found.


Manchester, a historically significant neighborhood in the North Side, features beautiful Victorian-style houses and a strong sense of community. The area is also home to the 287-acre Riverview Park, offering miles of wooded trails, perfect for a day outdoors. Take advantage of visiting the historic Allegheny Observatory within the park and get ready to marvel at the universe's wonders.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top attractions in North Side Pittsburgh?

The North Side of Pittsburgh has numerous attractions worth visiting, including the Andy Warhol Museum, which is dedicated to the iconic artist and features an extensive collection of his artworks. Riverview Park is another excellent place to explore, with its 287 acres of green space, wooded trails, and the historic Allegheny Observatory. For art lovers, the Mattress Factory Art Museum offers unique and immersive installations for visitors to experience.

Which hotels are recommended in the North Shore area?

The North Side offers a range of accommodation options for travelers. Popular hotel choices include chain options like the Hyatt Place Pittsburgh North Shore, the Marriott Residence Inn, and the SpringHill Suites Pittsburgh North Shore. Smaller boutique hotels and bed-and-breakfasts can also be found in the area, providing a unique lodging experience.

Is the North Side of Pittsburgh a safe area?

While areas within North Side Pittsburgh can vary in terms of safety, they are generally considered safe for locals and visitors alike. As with any urban environment, it's essential to be vigilant and take standard safety precautions, such as staying in well-lit areas, being aware of your surroundings, and not leaving valuables unattended.

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