So, what’s an Atlanta Neighborhood Guide?
Here’s the scoop. Even as Metro Atlanta spreads and sprawls, the heart of the city is still a hugely popular place to live and play.
Atlanta locals call these areas “Intown.”
According to Wikipedia, Intown communities include “Downtown and Midtown Atlanta and the surrounding, mostly pre-World War II neighborhoods that contain unique destinations that draw customers from across metro Atlanta.”
Most Intown neighborhoods share a similar history. In the late 1800s, Atlantans rebuilt their city on the ashes of the Civil War battlefields. Factories flourished. Beautiful Victorian homes appeared. Parks bloomed. But, as in many cities, the rise of the suburbs brought a decline to inner-city neighborhoods.
Starting in the 1990s, Atlanta began revitalizing its oldest areas. Trendy businesses opened and new, modern apartment buildings popped up. A flagship piece of this effort is the Atlanta Beltline, a former railway corridor being developed as a multi-use trail. The Beltline runs through many of the Intown neighborhoods, bringing them together and spurring economic growth.
If you’re moving to or within Atlanta and aren’t sure which neighborhood is best for you, look no further. Here’s our ultimate Atlanta’s neighborhood guide.
Atlanta Neighborhood #1- Old Fourth Ward
Vibe: High energy revitalized neighborhood
Location: East of Downtown Atlanta, south of Midtown
- One of the most walkable, bikeable and dog-friendly Atlanta neighborhoods
- Easy access to Ponce City Market and the Eastside Beltline
- Historic Fourth Ward Park with open lawns, a playground, a splashpad, an outdoor theater, and a 2-acre lake
- Historic Fourth Ward Skatepark, inaugurated and supported by skateboarding legend Tony Hawk, includes something for skaters of every skill level.
- Old Fourth Ward Arts Festival in September
Until 2010, Old Fourth Ward was a low-income area made famous as the birthplace of Martin Luther King, Jr. But with the construction of the Beltline came the revitalization of the neighborhood. It’s now a trendy hot spot with plenty of outdoor recreation, shopping, and dining. If you have a hard time knowing which restaurant to start with, the locals will tell you not to miss Two Urban Licks.
Rental Market: O4W has countless new and luxurious apartment communities, many with direct park access. Average rent is $1700.
Atlanta Neighborhood #2 – Midtown
Vibe: Authentic city living and views
Location: North of Downtown Atlanta on the east side of the Downtown Connector
Where to live: See available apartments in the Midtown neighborhood.
- 185 acre Piedmont Park, the “Central Park” of Atlanta
- The “Heart of the Arts” including the Woodruff Arts Center, Fox Theatre and so much more
- Arguably the best nightlife in the city
- More than 150 restaurants
No Atlanta neighborhood guide is complete without Midtown. Nearly 17,000 people can’t be wrong. Yep, that’s the current Midtown population estimate, and it’s only growing. From the High Museum of Art to the Peachtree Street commercial district to the clubs on Crescent Avenue, the action never stops. In the words of the Midtown Alliance, it’s a “true mixed-use, new urbanist, live-learn-work-play community.” Couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Confused on the difference between Midtown and Downtown Atlanta? Read about the difference here.
Rental Market: Midtown is the place for ultra-luxury high rise apartment buildings with incredible city skyline views. Average rent is $1870, but Midtown residents will tell you it’s worth the price.
Atlanta Neighborhood #3 – Inman Park
Vibe: Young professional with a sense of history and community
Location: Two miles east of downtown Atlanta
Where to live: See available apartments in Inman Park neighborhood.
- Highly walkable neighborhood with Beltline access
- The active Inman Park Neighborhood Association (IPNE) promotes community events and works to maintain and preserve the neighborhood’s history.
- Famous Inman Park Festival, which the IPNE calls “Atlanta’s most spirited and eclectic” neighborhood festival
- Lots of local restaurants, bars, and shopping options
Inman Park has the distinction of being both Atlanta’s first planned residential suburb and its first electric trolley neighborhood. Think Victorian style mansions on large lots, curving streets and green parks. Today the community combines the old and the new. Just look at Inman Park’s reputation for outstanding restaurants like Barcelona, Kevin Rathbun’s, and Sotto Sotto.
