Baltimore has more than 250 distinct neighborhoods. Each one reflects the city's quirky personality through its restaurants, historic sites and attractions, shops and architecture.
We scoured the city to create this list of five fun facts about 10 of Baltimore's most popular neighborhoods.
The historic waterfront community, located in Southeast Baltimore, is a popular neighborhood for young professionals and newcomers. Canton offers convenient access to shopping, dining, nightlife and recreation.
Residents enjoy outdoor festivals, summer concerts and community fitness classes in the two parks within walking distance. Rentals range from lofts in restored warehouses to apartments in historic row houses.
Five fun facts about Canton
- Canton played an important role in the development of Baltimore's early maritime trade and is one of the oldest industrial communities in the United States
- In 1785, Irish merchant John O'Donnell settled in this Baltimore neighborhood and named it Canton after the Chinese port with which he traded
- Welsh and Irish migrant workers settled in the area during the early 19th century. In 1865, a large community of copper workers established a Presbyterian church, located on Toone Street.
- Extending nearly 100 blocks, Canton is one of the largest historic districts in Baltimore. It's primarily comprised of 19th and early 20th-century row houses.
- Canton is in one of the most gentrified ZIP Codes in the nation from 2000–2016
Charles Village has a strong sense of self-identity and is well-known for its cultural and educational resources, including Johns Hopkins University and the Baltimore Museum of Art. Many of the university's staff and students live in the neighborhood, particularly in the high-rise apartment buildings and row houses adjacent to the campus.
The neighborhood has a reputation for being one of the more racially and socially diverse in the city.
Five fun facts about Charles Village
- Originally known as Peabody Heights, Charles Village was first developed as a streetcar suburb in the early 20th century
- The Olmsted Brothers, descendants of the famous 19th-century landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Sr., planned and designed the 16-acre Wyman Park Dell, a public space with manicured areas and a large lawn in the center
- A small portion of lower Charles Village is home to a number of Korean restaurants and sometimes referred to as "Koreatown"
- A portion of Charles Village was known as "Little Appalachia" and was home to Southern and Appalachian migrants. Little Appalachia was home to renowned bluegrass musician Hazel Dickens.
- In 2008, the American Planning Association designated Charles Village as one of 10 Great Places: Neighborhoods in America
Downtown Baltimore is the central business district and primary tourist destination of the city. It includes historic and commercial areas along Charles and Pratt Streets, east to west, and St. Paul and Calvert Streets, north to south.
Residents enjoy easy access to shops, restaurants, museums and entertainment. Most of the rentals are high-end luxury apartments located in high-rise buildings.
Five fun facts about Downtown Baltimore
- The former home of writer Edgar Allen Poe is located a few blocks northwest from his grave at the intersection of Greene and Fayette Streets
- The historic Lexington Market, founded in 1782, is one of the longest-running markets in the world
- The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad was the country's first commercial railroad, dating back to 1827
- In 1904, downtown Baltimore was almost destroyed by a huge fire with damages estimated at $150 million
- G. Krug & Son Ironworks and Museum is the oldest continually operating blacksmith shop in the United States, as well as a museum
Editorial credit: Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com
Fells Point is a historic waterfront neighborhood, an upscale residential area and tourist destination with many restaurants, hotels, shops, a municipal market house and more than 120 pubs.
Established as a maritime port in 1763, in recent years, the area has steadily been restored to preserve historic homes and businesses. Rentals range from studios in mid-sized apartment buildings to renovated 100-year-old brick row houses.
Five fun facts about Fells Point
- In the 18th and 19th centuries, Fells Point shipyards produced topsail schooners, renowned for their speed and handling. Today's "Pride of Baltimore II" is a schooner based on the "Chasseur," built by Thomas Kemp, which was built in Fell's Point during the War of 1812. Fells Point remained a shipbuilding center until the Civil War when it could no longer handle the larger ships.
