15 Reasons to Visit Pittsburgh in July – Summer Activities

Last Updated on July 27, 2021 by Jeremy

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July in Pittsburgh is one of our favorite months. There are long, hot sunny days, numerous events, and many opportunities to get out and enjoy the great outdoors of southwest Pennsylvania!

As such, it should be no surprise that this month's guide includes a number of outdoor activities as well as a few indoor favorites to round out the list. No matter what you do, you'll be having a great time if you visit Pittsburgh in July!

Looking for things to do in Pittsburgh in July? Check out the following options!

Take a River Cruise with Rivers of Steel Uniquely Pittsburgh

Rivers of Steel Boat Tour

Looking to get out on the water, see Pittsburgh's skyline from the water, and learn a bit of history as well? A trip out on the Uniquely Pittsburgh tour is a must.

This 90-minute tour is one of the longest boat tours in the city and makes for a great day out on the water with views and history!

After disembarking from the ship in North Side, take a stroll on the river trail, visit the Science Center, or grab a beer at Southern Tier!

Street Food in the Strip

Lucy's Banh Mi in the Strip District

More often than not, when we recommend going down to the Strip District, we follow it up with a long list of incredible restaurants that you absolutely must try.

What we overlook in many cases is the fact that the Strip District is home to some of the best international street food in Pittsburgh. So when you visit you should do so with one goal in mind- eat as much street food as possible.

Although there are tons of options, we personally recommend Lucy's Banh Mi (near Bar Marco most days in the summer), the egg rolls from the Thai cart on the right side of Roland's Seafood Grill, the mung bean pancakes from Sambok Korean Grocery, tacos from Reyna's or Edgar's, and that is just to start!

Be sure to check out our Strip District guide for more recommendations on what to do in Pittsburgh's favorite neighborhood (okay fine, our favorite neighborhood).

Yoga in Market Square

PPG Place from Market Square

If you're like us, odds are good you're going to overindulge on Saturday, so why not head down to Market Square on Sunday for their summer yoga series? Join a few hundred new friends for one of the largest outdoor yoga events in the city.

After a great yoga session, why not grab one of Prantl's famous almond tortes? (We won't judge; we'll see you there as they're one of the most popular bakeries in Pittsburgh!)

Allegheny City Brewing

Allegheny City Brewing

Allegheny City Brewing is Deutschtown's neighborhood brewery, and has an interesting assortment of beers with flavors you will not find anywhere else (including Habanero Stout, a Brown Ale aged on Commonplace Coffee, a Graham Cracker Stout, and more!).

After grabbing a round (or two) of beer, grab a meal at Max's Allegheny Tavern, shaved ice at Gus & Yia Yia's, or make a bit of a drive further north to the Pittsburgh BBQ Company.

Raspberry Picking at Triple B

Triple B Raspberries

When it comes to picking raspberries, there is no farm better than Triple B berry farm in Monongahela, PA.

This 400 acre estate is known for far and wide for its berry picking, and we've always had great luck finding the fruit here during the season.

On your way back into town, pick up a pizza at Fiori's or Beto's– two local favorites!

Bach, Beethoven, and Brunch

Bach Beethoven and Brunch

Note: 2021 dates have not currently been announced. We are hopeful this one will return!

We are featuring several Citi Park events in our weekend guide series, and one of our favorites is the Bach, Beethoven, and Brunch in Mellon Park that takes place on Sunday mornings in the summer months.

In this event, a different local ensemble, including the likes of the Pittsburgh Philharmonic, Allegheny Brass Band, Aeolian Winds, and more, performs a classical music concert each Sunday. The non-alcoholic mimosas, however, are on you.

After taking in the incredible performance, grab lunch at one of our favorite restaurants, Point Brugge in Point Breeze, or head over to Garfield to check out the Center for PostNatural History.

Deutschtown Music Festival

Deutschtown Music Festival

The Deutschtown Music Festival converts several blocks in this North Side neighborhood into one of the biggest concert arenas in the city with many bands over several stages. 2021's music festival takes place July 17th!

Many of the bars and restaurants in Deutschtown are open for the festival, including Max's Allegheny Tavern, and Allegheny City Brewing. Check them out while you are there!

