Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, USA, is best known across the world for two things. Steel and sports. Whilst it’s usually the Steelers (Pittsburgh’s NFL team) or the Penguins (NHL ice hockey) in the limelight, this week it’s a completely different sport taking centre stage in the “Steel City”… golf.
The U.S. Open, dubbed the toughest test in golf due to its difficult set-ups and tight scoring, is the second major event on the annual golfing calendar. No other golf tournament is more highly associated with this elevated degree of difficulty and whilst a lot of players thrive on the challenge, some are quite intimidated by it. As Scottish golf legend Colin Montgomerie said “The U.S. Open is my favourite week of the year. To a lot of people, it is the worst week of the year.”
The Oakmont Country Club in Pittsburgh, the “oldest top-ranked golf course in the U.S.”, has hosted the U.S. Open eight times, which is more than any other course in history, and this week, it welcomes the world’s major players for the ninth time.
Built on old farmland, the course was opened in 1903. Featuring large, very fast and undulating greens, it straddles the Allegheny River Valley but though it has virtually no water hazards, it is generally regarded as one of the most difficult in the United States with over two hundred bunkers around the course.
So as the world watches to see who will succeed on this challenging course and take the major title from young champion Jordan Spieth, we take a look at Pittsburgh, the dynamic city in which the tournament is hosted.
Considered an underrated place to visit, Pittsburgh has already shed its reputation as a polluted industrial town and is thriving as a global tech hub, complete with green buildings and spaces throughout the city. Whilst it might have been late to embrace new industry at first, it’s definitely caught up with more than 1,600 technology firms now residing here, including Google, IBM, Apple, Uber and Intel. The official home of the emoticon is also home to 445 bridges crossing the three rivers (Ohio, Allegheny, and Monongahela) that meet downtown. That’s officially more bridges than Venice!
Much like San Francisco, Pittsburgh is made up of hills and valleys, creating a network of steep streets throughout the city. To fully appreciate the landscape and arguably one of the world’s finest skylines, you can ride up the Duquesne Incline to the top of Mount Washington in one of two original 1877 wooden cable cars. The panoramic views at the summit are stunning both by day and night. But for those who aren’t good with heights, the Gateway Clipper Fleet offers a selection of cruises up and down the rivers so you can enjoy picturesque views from the water as well.
So whether you fancy seeing what all the fuss is about at Oakmont or simply want to drink in the Pittsburgh scenery, Turkish Airlines flies to nearby New York three times per day and is ready to “steel” you away.
Book your flights at www.turkishairlines.com/Book-Now.
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