- In 1835, Frederick Douglass, while still enslaved, was hired out to a shipbuilder as a caulker on Fells Point. The site is now the Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park Museum, providing hands-on activities and education about African American heritage.
- In the 19th century, the neighborhood was a major port of entry to the United States and was home to large immigrant populations of Irish, Germans, Jews, Poles and other Eastern European nationalities.
- Several films and TV shows have been filmed in Fells Point including "He's Just Not That Into You," "Homicide: Life On The Street" and "Sleepless in Seattle."
- Notable former residents include jazz singer Billy Holiday, actress Edith Massey and Olympian Michael Phelps.
Editorial credit: Andrew F. Kazmierski / Shutterstock.com
Once a 19th-century mill town, Hampden has evolved into a hipster Baltimore neighborhood over the past decade. Hampden's main drag is 36th Street, known as The Avenue, popular for its locally-owned shops and restaurants such as Trohv, Bluebird Cocktail Room, The Charmery and Zissimos Bar.
The Woodberry station on the Baltimore Light Rail system is within walking distance. Most of the apartments are located in older buildings, however, a new, high-end mixed-use development at Clipper Mill has spurred economic growth to the area.
Five fun facts about Hampden
- At the turn of the 20th century, the workers of Hampden-Woodberry Cotton Mill made up one of the largest workforces in the nation
- Home of the HONfest since 1994, the nationally recognized festival expands four city blocks along West 36th Street in the Hampden neighborhood. The annual event celebrates and honors the working-class women of Baltimore.
- Famed Baltimore filmmaker and author John Waters is known to pick up his fan mail at Atomic Books in Hampden
- Miracle on 34th Street is a display of holiday lights that takes place annually on the 700 block of 34th Street (between Chestnut Avenue and Keswick Road) in Baltimore's Hampden community. The display started in 1947 and has become a major attraction featuring Christmas trees, Hanukkah menorahs, trains, animated figures and an array of seasonal characters.
- Novelist Philipp Meyer grew up on 36th Street during the late 1970s and 1980s
The Inner Harbor is the centerpiece of downtown Baltimore, with world-class attractions including the National Aquarium, Maryland Science Center, Port Discovery Children's Museum and Harborplace.
Baltimore has been a major seaport since the 18th century and today, the Inner Harbor is a prime tourist destination and the city's most expensive place to live.
Five fun facts about Inner Harbor
- The USS Constellation is docked at the Inner Harbor. Built in 1854, it's the last all-sail warship built by the U.S. Navy.
- Harborplace opened on July 4, 1980. The restoration and development of the historic seaport was inspired by the July 4, 1976 rendezvous of Tall Ships in New York for the U.S. Bicentennial. Eight ships from other nations visited Baltimore, where they attracted a huge number of tourists.
- The Baltimore Inner Harbor is home to the National Aquarium, the country's first public aquarium displaying more than 20,000 fish, birds, reptiles, amphibians and marine mammals.
- Baltimore's World Trade Center is the world's tallest five-sided building. Visitors can get a great panoramic view of the city from the building's 27th floor at Top of the World Observation Level.
- The Power Plant, also known as the Pier Four Power Plant and The Pratt Street Power Plant, was built between 1900 and 1909 and was one of only 11 buildings in the zone of the Baltimore Fire of 1904 to survive that event. It provided electric power until 1973. The Neo-classical structure was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1987. It has since been repurposed twice and used to house a variety of entertainment venues.
Locust Point is a peninsular neighborhood located in South Baltimore near Fort McHenry. It once served as a center of Baltimore's Polish-American, Irish-American and Italian-American communities.
In more recent years, Locust Point has seen gradual gentrification with the rehabilitation of Tide Point and Silo Point. New luxury apartment buildings have been built attracting young professionals to this part of town.
Five fun facts about Locust Point
- Baltimore's immigration station opened in Locust Point in 1868. It was the third-largest point of entry for immigrants to the United States, following Ellis Island and the Port of Philadelphia.
