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This Surprising U.S. City Was Just Named One Of The World’s Top Travel Destinations

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When we think of the perfect travel experience, our minds automatically wander to remote places we know of but have never had the chance to visit.

By doing that, though we make one big mistake – we overlook all the amazing destinations that are right under our noses, cities that other travelers probably dream of visiting and we take for granted.

Pittsburgh from above

That’s especially the case with one criminally overlooked Pennsylvanian gem, a place that a recent National Geographic publication named one of the top travel destinations in the entire world.

And below, you’ll find out just what makes Pittsburgh such a fantastic choice for your next U.S. vacation.

So Much To Explore

Because most people only know Pittsburgh for its industrial past, they tend to write it off as just another big city with little to see – however, that couldn’t be further from the truth.

People watching a polar bear playing in the water at the Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium

Even beyond iconic landmarks like the Andy Warhol Museum (which houses the largest collection of the artist’s work), the Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium, and The Carnegie Museum Of Natural History, the city promises visitors an experience filled with culture, art, and excitement.

Even outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty to love in Pittsburgh as they take advantage of the extensive 165-park system that spans from the scenic trails of Frick Park to the panoramic views of Mount Washington.

A stream in Frick Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Art lovers, on the other hand, won’t want to miss out on a trip through the city’s Cultural District, where they can find the Benedum Center and the Byham Theater.

If this all sounds a bit overwhelming to you, you can always book an organized tour that’ll take you through some of Pittsburgh's biggest attractions, like this one that starts at $75 per person.

You’ll Get A Lot Of Bang For Your Buck

The main concern travelers have when visiting a bigger U.S. city like this is that the costs can quickly ramp up.

Pittsburgh skyline

And while that’s true for comparable places, Pittsburgh is actually one of the cheapest destinations of its kind and size, as you can also see in this U.S. News Real Estate article right here.

Don’t let the name of the publication fool you – housing isn’t the only thing that’s surprisingly affordable in this Pennsylvanian hub.

A three-course meal for two at your average restaurant costs roughly $60 (which is way better than what you’d get in most similar places across the U.S.), while a 1-mile taxi ride costs less than $2!

A Pittsburgh salad

If you’re looking to make your Pittsburgh trip extra budget-friendly, you’ll be happy to know that places like the Carnegie Museum offer heavily discounted tickets for students and seniors.

Admission is entirely free on the first consecutive Saturday and Sunday of every month, so try to time your visit accordingly.

One Of The Safest Cities In The Country

Not only does Pittsburgh offer excellent value for the money, but it’s also one of the safest cities you can visit in all of North America, which, let’s face it, is any destination’s biggest selling point.

Travel is supposed to be fun and relaxing, and here, you won’t have to look over your shoulder every two seconds.

View of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania from atop a mountain

The same source I mentioned above found Pittsburgh to have a notably lower crime rate than similarly-sized metro areas – and that includes Cleveland, Cincinnati, and Baltimore.  

A Thriving Tech Hub That Gives San Francisco A Run For Its Money

OK, so I’m not really a fan of the “destination dupe” trend going around right now since every place has its unique charm and character, but Pittsburgh truly is kind of like a smaller, cheaper, safer San Francisco, so if that’s a city you’ve wanted to visit for a while now, considering Pittsburgh instead might work in your favor.

Night view of Pittsburgh skyline

The Pennsylvanian hub boasts the same “hilly tech town” vibe and forward-thinking industries that make San Francisco so fascinating.

If that sounds like something you want to experience in the near future, your decision-making process just got a whole lot easier!

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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.