• Pittsburgh Desi Guide Part 2

  • 66 Visits
Outbound Tourism:

For those brave once out there, Pittsburgh is perfectly placed for a super-fast and very inexpensive trips to Washington, Newyork, Niagara falls and West Virginia (ISCON). Desis on short term project (or) for any group of guys and gals this is your best bang for the buck. See what you can visit over a weekend living in Pittsburgh. 

Washington :  Go to Mega Bus and book tickets for Friday night to Washington. Distance and time are perfectly suited for a night trip. It is 6hour trip generally starting at 10:20-11:00 PM and reaching Washington at 4:00 AM at Union station. It is perfect time at station with not much crowd. Freshen up, have Breakfast and be out by 7:00 AM – 8:00 AM. 

Washington has amazing hop in / hop out tourist buses. Get on to them and have a nice City ride. These are hop in/ hop out, you can get down at any stop have a stroll, click some photos and hop back next bus all for single fare. Return to Union station at night and hop on your bus to Pittsburgh. Busses are there from 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM and your Pittsburgh drop point is Downtown convention center. If you have ride back home its great (or) Uber is just minutes away. Remember Pittsburgh is one the most livable and safe city 😊

Newyork: Everything that applies to Washington is true for New York. Instead of Union station, it is Penn Station. It has same convenient timings with overnight busses. If you can risk burden of one day trip, then visiting Newyork from Pittsburgh can be fun and very in-expensive. Be warned, there are absolutely crazy number of things you can do in Newyork, even for a days trip. Catching up overnight busses and spending busy day at Big apple can be very tedious thing to do.

Niagara Falls: This is one the must-see place for all Indians. I don’t know what is with our desis and falls but no once trip is complete without a visit to falls. conveniently enough falls is 4hr drive from Downtown Pittsburgh. If you can wake up one weekend early, you can complete a visit to Niagara Falls in same days. For first timers on a single day trip follow below pointers

  • Get your tickets online for Maid of the Mist, Cave of Winds. You will not save time (or) get any discounts, but you will not be tempted to buy no so useful combo packages
  • Maid of Mist is right at the entrance get into line, have the boat trip and on return spend time at small waterfall next to Maid of Mist.
  • Your next must-see place is at another end of park, it’s a pretty long walk. If you are planning to make it quick there is very good bus service in the park get on and go to horse show point.
  • Cave of winds is right here. Spend time at fall and relax at horse show point. Take the bus get back to park entrance. Right out of gate there are numerous Indian food stalls. 
  • Pack your food and drive back home.
  • You can have 5-6 hrs fun time in pack, if you stick to schedule and with 9hr commute your visit is complete.


New Vrindaban located in west Virginia is less than two hours’ drive from Pittsburgh. It is almost like international headquarters for ISCON movement. ISCON is packed with events almost all over the year (more so in summer). You can see Krishna devotees all over from US at ISCON events. 

Everything about ISCON is beautiful. Devotees dancing, very well-maintained temple, pond filled with fish (make sure you carry lot of bread), freely roaming peacocks to name a few. If are lucky you can watch peacocks fanning out their feathers showing their impressively sized and patterned plumage at garden next to ISCON. At all ISCON events lunch is served, but additionally they also have a canteen attached. Just word of caution, watch out for weather, snow and visibility are generally poor during winters and roads can be difficult to drive.

Pittsburgh Accommodation: 

Named as one of the most livable cities in the world, Pittsburgh is a place full of cultural diversity, with nice ecosystem for Indians. If you’re looking for an accommodation, you’ll want to read these tips on the best places.

If you are looking to start as a paid guest (or) share accommodation. I recommend joining one of Pittsburgh Social groups. You can find details about our group here. It is most convenient and secure way to ask for accommodation (or) to post vacancy availability in your house.

Generally, for Desis, Green Tree Road is very convenient to be your first accommodation. If you plan to land in Pittsburgh on a Friday and be  settled in by Monday, this is the place to be. There is a whole ecosystem build for us Desis that will make you feel as if you are in another Indian city than in a foreign place (This may be an overstatement, but it is close). 

Carriage Park apartments is where you can find largest Indian community in Green tree road. Highland Hills, Greenbrier Apartments are other few options. There are also multiple independent houses where they offer paying guest options along green tree road stretch. You can check   Craigslist for them (look for paying guest in Green Tree or Carnegie). 

  • Below are few things you get access to if you are in Green tree road
  • Easy access to Indian Grocery and Indian Restaurants
  • Throw away distance to assortment of other eateries, Groceries and stores.
  • Excellent Bus facility to Downtown. You will have buses every 10 mins during peak hours.
  • Near 24/7 Uber, Lyft availability.
  • Quality preschools, beautiful Parks and play grounds at very near distance.
  • Libraries with year-round activities.
  • Large pool of Indian community, your kids and parents will never be short of friends.
  • Easy access to food, carpools for your kids, multitude of events during Indian festivals. 

After Green tree, Upper St Clair, South Fayette, South hills from south side. McKnight Road, Wexford, Cranberry from North of Pittsburgh are other popular housing choices for Indian community. You can find decent amount of Indian crowd in these places and they have some of top school ranked districts in Pittsburgh. Upper St Clair is often considered one of best rated school in Pittsburgh (some say it is one of best even in country). 

Generally, these places have bigger and newer houses and are at reasonable distance from Downtown. But when you compare to Green Tree rental options are limited and public transport is not as convenient. If your preference is school district and if you are okay to commute and have car these are some nice choices. 

On price front Green tree is affordable. Carriage park often commands premium due to its vast community. It is very old establishment but is well maintained, but you often find wear and tear in your apartments due to its age.

Green tree is place where you can easily find shared (or) sub leased accommodation. Other places are little affluent owing to their newer and bigger houses and because of their top-rated schools. 

You will not easily find shared or subleased accommodations at these places. 

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