Blueberry Picking at Trax Farms

Trax Farms

Mid-July also coincides with blueberry season in southwestern Pennsylvania, and one of our favorite spots to pick is Trax Farms located south of the city. The reason we love this one is that they do a great job regulating the picking of the bushes, and close early and even skip days to ensure the plants are not over-picked.

While this may be an inconvenience in being able to visit on the exact day you want to, we've always come away with an incredible haul of blueberries when we are able to make a trip to this farm.

On your way back into Pittsburgh, grab a beer at Spoonwood Brewery!

Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium

Polar Bears at the Pittsburgh Aquarium

Lions, tigers, and bears- oh my. (Sorry, can't resist.) The Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium highlights animals from around the world as well as an aquatic section that would put most standalone aquariums to shame. Our favorite exhibit is the walk-through polar bear tunnel, and on a recent visit, we had the show of our lives as the polar bears played overhead.

Looking for a bite to eat in Highland Park? Check out Teppanyaki Kyoto, Park Bruges, or Smiling Banana Leaf– three of our favorites!

Glen's Frozen Custard

Glen's Frozen Custard

As far as ice cream in the greater Pittsburgh area is concerned, Glen's Frozen Custard has an almost cult-like following behind it. Mention its name and people start drooling, while others get in their cars immediately to make the drive to Springdale to have a scoop (or three). This simple stand focuses on quality custard and seasonal specials, making it a great summer treat!

Riverview Jazz

Jazz at Riverview Park

Note: 2021 dates have not currently been announced. We are hopeful this one will return!

Another great event hosted by Citi Parks in the summer months is the Saturday jazz at Riverview Park. Cast in the shadow of the beautiful Allegheny Observatory, music lovers gather on the hillside to listen to some of the best live jazz in the city- absolutely free!

After the performance, stick around to enjoy a Hollywood blockbuster movie screening, or head down to the North Side for dinner at Federal GalleyMonterey Pub or takeout at Quik-It Chicken.

Vintage Grand Prix

Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix

The Vintage Grand Prix is an annual tradition in Pittsburgh that spans several weekends with many events focusing on all things automobile.

The event culminates with a vintage car race around Schenley Park that is unlike anything the city ever sees (outside of this event, of course). So whether you head down for the events over several weekends, or just come check out the grand finale race at the end, this event proves that there is a car lover in everyone. We guarantee it.  

In 2021 the Vintage Grand Prix is set to occur from July 16th to 25th, with race weekend occurring on the 24th and 25th.

While in Oakland, grab a meal at The Porch or Lulu's Noodles or explore the Nationality Rooms at the Cathedral of Learning!

Schwirian Farms Sunflower Festival

Sunflowers at Schwirian Farms

It is a bit unusual to think that sunflowers near Pittsburgh start blooming in mid-July, but it is true- many, many farms start opening up for sunflower experiences around the middle of the month for the flowers' roughly 14-20 day bloom.

One of the best sunflower experiences near the city is the annual sunflower festival at Schwirian Farms near Elizabeth, PA. In 2021, this event runs from July 18th to 25th and features one of the largest sunflower fields we've seen to date. The best part? Visiting this one is free!

But if you want more, the farm has registered photographers open for portrait sales (advanced registration), sunflower products for sale (grab a sunflower oil if you can), and even pick your own in a dedicated field for a nominal fee!

Sandcastle

If the heat of the summer is still with you, head down to Sandcastle water park in West Homestead for a day enjoying water slides, wave pools, lazy rivers, and more.

You don't have to be a kid to get a thrill out of this one, although by the end of the day you may certainly feel like one again.

Deer Lakes Park

Deer Lakes Park

Deer Lakes Park is one of our favorite parks to explore in Allegheny County as it has a wonderful selection of things to do- from fishing in the man-made lakes (which are beautiful), hiking in the well-marked trails, or even playing disc golf on what is perhaps the county's best course.

No matter what you are in the mood to enjoy, Deer Lakes Park should have it and is well worth the visit this month.

In the mood for something sweet after your hike? Check out Glen's Custard nearby!

Looking for more Pittsburgh events in July? Click the previous link to check out even more! Or if you're looking to visit Pittsburgh and need a neighborhood to stay in, we've got you covered there at the previous link too!

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