What is the best neighborhood in Seattle?
What’s the best neighborhood in Seattle to live in and buy a house if you have kids? What about if you’re an active single person? Or getting older and maybe want something quiet? Where do the artists and creative folks live? Are there certain neighborhoods that attract those in tech or musicians or dog lovers? What if you want to just relax and have peace and quiet or you love to garden or take long walks or bicycle to work?
The truth is, there’s something to like in most Seattle neighborhoods that will appeal to most people. And Seattle IS a city of neighborhoods. It’s not homogenius, as many neighborhoods have boundaries established by geography, school boundaries, amenities, price and socio-economic factors.
Seattle Real Estate is varied in style, price, condition and age, no matter what the neighborhood
Each neighborhood has something different about it and in some neighborhoods, those differences are so pronounced that we now have stereotypes of these certain ‘hoods.
In the past, Ballard was characterized as being like a small fishing village of Nordic characters, salty and briny as the sea. That neighborhood was first settled by folks at the turn of the last century, from Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark. There are still a number of social clubs there, Sons of Norway for instance (while the Swedish Club is in a little higher ground on top of Queen Anne Hill.)
Capitol Hill was often characterized as Seattle’s gay neighborhood, as that was where a lot of cool gay guys bought old houses and fixed them up and there was a little club scene around Neighbors and the Wild Rose. But it could just as easily been known as the “family neighborhood” as Capitol Hill and the Central District have more kids per capita than any other neighborhoods in Seattle.
For runners, living near Greenlake’s an easy choice, as it’s 2.2 miles around, so easy to keep track of your mileage as you run around the lake.
For dog lovers, the city of Seattle has 7 off-leash dog parks, so living near one of those might be a good choice. Dogs are not allowed on our city beaches at all, and not allowed to run off-leash in the park, so having a yard or being near a dog park might be a good choice for our four-legged friends.
Bicycle riders might like to be near the Burke-Gilman trail that runs around Lake Washington or the Interurban trail that goes through Ballard. They may also like to live in the South End near Seward Park and use the bike trails along Lake Washington Blvd. to get to work.
Like natural foods? Choose a neighborhood near PCC, such as Wedgewood, Capitol Hill or Seward Park. Or enjoy eating out? Anywhere in Seattle has great food, but being near the downtown core is going to maximize your enjoyment of the food scene.
Interested in higher education? Again, you’ll probably want to be in Seattle, as there’s the University of Washington, Seattle University (Jesuit), Seattle Pacific University (Methodist) and several community colleges, NSCC, SCCC, SCCC.
Like cultural activities? Again, you’ll want to be within 5-10 miles of the downtown core, as most museums, theaters and galleries are going to be in the city, with some smattering in West Seattle, Georgetown, Greenwood and Phinney Ridge. Bare in mind there’s only one museum in Bellevue and only Kirkland has a performing arts theater (though the Kirkland Arts Center has a lot of great events and programs.)
If you work in the healthcare field, you may be working on First Hill, so living anywhere in the central part of the city will work great for you, such as Madison Park, the Central District, Beacon Hill or Madrona. If you work at the UW Medical Center, Laurelhurst, Wedgewood, Montlake, all are great choices.
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