Top 10 Neighborhoods in Washington D.C.
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1. Capitol Hill - Top Neighborhood Overall

Capitol Hill is one of Washington, DC's oldest and most historic neighborhoods, known for its stately rowhouses, tree-lined streets, and iconic landmarks. In the center of DC’s central business district, Capitol Hill is one of the most popular neighborhoods for those working or commuting downtown regularly. Residents feel a strong sense of community and take pride in preserving our U.S. Capitol's historic character and beautiful architecture. Situated just east of the US Capitol Building, the neighborhood has many government buildings, museums, and cultural attractions, such as Lincoln Park, the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian National Museums, and so much more. When you imagine Washington, DC, you are imagining Capitol Hill, and those who live here are sure to keep the area a serene location for residents, visitors, and tourists alike.

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2. Columbia Heights - Top Up-and-Coming Neighborhood

Hispanic vitality and increasing diversity run through Columbia Heights, cultivating creativity, great food, and beautiful performances. Experience the multicultural vibe that radiates through the town by grabbing a ticket to a show at the GALA Hispanic Theatre after getting some Laotion food at Thip Khao. The area has become an exemplary image of urban renewal, constantly developing since 2000. 14th St and 11th St have been hotspots for the expansion of the community, with high-end dining options, artisan bakeries, and ethnic food havens popping up everywhere. Young professionals are making their way to this growing community due to its location between Downtown and DC’s biggest universities, like GW, Georgetown, and especially Howard University, as it is closest to the neighborhood. New condos, large rowhomes, and home properties are waiting to be filled with residents seeking a place strong in character and culture. 

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3. Adams Morgan - Top Neighborhood for Nightlife

When it comes to nightlife, AdMo is the place to be. The main strip on 18th St boasts a plethora of restaurants and bars that keep the street buzzing well into the night. Living in AdMo means you're right in the heart of all the action, without the need for a car or public transportation. Plus, you'll have easy access to fitness centers, grocery stores, delicious food, and parks, all while still being just a mile or two from Downtown. When you need a break from it all, you're just a stone's throw away from Rock Creek Park and the Smithsonian National Zoological Park, where you can immerse yourself in a complete nature retreat. But let's be honest, with the stunning tree-lined streets and beautiful brick homes that make up the Adams Morgan neighborhood, there's little reason to want to escape. While the area is great for families, kids, and pets, college graduate students and young professionals flock to this area for its location and nightlife. AdMo’s location is ideal for students from all of DC’s biggest universities including, American University, Georgetown, GW, and Howard University. So, if you seek a peaceful yet vibrant community with fantastic restaurants and lively nightlife, look no further than AdMo!

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4. Logan Circle/Dupont Circle - Top Neighborhood for Art and Fashion

The symmetry between Logan Circle and Dupont Circle, reflected over 16th St, is quite satisfying to the eye. However, their interiors are far from rigid. These two neighborhoods are home to some of Washington, DC's most stylish and artistic residents, and businesses. Located just north of Downtown, the historic core of Dupont and Logan circles has been revitalized with an eclectic modern style. These high-end communities welcome people from all cultures, with Dupont Circle offering a wealth of international knowledge from Embassy Row to The Phillips Collection, the first museum of modern art in America, and museums dedicated to Jewish, Palestinian, and Chinese cultures. The lively and unique vibe of Logan Circle's 14th St and Dupont's Connecticut Ave can be attributed to the local residents and businesses. Quirky establishments such as ChurchKey and Madhatter add an artistic touch to any laid-back evening. These bustling communities are conveniently located near the downtown area, business district, and prestigious universities like GW, Georgetown, and Howard, making them ideal for young professionals and graduate students looking to flourish.

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5. Shaw/U-Street - Top Neighborhood for Community Culture

Shaw/U-Street, one of the oldest neighborhoods in Washington, DC, is now one of the trendiest communities in the area. It has a rich African-American history, being the birthplace of Duke Ellington, home to Little Ethiopia, and the renowned U Street’s “Black Broadway” that was frequently performed at the local Howard and Lincoln Theatres. The hottest spots like 9:30 Club (previously known as The Atlantis), DC9, and Flash are where live music is played at the intersection of U-Street and Shaw. As the neighborhood is being renewed with new constructions and unique retail options, property values are growing higher and the community is everchanging. Current residents can take advantage of the expanding community economy while it remains within their price range. All necessities are within walking distance, especially advantageous for Howard students being just a half-mile south of campus. The area is full of obvious and hidden gems that are ripe for the picking, making this neighborhood a goldmine for those looking to become involved in their community. 

