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Pittsburgh named top global travel destination in National Geographic publication

Something Good: Pittsburgh makes top-100 unexpected destination list
Something Good: Pittsburgh makes top-100 unexpected destination list 00:53

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- Pittsburgh has been named a top global travel destination in a new National Geographic publication.

"Here Not There" by Andrew Nelson explores 100 unexpected travel destinations, including Pittsburgh. VisitPittsburgh, the region's tourism agency, says the book plays off the growing trend of "destination dupes," giving travelers alternatives to overcrowded, expensive and predictable hot spots. 

As a "hilly tech town" with steep neighborhoods, water views and tech start-ups, Pittsburgh is presented as an alternative to San Francisco. The 'Burgh even has its own Oakland. 

"For those that haven't been, Pittsburgh is a revelation—like San Francisco it's a mix of forward-thinking technology sectors mixed with some of the most historic and community-minded 19th Century neighborhoods found anywhere. And, of course, hills," Nelson said in a press release from VisitPittsburgh.

San Francisco is known for its steep streets, but with a 37% grade, Canton Avenue in Pittsburgh's Beechview neighborhood actually holds the title for the steepest street in the country. But there's more than just hills -- the article also showcases must-see attractions like the Carnegie Museums and Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens. 

VisitPittsburgh said the accolade speaks to the "exciting energy" around travel in the Steel City. 

"What an incredible honor to have Pittsburgh featured in such an esteemed travel publication," said VisitPittsburgh president and CEO Jerad Bachar. "We have worked hard to position Pittsburgh as a travel destination that will surprise and delight visitors, and this designation showcases our destination's ability to do just that. Tucked away in the heart of the East Coast, Pittsburgh is a place where tech meets rec, Warhol meets whiskey and unexpected adventures abound."

At VisitPittsburgh's annual meeting last week, the agency said the area raked in more than $6.4 billion in 2023.

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