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Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

October 13, 2021
Throw away all your preconceived notions about Atlanta. The city isn't all that movies and TV will have you believe it is. Sure, it's become a huge metropolis with lots of hustle and bustle, but there's more to Atlanta than that! There are peaceful suburbs where families can live in peace, nature-centric parts where you can have an adventure, and more. To truly know the city, you must explore the different neighborhoods in Atlanta. Even just its central districts are enough to give you a better grasp of the city.

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood



Best Neighborhoods in Atlanta for Families

If you're moving to Atlanta with your family, you'd do well to settle down in places like Kirkwood, Buckhead, Virginia-Highland, Sandy Springs, Brookhaven, Old Fourth Ward, or even Midtown Atlanta. Some of these neighborhoods are the city's suburbs, built specifically for a peaceful life with family. Others, however, like Midtown, are within urban areas but are still safe nonetheless. 


What are the Safest Neighborhoods in Atlanta?

Unsurprisingly, many of the family-friendly Atlanta neighborhoods mentioned previously are also some of the safest parts of the city. Buckhead, Virginia-Highland, Kirkwood, and Midtown Atlanta particularly stand out. They're also among the most popular areas for locals and tourists alike. 


Areas to Avoid in Atlanta


As great of a city it is, the unfortunate truth is Atlanta's crime rates are pretty high. So does this mean that the city isn't safe? Not necessarily. You'll largely stay safe if you avoid places like Mechanicsville, West End, Oakland City, Vine City, Grove Park, and Sweet Auburn. These are some of the most dangerous areas in Atlanta and have the highest crime rates in the city. 


Buckhead Village, Atlanta

Nestled between the Midtown district and Brookhaven, Buckhead is one of the more upscale neighborhoods of Atlanta. So much so that it's referred to as the "Beverly Hills of the South." That alone already says a lot. Add to that all the luxury shopping, elegant restaurants, and some of the most luxurious homes in Atlanta. It's not a reach to compare it to the famous swanky LA neighborhood, is it? Though it has its homegrown gems, namely the Atlanta History Center and the Chastain Park Amphitheater. 


Where is Buckhead Village?

Buckhead Village is located uptown, right by the north of Midtown Atlanta. The place is surrounded by other popular areas like Brookhaven, Sandy Springs, and Vinings. 


Is Buckhead Village Safe?

Yes, it is. It's among the safest parts of the city. This is thanks in large part to the largely residential area and peaceful community. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Flickr.com/ David


East Atlanta

Though it used to be one of the grittier parts of the city. East Atlanta has become so gentrified that you can almost compare it to Brooklyn in New York. But make no mistake! The spirit of its old days can still be felt by way of the eye-catching street art and bohemian spirit. Nowadays, it's become a largely residential area with a lively nightlife scene. Bars, restaurants, and more line up the streets entertaining the many hipsters that have settled down in the area. 


Where is East Atlanta?

True to its name, East Atlanta is on the east side of the city. It's right beside other neighborhoods like Woodland Hills, Olmsted, and Cabbagetown. 


Things to Do in East Atlanta

If you could spend only one day in Atlanta, why not spend it in East Atlanta? There's a lot you can do here! For one thing, you can have a local street art tour of the village. The place even has full-blown houses as canvases for its street art. The East Atlanta Village Farmers Market is always a good place for shopping and eating. It's among the most popular markets in the city. And of course, you can't forget about the food! East Atlanta has a diverse culinary scene that's worth checking out! 


Is East Atlanta Safe?

Don't worry! Despite how bohemian it is, East Atlanta is a generally safe place. There are far more dangerous areas in the city compared to this village! 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Kirkwood in Atlanta, Georgia

If you're looking for a family-friendly place to stay in Atlanta, go to Kirkwood. A nature-bound district, it's also one of the more suburban-like parts of the city. The place feels more like a typical small town in the American South, bursting with rural charms and natural beauty all around. The vibe is so different from the rest of Atlanta that you'd almost think that you're in another city entirely. But don't worry! Atlanta's public transport still connect Kirkwood to the more urban parts of the metropolis. 


Things to Do in Kirkwood, Atlanta

The best thing to do in Kirkwood, Atlanta is to get closer to nature. The neighborhood has many trails, for example, that are perfect for a hike with friends. It also won't take you long to venture further into the nearby Kirkwood Urban Forest Reserve and set up camp on a nice site. And if you want to cool off, you can always hang out by the lake and feel the breeze brush up against you. 


Is Kirkwood, Atlanta Safe?

​​While it may not have the lowest crime rates in Atlanta, Kirkwood is still one of the safest parts of the city. It's a peaceful place overall and is safe enough for families to settle down here. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Flickr.com/ Thomas Cizauskas


Knight Park in Atlanta

On the opposite side of the city, there's another suburban-like neighborhood worth checking out: Knight Park. Encircling the eponymous Knight Park green space, there's a tight-knit community here just waiting for new families and residents to join them. Though it's very much a busy area too, what with the shopping districts and office buildings that make up the area. The place is famous for its mix of architectural styles. You can't exactly pinpoint Knight Park's distinct look, which itself makes it pretty distinct too. 


Is Knight Park in Atlanta Safe?

Yes, it is. Knight Park has mid-to-low crime rates. It's also among the more peaceful parts of the city that's perfect for families to settle down. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Midtown Atlanta, Georgia

City living is alive and well here in Atlanta, especially in its Midtown district. Comprised of high-rise buildings and modern-day conveniences, this is one of the most comfortable places to live in the city. And it helps that many of Atlanta's finest hospitals are located here too, making it all the more convenient for local and tourists alike. Though it's not exactly New York City or London, Midtown Atalanta is urban enough that you can easily lead an exciting lifestyle here. Go to work during the day and still go out at night. What more could you ask for?