- Best known for its role in the War of 1812, Fort McHenry defended Baltimore Harbor from an attack by the British navy from the Chesapeake Bay on September 13–14, 1814. The fort was first built in 1798 and was used continuously by the U.S. armed forces through World War I and by the Coast Guard in World War II.
- The sportswear company Under Armour makes its home in Tide Point
- Locust Point played prominently in the second season of the HBO cable TV series "The Wire"
- Locust Point is home to the Baltimore Museum of Industry, a museum with exhibits on various types of manufacturing and industry from the early 20th century
Located immediately north of downtown Baltimore, Mount Vernon is one of the city's oldest neighborhoods and originally was home to the city's wealthiest families. The area is named for the Mount Vernon home of George Washington.
Mount Vernon is home to renowned institutions, including the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, Walters Art Museum, University of Baltimore, Maryland Historical Society, Maryland Institute College of Art, Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, Lyric Opera House, Center Stage and the central branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library. Rentals range from Victorian-era row houses to high-rise apartments.
Five fun facts about Mount Vernon
- The original Washington Monument, a massive pillar erected in 1815 to commemorate the first president of the United States, is the cornerstone of the neighborhood
- Mount Vernon boasts examples of period architecture including Beaux-Arts, Greek Revival, Federal, Chateau, Gothic Revival, Queen Anne, Romanesque and Renaissance Revival
- The Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church sits on the northeast corner of the Washington monument. It was built on the site of the Charles Howard mansion, the house where Francis Scott Key died.
- The historic beaux-arts Belvedere Hotel, opened in 1903, was converted to condominiums in 1991
- In 1964, the community became Baltimore's first historic district
Mount Washington is located within the city limits and borders with Pikesville in Baltimore County. It's mostly residential, though it has two small commercial areas: Mount Washington Village contains several restaurants and shops and Mount Washington Mill, a refurbished textile mill has a Whole Foods, Starbucks and other stores and offices. Most of the rentals here are located in a few older apartment complexes or in historic single-family homes.
Five fun facts about Mount Washington
- The Mount Washington Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990
- Originally built in 1810 by the Washington Cotton Factory, the Mt. Washington Mill is the third oldest cotton mill in the United States. In 1989, the complex was converted into a mixed-use retail and office complex. In 2014, the original Dyeworks building was transformed into the Mt. Washington Mill Dye House event space, a popular venue for weddings.
- Mount Washington is home to the North Baltimore Aquatic Club, also known as the NBAC. It's a team of many Olympic swimmers, including Michael Phelps and Katie Hoff.
- To the north of Mount Washington is Lake Roland Park, a city/county park encompassing more than 500 acres of woodland and wetlands and the Carrie Murray Nature Center
- Also nearby is Cylburn Arboretum, the largest public garden in Baltimore and the former estate of businessman Jesse Tyson
West Forest Park borders Baltimore County and gives residents a mix of urban and suburban lifestyles. Mostly residential, the area has many parks and varied housing.
The area was once the center of Baltimore's Jewish community. During the Vietnam War era, the community changed and is now an almost exclusively African American region of Baltimore. It's an economically diverse neighborhood with single-family homes and a few apartment buildings.
Five fun facts about West Forest Park
- Forest Park is the home of former city mayor Catherine E. Pugh, as well as past mayor Kurt Schmoke and other prominent African-American political leaders
- Nearby is the Baltimore Zoo, home to more than 1,500 birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles
- Sixty-four-acre neighboring Gwynn Oak Park was once home to an amusement park. Today, it features walking trails, plus a fishing area, picnic facilities and a playground.
- Leakin Park also borders the neighborhood, featuring 1,216 acres of woodlands with sports fields, miniature trains and hiking/biking trails
- Gwynns Falls is a 24.9-mile-long stream that runs through the West Forest Park neighborhood
Whatever neighborhood you choose, there are many available apartments for rent and homes for sale in Baltimore to suit your needs.