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Best Neighborhoods in Baltimore for Families

Moving to Baltimore with your family? Maryland’s largest city has plenty of safe places to live with top-rated education, kid-friendly activities, and affordable housing. If you’re ready to get settled with your kids in Charm City, check out five of the best neighborhoods in Baltimore for families!


  • Home Price: $259,906 median purchase price; $1,548 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 50% of Maryland cities

Canton is a lively neighborhood full of summer festivals and family-friendly things to do in Baltimore. Located off the harbor and roughly a ten-minute drive to I-95, this Baltimore neighborhood boasts a thriving, easily-walkable commercial district along O’Donnell Street, where young professionals flock for trendy bars, restaurants, and nightlife. The area hosts traditional rowhomes among refurbished rowhouses and modern apartments—many even provide gorgeous harbor views from Canton’s tree-lined streets and several parks. Kids can attend Hampstead Hill Academy or head to nearby neighborhoods for The Baltimore Montessori and Archbishop Borders School.

Things to Do in Canton

Make memories with your kids watching the Fleet Week air shows and fireworks, catching a Baltimore water taxi, or enjoying free concerts in Baltimore all summer long with WTMD’s First Thursday Festival in Canton Waterfront Park. Strike out and teach your kids to bowl at the oldest duckpin bowling alley in America, Patterson Bowling Center. Tire your kids out year-round in the amenity-rich Patterson Park, where you can hang at the Patterson Park Swimming Pool, find family-friendly fun at Virginia S. Baker Recreation Center, or go skating at Dominic “Mimi” DiPietro Family Skating Center. Grow your young child’s creativity with a Saturday Family Drop-In Art Class at Creative Alliance. Impress your partner with a date night featuring elevated, globally-inspired cuisine like Duck Confit Spring Rolls and Thai Seafood Hot Pot at Gunther & Co. Have a family dinner of some of the best pizza in Baltimore at Verde Pizza with a Chef’s Charcuterie Board and a specialty Porchetta Neapolitan Pizza. Pair some Blackened Baby Crabcakes and Roasted Brussels Sprouts with a Seafood Bowl Steamer at Lee’s Pint & Shell. Or grab a cone with the kids at Baltimore’s BMORE LICKS for Cookie Monster Holy Cannoli Hard Ice Cream or a Crunchie Munchie Flurry.

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  • Home Price: $163,077 median purchase price; $1048 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 59% of Maryland cities

This quirky North Baltimore neighborhood is a fun area for Baltimore families to live. You might recognize this neighborhood from Charm City native John Waters’ musical, Hairspray! Hampden is even more well-known for its festivals, including the Mayor’s Christmas Parade, Miracle on 34th Street Holiday Lights Show, and kitschy HONfest, where participants wear 1960s clothes. Many residents living in Hampden appreciate how easily accessible I-83 is, along with the Baltimore Light RailLink at nearby Woodberry Station, and several Local MTA bus routes. Plus, Johns Hopkins University is just minutes away for non-traditional students and educators living in this walkable, bikeable neighborhood for families in Baltimore. Families can rent or buy a classic Baltimore rowhouse or a more recently refurbished modern apartment. Plus, Hampden Elementary/Middle School, the Academy for College and Career Exploration, and Medfield Heights Elementary School serve the area.

Things to Do in Hampden

Entertain young ones with Coloring & Activity Books and Books For Strange Children at Atomic Books—or get a babysitter, so you can join one of the monthly reading club and make adult friends! Give your kids a lesson in pop culture classics by checking out nostalgic memorabilia like a Breakfast Club Funko Pop or a Jonny Cash LP record at Celebrated Summer. Kick it with your family at Skatepark of Baltimore in Roosevelt Park where there are plenty of rails for roller skaters and BMX riders, too. Help your teen find their style with vintage-inspired dresses, shirts, and more at Doubledutch Boutique. Start your morning routine right with a Down Home Girl Breakfast Sandwich, Japanese Iced Coffee, and Golden Milk Cookie from Artifact Coffee. Relax after dropping the kids off at school with a savory baked good like a Chickpea Tart or sweet treats like Shortbread Almond Jam Cookies along with home-brewed Mint Lime Kombucha at Harmony Bakery. Chow down on items for the whole family like Crab Mac N’ Cheese, Spicy Sweet Potato Soup, and an Insanity Burger at the well-known Wicked Sisters. Or saddle up the fam for a satisfying meal of Vegan Hot Honay Chick’n & Waffle, Pumpkin Curry Soup, and Aztec Burrito at Golden West Cafe.

Mount Washington

  • Home Price: $219,100 median purchase price; $839 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 80% of Maryland cities

If you want to live in one of the best Baltimore neighborhoods with your family, check out Mount Washington! Located less than 20 minutes from Downtown Baltimore, this open, airy neighborhood is known for its Colonial-style homes, spacious yards, and countless trees providing a canopy of shade in the summers. Careful maintenance of local Irvin Luckman Memorial Park by the Friends of Luckman Park and clearly-marked pedestrian walkways showcase the community’s resident-first, family-focused values. Mount Washington offers students highly-rated local schools like The Mount Washington School, The Bryn Mawr School, and Baltimore Polytechnic Institute. Commuters can easily access I-83 and the MTA Lightrail, while local medical professionals may work at nearby Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital or Sinai Hospital. With plenty of retail options, outdoor recreation on the Jones Falls Trail, plus parks and Baltimore community gardens, Mount Washington has something for every family!

