On the high ground above the southern banks of the Monongahela and Ohio Rivers sits the neighborhood of Mt. Washington. It’s famed for its quintessential view of the Downtown skyline and the rolling hills of neighborhoods in the background. In the early days of Pittsburgh, it was known as “Coal Hill” because of its easy access to several mines at the base. Rock — like gray sandstone — was also quarried in “Coal Hill.” Fun fact: that’s where they got stone for the second and current Allegheny County Courthouse.
The Monongahela Incline was recently refurbished to its former glory. (Francesca Dabecco / City Cast Pittsburgh)
1 Thing To Know
Mt. Washington is also famous for its long-standing funiculars — the only two remaining of 24 that used to scale Pittsburgh hills. The Monongahela Incline was the first one built in 1869, and the Duquesne Incline opened in 1877. These early “gravity planes” were used exclusively for coal.
Eat & Drink
🌮 If you take the Mon Incline, Gordo's Tacos & Tequila is right at the top, ready to serve you cocktails and Mexico City-style street food.
🏒 Are you a Pittsburgh hockey fan? Word on the Mount is that you might run into Evgeni Malkin at Kavsar, a take-out halal eatery with Russian and Uzbeki food.
🍻 Coughlin's Law Kitchen and Ale House has 43 rotating taps, a seasonal menu for brunch and dinner, and most famously, a gorgeous rooftop.
🍾 Go to The Summit for the specialty cocktails and small bites, stay for the cozy vibes.
🍔 Bigham Tavern has been Mt. Washington’s watering hole for over a century. Today you can find booze, microbrews, and brunch bites like loaded mac and cheese. For more American comfort food, check out Shiloh Gastro.
🍰 Cookies, cakes, pastries, pies, oh my! You can get just about any dessert at Grandview Bakery.
Get mums, pumpkins, and more at Armful of Flowers’ Fall Fest on Bigham. (Francesca Dabecco / CIty Cast Pittsburgh)
🛍️ If you want a card that says “You’re worth crossing a bridge for,” a Pittsburgh neighborhood puzzle, or a pierogi potholder, love, Pittsburgh is your one-stop-shop for gifts by local artists and makers.
🌻 Pick your own flowers or buy a bouquet at the urban farm and gift shop, Armful of Flowers. They also host flower arranging classes, gardening classes, and pop-up markets. Don’t miss Fall Fest on Bigham Street on Oct. 8 with a fall garden center, vendor market, Steelers watch party, pumpkin painting, and more.
Golden trees and fallen leaves at Emerald View Park in Mt. Washington. (Francesca Dabecco / City Cast Pittsburgh)
Go, See, Do
📸 Take the Incline to the top, and stop for a snapshot at the Grandview Overlook.
📚 Check out a book and read with a view at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, built in 1900 right on Grandview Avenue.
👟 Lace your shoes for a short, steep hike up Emerald View Trail, then take the Saddle Trail Branch for a 2.4 mile loop hike with views of the city.