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Best Neighborhoods in Boston

Boston rarely needs an introduction as its historical landmarks, parks, lively streets, great pubs and even greater accent speak for themselves. And when it comes to the best neighborhoods in Boston, the choices are as diverse as the city itself.

If you’re about to make Beantown your home, you’ve most likely done your research on one of the oldest and most important cities in the U.S. Looking for apartments in Boston is an experience in and of itself and we’re here to help with your research on the top neighborhoods in Boston:

1. East Boston

Despite its desired location, Eastie is one of the more affordable options among the best neighborhoods in Boston. Fairly close to downtown, as well as Logan International Airport, the neighborhood continues to attract Millennials, especially young professionals and students looking for their next home. Plus, if you like jogging or just need to be near green spaces, you can take your pick from the beautiful Piers and LoPresti parks.

2. South Boston

Probably the most well-known area of Boston among outsiders, Southie has become one of the hottest neighborhoods in town. Beloved by all generations, it’s drawn a more affluent and young professional crowd lately. Plus, this large neighborhood located south and east of downtown also has some of the best bars and restaurants you could ask for from your new home. It also hosts the famous St. Patrick’s Day Parade that draws crowds from outside the city, state and even the country.

3. Back Bay

Often paired with Beacon Hill, it doesn’t get much better than renting in Back Bay. Cobblestoned streets, brownstones, streetlamps and some of the most picturesque strolls await once you move here. The area also offers locals and tourists plenty of trendy dining and shopping options on top of the great backgrounds for your artsy photos, so it’s easy to understand why it ranks third among the best neighborhoods in Boston.

A row of townhouses on a sunny day in Black Bay, D.C.. One of the homes has a U.S. flag hung on its balcony.

4. Jamaica Plain

One of the first streetcar suburbs in the country, JP is now a highly coveted area in the city. Family-owned restaurants, independently owned shops, trendy boutiques, cute cafés and lots of green create the unique Jamaica Plain bubble. Known as Boston’s hidden gem, JP is also one of the city’s most bicycle-friendly areas.

5. South End

If you picture yourself strolling down cobblestoned streets lined with brick rowhouses on the regular, check out South End. Not to be confused with Southie, South End is a magnet for artists and creative minds. Among the best neighborhoods in Boston, this area takes pride in its dining scene, art scene, nightlife and entertainment options for all ages.

6. West End 

The area has gone through drastic changes over the years, but one of the best things about living in the West End has never changed: its central location and easy access to downtown. Home to the TD Garden and Massachusetts General Hospital, it’s a lively neighborhood with plenty of entertainment venues and dining options.

7. Charlestown

Charlestown is a tight-knit community that’s perfect if you’re looking for small-town vibes within a big city. Located right across the Charles River, it’s the oldest not just among the best neighborhoods in Boston, but in the entire city, dating all the way back to the 1600s. With great shopping, dining and entertainment options, Charlestown is also home to the Freedom Trail, the city’s can’t-miss landmark.

A shot of a cobblestone street surrounded by old, red-brick houses in Charleston, one of the best neighborhoods in BostonBoston

8. North End

Boston’s very own Little Italy neighborhood is, of course, the best place for good Italian food and wine. Plus, the North End neighborhood is close to downtown and the waterfront, which makes it one of the most coveted areas of Boston. Take your pick from the many restaurants, unique cafés and pastry shops as you stroll down narrow streets full of history. You might even bump into the Paul Revere House dating back to 1680 or one of the many other historic buildings that are still standing tall.

9. Beacon Hill

Home to Acorn Street — one of the most picturesque streets in the U.S. — Beacon Hill is a preferred spot for impromptu Instagram photo ops, much like Back Bay. One of the prettiest, this historic neighborhood transports you to a different era. Beacon Hill is also conveniently located right next to the city’s downtown and Back Bay, two of the hottest areas for Boston office space. The cobbled streets are packed with rowhouses and old-fashioned gas lamps, quaint cafés and boutiques.

10. Mission Hill

Mission Hill might be on the smaller side, but that just makes it cozier — it’s one of Boston’s most diverse areas, even though it covers less than one square mile. Here, your future neighbors could be undergrads or even employees of New England Baptist Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Hospital or other institutions. This charming neighborhood is an architectural landmark in its own right, with brick rowhouses and 19th-century, triple-decker houses across its beautiful streets.

Alexandra Ciuntu
Alexandra is a creative writer and researcher for RentCafe. With a background in e-learning content writing and a passion for knowledge-sharing platforms, she's covered topics from prop-tech to renters insurance to interior design tips. Very familiar with the renter lifestyle herself, Alexandra enjoys researching and writing about renter demographic shifts and residential real estate market trends as much as she loves writing about how to get along with roommates. You can connect with Alexandra via email. Alexandra’s work includes collaborations with financial and business publications. Her articles have been featured in several national and international online publications, including the New York Times, Barrons, Inman, Forbes, Architectural Digest, Marketwatch, Bisnow, and Curbed. Her educational background includes a B.A. in Japanese and English and an M.A. in Journalism and Cultural Studies.

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