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Pittsburgh's Countryside

Day One

Morning

Carnegie Museum of Art and
Carnegie Museum of Natural History

The Carnegie Museum of Art, the preeminent art museum in the region, offers a distinguished collection from ancient Egypt to present day that includes paintings, sculpture, drawings, photographs, architecture and video. The Carnegie Museum of Natural History provides exciting interactive exhibits that explore and illuminate four billion years of life on earth. The two museums are contained in the same building, so the art lovers can go one way and the natural history buffs can go the other. Group rates. Restaurant on site. Really nice gift shop. Tour guides available and included in group admission price.

Lunch

This would be a great area for everyone to do lunch on his or her own. Some could stay in the museum and eat at the Museum Café and others could go directly across Forbes Avenue to Craig Street. There are many restaurants to choose from on Craig ranging from an Asian noodle house to a pub to upscale Italian. Lots of variety. Also some interesting boutique-type shops.

Afternoon

The Nationality Rooms

A visit to the Nationality Rooms, located in the Cathedral of Learning on the University of Pittsburgh campus, provides a mini-tour of the heritage of Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Twenty-nine rooms reflect Classical, Byzantine, Renaissance and Folk styles that represent the "good things" immigrants brought to America. Guided tours for ten or more are available by reservation. Admission fees are nominal, making the Nationality Rooms an inexpensive and unique experience.

Evening

Duquesne Incline

The Duquesne Incline is a 110-year-old cable car that once carried steel workers from their homes on Mt. Washington to the steel mills located along Pittsburgh’s three rivers. While the steel mills are long gone, the Incline remains. The holiday view is enhanced by the downtown holiday lights and the Christmas tree at "The Point." USA Today Weekend ranked the nighttime view from Mt. Washington the #2 Most Beautiful View in America and had this to say:

Standing atop Mount Washington, the steep hill that rises giddily on the city's south side, sightseers enjoy the unforgettable panorama of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers flowing together to create the mighty Ohio, that waterway so essential in the nation's settlement. The rivers cup downtown's lustrous Golden Triangle, where landmark skyscrapers thrust upward like rockets. At night, lights twinkle on no fewer than 15 bridges.

Dinner atop Mt. Washington

The following are a few recommendations for restaurants with breath-taking views of Pittsburgh.

Day Two

Morning

The National Aviary

The National Aviary, a fascinating indoor bird zoo, is home to more than 500 rare birds from around the world. Walk-through exhibits offer an intimate interaction between visitors and free-flying birds. Marvel at the nobility of eagles and be amazed at the antics of penguins, parrots and more. Group activities include guided tours, up-close encounters and educational (and fun!) breakfast and lunch programs.

Afternoon

Calvary United Methodist Church

Calvary is as interesting and inspiring as any of the finest Cathedrals in Europe. Elaborately decorated spires, louvers, gargoyles, geometric designs, St. Andrews Crosses, angelic faces carved into the Cleveland bluestone and vaulted oak ceilings are just some of the architectural features that have captured the imagination of art critics and historians alike. The crowning feature of the building is the abundant Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass windows.

To Schedule a Group Tour: Dennis Panek, 412.323.1070

Mattress Factory

The Mattress Factory is a museum of contemporary art that presents art you can get into — room-sized environments, created by in-residence artists. Located in the historic Mexican War Streets of Pittsburgh’s North Side since 1977, the Mattress Factory is one of few museums of its kind anywhere. Guided museum tours are available for groups.

The Andy Warhol Museum

The Andy Warhol Museum provides a one-of-a-kind archive of Pittsburgh’s most idiosyncratic prodigal son (yes, he’s really from Pittsburgh). The museum’s large collection of original Warhol art and memorabilia provide a personal experience of recent contemporary culture. Guided tours are available. Restaurant on-site and a very quirky gift shop.

Dinner

The Grand Concourse Restaurant

The Grand Concourse Restaurant is housed in the old P&LE Railroad station, which provides a stunning backdrop for this seafood house located in the popular Station Square complex on Pittsburgh’s South Side. The main dining room, which can accommodate 500 people, is in the old concourse, sporting large stained-glass windows and ceilings in excess of 80 feet. The Old Station Baggage Room, an informal space with a wooden plank floor, has been transformed into a lively bar called the Gandy Dancer, perfect for casual dining or just drinks and appetizers.

Day Three

Pittsburgh and Its Countryside

Time to "hub and spoke"! Quaint towns, quirky attractions and quality dining are a quick trip from the city. Choose one of the destinations below as the centerpiece to your day away and we’ll provide information about what else to see in your county of choice.

  • Kiski Junction Railroad - Armstrong County

    Seasonal fun on a working historic rail car with beautiful riverside views

  • Old Economy Village - Beaver County

    A beautifully preserved separatist community that’s perfect for an Alternative Tour

  • The Maridon Museum - Butler County

    A private Asian art collection of staggering proportions housed in an unusual museum

  • W.A. Young & Sons Foundry and Machine Shop - Greene County

    Private tours of what the Smithsonian calls "the greatest find of its type in the nation"

  • The Jimmy Stewart Museum - Indiana County

    Homage to a hometown hero and Harvey’s best friend

  • The Amish Experience - Lawrence County

    Old Order flea markets, furniture, produce and crafts

  • Chocolate Choices - Mercer County

    Taste the treats at two great candy factories, Daffin’s and Philadelphia

  • Pennsylvania Trolley Museum - Washington County

    Rides, history, artifacts and the actual Streetcar Named Desire

For more information on Pittsburgh and Its Countryside attractions and accommodations, or assistance planning a tour, contact the VisitPittsburgh Group Tour department at 412.281.0482, extension 3153.

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