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Best neighborhoods in Portland

When you think of Portland, you probably think of a thriving artistic and theatrical community, local businesses, and delicious cuisine — as well as lots of hipster jokes.

If you’re considering relocating to Portland or currently reside here, you’re probably aware that the neighborhoods are as different as the town itself. There’s something for everyone in this thriving business community, from the bustling streets of Sunnyside to the tranquil parks of St. Johns.

Neon sign on a concrete building

Here’s our list of best neighborhoods in Portland!

If you’re wondering which Portland neighborhood is the best for you but can’t decide, contact Eileen today. Eileen and her team can help you find your dream home in Portland, Oregon.

Portland City

Portland is divided into six sections: Southeast, Southwest, Northeast, Northwest, and North, and South Portland. There are 95 neighborhoods overall in each division. The Willamette River separates the city’s east and west sides. Portland is Oregon’s largest city, with a population of around 620,000 residents.

Portland is regarded as being an extremely liberal city for progressive and active people. At least, that’s what people like to think of the place. But, like with every metropolis, there are many types of individuals that reside there. It’s heavy on art and nightlife, and it’s extremely gorgeous.

However, Portland is about more than its landscape and drinking culture. Looking at a town’s neighborhoods is also a fantastic approach to learning more about it.

If you’re relocating to Portland, we’ve compiled a list of our top picks. From students and creative professionals to working professionals and developing families, the communities mentioned below provide something for everyone. Each one has its own set of attractions as well as a great deal of charm. One of these will undoubtedly be ideal for you.

Best Neighborhoods in Portland

Here are some of the best neighborhoods in Portland explained for you!

Pearl District

The Pearl District is a great place to live if you enjoy eating out and having fun. It’s one of the most popular districts for young professionals in Portland, with wonderful nightlife just waiting for you around every corner!

Pearl District is perfect as well for families looking for family-friendly activities that will keep them entertained throughout their stay. This neighborhood has something everyone can appreciate on offer no matter what your interests may be!

The Pearl District Neighborhood Association is also quite active and a terrific way to meet new people and learn more about the neighborhood.

In and around the Pearl District, there are far too many commercial and government schools to include here. But here are a few that we’d like to call attention to including East-West Sylvan, Chapman Middle, and Lincoln High. The Emerson School, on the other hand, is a non-profit community school that serves kids in Preschool through grade five.

There are no separated single-family houses in the Pearl District, but there are plenty of condominiums, lofts, and townhomes.

Best neighborhood in Portland

West End

Another win for Portland’s downtown district. The West End is a true treasure between Southwest Morrison St. and West Burnside extending from Southwest 14th Street to Southwest Broadway.

While it isn’t an official Portland neighborhood classification, it is a rare find between West Burnside and Southwest Morrison St. In other words, it’s sandwiched between Powell’s City of Books and the Pearl District. This new neighborhood is gradually filling up with interesting boutiques and establishing itself to be a trend and lifestyle destination.

When it comes to Portland neighborhoods, West End is unquestionably unique. It’s edgy and modern, cutting-edge and innovative, a community that isn’t a neighborhood. It’s the intersection of innovation, fashion, and nightlife.

West End inhabitants send their children to schools such as West Hills Christian School, Jackson Middle School, and the Markham School.

The West End area has a wide range of condominiums, townhouses, flats, and traditional single-family residences.

Arlington Heights

Arlington Heights is one of the most family-friendly cities in the United States. It’s one of Portland’s most gorgeous neighborhoods, tucked in the Tualatin mountain range in Southwest Portland. With 323 acres of open space, the area comprises roughly 300 single-family houses and some of the city’s most well known parks.

Arlington Heights has a total of 20 public and private schools. Chapman and Ainsworth Elementary schools, East-West Sylvan, and Lincoln High are some of the more notable institutions that locals send their children to.

Arlington Heights’ historic residences include Victorian houses, English Tudors, country residences, and contemporary designs. Approximately 60% of the residences were constructed before 1939.

Best neighborhoods in Portland

Nob hill

The Northwest District, often referred to as “Northwest” or “Nob Hill,” is a heavily urbanized business and residential region located in the town’s northwest corner. It’s only 976 acres in size, but it’s home to more than 14,000 people. Specialty stores, eateries, and cafés abound in this chic neighborhood.

