Those of you who are relocating to the Lone Star State should know that Austin is not just the capital of Texas; it is the Live Music Capital of the World, where a different live music event occurs pretty much every evening. However, you shouldn’t worry about your sleep at night because you can always find a quiet street in some of the best neighborhoods in Austin. And with more than one hundred unique communities, we are sure you will manage to find just the right one for you.
Are you ready to call the capital of Texas your home?
The sooner you figure out the reasons why you should move and find that right community for you, the sooner you will be able to start living like a true Austinite. That’s why we prepared a guide that has something for everyone because we all have different needs and preferences. If you are not that much into music, don’t worry; there are plenty of other things to do around ATX, from watching an annual Formula 1 race to weekly football games. And if you want to do it Texas-style, don’t forget to light the BBQ before the game starts and enjoy watching it in front of your big screen.
10 Best Neighborhoods in Austin, Texas, Starting From South
You figured out how to tell your friends you are moving now there are things you should know before you start thinking about changing the address and exploring communities around the city. There are more than one hundred of them, so you will easily find one to call home no matter if you are moving for a relationship or in pursuit of knowledge. To help you navigate easily you should know they are divided into nine geographical regions. Every location is named in relation to the heart of the city. That should help you navigate around town, and kind of have an idea where your community is in comparison to downtown.
One of the major boundaries is Lady Bird Lake, which separates the south from the central portion of A-town, as well as the east from the southeast area. Other significant boundaries are Highway 1 (MoPac) and Interstate Highway 35.
When you are thinking where should you move, consider SoCo because it is one of the favorite areas for local Austinites, much like downtown itself. Generally speaking, this neighborhood has everything, so you would rarely need to go outside of its boundaries unless you work in another part of the city.
There are so many options for eating out, from pastries, patio cafes, chic restaurants, places where you can grab a midnight snack, etc. So if you are looking to explore the best restaurants in Austin, a foodie inside of you will definitely be happy to stay around here. Also, a lot of these places are open 24/7. In terms of shopping, there is a wide variety of stores, including even the one where Bob Dylan allegedly shopped his retro outfits.
A-town is also known as the live music capital of the world, and in SoCo, you can find one well-known club called the Continental Club, which has been around since the ’50s. But there are some other great local spots like Jo’s Cafe and Hotel San Jose.
The first Thursday of every month is reserved for a neighborhood party in SoCo, suitable for all ages. It is a great family-friendly event where you can easily mingle around and don’t worry too much about how to make new friends, because it will all happen spontaneously.
Although this area is more known as a shopping and entertainment district, there are still some good schools around in case you want to raise a family in a trendy neighborhood.
#2 South Lamar (SoLa)
We are still in the southern part, and our second choice is also a popular community relatively close to the center, filled with spots where you can eat and drink. Besides that, this is an excellent location for all the outdoorsy types. Biking and hiking trails, as well as parks that go around Barton Springs, are nearby.
The population here is mixed, so you will find people of different ethnic backgrounds and age groups, from young singles to seniors and students. The area is also popular with families that are moving children because here you can find a lot of top-rated schools in the vicinity. That’s why this is a great place if you and your partner are planning to move in together and start a family soon.
Public transportation runs smoothly around here, the cost of housing is affordable, and although this community is continuously growing and becoming more urban, there is still some of that old charm left in it.
Where to? South or west?
Live in North ATX and Discover Some of the Best Neighborhoods in Austin for Families
Don’t get confused if you notice that some also call this part a “concrete jungle.” That is mainly due to the vast number of shopping malls and office buildings that are located in the very north. If you go a bit to the south you will find those idyllic streets lined with large trees, single houses, etc.
#3 North Loop (NoLo)
If you are looking for an authentic, vintage-style neighborhood, NoLo is the choice for you. It features plenty of older homes, mainly bungalow-style, and it’s close to the University of Texas and downtown, which is why it is so popular among students. You will find a lot of young people, but at the same time, a lot of residents who have been here for decades.
It is a quiet community to live, very similar to Hyde Park, but with slightly more affordable housing prices. Everything is accessible on foot, the general safety of a neighborhood is high, and new restaurants and cafes just keep popping up. This community is most known for the North Loop Strip, which is a bunch of local restaurants and shops, organized in a row on the North Loop Boulevard.
Allandale has its association of neighbors, so it is a type of community where everyone knows everyone, and it is considered to be a safe area. One of the advantages of moving alone here is that you’ll probably adjust very quickly, meet your neighbors, and make friends. This community organizes its own Fourth of July celebration parade and many other events throughout the year, which means that the best time to move here is anytime.
Many people come to live and work in the capital of Texas.
