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Best Neighborhoods in Raleigh for Families

Best Neighborhoods in Raleigh for Families

Moving to Raleigh? Whether or not you live inside the Beltline, Raleigh is one of the best cities to raise a family in the U.S., offering plenty of outdoor recreation, job opportunities in the Research Triangle, and safe, affordable housing. Check out five of the best neighborhoods in Raleigh for families!

Five Points

  • Home Price: $516,550 median purchase price; $762 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 67% of Raleigh neighborhoods

If you’re looking for beautiful vintage homes just minutes north of downtown, Five Points is one of the best areas in Raleigh for your family. Though these century-old Raleigh neighborhoods have their own unique charms, they share shaded, walkable streets and local shops for families in Raleigh to explore. Nestled in the west side of Five Points, the well-known Hayes Barton offers residents bungalows and Tudor-style homes next to huge Colonial estates. The northern micro-neighborhood Bloomsbury blends the Queen Anne style with Craftsman homes, while Roanoke Park is dotted with modest triple A-frame cottages in the south.

Things to Do in Five Points

Let your kids climb on the playground or play on the courts at Roanoke Park. Hike through the wooded trails or picnic under the gazebo at Fallon Park. Browse handmade mugs or spin pottery from local artisans at Gretchen Quinn Pottery or NOFO @ the Pig. Order Vietnamese Coffee or a Dragonfruit Matcha Latte with a Salmon Lox Sandwich from one of the best brunch spots in Raleigh, Idle Hour Coffee Roasters. Grab one-of-a-kind pizzas like the Thai Bhat or Sergeant Scofflaw from Lilly’s Pizza. Sit down for Popcorn Bisque and Roasted Butternut Squash & Grits at the Southern-inspired Mandolin. Grab a slice of Bailey’s Irish Cream Tiramisu, Banana Pudding, or Carrot Cake with Pineapple at Hayes Barton Cafe & Dessertery. Or try creative brews like the Honey Blonde, Peach-lemon Pilsner, or Jalapeño Pineapple Ranch Water from Lonerider.

Glenwood South

3 story apartment buildings surround a pool, patio, and deck chairs on two sides at a Glenwood South, Raleigh apartment complex. Photo via Instagram user @712tucker.

Photo via @712tucker

  • Home Price: $619,129 median purchase price; $842 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 94% of Raleigh neighborhoods

Just northwest of the Raleigh Warehouse District, Glenwood South is great for families who want to enjoy downtown culture in one of the safest neighborhoods in Raleigh, NC. This former industrial zone is now known as Raleigh’s entertainment district thanks to its trendy bars and restaurants along the central Glenwood Ave strip. The easily walkable neighborhood is also great for running errands or walking the dog, a major draw for families in Raleigh. Parents will find top-notch schools in Raleigh like The Exploris School, Wiley Elementary School, and Saint Mary’s School. Families moving to Glenwood South can find a blend of condos and apartments on the east side, and bungalows and American Foursquare homes on the west.

Things to Do in Glenwood South

Ride the train, carousel, or pedal boats around the lake at nearby Pullen Park. Shop home goods, clothing, jewelry, and more at Raleigh Vintage, or find classic vinyls at Record Krate. Let your little ones play with interactive exhibits about music, plants, and fitness at Marbles Kids Museum. See dance performances, live music, or spoken word at the youth-focused performing arts organization, TheGifted Arts. Find musical activities for toddlers in Raleigh, NC like the music discovery program, or enjoy a classical concert at the North Carolina Symphony. Start your morning with a Rosemary Latte or London Fog at Iris Coffee Lab. Make a reservation at Vidrio for Mediterranean specials like Figs and Blue Cheese Flatbread, Lamb Tagine, and Coconut Lemongrass Panna Cotta. Or twirl around a handcrafted cocktail like the Vieux Carre or Gold Rush while dancing to cool jazz at C.Grace.

Historic Oakwood

  • Home Price: $247,660 median purchase price; $779 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 17% of Raleigh neighborhoods

Families move to Historic Oakwood for the community. Narrow, tree-lined streets and well-maintained Raleigh gardens make the walkable downtown neighborhood feel like you’re in a small town instead of the heart of Raleigh. Families living in Historic Oakwood are welcome to join in on resident-only events in Raleigh, NC including a Samedi Gras Celebration, Spring Jazz Supper, July 4th Block Party, Historic Oakwood Candlelight Tour, and more. The Oakwood Garden Club also hosts an annual Garden Tour and tea party for anyone in the city. Or residents can gather on the last Sunday evening of every month for a community potluck.

Things to Do in Historic Oakwood

Bring your kids to the playground or experience fun public art with your family at Oakwood Commons Park or play cards at the neighboring Tarboro Road Community Center. Visit the LeVelle Moton Park (formerly Lane Street Park) for playgrounds, green space, and basketball courts. Give your teens a place to hang out and take classes in cooking, basketball, and more at the Saint Monica Teen Center. Devour delicious dishes like Traditional Empanadas, Smoked Sausages, or Eggplant Ragu at SmokeStacks Cafe. Share appetizers like Papaya Salad with Coconut Shrimp or Chipotle Chicken Tenders at The Station at Person Street. Make pizza night a blast with classic pizzas, house salads, and drinks like the Savoy 75 or Painkiller at Oakwood Pizza Box. Or sample complex flavor combinations like the Curried Carrot Soup, Seared Monkfish, or Manchego-herb Biscuits at Crawford & Son.

North Hills

A modern home with huge glass windows, wooden panels, and white stone bricks stands on a sunny day in North Hills, Raleigh. Photo via Instagram user @homesteadbuilt

Photo via @homesteadbuilt

  • Home Price: $266,389 median purchase price; $873 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 89% of Raleigh neighborhoods

Families looking to get away from the busyness of Downtown Raleigh can find a more relaxed lifestyle outside the Raleigh Beltline in North Hills. Though removed from downtown, families living in North Hills can still expect a short commute with I-70 and US-401 close by. This up-and-coming neighborhood in Midtown Raleigh is booming with accessible amenities like the North Hills Innovation District and North Hills Shopping Center, along with upcoming projects like Big Branch Food Hall. And with a wide selection of well-reviewed schools like Douglas Magnet Elementary School, or LeRoy Martin Magnet Middle School, it’s easy to see why North Hills is one of the best neighborhoods in Raleigh for families.

Things to Do in North Hills

Schedule a round of golf while your kids take tennis lessons at Carolina Country Club. Hike the Greenway Trail or perfect your serve on the pickleball courts at one of the best parks in Raleigh, North Hills Park. Shop dresses, bathing suits, and accessories at women-led, locally-owned Voda Boutique. Pick up a new bestseller and meet visiting authors at Quail Ridge Books. Sign your children up for art classes at Raleigh Art Studio no matter their skill level. Catch a live concert at The Ritz for date night. Fuel up on healthy lunch options like a Beyond Bulgogi bowl or a Pink Drink smoothie at Happy and Hale. Share plates like Pan Roasted Duck Breast or Ricotta Gnocchi at one of the best restaurants in Raleigh, Vivace. Or satisfy your sweet tooth with Vienna Crepes, a Cream of Fina, or a Cafe Miel at Hereghty Heavenly Delicious.


Ranch style home surrounded by green yard and trees on a sunny day in Mordecai, Raleigh. Photo via Instagram user @raleighdevotee

Photo via Instagram user @raleighdevotee

  • Home Price: $287,625 median purchase price; $806 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 39% of Raleigh neighborhoods

Just minutes north of Downtown Raleigh, Mordecai offers a close-knit, affordable community for families of all ages. Mordecai is one of the most well-known historic Raleigh neighborhoods thanks to the Mordecai House, the oldest home in Raleigh. Find affordable apartments and townhomes in Mordecai, Raleigh, or buy your dream home with architecture styles ranging from Craftsman and American Foursquare homes, to grand Colonials. Families appreciate Mordecai’s convenient proximity to two colleges in Raleigh, William Peace University and Saint Augustine’s University. Younger kids also have great educational options like Conn Magnet Elementary School and Raleigh Nursery School.

Things to Do in Mordecai

Push your kids on the swings at Mordecai Mini Park, or take a Zumba class while your teens shoot hoops at Halifax Park. Decorate your outdoor space with plants, patio furniture, and yard art from Logan’s Garden Shop. Teach your kids about urban farming or buy fresh, local produce at the pay-what-you-can Seasonal Farmstand at Raleigh City Farm. Fill up with a Veggies on Sunflower Bread Sandwich or homemade muffins from Seaboard Cafe. Sit down for a dinner of Bacon & Egg Fried Rice, Honey Walnut Shrimp, or Red Curry Chicken at Peace China. Reserve a rooftop table and taste classic French cuisine like Petit Bouillabaise and Duck Cassoulet at Jolie. Treat the kids to a Peanut Butter Sundae or an Oreo Super Shake at Circus Family Restaurant. Or sample one-of-a-kind chocolates with flavors like Sassafras Cinnamon, Lychee Blossom, and Mexican Mole at Escazu Chocolates.


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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes

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