Linfield College’s Portland campus, as well as the Dove Lewis Emergency Animal Hospital, are also nearby. Nob Hill is connected to the Pearl District, the Downtown Cultural District, Portland State University, and the South Waterfront region by the Portland Streetcar system.

Within two miles of the Nob Hill neighborhood’s core, there are 22 governmental and non – governmental schools. Albina Youth Opportunity School, Metropolitan Learning Center, and Childpeace Montessori School are just a few of them.

In Nob Hill, you’ll find everything from brick apartments to condominiums and townhouses, as well as modern and vintage separate single-family residences. The price varies from the low hundreds to over a million dollars.

Downtown Portland

The most attractive neighborhood for rentals is, naturally, Portland’s Downtown. The highly accessible city contains some of the country’s most condensed streets, ensuring that anything you may need or desire is just a quick and enjoyable stroll away, no matter where you reside.

You’ll never be too far away from grabbing tickets to a performance on the spur of the moment, paying a quick visit to an art opening, or starting a sudden retail therapy session if you live here. You’ll also be in for a treat whether you want a fast nibble from a contemporary food truck or a leisurely meal at one of the numerous luxury eateries.

Most of these benefits, of course, come with a cost. While downtown prices are cheaper than in a few of the town’s more premium areas, the average property rental is still roughly $1,656, which is more than the $1,431 median in Portland.

city lights in the night


Laurelhurst is primarily composed of residents who are represented by a robust, proactive community council that takes its responsibilities seriously. It’s around 10 minutes from downtown and borders a neighborhood park with the same name. The neighborhood is fairly walkable and ideal for families.

Laurelhurst K-8, Benson High School, and Grant High School are among the 34 public and private institutions in the region.

The majority of the 1,500 residences in Laurelwood are antique homes ranging from Tudors to English cottages.

South Waterfront

South Waterfront is among the country’s best-known urban reconstruction projects, so you can expect top-notch facilities and sky-high residential complexes.

If you’re searching for a property with a view, South Waterfront is the place to go. Portland, Oregon’s high-rise city, has a plethora of condominiums with waterfront panoramas, allowing you to properly appreciate the Willamette River in all of its glory. Even in this metropolitan center, a nature stroll is just a stone’s throw away, thanks to the abundance of walkways along the shoreline.

Furthermore, South Waterfront’s new apartment complexes provide a variety of facilities in a location with good public transportation links. As a result, apartments in the area tend to be priced similar to those in more central locations, with an average rent of $1,651.

What is the best part of Portland to live in?

Based on statistics from the U.S Census Healy Height is the number one neighborhood in Portland.

Healy Heights is a neighborhood with a community of 1,182 people. Healy Heights is located in Multnomah County and is considered one of Oregon’s greatest places to live. Inhabitants of Healy Heights enjoy a thick suburban atmosphere, with the majority of residents owning their houses. There are several eateries, cafés, and gardens in Healy Heights. Healy Heights is also known to be a family-oriented neighborhood with liberal leaning citizens. Healy Heights’ public schools are well regarded.

house with cozy garden

What are the hipster neighborhoods in Portland?

Portland is known to have multiple hipster neighborhoods.

Alberta Arts District

Alberta Street in Northeast Portland has a lot going on with its long line of museums, eateries, pubs, and retailers. An ideal Saturday expedition may include allergen and vegan restaurants, wine stores, and outstanding Mexican food, but that’s only the beginning.

Once a month, the eclectic neighborhood hosts Last Thursday, a colorful street festival inspired by Pearl/original Downtown’s event. While new artwork premieres in adjacent galleries, pubs, and eateries, entertainers, dancers, and local painters line Alberta, showcasing their gifts and products.

Hawthorne Boulevard

Hawthorne is a vegan hotspot, with a slew of plant-based restaurants and a slew of famous food carts serving anything from pancakes and tacos to Korean cuisine. This popular Southeast Portland Boulevard, which stretches between 30th and 50th Avenues, is lined with a diverse range of local enterprises, from clothing boutiques and thrift stores to independent eating options and musical performances, films, and live acts.

two men sitting together outside on a sunny day

Division Area

Beautiful homes span Richmond’s streets to the south, including small gift boutiques, handcrafted gifts, and oddball galleries populating the chic SE Division neighborhood. Pok Pok — the New York site has a Michelin star – and the Bollywood Theater, a lively, delectable eating experience consisting of spicy Indian street dishes and vintage Bollywood movies showing on the screen inside, are both located in the area.

