The #1 Denver Neighborhood Guide
Denver’s wide variety of neighborhoods contribute to the mile-high city’s rich culture. Each has its own personality, befitting the wide variety of people who call this place home. From sleepy, shaded streets to bustling urban centers, Denver has a neighborhood for every preference. To get a better feel for the centennial city, check out our neighborhood guide below.
Denver Neighborhood Guide
Capitol Hill (Cap Hill)
The first area we’ll cover on our Denver neighborhood guide is the eclectic and historic Capitol Hill. This beautiful neighborhood is known for a few things, but namely, terrible parking and gorgeous architecture. Dating back to 1864, Capitol Hill was once the home to Denver’s wealthiest residents and many built their homes in the heart of Cap. Hill. While few of these mansions still stand as single resident homes, many were turned into apartment buildings during the Great Depression. Cap. Hill stands as a small time capsule for Denver’s rich history. This quiet neighborhood is a short few blocks from the Central Business District, so if you’re planning to work downtown, this could be the spot for you.
Neighborhood vibe: Tree-lined streets, bumpy cobblestone sidewalks, and rows of single-family homes give Cap Hill its historic charm. New developments are sprinkled throughout, most of which are mid-rise apartment complexes or modern three story condos. The surrounding neighborhood of single-story homes means that these new taller buildings will always have unobstructed views of the mountains. Roads are slushy in the winter and shady in the summer, with plenty of lawns and gardens to enjoy during sidewalk strolls.
Central Business District
There’s never a dull moment in this lively neighborhood. Residents live in the middle of downtown Denver. Home to some of the finest dining and best-loved bars, the Central Business District is most comparable to living in a big city. The 16th Street Mall cuts right down the middle of this neighborhood and provides plenty of shopping, tourist attractions, theaters, and more. It’s a great place to host out of town visitors and to meet new people upon your arrival to Denver.
Neighborhood vibe: If you want a big city feel, this little neighborhood will be perfect for you. Although it is smaller than the business districts in New York or Chicago, you’ll still get that bustling downtown vibe. Commuters run to lunch, the Light Rail trains meander through traffic, and people in suits whiz by on electric scooters. Sleek glass skyscrapers tower over parking lots, 7-11s, and ever-present construction projects. Massive hotels like the Hyatt Regency, the Sheraton, and the Westin host conferences year-round. Because this area is so urban, it isn’t ideal for people with dogs.
This neighborhood’s namesake is one of Denver’s most loved parks. Built on ancient burial grounds, this grassy field is said to be haunted. However, that doesn’t keep scores of sunbathers, soccer players, and dogs off its lawns. Cheesman Park’s apartment lined streets can feel a little cramped, so its residents spend much of their free time congregating at the park. Nestled between Cap Hill and Congress Park, you’ll be hard pressed to find parking but are within walking distance to many of 6th Avenue’s coffee shops, bars and restaurants and the Denver Botanic Gardens.
Neighborhood vibe: Cheesman Park is a laid back neighborhood compared to areas like LoDo or RiNo. The area is dotted with relaxed cocktail lounges and hip coffee shops that set the calm and social vibe of Cheesman Park. This park dates back to the 1850s, when it was used as a cemetary. Despite this spooky past, today the park is green and lively and full of energy. Residents enjoy long walks through the park’s trails, sunsets from the pavilion, and visits to the Denver Botanic Gardens. Cheesman Park is a great location for weekends at home that will never leave you restless.
Cherry Creek is one of Denver’s more upscale neighborhoods. Apartment buildings are elegant and new. Most are within walking distance to high-end shopping and dining. Housing isn’t cheap as there is a lot of demand for the less expensive condos and townhomes. Construction has been a constant in this neighborhood for the past few years as interest in the area continues to grow. There’s plenty of access to public transportation. Whole Foods and the Cherry Creek Mall are within walking distance of most housing.
Neighborhood vibe: Luxury gated communities with posh amenity spaces and rooftop views of the Denver skyline. Most Cherry Creek apartments are mid-rise or high-rise buildings with floor-to-ceiling windows, top-of-the-line finishes, and impressive amenities. Even though most buildings are multi-family, this neighborhood maintains a homey community feel. If you want to live downtown (but not right downtown), love shopping, fine dining, and Pinterest-worthy interior design— Cherry Creek is for you.
One of Denver’s oldest neighborhoods, Five Points boasts a diverse history, it’s roots dating back to pre-Capitol Hill era. Five Points is known to locals for its vast, multicultural history, marks of which can still be seen in the neighborhood’s businesses. Previously known for a short time as “Harlem of the West”, Five Points played host to many famous African-American jazz musicians. Efforts to renew and revitalize the area are well underway, making Five Points one of Denver’s most treasured neighborhoods.
Neighborhood vibe: A residential step back from Denver’s growing concrete jungle, this historic neighborhood has mostly single-family homes or renovated duplexes. A few apartment complexes on Welton are the exception. Watering holes, concert halls, and world-renowned street art make this neighborhood a cultural center of Denver.
Highlands & Lower Highlands (LoHi)
This area has long reigned as one of Denver’s trendiest places to live. You get the best of both worlds – proximity to the city, but far enough away to enjoy the tranquility that suburban living can offer. While this area is pricey, it offers convenience with quick access to I-25. Lower Highlands is a short Lyft from Union Station and a quick bike ride into downtown. These neighborhoods are speckled with yoga studios, breweries, and boutiques making it a great place to spend the weekend.