Things to Do in Mount Washington

Get a family membership to access a private swimming pool, basketball court, volleyball court, and more at Mount Washington Swim Club. Take your kids to see chimpanzees, alligators, and penguins at The Maryland Zoo of Baltimore, which is just a few minutes south at Druid Park. Check out everything from family movie nights to gardening workshops at the Mount Washington Arboretum. Peruse a diverse spread of books or join events like Children’s Storytime at The Ivy Bookshop. Enjoy Cajun Creole dishes like Authentic Gumbo, Slow-Roasted Baby Back Ribs, and Jambalaya at Ethel’s Creole Kitchen. Order Avocado Toast, Buttermilk Pancakes, or a Skinny Egg Sandwich during Saturday Brunch at The Corner Pantry. Dig into Hawaiian and Buffalo Chicken specialty pizzas, or a Gyro Platter at Pepe’s. Or make memories on your date night by ordering the Sashimi Boat for Two, Yaki Udon, and Pizza Sushi from Chiyo Sushi.


  • Home Price: $257,315 median purchase price; $1,884 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 91% of Maryland cities

Riverside offers the best of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor! Enjoy close proximity to famous Federal Hill’s many eclectic events like the Kinetic Sculpture Race held by the American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM). In Riverside, one of the safest neighborhoods in Baltimore, you’ll find better parking options and a more family-friendly atmosphere similar to neighboring Locust Point. This walkable South Baltimore community is active and engaged in improving public works for the compact, urban neighborhood of tree-speckled, narrow streets lined by Rowhouses and sleek, newer apartment buildings. The Friends of Riverside Park maintain and beautify Leone-Riverside Park with projects like the SoBo Pop-Up Pool. Schools like Thomas Johnson Elementary Middle School, Federal Hill Preparatory School, and Francis Scott Key Elementary/Middle School serve the area. Get around town by hopping on I-95 or catching the CityLink Silver bus and other local bus routes. Boaters will love access to the harbor through Port Covington Marina while avid travelers can take off on cruises from Baltimore at the Maryland Cruise Terminal.

Things to Do in Riverside

Learn the local history from exhibits about Baltimore’s Steel Mills and Steam Tug Baltimore, workshops in Oyster Gardening, and on-demand shows like Stoop Storytelling at the Baltimore Museum of Industry. Get your family involved in meal planning by visiting the BMI Farmers’ Market on Saturday mornings from May to November! Need some free kids activities in Baltimore? Play a pick-up game of basketball or baseball, dive into the Riverside Public Swimming Pool, or explore historic cannons at Leon-Riverside Park. Listen and dance to local Baltimore bands at the Riverside Concert Series on Second Sundays or the Whiskey on the Waterfront at Sagamore Spirit Distillery. Wake up with a Milky Way Espresso, Ginger Lemon Tisane Organic Hot Tea, or Blue Goose Smoothie at locally-owned Koba Cafe. Treat your family with locally-sourced ingredients from the Home Maid brunch menu, including the Andouille Sausage and Soul Flower Banana Pudding. Head to Nick’s Fish House for the self-proclaimed best crab in Baltimore and other menu items like Lobster Egg Roll, Seafood Cavatappi, and Nick’s Signature Crab Cake. Or take in fantastic waterfront views, vintage decor, and delicious dishes like Seared Striped Bass, Cuban Fried Eggs, and Chicken Tinga Tacos at Little Havana.

Roland Park

Small Victorian Queen Anne style home with a touret on left, small upstairs window on right roof, and white paint details making the brown wood features stand out. It's twilight and the porch lights light up the home amidst evergreen trees, bushes, and a tidy lawn. Photo via Instagram user @baltfishbowl

Photo via @baltfishbowl

  • Home Price: $314,367 median purchase price; $1,064 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 96% of Maryland cities

Roland Park is widely considered one of the best places to live in Baltimore for young families. As America’s first planned suburb community and one of the safest places to live in Baltimore, Roland Park has wide, well-lit streets lined with bike lanes, Victorian-style homes, and beautifully-manicured gardens, shrubs, and large, established trees. Many of this Baltimore suburb’s residents take action on matters of mutual interest through the Roland Park Civic League, which takes care of the roads and common areas through the Roland Park Roads & Maintenance Corporation and the Roland Park Community Foundation non-profit. And while younger children here attend top-rated schools like Roland Park Country School, Gilman School, and Roland Park Elementary Middle School, young adults attending universities in Baltimore, Maryland like Notre Dame of Maryland University, Loyola University Maryland, and Johns Hopkins University benefit from a short commute.

Things to Do in Roland Park

Stroll through 200 acres of wildlife-filled gardens for free year-round, and keep your kids’ summer exciting with the Nature Camp at Clyburn Arboretum. Tour the Gilded Age mansion and see paintings, rare books, and gorgeous gardens at Evergreen Museum & Library. Exercise as a family with duckpin bowling lanes, tennis courts, a resort-like pool complex, and more at the Baltimore Country Club. Catch a mid-day break while the kids are at school to shop at stores like Talbots and Williams Sonoma or grab lunch at shopping center The Village of Cross Keys. Take the family out for brunch eats like Johnny’s French Toast, Kiko’s Loco Fried Rice, Eggs Benedict, and more at  Johnny’s. Dig into a Po’Boy Sandwich, Crazy Man Wings, or the Alonso’s Famous Burger at sports bar Alonso’s. Order Paneer Tikka Masala, Tandoori Shrimp, or Lamb Vindaloo at family-owned Indian restaurant Namaste Baltimore. Or expand your kids’ pallets with French dishes like Pâté Maison, Truite Amandine, and Culotte de Wagyu at Petit Louis Bistro.


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Baltimore, MD: 5 Best Neighborhoods for Families

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