What is the fanciest neighborhood in Portland?

Forest Park

Forest Park, located between Barnes and Willamette Heights, is perhaps the most luxurious Portland area to reside in.

The standard of living in this neighborhood is around 65% higher than the national median. The typical home value in the city is $319,400, which is almost 73% greater than the national median.

On the plus side, there are numerous and well-reviewed educational and job opportunities. Forest Park has a 2% unemployment rate and a typical family income of $138,185. According to reports, average test results in scores are over 80%, compared to Portland’s general 51%. Forest Park has a population of little over 10,000 residents, which is a pretty healthy number.

Southwest Hills

Southwest Hills, which is positioned just outside Sunset Highway and several miles from Forest Park, is another affluent Portland area. Southwest Hills has a cost of living that is 37 percent more than the Portland median and 62 percent higher than the general population. It’s a little on the pricey side.

Southwest Hills, on the other hand, does have a reasonable wage. The median household income is over $130,000, with a per capita income of just over $71,000. Southwest Hills is almost 139 percent higher than the median. This will undoubtedly be one of the best sites to consider if you’re searching for a place to truly get your business up and running.

concrete buildings under blue sky

Where is the best place to live in Portland Maine?

West End

West End is one of Portland’s finest historic districts. The building here is Gothic and Victorian in style, as it was in old New England. Ironwork entrances, pillars, and lots of balconies for staring out towards the sea embellish the homes.

Properties in this area have risen near $350,000, but they come with excellent state education and some of Portland’s nicest parks. For those searching for fitness or a pleasant stroll, the Western Promenade features approximately 25 acres of paths and outdoor areas.

The West End has many dining options, and those searching for a more bustling evening can head Downtown or to the Old Port, which are only a few steps away. When it comes to moving to Portland, Maine, this renowned area should be at the top of everyone’s list.


Home prices in the Oakdale community are approaching $380,000, with just a 1.8 percent gain predicted over the next year. With just roughly 40% of inhabitants owning their houses, this area has a lot of rental units.

The existence of the University of Southern Maine has had a significant impact on the area and fuels the local property market. While this area may be a fantastic investment for individuals wishing to buy rental homes, families with young children and first-time homebuyers will find lots of tree-lined avenues.

neon signs in the night

What's the coolest neighborhood in Portland?

St. Johns

St. Johns is among Portland’s most trendy and hip neighborhoods for a reason: it’s a naturalist’s dream. The area encompasses a peninsula wedged between two bodies of water and is known for Cathedral Park, which is greatly adored. St. Johns has its own city center since it was previously an independent entity, yet it’s only a 20-minute drive to Portland.

The area is also known for being one of Portland’s famed transitional areas, transitioning from a gloomy, industrial district to a lovely area with lively startup companies and high-end residential structures. Of course, there are other benefits to urban redevelopments, such as local enterprises, gourmet cafés, and wonderful eateries.

The nicest aspect of this up-and-coming district is that it’s still in the early stages of development, so you’re likely to find a rental at a fair price. St. Johns’ median rent is $1,359, which is lower than both federal and provincial norms.


To be fair, neighborhoods are all about proximity and personality. They are, however, also crucially about the residents who live in them. Culturally rich downtown areas provide a varied spectrum of lifestyles, contributing to Portland’s status among the most multicultural cities in the United States. We hope you find this guide useful to making your decision.

Eileen’s goal is to provide concierge-level service to her customers at every stage of their real estate transaction. Contact her right now if you want a realtor that knows how to bargain, welcomes creative marketing methods, and actually lifts the real estate bar.

Eileen O'Reilly

Eileen O’Reilly is a Bay Area Top Producer, and one of eXp Realty’s most dedicated and successful real estate agents in Oregon. Committed to finding real solutions to the challenges buyers and sellers face today, Eileen draws from a heart-centered approach and tenacious drive to help clients transform their lives through real estate.