Boston, Guest Experience

A Guide to The Best Neighborhoods in Boston

A Guide to The Best Neighborhoods in Boston

Boston, the historic and vibrant capital of Massachusetts, is known for its rich history, diverse culture, and thriving neighborhoods.

Whether you’re a local resident or a visitor, exploring the different neighborhoods in Boston is a must-do to truly experience the essence of the city.

In this guide, we’ll take you through the best neighborhoods in Boston, highlighting their unique characteristics, attractions, and amenities.

We’ve chosen these neighborhoods based on factors like affordability, walkability, amenities, safety, and the overall lifestyle they offer.

How We Chose the Best Neighborhoods

Selecting the best neighborhoods in Boston wasn’t an easy task. We considered several important factors to ensure our guide provides valuable insights for both residents and visitors. Here are the criteria we used:

  • Affordability: We looked at the cost of living in each neighborhood, including rent prices, to help you find areas that fit various budgets.
  • Walkability: Boston is a city best explored on foot. We considered how easy it is to navigate each neighborhood by walking, with access to essential services and attractions.
  • Amenities: From parks and recreational facilities to shops and restaurants, we evaluated the range and quality of amenities available in each neighborhood.
  • Safety: Feeling safe is crucial when choosing a place to live or visit. We reviewed crime statistics and general safety perceptions for each neighborhood.
  • Lifestyle and Culture: Each neighborhood in Boston has its own unique vibe. We considered the lifestyle, cultural attractions, and community feel to ensure a diverse selection that caters to different preferences.

1. Beacon Hill

Nestled in the heart of Boston, Beacon Hill is a picturesque neighborhood that exudes old-world charm. With its cobblestone streets, gas-lit lamps, and historic brownstone buildings, it feels like stepping back in time. Explore the iconic Acorn Street, visit the Massachusetts State House, and indulge in the neighborhood’s quaint shops and cozy cafes.


  • Acorn Street
  • Massachusetts State House
  • Charles Street boutiques and cafes

2. Back Bay

Known for its elegant Victorian brownstones and upscale shopping destinations, Back Bay blends historic charm with modern sophistication.

Stroll down Newbury Street, lined with trendy boutiques and restaurants, and admire the architectural beauty of the Boston Public Library and Trinity Church. Don’t miss the opportunity to take a leisurely walk along the picturesque Charles River Esplanade.


  • Newbury Street
  • Boston Public Library
  • Trinity Church
  • Charles River Esplanade

Property Highlight: Compass’ Dalton property offers luxurious living in the heart of Back Bay. The pet-friendly apartment is at the center of shopping, scenic walks, and some of the city’s best restaurants.

3. South End

The South End is a vibrant and diverse neighborhood boasting a thriving arts scene, trendy restaurants, and beautiful Victorian row houses. Explore the SoWa Art + Design District, home to art galleries, studios, and a popular farmers market. Indulge in the neighborhood’s culinary delights at the renowned restaurant row on Tremont Street.


  • SoWa Art + Design District
  • Restaurant Row on Tremont Street

Property Highlight: Check out Compass’ 345 Harrison for a chic living experience in South End.

4. North End

For a taste of Boston’s Italian heritage, head to the North End. This charming neighborhood is famous for its narrow streets, historic sites, and mouthwatering Italian cuisine. Visit the iconic Paul Revere House, explore the bustling Hanover Street, and savor a cannoli from one of the many authentic pastry shops.


  • Paul Revere House
  • Hanover Street
  • Authentic Italian eateries

Property Highlight: Enjoy a stay at Compass’ 19 Battery Street for an authentic North End experience.

5. Jamaica Plain

If you’re looking for a more laid-back and bohemian atmosphere, Jamaica Plain is the neighborhood to explore. Known for its green spaces, including the Arnold Arboretum and Jamaica Pond, this neighborhood offers a refreshing escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. Enjoy the local shops, cafes, and the vibrant community feel.


  • Arnold Arboretum
  • Jamaica Pond
  • Local shops and cafes

6. East Boston

East Boston is a vibrant and diverse neighborhood offering stunning waterfront views and a rich cultural scene. The area is known for its parks, including the beautiful Piers Park, which offers breathtaking views of the Boston skyline. East Boston also boasts a variety of international eateries, reflecting its diverse community.


  • Piers Park
  • Waterfront views
  • International dining options

7. Charlestown

Charlestown is one of Boston’s oldest neighborhoods, rich in history and charm. Visit the historic Bunker Hill Monument and the USS Constitution Museum. This neighborhood offers a mix of historic homes and modern developments, providing a unique living experience.


  • Bunker Hill Monument
  • USS Constitution Museum
  • Historic homes

8. Cambridge

Just across the Charles River from Boston, Cambridge is home to prestigious universities like Harvard and MIT. This neighborhood offers a blend of intellectual and cultural attractions, with numerous bookstores, cafes, and museums to explore. Cambridge’s diverse food scene and vibrant arts community make it a lively place to visit or live.


  • Harvard University
  • MIT
  • Bookstores and cafes
  • Museums and cultural sites

9. Somerville

Somerville is known for its creative community and eclectic vibe. The neighborhood is home to unique shops, trendy restaurants, and lively events like the annual Somerville Arts Council’s ArtBeat festival. Davis Square is a popular spot for dining, shopping, and entertainment.


  • Davis Square
  • Unique shops and restaurants
  • ArtBeat festival

10. Fenway

Fenway is best known for Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. This neighborhood offers more than just baseball, with cultural attractions like the Museum of Fine Arts and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Fenway is also a hub for nightlife, with numerous bars and restaurants.


  • Fenway Park
  • Museum of Fine Arts
  • Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum

Property Highlight: Experience luxury living at Compass’ The Harlo in Fenway.

11. Seaport District

The Seaport District is one of Boston’s most rapidly developing neighborhoods, known for its modern architecture and waterfront attractions. Enjoy the scenic Harborwalk, dine at trendy restaurants, and visit the contemporary art installations at the Institute of Contemporary Art. The Seaport District is a hotspot for both business and leisure.


  • Harborwalk
  • Institute of Contemporary Art
  • Trendy restaurants and bars

Property Highlights: Stay at Compass’ The Benjamin or VIA for a luxurious experience in the Seaport District.

Book A Stay in Boston

Boston’s neighborhoods offer a range of experiences, each with its unique character and attractions. From the historic charm of Beacon Hill to the trendy vibe of the South End, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant city.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a food lover, or an art aficionado, exploring the best neighborhoods in Boston will leave you captivated by the city’s rich culture and vibrant communities.

See our availability and explore Compass’ properties in Boston to find your perfect home away from home.

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