Best Neighborhoods in Albany for Families in 2024

Relocating to Albany? The Capital Region is one of the best places to live in New York—with great education, extensive medical facilities, and plenty of family-friendly things to do. Here are the five best places to live in Albany for families!

Helderberg

  • Home Price: $206,800 median purchase price; $1,180 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 67% of Albany neighborhoods

Helderberg is a safe, affordable neighborhood home to a vibrant mix of residential and commercial living with a short commute to major Albany employers. The neighborhood’s housing consists of 1900s Colonial and Victorian single-family homes with a quaint feel. Though, residents appreciate the ability to participate in community events like volunteer cleanups, annual picnics, and movie nights sponsored by the Helderberg Neighborhood Association. Institutions like The Albany Academies offer high-quality K-12 education, while local young adults can attend Russell Sage College. Plus, with close proximity to St. Peter’s Hospital and Dr. K Dental, families can have nearby options for check-ups and emergencies.

Things to Do in Helderberg

Enroll the little ones in art classes like painting and hand-building at the Albany Art Room. Take your kids just outside Helderberg to watch lively performances of shows like Driving Miss Daisy and The Half-Life of Marie Curie at Albany Civic Theater. Travel down Morton Avenue to have a family picnic, or play friendly games of tennis under the sun at Lincoln Park. Browse imported cheeses like Brie, Fermier, and Alisios at one of DelSo’s funkiest shops, The Cheese Traveler. Treat your family to Bumbles Breakfast Sando, Supreme Avocado Toast, Fresh Fruit Oatmeal, and more at Mr. Bumbles Cafe. Pick up scrumptious bagel flavors like Cinnamon Raisin, Poppyseed, or Pumpernickel—or bite into daily-made brownies at Pearl’s Bagels & Bakery. Order Red Specialty pizzas like BMT Supreme, 4-Cheese, and Margherita, or Build Your Own Pizza at Spinner’s Pizza & Pub. Or take a seat for Peruvian-style meals with Cheesy Chicken, Beef, or Cau-Cau Empanadas at La Empanada Llama.

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New Scotland

  • Home Price: $221,260 median purchase price; $1,171 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 38% of Albany neighborhoods

Originating as farmland and fields, New Scotland was founded in the 1800s as a stopping point between farmhouses and the big city. Located on the border of Buckingham Lake Park, just off Route 85, New Scotland is a scenic getaway full of lush oak and maple trees and outdoor recreation activities. This historic Albany neighborhood offers Colonial homes, clusters of townhomes, and large cul-de-sacs branching from Woodside Drive—which provides a more suburban feel for a relaxed, family-friendly lifestyle. Plus, Albany schools like New Scotland Elementary School and Albany High School are nearby for commuting families, and young adults can pursue undergraduate programs at Maria College or earn a nursing degree at the St. Peter’s Hospital College of Nursing.

Things to Do in New Scotland

Take your kids fishing in Albany and snag common species like goldfish, brown bullheads, and bluegill at Buckingham Pond. Check out books or attend family-friendly events like Messy Art for Preschoolers and Pajama Storytime at the Albany Public Library — Bach Branch. Tee off at Albany golf courses like the challenging six-hole Capitol Hills Golf Course and the beautiful Normanside Golf Course. Let the little ones roam the playground or practice hitting home runs on the baseball diamond at Woodlawn Park. Bring the whole family to dinner for signature smash burgers like the 605 Cheeseburger, Mushroom Swiss, and Don Marco Bacon Bleu at Restaurant 605. Grab slices of Albany pizza like Mr. Bill or Cheese Puddle Pizzas and savor sweet Housemade Cheesecake at Restaurant Navona. Crunch on Bresaola Bites and Hot Pretzels while you split apart Roasted Oysters at Albany Ale & Oyster. Or partake in Mediterranean classics like Chicken Curry, Shish Kebab Chicken, and Shrimp Kavourma at Kismet Mediterranean Grill.

North Albany-Shaker Park

  • Home Price: $130,350 median purchase price; $853 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 79% of Albany neighborhoods

Historically established as an industrial hub by an influx of 19th century Irish immigrants from Limerick, the historic North Albany-Shaker Park area is a safe, affordable neighborhood for families in Albany. Now known as the Warehouse District and often referred to as Little Limerick by locals, North Albany-Shaker Park is a hot spot for families looking for live entertainment, vibrant art and culture, and fun Albany parks. Additionally, this Albany neighborhood is a great place to find quality education, including schools like Arbor Hill Elementary School and North Albany Middle School—along with quick access to medical care at Samaritan Hospital – Albany Memorial Campus. To top it off, North Albany-Shaker Park boasts a mix of historical single-family homes, as well as newly-renovated houses, perfect for raising a family in Albany.

