Moving to a new city is always challenging. And a large part of that challenge is looking for a place to live. There are so many things to consider when weighing your options-house styles, neighborhood safety, quality of schools, the convenience of location-it all can be quite overwhelming.
That’s why we’ve done the research for you, so you don’t have to. You’ve no doubt seen our Austin City Guide, which includes a short section on a few of Austin’s most popular neighborhoods.
This list and our “Best Places to Live in Austin,” “Best Suburbs of Austin,” and our “Best Neighborhoods for Families in Austin” lists are more in-depth neighborhood guides meant to examine what it’s like living in each of these highlighted areas, with links to popular destinations, as well as available houses for sale and apartments for rent (and by the way of introduction, we’re Bellhops—movers in Austin and beyond).
Tucked into the greater Texas Hill Country, Austin was first given the charming title ‘Waterloo.’ Soon after, this Texan capital was renamed to honor the ‘Father of Texas’ and first secretary of state, Stephen F. Austin.
But a lot has happened since 1839. At this point, if you don’t hop on Austin quick, it’ll ride away without you. Austin is now the fastest growing large city in the country. People are moving here to get a taste of the year-round warm weather, nature oases, incredible food, live music, and laid-back culture.
The city’s 100+ neighborhoods are divided up into general regions (ex: Southeast Austin, Central Austin, West Austin, etc.). And these regions are separated by boundaries like Hwy. 1, Interstate 35, and Lady Bird Lake. Surrounding Austin’s perimeters are neighborhoods and mini-cities like Kyle, Wimberley, and Round Rock. And many people living in the area lump these neighboring areas in with the city.
So now that you’ve got a lay of the land, look a little further for our list of 4 up and coming neighborhoods in this up and coming city.
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This small, friendly residential area is just 3 miles from downtown, making it an awesome spot for families wanting access to an abundance of things to do – whether going out with the family or going out on a date. Cherrywood has all the perks of being downtown, but with quieter streets lined with cute little homes and parks dotting the neighborhood.
Cherrywood is home to the Willowbrook Reach and Patterson Neighborhood Park, and it also neighbors the Mueller Lake Park and Southwest Greenway. Besides the exceptional options for eating and drinking just a few miles away from Cherrywood, the neighborhood itself has a few local treasures.
Check out the neighborhoods local gem, Cherrywood Coffeehouse. This charming coffee house hosts live music and yoga classes, has an outdoor patio, makes yummy meat-forward and vegan-and-vegetarian-friendly food, and………serves over 17 drafts of beer.
There are over a dozen of awesome restaurants and bars along Manor Street which borders the Cherrywood neighborhood. Locals can simply walk off their front porches, down a few blocks and have a pastrami sandwich in their hand in less than 10 minutes.
This urban village was built for getting outside. With over 20% of the neighborhood dedicated to parks and open spaces, and with walking paths and bike lanes built within the neighborhood and along every road that runs through it, Mueller is an extremely pedestrian-friendly spot. And many young adults and young families have made Mueller their home.
Once an old Austin airport until 1999, this area was transformed into a master-planned community with an emphasis on sustainability. In fact, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) recognized Mueller as one of the most sustainable communities in the nation. And with all its parks, green spaces, and porches on every house, it’s easy to meet fellow-locals in the neighborhood.
At about three miles from downtown and two miles from The University of Texas, Mueller is perfectly located with a vibrant community and plenty of things to do. Most residents can walk to the grocery store in less than 10 minutes. And the Mueller Farmers Market, a highly-visited and favorited market throughout the entire city which hosts local vendors and live music, is just around the corner of the residential area.
Lots of local shops, restaurants, and bars seem to be popping up every time we check along Aldrich Street. One of these new and popular hubs is the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, which always hosts fun activities for patrons of all ages. For some tasty Texas fare, cocktails, and beer check out Contigo. Or visit the newer L’Oca d’Oro Italian restaurant and sample their wines, and house-made pasta and cheese.
Mueller is made up of mostly apartments, single-family homes, and condominiums, with 25% of the housing being in the Meuller affordable housing program. Here are the current houses for sale and homes for rent in the area.
North Loop is the trendy hub of North Austin, with vintage shops, indie bookstores, creative coffeeshops, juice bars, cocktail bars, and a skateboard shop. The neighborhood has had a pickup in the number of young professionals and couples in the past few years, and it’s still swiftly growing.
North Loop’s proximity to downtown and the University of Texas give the area ready-access to numerous businesses and amenities. And its tree-lined residential streets create a quiet and quaint space amidst the busier city. The neighborhood also borders I-35, giving easy entrance to the rest of the city.
This laid-back neighborhood is very bike friendly and creates a pleasant atmosphere for its eclectic mix of students, young professionals, families and longtime residents who have been in the area for decades.
North Loop is conveniently located close to all the businesses and amenities of the city. But it also offers plenty of great places within its borders.
The indie bookstore, Monkey Wrench Books is a local favorite. Tamale House sells 85-cent breakfast tacos. Flightpath Coffee accommodates its many patrons with a large seating area and outdoor patio. And Foreign & Domestic offers a finer side to dining in the neighborhood. Exploring North Loop, you’ll find local shops that are effortlessly hip with an extremely accepting and welcoming atmosphere.
One of the area’s largest hangout spots is Workhorse, a brewery boasting of 50 taps and an outdoor area packed with jovial locals squeezed together along massive picnic tables. If you walk in on this beer garden for the first time, you’ll probably think you’ve just crashed a massive family reunion. But you haven’t. Those are just North Loopians.
Unlike the tourist-trapping nearby neighborhood SoCo (or South Congress), South Lamar is full of underground shops, cheap eateries, quirky thrift stores, and dive bars. Home of the legendary Broken Spoke Dance Hall that has been hosting live music and cookin’ up chicken fried steak, since 1964, South Lamar prides itself on its uniqueness. And over the past few years, it has started to burst with new restaurants and bars.
South Lamar is full of restaurants, bars, food trucks, cafes, markets, galleries, and one-of-a-kind shops. Some of the top spots include the mural-decked East Side King where Asia meets Austin. Kerbey Lane Cafe serves breakfast all day and some amazing breakfast tacos. And Red’s Porch whips up some of the best brunches in the area.
For pre-dinner drinks, check out Maria’s Taco Xpress, which sells $2.25 giant margaritas. The Patika coffee shop serves beer, wine, pastries, breakfast, brunch, and lunch along with their coffee creations.
For post-dinner sweets, check out Crêpe Crazy, and their French-inspired sweet and savory crepe dishes. Barley Swine serves creative American fare and wacky deserts, like their sweet potato mousse with oat, mesquite, and fenugreek icecream. And the Lick ice cream shop scoops some wild flavors.
We hope this was helpful, and if you decide to take the plunge, don’t hesitate to reach out to your friends here at Bellhops. As we said, we coordinate local and long distance moving services in Austin, and we would love to help.
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