Pittsburgh has three rivers—the Allegheny, the Monongahela, and the Ohio-- and five main districts—North Side, West End, South Side, East End and Downtown, all of which are comprised of many other smaller districts. Everything else, such as the Pittsburgh International Airport, is in the surrounding Allegheny County.
It's a short trip from the airport to Downtown. Here stand the old, classic parts of Pittsburgh, including Fort Pitt Museum and Blockhouse, the original settlement built by the British settlers in the 18th Century. Here too are the modern economic structures of the Golden Triangle district that reflect Pittsburgh's dynamic economy. The smaller neighborhood of the Strip District provides a satisfying place to find dinner and nighttime entertainment. Restaurants and bars like Mullaney's Harp & Fiddle Irish Pub, and Primanti Bros. Restaurant give you plenty of ways to experience the eclectic community. The Strip offers a wide choice of coffee shops, cafes, and some living history in the wholesale produce markets.
The North Side is dominated by two baseball and football stadiums. It's an old working-class neighborhood that is noteworthy for the interesting architecture of the many 19th-century homes that line the streets, such as the Preserve Cottage. Stroll through and take a look at the intricate woodwork, decorative ceramic tile, slate roofs, and stained glass. For those searching for a day out, you can take in a game and then have something to eat at a place like Penn Brewery or the Church Brew Works.
This neighborhood is often overlooked for its busier counterparts, but West End holds its own treasures. It encompasses the Mount Washington district, and the best view from the 400-foot top of Mt. Washington. The whole city and the mighty, muddy Monongahela River are laid out below, like a postcard. Among its most interesting features are its inclined railways, or funiculars, that run up the Appalachian hills in and around the city, a remnant of the old mining industry. Still, there are many things to do in this district. The James Gallery and the Meter Room host modern art pieces in contemporary settings. A tasty meal can be had at Cain's.
This is the place to be on weekends, with plenty of restaurants and bars within walking distance of each other. Once the crowded home to thousands of mill workers, this has become a trendy place to live and also a great place to scope out art. Houlihan's and Pittsburgh Steak Company keep their customers satisfied with stellar cuisine. The Carson Street and Shadyside neighborhoods also have some galleries, like the Carnegie Museum of Art and the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.
This area is primarily known for its universities and ritzy neighborhoods. Both Carnegie Mellon and the University of Pittsburgh call this district home, and the businesses have shaped themselves accordingly. The street-side cafes, restaurants, and bookstores all exude academia, all the while mingling with the high-end residential neighborhoods that surround them. Prantl's Bakery, La Feria and Caesar's Designs are all must-stops.