Midtown Atlanta Restaurants

It's no surprise that Midtown is where you'll find some of the best restaurants in Atlanta. This is the center of the city, the place where locals and tourists converge. It's only natural to have the finest culinary hotspots in this area. Among them is the famous South City Kitchen Midtown, a mecca of American Southern cuisine. If you want to truly taste the flavors of Georgia, this is the best place to start. There's also Momonoki at 95 8th St NW, the city's premier ramen place. This hotspot offers a different flavor—a deliciously Eastern one—you won't want to miss! And if you're looking for an affordable place to take your family, check out Cheddar's Casual Cafe. The food is great and the prices are low! 


Is Midtown Atlanta Safe?

Yes, it is. Midtown is one of the safest neighborhoods in Atlanta. Security is tight here and the energy is lively enough with all sorts of tourists roaming about. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Old Fourth Ward in Atlanta

Students, young professionals, and newlyweds starting their own families—these are what mostly comprise the residents here in Atlanta's Old Fourth Ward. Contrary to its name, this neighborhood is one of the hippest in the city, a congregation of millennials and Gen Z kids (and a few young-at-heart Gen X-ers/Boomers too!) looking to start their new independent lives. Its historic significance—the hometown of Martin Luther King Jr.—makes it even more attractive to those nostalgic youngsters who want to relive the past while making a difference in the present for the future. 


Old Fourth Ward, Atlanta Restaurants

Part of what makes the Old Fourth Ward one of the trendiest neighborhoods in Atlanta is its emerging culinary scene. The district is giving Midtown a run for its money when it comes to the must-try restaurants in the city. There's Bully Boy on Ralph McGill Blvd, for example, which is a chic restaurant that's perfect for a business dinner or an anniversary date. The place pairs sensational seafood with delicious cocktails—what more could you ask for? Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall on John Wesley Dobbs Avenue is also a stand-out. It's an outdoor restaurant where the American South’s cuisine reigns supreme. 


Is Old Fourth Ward, Atlanta Safe?

Yes, Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward is entirely safe. Not only is it one of the least dangerous parts of the city, but it’s also one of the best family-friendly areas in all of Georgia! 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Piedmont Heights in Atlanta, Ga

You can say that Piedmont Heights is in “the middle of all the action” in Atlanta. It has all the charms of the past but is kept lively by the modern energy of today. A convergence of old and new worlds, it's a pretty suitable place for those who simply want to enjoy life in Atlanta. Other parts are more residential than others but there's still a mostly urban feel to it. Arguably its most famous spot, Cheshire Bridge Road, is lined with all sorts of fun and unique establishments. This is the best place for locals to hang out and have fun on the weekends. 


Is Piedmont Heights, Atlanta Safe?

Yes, it is. The family-centric area is known as one of the safer parts of Atlanta. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Summerhill in Atlanta, Ga

Summerhill is yet another part of Atlanta that's become completely gentrified. And this has had both good and bad effects in the long run. The good effect is that it's a largely residential area now, with more and more families moving into comfortable houses and stable apartments. But the bad part, however, is that the district has more or less lost its distinct spirit. All of its noted histories have disappeared, now dominated by the commercial center where people shop, eat, and hang out. 


What to Do in Summerhill, Atlanta

Summerhill, Atlanta is the kind of place where you can just hang out and have fun. The area is known for its bikeable paths, perfect for cyclists to exercise and pass the time riding from one street to the next. The malls and stores make it a great place for shopping. Though it may not have famous designer labels, it still has the high-street brands that you can afford. And of course, you can't forget about the eateries too! From restaurants to diners, Summerhill is not a bad place to let out your inner foodie. 


Is Summerhill, Atlanta Safe?

The short answer is yes, it is. But in truth, Summerhill is far from the safest neighborhood in Atlanta. It tends to get rowdy at times, but overall, you'll find no problem staying safe here. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Underwood Hills in Atlanta

The living costs in Atlanta aren't all that high, especially if you'll be living in Underwood Hills on the western side of the city. While the area itself is undergoing gentrification, many of the decades-old apartment complexes here offer affordable living spaces. Not to mention houses & lots that make up the more suburban parts of the area. Though the community here is diverse for now, it won't be long until this part of Atlanta will be full of young people just like the other neighborhoods in Atlanta.  


Is Underwood Hills, Atlanta Safe?

Yes, it is. Underwood Hills is safe enough for families to live here. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Westview, Atlanta

The story of Atlanta's Westview neighborhood belongs in the history books. Because of the Great Recession a couple of years back, this district was hit the hardest and practically reduced to a downtrodden neighborhood, almost becoming a ghetto. But in the past few years, the area has risen to become one of the best residential districts in the city. Today, it's become a collection of bungalows that are perfect for a family to move into and live the quintessential American suburban life. The area also has gentrification to thank for that, but still, there's no place with a history quite like Westview!


Is Westview, Atlanta Safe?

Westview is no doubt one of the safest neighborhoods in Atlanta. It’s almost entirely residential, making it one of the most peaceful parts of the city. 

Ultimate Atlanta Guide by Neighborhood

Source: Wikimedia Commons 


Discover more about the central neighborhoods in Atlanta with this neighborhood guide. Though it only includes the basics of a select few districts, they're enough to give you better a idea of what Atlanta is all about.


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