Top 10 Neighborhoods to Live in Greater Boston

With its rich history, vibrant nightlife, ample shopping and gorgeous green spaces, Boston is one of the best cities in America to call home–but choosing which part of Boston to move to can be difficult. Its many neighborhoods all have their own charms and appeal, and which one is best suited to you depends on your preferences and needs. With that in mind, here are the top 10 neighborhoods in Boston and what you should know about each before embarking on your apartment search.

Allston / Brighton

Explore the Brighton neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

Thanks to their close proximity to downtown Boston and the greater Boston area’s many colleges and universities, the adjoining neighborhoods of Allston and Brighton draw in droves of professionals and students alike. The unique boutiques and varied restaurants that line these neighborhoods’ streets create a lively and diverse atmosphere, and the vibrant nightlife reflects Allston and Brighton’s young populations. Though Allston and Brighton are removed enough from downtown Boston to have their own individual characters, commutes are quick and easy thanks to the convenient Green Line.

  • Average Cost of LivingD
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: C
  • Average Age25

Back BayExplore the Back Bay neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

From Newbury Street with its designer shopping to skyscrapers such as the John Hancock Building and the Prudential Center, Back Bay encompasses some of Boston’s most recognizable landmarks, both new and old. Incredibly enough, Back Bay was all swamp just a century and a half ago; a massive filling project transformed it into the desirable neighborhood it is today. Thanks to its historic past, apartments in Back Bay frequently feature grand details such as high ceilings and original moldings. The neighborhood’s residents also benefit from its central location, with ample public transportation and the ability to easily walk almost everywhere.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: C
  • Average Age31

Beacon Hill

Explore the Beacon Hill neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

With its cobblestone streets and stately Federal-style brick row houses, Beacon Hill is widely regarded as one of the prettiest nabes in Boston. However, the appeal of Beacon Hill isn’t limited to its setting; the fine dining and boutique shopping along Charles Street is among the best in the city, while the neighborhood’s close proximity to the Boston Public Garden and Boston Common offers a welcome respite to its residents.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: B
  • Average Age34

BrooklineExplore the Brookline neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

One visit to Brookline quickly reveals why this Boston suburb is among the most popular in all of Massachusetts. Part of Brookline’s charm is the way it seamlessly blends urban and suburban, offering plenty of shopping and dining options alongside large green spaces. With a reputation for safety and incredible public schools, this suburb continues to draw in many young families looking for a place to call home. Brookline’s professionals and students alike enjoy easy access to downtown Boston via the Green Line.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: A
  • Average Age33

Jamaica Plain

Explore the Jamaica Plain neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

Well-known for being among Boston’s greenest neighborhoods thanks to its proximity to the Emerald Necklace, Jamaica Pond and Franklin Park, Jamaica Plain has also become one of the most dynamic areas of the city. The neighborhood’s large Victorian homes, triple-decker apartments and converted loft condominiums offer options to suit many potential residents, while Jamaica Plain’s diverse restaurant and pub scene helps to make the neighborhood welcoming and comfortable. Despite Jamaica Plain’s quiet atmosphere, downtown Boston remains easily accessible via the Green Line or by bus.

  • Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: D
  • Average Age34

Newton and Chestnut HillExplore the Chestnut Hill neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

Consisting of 13 villages with their own unique characters and separate quaint downtown areas, Newton offers many of the advantages of suburban living combined with many of the conveniences of an urban environment. Chestnut Hill, one of Newton’s villages, is particularly renowned for its historic homes and charming streets. All of Newton’s villages are awash with green spaces, earning it the nickname of “Garden City.” Despite its quieter atmosphere, Newton’s proximity to downtown affords its residents with a quick and easy commute to anywhere in the Boston metro area.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: A
  • Average Age41

Seaport & WaterfrontExplore the Seaport & Waterfront neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home or apartment.

Just a few decades ago, the Seaport Waterfront area was little more than barren parking lots. Wave upon wave of development and investment, however, have transformed this neighborhood into one of Boston’s most up-and-coming locales. As befitting its location along the water, Seaport Waterfront is home to excellent seafood restaurants, while its youthful energy has made it a draw for many Boston-area artists and entrepreneurs.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: B
  • Schools: D
  • Average Age: 32

SomervilleExplore the Somerville neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

The spirited creative community that calls Somerville home makes this Boston suburb a wonderful place for art lovers and artists alike. From its annual Art Beat festival to its many live musical venues and art galleries, Somerville offers a wide range of cultural experiences just a short ride from downtown along the Red Line or Orange Line. In contrast to neighborhoods like Beacon Hill or Back Bay, many of the retailers in Somerville are independent, and vintage clothing stores and local coffee houses abound.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: A
  • Schools: B
  • Average Age33

South BostonExplore the South Boston neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

Affectionately known as “Southie,” South Boston has long had a reputation in popular culture as a rough-and-tumble neighborhood filled with Irish-American immigrants. However, this stereotype no longer holds true, as recent years have seen a new wave of young professionals calling South Boston home. The neighborhood now boasts a blossoming bar and restaurant scene, while the influx of new cultural institutions hasn’t changed South Boston’s deep historic identity. The neighborhood’s several stops on the Red Line and proximity to I-93 make commutes easy for public transportation riders and drivers alike.

  • Average Cost of LivingB
  • Commute: C
  • Schools: D
  • Average Age33

South EndExplore the South End neighborhood and let Metro Realty help you find your perfect Boston home, condo, or apartment.

In an already diverse city, South End stands out due to the broad range of cultures represented. This reputation dates back to the late nineteenth century, when influxes of immigrants from Greece, Italy, China, France, Ireland and more began leaving their mark along South End’s streets. Today this diversity is reflected in the neighborhood’s wide variety of restaurants and cuisines, and South End is well-known as Boston’s premier restaurant district. With the largest concentration of Victorian row houses in the country, South End’s aesthetic is equally unique, helping to make this neighborhood one of the most desirable in the city.

  • Average Cost of LivingC
  • Commute: B
  • Schools: D
  • Average Age29

Looking to make your move in Boston? We hope this guide helped you find the right neighborhood for you. Whether you’re looking to buy or looking to rent, Metro Realty has thousands of options for you, and a great team of realtors ready to help.