Rental Market: Average rent in Inman Park runs at about $1700, but there’s a wide range. The neighborhood has its share of new luxury buildings with lofts and one and two bedroom options. Some private homes offer apartments for rent, too.
Atlanta Neighborhood #4 – Castleberry Hill
Vibe: Warehouse district turned artsy and trendy
Location: Adjacent to and southwest of Downtown Atlanta.
- Active Castleberry Hill Neighborhood Association runs neighborhood events
- Diverse dining, including Paschal’s, made famous in its original location by civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King Jr.
- Numerous art galleries such as the Besharat Gallery and ZuCot Gallery
- Neighborhood Free Art Stroll the second Friday of every month.
- More than 100 preserved early-20th-century warehouse buildings
Until the 1980s, Castleberry Hill was just another aging warehouse district. But when the artist community fell in love with its arched windows and parapets, everything changed. Soon, old warehouses became lofts and art galleries. Nearly 40 years later, the neighborhood is a center of creative life, with art strolls and free concerts. It’s even become a popular filming site.
Rental Market: Castleberry Hill is famous for its trendy lofts in converted warehouses. You can still find plenty of those, and there are some new apartment buildings, too. Average rent is about $1600.
Atlanta Neighborhood #5 – Home Park
Vibe: Residential city neighborhood with excellent shopping and entertainment options
Location: West of Midtown along the Downtown Connector
Where to live: See available apartments in the Home Park neighborhood.
- Super-convenient access to the shopping districts of Atlantic Station and the Marietta Street Artery
- Member of the Grady Cluster, known for the best public schools in Atlanta.
- Many entertainment and restaurant options at Atlantic Station and within the neighborhood.
- Home Park Community Improvement Association (HPCIA) provides information, services, and education to the Home Park community
- Large GA Tech student population
Known as the “The Heart of West Midtown,” Home Park began humbly in the early 1900s for workers from the Atlantic Steel Mill. But when the Atlantic Steel Company shut down in the 1990s, its gigantic site was entirely redeveloped into Atlantic Station, a chic center of shopping, dining, and entertainment. Home Park now has the best of tree-lined walkable residential streets along with extensive amenities on its commercial avenues.
Rental Market: Home Park offers a diverse rental market with homes, townhomes, and apartments. Average apartment rent is $1600, but varies widely. The upper end includes modern luxury buildings in prime neighborhood locations.
Atlanta Neighborhood #6 – Virginia Highlands
Vibe: Upscale, but with a cozy, small neighborhood feel
Location: East of Midtown
- Walkable neighborhood with Beltline Access
- Active Virginia-Highland Civic Association which plans the annual Summerfest and Tour of Homes
- Funky, fashionable shopping and dining district at the intersection of Virginia Ave and Highland Ave
- Plenty of parks and green spaces
Virginia Highland is so named for its busiest intersection, but you can show how cool you are by just calling it VaHi. While the neighborhood features preserved homes and bungalows from the early 1900s, the nightlife crowd is totally modern. The Highlands is home to a community of affluent young professionals and families.
Rental Market: VaHi has plenty of apartments for rent, including one, two, and even three bedroom options. Rent is pricier than other neighborhoods, averaging nearly $1800.
Atlanta Neighborhood #7 – Grant Park
Vibe: Parkside life in a historic neighborhood
Location: Southeast of Downtown Atlanta
Where to live: See available apartments in the Grant Park neighborhood.
- Historic Grant Park, home to Zoo Atlanta
- Oakland Cemetery, resting place of “Gone With the Wind” writer Margaret Mitchell
- Summer Shade Arts & Music Festival, Halloween Lantern Parade, Pic’n in Grant Park BBQ & Music Festival and more
- The Grant Park Farmers Market has over 60 vendors, celebrity chef demonstrations, and special events
- Grant Park Neighborhood Association (GPNA) hosts events and protects the interests of the neighborhood
The Grant Park neighborhood is named for the large park that defines it. As with most other Intown communities, the beautiful Victorian homes were decayed and neglected by the late 1900s. Focused efforts to revitalize the park and the neighborhood brought them back to life. The park is a center of community life, but Memorial Drive features a fantastic selection of restaurants, bars and shopping, too. The reasonable housing market attracts young professionals and families alike.
Rental Market: Grant Park has plenty of new apartments for rent, averaging $1300.