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6. Georgetown - Top Neighborhood for Safety

Georgetown is best known for being DC’s oldest neighborhood as well as being home to Georgetown University’s campus and college life. The area is heavily fueled by college energy and old money stemming from historic mansions dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. High-end restaurants and retail options on M Street as well as the waterfront amenities along the Potomac River attract tourists and DC locals alike. Georgetown residents are sure to take advantage of the Georgetown Waterfront Park for outdoor recreation and beautiful dinner views. Although there is not much nightlife in the area, surrounding neighborhoods like Foggy Bottom and Dupont Circle are only a short bus ride away. Many residents prefer this area because of its family-friendly nature and lack of a bar scene, which makes the residential area peaceful and safe at night. There is plenty of activities in the area, with spots like Pinstripes Restaurant, AMC Georgetown, Washington Harbour, and Blues Alley Jazz Club all located within walking distance. Overall, Georgetown has become known as a peaceful community suitable to those who enjoy outdoor recreation, shopping, and historic charm. 

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7. Foggy Bottom - Top Neighborhood for College Students

Just west of the National Mall and adjacent to the Potomac River, Foggy Bottom is an outstanding location for those looking to be right outside Downtown DC. Foggy Bottom is like Georgetown’s hipster brother, named after the natural fog accumulating each morning. Surprisingly, the fog in the morning is a result of the close proximity to the Potomac River and not the JFK Center for Performing Arts, which is this neighborhood's biggest attraction. Compared to its surrounding neighborhoods, Foggy Bottom has a quiet and laidback nightlife where most people are looking to relax and enjoy the serenity of the beautiful Rock Creek Park and our National Memorials. The food scene stays true to the community’s vibe with sophisticated spots like Nobu and Blue Duck Tavern and more casual spots like Tonic at Quigley’s Pharmacy and Founding Farmers. Politicos and GW students populate most of the area with GW’s campus and the U.S. Department of State being central to the neighborhood. Still, trying to figure out Foggy Bottom’s vibe? Imagine Thanksgiving dinner with JFK and Richard Nixon; it doesn’t get more interesting.

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8. Cleveland Park - Top Neighborhood for Suburban Living

Cleveland Park is a beautiful suburbia 2-3 miles northwest of Downtown DC. Residents in this area tend to be nature lovers and proud landscapers. Sprawling with trees and greenery preserved by wildlife conservation in Washington DC, this area is one of the best areas for growing families and pet lovers. Everything you need is just a short drive away, including American University’s and the University of DC’s campuses, Rock Creek Park, and shopping on Wisconsin Ave and Connecticut Ave. Though located outside of the bustle of downtown, Cleveland Park hosts some of its own landmarks, like the magnificent Washington National Cathedral and the entertaining Uptown Movie Theater that add some history to the relaxing manicured streets of Cleveland Park. 

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9. Chinatown/Penn Quarter - Top Neighborhood for Food Lovers

Chinatown/Penn Quarter is a bustling neighborhood in the heart of Washington DC. Keep an eye out for Friendship Archway marking the entrance to Chinatown. The area is a melting pot of cultures, with a strong Chinese influence and, naturally, full of amazing cultural cuisines including numerous Chinese restaurants ranging from casual noodle shops to high-end dim sum restaurants. In addition to Chinese cuisine, the area also features a diverse array of restaurants from around the world, including Italian, French, Thai, and Ethiopian. CityCenterDC is a must-visit featuring luxury brands and divine eateries to fit anyone’s tastes. Home to the Capital One Arena, the American Art Museum, and the National Portrait Gallery, Penn Quarter is constantly full of life. Residents can feel the history of our nation’s capitol around every corner with national landmarks, such as Ford’s Theatre, where President Lincoln was assassinated, and the Shakespeare Theatre Company. Whether you're looking for great food, entertainment, or shopping, this neighborhood is sure to deliver.

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10. H Street Corridor - Top Neighborhood for Music Lovers

H-Street Corridor spans approximately ten blocks between 2nd and 15th Streets NE in the heart of DC. The entirety of H-Street seems like a never-ending pathway through an assortment of international eateries, including yet not limited to, Mexican, Italian, Vietnamese, and Ethiopian foods. In addition to its dining scene, H Street is also home to a number of trendy, shops, and boutiques. Visitors can find everything from vintage clothing stores to artisanal coffee shops, making it a great destination for shoppers and urban explorers alike. The bar scene is one-of-a-kind with live music venues, hosting genres from rock and punk to jazz and blues, alongside popular bars and clubs that keep the street alive all night long. Residents adore the area for its close-knit community and resident events, such as the H Street Festival that occurs every year in the fall to celebrate the multicultural art and food scene of Washington DC.

Author: VeryApt Expert
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