Want to live in New Orleans? Thanks to its thriving nightlife, famous Mardi Gras festival, and hot job market, the Big Easy is a great place for singles and young professionals to live. If you’re thinking of moving to NOLA, consider living in one of these five best New Orleans neighborhoods for young adults!
- Central Business District
- Lower Garden District
- Home Price: $249,333 median purchase price; $841 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 25% of New Orleans neighborhoods
Known for its colorful shotgun houses and vibrant arts scene, Bywater is one of New Orleans’ best neighborhoods for singles and young professionals. Often paired with the neighboring Marigny and just 10 minutes from downtown, Bywater is well-known for being one of the coolest places to live in NOLA. From the music clubs and neon lights lining the area’s beloved Frenchmen Street to the eclectic restaurants and beyond, this hip New Orleans neighborhood has plenty of things to do. As for jobs, young professionals moving to the Big Easy will find plenty of opportunities in Bywater, particularly in service industries like retail and food. More corporate jobs can be found just a short, 13-minute commute away in the Central Business District.
Things to Do in Bywater
Immerse yourself in colorful mixed-media exhibits and other large-scale art at JAMNOLA. Shop the same kinds of eclectic painted signs you’ll see throughout the city at Dr. Bob Folk Art. Host a block party or catch a live performance of all kinds at Marigny Opera House. Add a rare album to your vinyl record collection or check out a zine at Euclid Records. Play your way through a collection of real musical instruments-turned art pieces at Music Box Village. Get a variety of cuisine all in one spot, from Crispy Korean Brussel Sprouts to Biscuit & Gravy at Elizabeth’s Restaurant. Try elevated dishes like Pork Belly with Corn Crema or Roasted Pompano at Bywater American Bistro. Or try finger-licking BBQ dishes like Pork Ribs or a Sausage Plate at The Joint.
Central Business District
- Home Price: $269,920 median purchase price; $730 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 75% of New Orleans neighborhoods
With towering high-rise apartments, office buildings, and a plethora of shops and restaurants lining its busy streets, the Central Business District is one of the best places to live in New Orleans for singles and young professionals. The CBD is part of Downtown NOLA, located directly beside the famous French Quarter, with the winding Mississippi River to the east. Among the neighborhood’s sleek industrial skyline are major local employers like University Medical Center and Hibernia Bank, and even more jobs await in the Warehouse District to the south. CBD’s convenient location makes for short commutes—neither jobs nor things to do are ever far when you’re living in this popular New Orleans neighborhood. The Central Business District is also teeming with historic sites, art galleries, nightlife, and more for residents to enjoy!
Things to Do in Central Business District
Don a black and old gold jersey and cheer on the Saints (NFL) during a home game at Mercedes Benz Superdome. Learn the history of soul food and other Southern fares—or take classes on how to make them yourself—at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum. Visit the second-oldest public park in New Orleans, Lafayette Square, and enjoy live music from local acts during Wednesdays at the Square. Cruise down the Mississippi on the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen, while enjoying a meal, jazz music, and historic tours. Indulge in classic comfort foods with an elevated twist like Pimento Grilled Cheese or Oyster BTLA, at the award-winning NOLA favorite Willa Jean. Munch on Beignets and sip on coffee to wash it down at the famous Cafe Du Monde on the Riverwalk. Have a date night at Peche Seafood Grille, where you’ll find high-quality surf and turf, including Grilled Strip Steak and Jumbo Shrimp in an elegant setting. Or dance the night away while live DJs play sets at Barcadia.
- Home Price: $211,467 median purchase price; $990 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 34% of New Orleans neighborhoods
As a small part of the Uptown/Carrollton area, Freret offers a good blend of the amenities and architecture you’ll see in other larger New Orleans neighborhoods. People living in Freret can choose between quaint shotgun houses and duplexes or larger single-family homes, and the available jobs are equally diverse. Young professionals can find a career in healthcare at Ochsner Medical Center, while those looking to earn their degree can enroll in nearby colleges like Tulane University. On days off, young professionals and singles living in this popular NOLA neighborhood can enjoy perusing Freret Street, where shops, restaurants, and other entertainment awaits. This fun neighborhood is also a fantastic place for public art, live music, and more. Freret residents can find even more to do by taking a short 12-minute drive into Downtown New Orleans.