Neighborhood vibe: Walk through LoHi and you’ll see people jogging on the sidewalks pushing strollers, sitting outside of coffee shops, stepping out to get the mail, and carrying reusable shopping bags to the nearest locally-owned grocery store. This area blends suburban and urban living, with a dash of small-town-feel. You’ll bump into neighbors at rooftop happy hours, meet up to attend pilates classes, and enjoy the weekends at home in your little community.
Lower Downtown (LoDo)
This district is known for its wild nightlife and popularity with people relocating to Denver for work. LoDo is the heart of downtown Denver – it’s always alive with something to do. Restaurants, Art Galleries, Bars, and Sports games fill the dockett of most LoDo residents. You can live, work, and play all within a few square miles living in LoDo.
Neighborhood vibe: LoDo is an eclectic urban jungle with a surprisingly homey feel. You won’t get the “concrete jungle” vibe that you might have in the Central Business District, even though they’re neighbors. With hundreds of dining, shopping, and drink options, there’s something for everyone and every mood. If you’re looking for a luxe city life with a laid-back edge, LoDo is for you.
Looking for a way to carve out a community in this big city? Look no further than Platt Park. This quaint, historic neighborhood feels like a small town with its summertime farmer’s markets and charming main drag, Old South Pearl Street. Trolley tracks from days gone peek their way through the asphalt. Homes are quiet bungalows popular with first-time home buyers, the neighborhood bridges the gap between historical and modern.
Neighborhood vibe: Denver can feel like a big city— especially in the more bustling neighborhoods like LoDo or Uptown— but Platt Park is its own cozy district that will feel like home immediately. At the turn of the 20th century, this neighborhood was its own city, separate from Denver. This gives Platt Park its vintage feel, as most establishments choose to carefully renovate rather than tear down and rebuild. The Virginia Village neighborhood has a similar vibe to this peaceful area.
River North (RiNo)
RiNo is Denver’s very own arts district. Most blocks seemingly house either a gallery or brewery, or both. Rivaling LoDo for nightlife, RiNo is vibrant and energetic, pulsing with exuberance. If you’re a creative looking to connect with other artists, photographers, dancers, and the like – RiNo is the place for you.
Neighborhood vibe: Colorful murals, curated galleries and public sculptures created by local artists are spread throughout this lively neighborhood. Walk through sidewalk chalk, and stop by a pub for a locally brewed beer. If international, multicultural, quirky fusion cuisine is your thing, you’ll be in heaven here. From food trucks to world-famous hole-in-the-wall restaurants, you’re sure to be impressed. RiNo is best described as an artist’s playground, so if you have a knack for exploring off the beaten path, this place is for you!
While smaller than a typical ‘college town’, University Park’s proximity to the University of Denver drives much of its unique energy. Weekend nights are busy and there are plenty of dive bars to quench your thirst at. Sometimes referred to as The DU neighborhood, this area offers a wide varieties of rentals— and doesn’t fit any one stereotype. University Park is a fun, lively place to call home.
Neighborhood vibe: This quaint neighborhood in Denver is full of eager students and historical architecture. While DU campus is close by, all walks of life live in this charming area. With plenty of green space to roam around in and watering holes to try trendy cocktails at, there is never a shortage of fun things to do.
Uptown offers residents a break from the 16th Street Mall and the city’s bustle, while still situating itself on major bus routes only a stone’s throw from downtown. Professionals and commuters alike spend their time on 17th dining at Uptown’s unique, moderately priced restaurants. Beautiful churches, historic brick row houses, and modern apartment buildings form the amalgam that is Uptown.
Neighborhood vibe: Uptown is an extremely eclectic neighborhood. Walk through the tree-lined streets and you’ll see a mix of Victorian homes and modern loft apartments. This area shares many qualities with Cap Hill and City Park West, but is located closer to the bustle of Downtown. If you’re looking for a community feel, but still want to be near urban conveniences, Uptown is for you.
Washington Park (Wash Park)
Famous for its namesake, the neighborhood of Wash Park is a gorgeous and pricey spot to call home. The 155-acre park serves as the neighborhoods epicenter and is lined by beautiful historic and modern homes. People from all walks of life call Wash Park home and you’re sure to make friends at any of the pick up games this summer.
Neighborhood vibe: With its namesake park and Cherry Creek Trail a short walk away, the Wash Park neighborhood provides an oasis for outdoor enthusiasts. Local restaurants line the streets of this energetic neighborhood and provide a welcoming introduction into one of the most popular areas in Denver. You’ll find residents and their dogs taking a morning stroll down tree-lined streets or grabbing a warm coffee at any of the locally owned cafes that are sprinkled throughout this neighborhood.
This little slice of heaven has everything one could wish for. Situated near Baker’s burgeoning arts district and just north of a myriad of vintage shops, South Broadway is a great place to for music lovers and foodies. South Broadway is home to many of Denver’s greatest dive bars and some of the best music venues in the city. The residential streets remain relatively quiet and provide ample space for after work strolls with the pooch.
Neighborhood vibe: For a perfect mix of quirky and cool, head to the loosely-defined section of Denver known as South Broadway. This vibrant area is widely recognized for its colorful storefronts, hip restaurants, and music venues that line Broadway street. No matter where you draw the line, this eccentric collection of dive bars, galleries, hole-in-the-wall pizza joints, and vintage stores gives Denver a healthy dose of cool.
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