While many people may choose the beach, Disney World or an exotic island for summer vacation, sometimes it can be just as enjoyable to visit a place closer to home.

For some, Pittsburgh is the perfect place for a staycation. There are many enjoyable activities this time of year for both families and couples, making it an exciting city to explore.

Here are some favorite places for a staycation:

The Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium is located between the Lawrenceville and Highland Park neighborhoods in Pittsburgh. It is a natural habitat zoo and aquarium committed to conserving wildlife and their habitats.

“From animal encounters to the zipline to the dinosaurs there’s something for every adventurer,” its website boasts.

The Strip District, which is located between Liberty Avenue and the Allegheny River, is where people can spend the day shopping at a large assortment of international grocery stores and retailers, boutique shops and independent merchants. It is also home to some of the best restaurants in Pittsburgh such as Pamela’s Diner, Kelly O’s Diner, Cafe Raymond, Penn Avenue Fish Company (known for its sushi), Primanti Bros. and Wholey’s Market. Saturdays are the busiest times but also lots of fun.

Carnegie Science Center is a place your family can be dazzled by new and interactive exhibits plus shows. Engage your tiniest scientists at its new Little Learner Clubhouse, powered by PNC Grow Up Great! Defy gravity on the Ropes Challenge at Highmark SportsWorks. Enjoy interactive water exhibits in H2Oh! Challenge a robot to a game of air hockey in roboworld. You can also see the world’s largest Lego art display, The Art of The Brick. It’s been voted Pittsburgh’s #1 most visited museum located on the North Shore.

While visiting the North Shore, take in an afternoon or evening game at PNC Park, the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates. PNC Park, which opened in spring 2001, is an intimate, classic-style ballpark that embraces the progressiveness of Pittsburgh while saluting the spirit of early ballpark originals. Its prime location along the shore of the Allegheny River takes advantage of scenic vistas of the downtown skyline and riverfront, creating an exciting and dramatic urban sports venue. Visit pirates.com for more information.

Either before or after the Pittsburgh Pirates baseball game, stop at the Church Brew Works in Lawrenceville, a former church is now a lofty space for house-brewed beers, plus a mix of pizza, pierogi and bratwurst.

And to beat the heat in the summertime, don’t forget Sandcastle Waterpark, open beginning in June through Labor Day.

For more information on these activities, check out the visitpittsburgh.com website.

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