Things to Do in Freret
Jam out to musical acts from all kinds of genres at Gasa Gasa, and don’t forget to grab a cocktail during Happy Hour. Eat, drink, and dance your way through the annual Freret Street Festival. Enjoy an open-air shopping experience complete with live music and homemade goods at the Freret Market. Wet your whistle with a Sherry & Tonic or any of many other great craft cocktails at Cure. Grab a Short Stack or Ricotta and Lavash for breakfast at Bearcat Cafe. Order “The Original” at Liberty Cheesesteaks for an authentic cheesesteak, just like the kind you’d find in Philly. Choose your own toppings and create the perfect hotdog, including vegan options, at Dat Dog. Or sink your teeth into a Lamb Burger or other sandwiches like a Grilled Cheese at The Company Burger.
Lower Garden District
- Home Price: $341,467 median purchase price; $1,197 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 42% of New Orleans neighborhoods
The picturesque Lower Garden District, with its neoclassical homes and vivid public art, is one of the best places to live in New Orleans for those seeking more natural surroundings in their everyday life. While many areas of New Orleans—especially those with hot job markets—are dotted with office buildings, the Lower Garden District has a very different aesthetic. The public parks and green spaces throughout the neighborhood offer a welcome contrast from the hustle and bustle of city life, but residents are still close enough to the heart of NOLA to enjoy its urban amenities. Downtown is just seven minutes away, but residents of the Lower Garden District won’t need to commute out of the neighborhood to find jobs. Employers in the area include various law offices, retailers, and even the St. Charles Surgical Center.
Things to Do in Lower Garden District
Take a round trip through other NOLA neighborhoods, including the French Quarter, on the St. Charles Streetcar, which makes several fascinating stops along its path. Book a staycation at one of New Orleans’ most famous (and allegedly haunted) hotels, The Columns. Enjoy the fresh air as you go jogging, have a picnic, or sit by the fountain at Coliseum Square Park. Visit some of the city’s most beautiful graves and learn about New Orleans’ history on a walking tour with Save Our Cemeteries. Get a Reuben or Rachel sandwich for lunch, along with a craft beer, at Stein’s Market & Deli. Fill up on vegan plates like Tofu “Pork Belly” Bao at Seed. Wake up right with a Crawfish Omelette and Grapefruit Mimosa at Gris-Gris. Or slurp down a bowl of Original Tori Ramen made with in-house roasted pork and their own chicken-based broth at Union Ramen.
- Home Price: $188,660 median purchase price; $912 median monthly rent
- Crime Rate: Safer than 23% of New Orleans neighborhoods
Quirky, affordable, and about five minutes from both Downtown NOLA and the French Quarter, Mid-City is a fantastic place to live for young professionals and singles moving to New Orleans. You’ll find plenty of interesting things to do on NOLA’s famous Canal Street, which runs through Mid-City. Homes mostly consist of shotgun houses and bungalows with large front porches, where residents can sit and admire the wide green spaces and historic architecture. Mid-Town combines old-school Southern charm with the cultural influences of residents from all over the world. For instance, foodies love the neighborhood’s many cuisines, from Italian to Cajun and beyond. And as for jobs, Mid-City’s proximity to the Central Business District makes it a prime location for young professionals.
Things to Do in Mid-City
Go sightseeing on a Canal Streetcar ride over the Mississippi, which includes great stops throughout the city. Go golfing or walk through the botanical garden at New Orleans City Park. Reserve tickets to see stunning rotating exhibits, like “Buddha and Shiva, Lotus and Dragon”, or browse permanent collections of sculptures, paintings, and more at New Orleans Museum of Art. Rent the VIP section of the Bayou Wine Garden to sip cocktails or wine served on tap among lush greenery. Eat your way through Vietnamese fusion food like Vietnamese BBQ Catfish and Red Curry Shrimp Pasta at Cafe Minh. Take your tastebuds south of the border with Mexican fare like Fajita de Pollo or Costilla de Res at Taqueria Guerrero. Try soul food done right at Bevi Seafood Co, where you’ll find traditional fares like Fried Catfish Po-Boys and rib-sticking sides like Fried Green Tomatoes and Spicy Fried Potatoes. Or get classic surf and turf food like a Shrimp & Catfish Platter at Katie’s.
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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes