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There’s an aura around Washington, D.C. — thanks to the political air, the diversity, the historical sites, the open green spaces, the amazing social scene, and of course the delicious cuisine. No wonder, the nation’s capital city is considered a great place to live in for millennials, especially young professionals and those with family. If you’re looking for the best neighborhoods in D.C. to settle down in, this blog is for you.
Finding a good Washington, D.C. neighborhood that suits your requirements is extremely important for a contented life. And that’s why, we’ve curated a list of the best neighborhoods in D.C. based on safety, local amenities, and quality public schools for you. Keep in mind that each of these neighborhoods have their own ambiance and appeal.
So, if you want to make Washington, D.C. (officially the District of Columbia) your next home then give this guide of best neighborhoods in D.C. a good read.
Adams Morgan is filled with the beauty of 19th-century row houses that adorn its streets. The neighborhood may be small but it has everything a young family will want. This includes a gorgeous community garden, annual festivals, great restaurants, entertainment hubs, and lots of green parks, including Walter Pierce Park.
The area is highly walkable and bike-friendly. On any given day, you can find many cyclists riding in bike lanes as well as a lot of pedestrian foot traffic. Commuting from this neighborhood is easy due to access to the Metro Red Line.
Logan Circle (made up of the Logan Circle Historic District and the Fourteenth Street Historic District) is for sure one of the trendiest neighborhoods in Washington, D.C.
The downtown residential neighborhood is full of history — with well-preserved, authentic Victorian-style homes. This sought-after part of the city attracts wealthy residents, young professionals, and families alike. If you’re one of those who want to feel like a part of the capital’s long history, this is the place to be.
The neighborhood has grown due to some significant redevelopments in the past and has a superb safety rating. You can find highly rated, popular schools here.
This D.C. neighborhood is known for its post-Civil War era buildings, the famous Dupont Circle, the popular farmer’s market, and a green park with stone chess tables.
Besides playing an exciting game of chess, residents can enjoy the numerous bars and restaurants. Remember that this is a popular tourist attraction so parking space is always limited, and the streets are always busy.
You’ll find row houses and other types of housing schemes here — both for rental as well as buying purposes. And, there’s easy access to the Red Line for quick public transportation.
While the area was initially named after a tavern owner, it’s not a wild neighborhood. In fact, Tenleytown is a family neighborhood that has an eclectic mix of residents, cultures, and cuisines. The streets are safe and the area has some great schools as well as parks.
No wonder the place is a magnet for history buffs, young families, government employees, and artists.
Georgetown is home to a well-known university by the same name and is regarded as a historic site due to its role in American history. You can see the massive 19th-century mansions, the famous Embassy Row, and the green spaces.
Georgetown is without a doubt one of the safest and the most elitist residential areas in Washington, D.C. And, it’s also a shopper’s paradise with high-end designers, retailers such as H&M and Anthropologie, and unique small businesses.
The gorgeous Georgetown Waterfront Park is a great place to have a picnic, a birdwatching session, a run, or just enjoy the peace and quiet.
Located near the United States Capitol Building, this neighborhood is recognized as a historic district. In terms of housing, it offers renovated brick single-family homes, Victorian-style townhomes, and two-story condos. So, there are all types of houses to cater to the different sections of the city. The residents can enjoy lots of green spaces, picturesque gardens, cafes, and the local farmer’s market on Sundays.
Capitol Hill is one of the largest and oldest neighborhoods in D.C. — home to many government officials, support staff, and significant government buildings such as the Supreme Court and the Capitol Building on Pennsylvania Avenue.
What started as a middle-class enclave witnessed major redevelopment efforts in the 80s and 90s. As a result, it has driven up the real estate prices in the area. If you’re fine with spending considerably more on buying a house, this neighborhood is a good choice.
Residents have access to the Eastern Market, interesting shops, vintage storefronts, restaurants, and bars serving great food as well as beverages. Plus, they get to enjoy the US Botanic Gardens and the famous Library of Congress.
Also known as Van Ness, this sleepy suburban neighborhood is quite prosperous on its own. It houses international embassies and Colonial style homes that have a global appeal. It’s an ideal place for those looking for a low-stress life, but with all the amenities of a more urbanized region. The prices of houses are high. However, the good news is that a lot of attention is paid to the safety of its residents.
The reason for such a strange name is the ever-present eerie fog. However, don’t let this fact spoil your chances of settling down here. Foggy Bottom is a bright and vibrant place with a culture of its own. Most importantly, it’s one of the safest neighborhoods in D.C.
The JFK Center for Performing Arts attracts artists and creative minds from all parts of the world. You can rent or buy lovely row houses dating back to the 1800s. What’s more, the amazing restaurants and whiskey bars are worth visiting over and over again. You can enjoy the scenic views of the Potomac River, a visit to the planetarium, an impromptu bike ride, or a run at the century-old Rock Creek Park.
Penn Quarter – Chinatown
These are actually two distinct D.C. neighborhoods but with unclear and overlapping borders. They are undoubtedly the entertainment hubs of D.C. — home to the Capital One Arena, the Smithsonian’s American Art Museum, the National Portrait Gallery, and the stunning Friendship Archway that represents a collaboration between Washington and Beijing.
Chinatown was once home to many Chinese immigrants and Chinese Americans but today has residents from various ethnicities. The neighborhood has high-tech businesses, tourist-friendly shops, and important company headquarters.
The housing situation is still in transition but it offers a lot of scope for bargains on rents and mortgages. That’s why, it’s a great neighborhood for newcomers, singles, and young couples who’re looking for good property deals in the region.
Once a shipyard, the area serves as the administrative center for the U.S. Navy today. Residents have witnessed extensive redevelopment over the last couple of decades with many new residential as well as commercial buildings in the area. Plus, there are many building projects in the pipeline.
Navy Yard has great parks, outdoor recreation spaces, a boardwalk, and a spectacular dancing fountain that’s illuminated at night.
This neighborhood is close to downtown D.C. and yet has a small-town vibe. It’s a perfect spot for young families and couples looking to settle down. The quiet neighborhood has tons of playgrounds and green spaces. And, friendly, good neighbors!
Unfortunately, the food and entertainment options are a bit limited. But, you can always walk down to the downtown area if you’re seeking an adventure or a culinary experience. Chevy Chase is such a charming place that its residents rarely complain about being away from the limelight.
Clarendon, located in Arlington, is a neighborhood of the up-and-coming. If you’re aspiring for a career in government work, this is one of the best neighborhoods in D.C. for you.
The place has a high percentage of singles, newly prosperous residents, as well as those from military families. The place is primarily characterized by loft apartments. It’s full of fashionable boutique stores, eclectic shops, and restaurants.
The Crescent aka Berkley is a well-to-do suburban neighborhood, adjacent to three parks: Wesley Heights, Battery Kemble, and Glover-Archbold. So, you’re away from the hustle and bustle of big-city life, and yet close to the action when required. The family-friendly neighborhood has some good schools and George Washington University’s Mount Vernon campus.
Washington, D.C. is a perfect place for anyone who’s looking for a city that doesn’t lack things to do. When you reach this place, the lovely green spaces, the iconic monuments, the vast museums, and of course the White House will mesmerize you.
If you plan to make D.C. your home, you can choose any of the above conveniently located neighborhoods to enjoy the best that life has to offer.