What is the definition of “underrated”? Undervalued, underestimated, fail to appreciate. In my opinion, this is what a good portion of people of this country do to the great city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is one of the fastest growing cities as people recognize everything that it has to offer. As for Phillies fans, trekking across the state to experience the battle for Pennsylvania supremecy will be well worth your time as the Phils visit the Pirates from July 2-4.
The best way to begin your Pittsburgh experience is to get a full scope of just how beautiful it is. You can do this by riding the Duquesne or Monongahela Inclines. They are wooden cable cars that date back to the 1800s when they transported workers from their homes at the top of Mt. Washington to Pittsburgh’s many plants. They are still used to transport local residents, but are also a popular tourist destination to get a panoramic view of Pittsburgh.
Another Pittsburgh area that is definitely worth the visit is the popular Strip District. It is a hopping neighborhood where everything from shops selling their wares to unique restaurants lure in everyone making the visit to the Steel City. At night, this place hops with an awesome selection of bars and restaurants. If you do nothing else on this Pittsburgh trip, you must stop into Primanti Bros. restaurant, with the original location being in the Strip District. This place is responsible for paradise slapped between two slices of bread: their famous sandwiches which come topped with French fries and cole slaw.
The same can be said about Station Square, another vibrant area of Pittsburgh that is chock full of places to go and experiences to be a part of. From here, you can board one of the boats in the Gateway Clipper Fleet. They are riverboat tours of the city in which you can embark on everything from dinner cruises to simple sightseeing adventures of this awesome city. At night, there are terrific restaurants on the waterfront to choose from, and then follow that up with some drinks at the pubs and bars on site. Amongst all of the hubbub are the fountain shows at the Fountain at Bessemer at Station Square. Every 20 minutes from 9am to midnight, experience multi-colored water jets bursting in the air set to choreographed music.
When it comes to game time, it is not hyperbole to describe PNC Park as quite possibly the cream of the crop of stadiums in Major League Baseball. Set on the banks of the Allegheny River, PNC Park allows the fan breathtaking views of the Pittsburgh skyline and the Roberto Clemente Bridge. Once inside, the park gives the fan an experience that is wonderfully Pittsburgh through and through. If you didn’t make one of Primanti Bros. locations around the city, you can get your fix here at the park. Or you can grab some hot wings at Quaker Steak and Lube, another famous establishment that got its start in western Pennsylvania. Of course you can also wash those down with some brews, many of which have that Pittsburgh flair (Iron City, anyone?).
The fun doesn’t end with the game either. Just steps away from PNC Park sits Federal Street, lined with sports bars that, when the Phillies visit, is full of fans that are wearing the red and white. Almost more than any other road city on the schedule, the Phillies series with the Pirates feels like home because of fairly close proximity and the fact that they are fighting for Pennsylvania supremacy. In 2013, the fortunes of the two teams have seemed to have flip-flopped, at least temporarily. The Pirates have the best record in the National League, while the Phillies have been constantly scratching and clawing back towards the .500 mark. After years of being a doormat in the NL, Pirates fans are thirsty for the playoffs and are tired of being second fiddle to the Phils in the state. The competitive juices will be flowing this week.