The Stars of Central Austin – Downtown and Hyde Park
If you want to be in the very center of it all, where everything is going on, communities around the central area are the right choice for you. Live music venues, famous attractions, shopping opportunities, restaurants -everything you can imagine is there, including tennis and golf courts, jogging, and biking trails.
Downtown is the beating heart of the city and the seat of state government. Many companies have decided to settle here, which is why this location is a favorite among young professionals and entrepreneurs, so start looking for a job before moving to another state. Vivid nightlife, plenty of options for dining out, shopping, sightseeing spots, and entertainment are only some of the perks of living in the heart of the city and they are always available to you no matter if you move during the holiday season or in the middle of summer.
This historical neighborhood is impeccably well maintained, with the tree-lined streets and homes in styles ranging from Victorian to Queen Anne. In 1900, this historic community was added to the National Register of Historic Places, and it preserves its original looks and charm even today.
House hunting in this district will be a pleasure, and you will hardly settle your mind on one property. Although it is one of the best Austin neighborhoods, the average rent in Hyde Park is not much higher than in other areas, and it is pretty much the same as in the other areas – around $1,270 per month. It is close to the University, and it is well connected to the other parts of the town by bus.
However, you won’t find as many restaurants and cafes here, since it is a more residential area, with single houses. There are still places to eat and get a drink, but just not as many as in other areas. The population mainly consists of families, professors, and graduate students.
Would you prefer your home to be in the center, where everything happens?
Going West for Suburban Lifestyle in the Hills
Plenty of greenery, outdoor activities, beautiful homes and surroundings, and some of the highest-ranked schools can all be found here. Some of the shared characteristics of communities located west of downtown are: the majority of residents are homeowners, rents are high, and they are generally preferred by wealthy families and seniors who don’t have to worry about the cost of living in Austin or reduce costs when moving.
#7 Northwest Hills
Northwest is a bit upscale, family-friendly community, nestled upon a hill in the western part of A-town. It is close to shopping malls and the center, but many fine-dining restaurants can also be found here, so you don’t have to go far to grab a delicious bite. You will find large homes with stunning views, a close-knit community that organizes annual events, etc. There is also a public swimming pool, Westover Hills Club, and plenty of outdoor activities, while the local Dell Jewish Club is open to everyone.
#8 West Lake Hills
Surprisingly, this small community, in the city’s suburbs, close to Lake Austin, is actually a separate town. But the city center is just 10 minutes away by car. So, it is an ideal location for everyone who loves living in nature, far (but not too far) from crowded and noisy streets. Here you will find small-town serenity and that feeling of being at home.
According to Niche, a webpage that focuses on specific groups of people and demographics, around 80% of West Lake Hills residents are homeowners. Rents are high, so not everyone rushes to move here, but if you can’t afford it, living here is worth the investment. Especially if you have children or you’re moving with dogs; they are going to love it here.
There are many family-friendly districts in A-town.
Best Places to Live in Austin for Singles Are to the East
If we have to say that some part of A-town was a bit notorious, that would be its eastern districts. However, as it usually happens, these are not dangerous or gritty places, but probably the most diverse and exciting parts of A-town. They are an eclectic mix of working-class communities and high-end modern properties, historic and contemporary homes, popular among young people in their twenties and thirties. Many bars and pubs opened recently, turning this area into a popular spot for hanging out and going out, so you can forget about getting relocation depression around here.
Chestnut is a small community that used to be known mainly for affordable rents, crime issues, and modest homes. But, don’t let that give you moving stress because it is slowly upgrading itself and improving on all fields, which has led to an increase in rent prices. Half of the residents are renting, so it is a nice mix of locals and newcomers. Conveniently located close to the University, Cherrywood, and center, this part is slowly but surely being rediscovered by many Austinites. Thanks to good train and bus connections, it is easy to commute from here – wherever you work, you can easily reach it from Chestnut.
This is one of the youngest and well-planned communities that is slowly becoming one of the trendiest in town. The construction started in 2007, on top of a former airport, and now this modern district consists of single-family houses, apartment complexes, plenty of restaurants, community pools, coffee, and retail shops.
Many young families prefer to settle down in Mueller because everything is within walking distance, including schools and parks. Every street looks impeccable, neat, and clean, and residents try hard to keep their community as clean and sustainable as possible. So get your boxes and packing supplies, and start learning some packing tips and tricks to avoid common moving mistakes because this community is waiting for you. A useful tip is to search for some free packing materials for moving and save some money on relocation expenses.
Do you prefer living in a historical street with traditional houses or in a modern complex?
Keep Austin Weird
Although many common jokes derive from this motto, it is rooted in the idea of promoting and supporting small local businesses. Later on, other US cities like Portland and Indianapolis kind of stole that idea, but Austinites still take great pride in the uniqueness of their city.