a person shopping at a vendor booth carrying children's toys at Market Square marketplace in Pittsburgh

A Guide to Market Square

Located in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh, Market Square is a must-see for tourists and locals alike. Market Square is surrounded by shops and restaurants and boasts year-round activities in the center of the space. With a rich history, Market Square certainly has something for everyone in the family.

Market Square for the Holidays

You'll definitely want to experience Market Square during the holidays as it turns into an incredibly festive Winter Wonderland! The Peoples Gas Holiday Market™, inspired by the original German Christkindlmarkts (or "Christmas Market"), brings a cherished European tradition to Pittsburgh. 

With an international flair and local charm, the market features shops from around the world with Asian, African, Haitian and Latin American goods. You can also find Santa's House and plenty of helper elves around an illuminated market square for a unique family-friendly photo op.

Across the way from the square is The Rink at PPG Place, an outdoor ice skating rink complete with a stunning 65-foot illuminated Holiday tree in the center.

The 2022 Holiday Market opens Nov. 18 and runs through Dec. 22, giving you plenty of time to shop! Nov. 19 is one of the most exciting days to visit Market Square, as Highmark Light Up Night dazzles by lighting the Christmas Tree downtown along with musical acts, firework displays, shopping, food and so much more.

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What is Market Square?

Market Square is was originally constructed in Downtown Pittsburgh in 1764 and become home to the area’s first courthouse, jail and newspaper. In 2009, the area went through a renovation that focused on catering to pedestrians by offering a variety of restaurants and dining options, shopping, activities, accommodations and year-round programming.  

Restaurants in Market Square

Tap into the history of Market Square by visiting Nicholas Coffee & Tea Co., an institution since 1919 or the iconic Primanti Bros., serving the ultimate Pittsburgh sandwich stacked with french fries and coleslaw since 1933. 

Pizzaiolo Primo serves handmade pizzas and pasta and if you’re looking for craft beer, City Works Eatery & Pour House has over 90 selections on tap. Stop into Market St. Grocery for fresh breakfast, lunch and dinner or to shop a range of local food products and goods. Looking for a sweet treat? Be sure to check out Millie's Homemade Ice Cream using only local and real ingredients to bring you delicious and flavorful ice cream, including vegan and dairy-free options! 

Many of the Market Square restaurants turn into a hub for nightlife, including Las Velas, which turns into one of the best dancing destinations in the city during the weekends. Directly above The Market Exchange, check out Barcadia for classic arcade games paired with themed cocktails, or visit The Speakeasy for a 1920s vibe (just don't forget to check the website for the current password).

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Shopping & More

There are plenty of great, local businesses to stop and shop at in and around Market Square. Powered by the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, PG&H is a brick and mortar location showcasing the works of artisans, craftspeople and makers in the local community. Explore a variety of unique, high-quality home goods, accessories, décor and gifts while giving back to Pittsburgh's vibrant arts community. Boutique La Passerelle is must-visit store featuring European fashion with a Pittsburgh flair, and 306 Forbes Boutique offers women's fashion, accessories and state-of-the-art Microblading, Permanent Lip and Eye Makeup. For the guys, be sure to visit Heinz Healey's, a locally-owned and operated Pittsburgh men’s clothier for 33 years carrying high-end fashion.

If you're ready for some pampering, you'll want to make an appointment at one of the salon and spas in Market Square. The Health Club & Spa at the Fairmont Pittsburgh is a great option for a full-service spa menu ranging from massages to a variety of full-body treatments. And, for the more athletic crowd, Moxie Mind & Body is a pilates studio with private, duet and group classes. 

Market Square Farmers Market

Events and activities are happening around Market Square year-round. From May-Oct, visitors and locals can experience the Market Square Farmers Market featuring a wide range of local vendors and live performances during Thursday lunch hours. During the summer months, Market Square transforms into an outdoor yoga studio for Yoga in the Square programming, offering free classes to the public on select nights and weekends. And, the Saturday Night Market brings together local businesses and the community for a fun pop-up shopping event from June-Oct.

people visit different vendor booths during the Farmers Market at Market Square in Pittsburgh, PA
Market Square Farmers Market

Parking in Market Square

Market Square itself is closed to vehicle parking however, there is limited street parking available in the area. Visitors can park in the Market Square Garage managed by the Alco Parking Corporation or explore real-time parking availability via ParkPGH