Atlanta Neighborhood #8 – Georgia Tech
Vibe: In-the-city campus life
Location: North of Downtown, west of Midtown
Where to live: See available apartments in the Georgia Tech neighborhood.
- Georgia Institute of Technology (of course!)
- Campus security and transportation
- Borders Centennial Park, the Coca Cola Museum, GA Aquarium and more
Georgia Institute of Technology, known affectionately as GA Tech, transformed and developed this Intown location over the years. Educational buildings and student housing define the area. But don’t worry, even non-students can watch GA Tech’s beloved Yellow Jackets play in Bobby Dodd Stadium.
Rental Market: The GA Tech neighborhood features mostly student housing, averaging about $1550. Of note is Centennial Village, apartment buildings which were originally built to house the 1996 Olympic athletes.
Atlanta Neighborhood #9 – Cabbagetown
Vibe: Small, eclectic 6-block neighborhood with a rural community feel
Location: Sandwiched between O4W and Inman Park to the north and Grant Park to the south
Where to live: See available apartments in the Cabbagetown neighborhood.
- Chomp and Stomp Bluegrass and Chili Cook-off Festival in November
- Annual Twisty Park festival, commemorating the sense of community and rebuilding after a 2008 tornado
- Community Garden
- Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts, the nation’s largest residential loft community
- Extensive street art and wall murals, especially in the Krog Street Tunnel
So, why IS it called Cabbagetown? Urban legends abound, but the most common story goes back to the area’s roots. In the late 1800s it was the site of the new Fulton Bag and Cotton Mill. The mill’s workers, a tight-knit group of Scottish and Irish immigrants, lived nearby in small “shotgun shacks.” The story goes that the area often smelled of cooked cabbage from these cottages.
When the mill closed in 1976, the neighborhood declined with it. In the late 1990s, though, the area was revived with an influx of artists. The mill itself was converted into the Fulton Cotton Mill Lofts. Cabbagetown is a fairly new development, which is why you might be surprised to see it on this Atlanta neighborhood guide. Today you can find good food and good company on the neighborhood’s main road, Carroll Street.
Rental Market: The neighborhood is small, but rental options exist, including houses and apartments, averaging at $1400.
Atlanta Neighborhood #10 – Downtown
Vibe: Action packed city living
Location: South of Ga Tech and southwest of Midtown
Where to live: See available apartments in the Downtown neighborhood.
- Just 10 miles from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
- Historic Downtown walking tour and Open House Atlanta
- Woodruff Park
- Excellent public schools
- Many popular tourist attractions such as CNN’s world headquarters, the World of Coke, the Georgia Aquarium, the Georgia Dome, Phillips Arena and Centennial Olympic Park.
Downtown Atlanta is the ultimate in urban living. From the Victorian era buildings to the brand new skyscrapers, it’s the center of action in the city. Downtown has a few distinct areas, such as Fairlie-Poplar, South Downtown, Centennial Hill and Sono. While each one has its own special flair and flavor, they all have the high powered mix of restaurants, attractions and commerce that characterizes Downtown.
Rental Market: Downtown has a range of rental options: from townhomes and apartment skyrises to trendy converted lofts. Average rent is $1740.
Atlanta Neighborhood #11 – Buckhead
Vibe: Luxurious, stylish city life.
Location: Large area north of the Downtown Connector.
Where to live: See available apartments in the Buckhead neighborhood.
- Upscale shopping in Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza
- Governor’s mansion
- Atlanta History Center with historic Swan House and Smith Family Farm
- Fun Foodie Events including the Buckhead Wine Festival, Eats & Beats, Party Brunch, and Buckhead Beer and Wine Festival
Is Buckhead really an Intown neighborhood? Although purists will tell you that it’s too far away from Downtown, no one can dispute the urban nature of the area. It’s Atlanta’s third-largest business district after Downtown Atlanta and Midtown, and comprises one-fifth of the city. Call it what you want, but Buckhead residents enjoy the high-end shopping, world-class dining, and happening nightlife of a city neighborhood.
Rental Market: Don’t be discouraged by the huge mansions you’ll see in the “Beverly Hills of the East.” There are lots of apartments for rent, too. Average price is $1870 and includes many luxury buildings. But with over 41 different neighborhoods, you can find modern, classy options on the lower end of the spectrum, too.
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