Rachel Cooper
Washington, D.C. insider tips

Washington D.C. is a vibrant city that showcases some of the richest culture in the nation. The population is growing at a rapid pace and many neighborhoods are experiencing a revitalization. Discover D.C.'s hip neighborhoods with apartments: a great starting point for where to live in D.C.  

Dupont Circle in D.C.
D.C.'s Dupont Circle, photo courtesy of Josh

Dupont Circle

Dupont Circle is one of the most popular places to live in DC. Located just one mile northwest of the White House, it is a hub for the hip, international and young at heart. The cosmopolitan neighborhood is home to some of the city’s finest museums, historic homes and foreign embassies as well as a variety of ethnic restaurants, bookstores, and private art galleries.

Why You’ll Love It: The late 19th and 20th century architecture is beautiful and the area is buzzing with activity – games of chess in the circle and impromptu snowball fights in winter.

D.C.'s Penn Quarter - Chinatown
Penn Quarter – Chinatown, photo courtesy of Rachel Cooper


Penn Quarter-Chinatown

Over the past two decades, the Penn Quarter-Chinatown area has become one of the city’s hottest neighborhoods for dining, shopping, live entertainment and cultural experiences. The area is home to the city’s largest arena, Verizon Center, plus many restaurants, hotels, nightclubs, art galleries, theaters and trendy stores. Within walking distance to the National Mall and the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro this area is especially convenient and has a wide variety of apartments.

Why You’ll Love It: The city’s top attractions and best restaurants are within walking distance.

U Street, a hip area in D.C.
U Street, courtesy of Rachel Cooper

U Street Corridor

The U Street Corridor is especially known for its lively music scene and history as the “Black Broadway”. It is home to the popular eatery Bens Chili Bowl, as well as the historic Howard and Lincoln Theatres. The commercial corridor along 14th Street has a variety of apartments, retailers, restaurants, art galleries, theater, and nightlife venues. The U Street/African American Civil War Memorial/Cardozo and Shaw-Howard University Metro stations make this area easily accessible.

Why You’ll Love It: The neighborhood is one of the most popular local hotspots for dining and nightlife.

D.C.'s Chip apitol Riverfront
Capitol Riverfront, courtesy of Rachel Cooper

Capitol Riverfront

Capitol Riverfront is the fastest growing neighborhood in the nation’s capital. The 2008 opening of the DC baseball park, Nationals Park, began the stimulus of this area. With its scenic location along the Anacostia River, it is a vibrant urban neighborhood and entertainment district with dozens of new apartments, restaurants, retail, hotels, and office spaces. The neighborhood has easy access to I-295 and I-395 and Metrorail’s Navy Yard/Ballpark station.

Why You’ll Love It: Almost everything is new and the waterfront area is developing a real sense of community hosting outdoor events such as movies, concerts, seasonal festivals, art expositions, and more.

NoMa in Washington, D.C.
Trendy NoMa, photo courtesy of the NoMa BID


NoMa is a vibrant neighborhood in Washington, D.C. located just north of Union Station and named for its location – North of Massachusetts Avenue.  With a WalkScore of 92, and easy access to Amtrak, VRE, MARC, and the Union Station Metro station, NoMa is a hub for regional transportation. Over the past decade, the area has been building new commercial and residential space and will soon have great new parks and public spaces. Nearby Union Market is an epicenter of culinary creativity with over 40 local vendors.

Why You’ll Love It: Shiny new office buildings, luxury apartments and new retail are being built rapidly. Its close proximity to downtown makes NoMa a great location for new residents.



About The Author

Rachel Cooper is a freelance writer and author with more than a decade of online journalism and content creation experience. She has written for About.com, Washingtonian, Federal City Council, Montgomery Parks, Destination Maryland, Conde Nast Traveler, Payscale, Valpak, Grandparents.com, Washington Parent and more. Her books include Quiet Water: Mid-Atlantic, AMC’s Canoe and Kayak Guide to the Best Ponds, Lakes and Easy Rivers; 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles: Washington, D.C. and Images of Rail: Union Station in Washington, D.C.