This is my humble contribution to the PIC vs AVR holy war.
TL;DR: I was a PIC user but decided I hate it, switched to AVR and love it!
PIC from Microchip and AVR from Atmel are both wonderful microcontrollers for hobbyist and professional as well (I am a hobbyist only if you're wondering).
I used to love PIC microcontrollers and originally choose them because they are the most widely available in my location. But there are just so many annoyances that AVR solves so wonderfully!