Things to Do in North Albany-Shaker Park

Get tickets for a family outing near North Albany so the kids can ride the Merry-Go-Round, The Umbrella, or Caterpillar at local staple, Huck Finn’s Playland. Let your kids run through the spray pad and explore the playground at Hackett Park—or head to Mullens Park together with Fido. Become a member to enjoy over 140 acres of a championship golf course at Wolferts Roost Country Club. Watch talented artists perform stunning Broadway shows in the heart of Albany at Capitol Repertory Theatre. Wake up for tasty Albany breakfast dishes like Buttermilk Pancakes, Fresh Fruit Parfaits, and Bayou Omelettes at Cafe Madison. Try specialty deli sandwiches for lunch like the Roasted Turkey, Honey Ham, and Grilled Cheese from City Line Cafe & Deli. Have some of the best brunch in Albany with family like Cinna French Toast, Cajun Chopped Cheese with Grits, Red Velvet Waffles, and more at Johnnie’s on Broadway. Or savor sweet, traditionally-made desserts and baked goods like Babka, Cinnamon Rolls, Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies, and more from Magnificent Dough Baked Goods.

Park South

  • Home Price: $160,050 median purchase price; $1,131 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 25% of Albany neighborhoods

Bordering the eclectic Washington Park—which offers access to tons of outdoor recreation and kid-friendly activities—Park South is one of the best neighborhoods in Albany for families. Along with providing budget-friendly housing—consisting primarily of Bungalows and Ranch-style single-family homes—Park South offers excellent education at nearby Thomas O’Brien Academy of Science and Technology, William S. Hackett Middle School, and other Albany public schools. Plus, families and healthcare professionals value Park South’s accessibility to top Albany hospitals—like the Albany Medical Center and The Massry Family Children’s Emergency Center.

Things to Do in Park South

Attend outdoor festivals, musical productions, and school-time shows in Albany, or enroll your kids in performance art courses at Park Playhouse. Help your child learn to skateboard or shred terraced terrain and challenging obstacles in the 20,000-square-foot skating area at the Albany Blue Banks Skate Park. Appreciate Albany’s history by viewing historic monuments and neighborhood landmarks, or get your family involved with local volunteer efforts from the Washington Park Conservancy. Meet community members, grab farm fresh produce, and purchase hand-crafted goods from local vendors at the Washington Park Farmer’s Market. Try authentic Korean food over rice and salad like Popcorn Chicken Bowl, Mix Well Bibimbap, or Grandson of Egg at Son of Egg. Stop by for brick-oven pizza like the Hot Buffalo Chicken or Meat Lovers Pizza with Mozzarella Sticks at Soho Pizza. Make reservations for a family dinner with farm-to-table Albany Italian food like Frutti Di Mare, Pollo Lago Di Como, and Melanzane Parmigiana from Villa di Como Ristorante. Or sit down in a family-owned Colombian restaurant for traditional fare like Bandeja Paisa, Arroz con Pollo, and Lengua a la Criolla at Moliendo Cafe.

Pine Hills

  • Home Price: $203,500 median purchase price; $1,080 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 50% of Albany neighborhoods

Pine Hills is a lively Albany neighborhood, boasting tons of budget-friendly amenities for families. The neighborhood is flush with not only parks and green spaces, but vibrant performing and visual arts showcases. Its neighborhood commercial district runs from Allen Street to Quail Street, and offers movie theaters, cafes, and family-friendly restaurants in Albany. But what draws residents to Pine Hills are the affordable home options, which primarily consist of farmhouses and Colonial Revivals. Not to mention, families further value Pine Hills’ great school options—including Pine Hills Elementary School, LaSalle School, the main campus of the College of St. Rose, and the University at Albany‘s Downtown Campus.

Things to Do in Pine Hills

Take your family to the latest box office release while grabbing bites to eat at Madison Theatre—”Upstate New York’s only dine-in theatre.” Appreciate dramas, musicals, and classical Shakespeare performances from local actors at Steamer 10 Theatre. Watch your child climb the monkey bars or go down slides at the playground in Ridgefield Park. Practice soccer, baseball, and softball on the fields, or cheer on college and amateur baseball teams at nearby Bleecker Stadium. Experience home-style American eats for breakfast like Blueberry Pancakes, French Toast, a Western Omelet with American Cheese, and more at Dan’s Place Two. Treat your family to authentic Latin dishes like Chicharron con Yuca, Bandeja Tipica, and Pollo Guisado from Mr. Pio Pio. Gather around to enjoy slices of Five Cheese, White Broccoli, and Eggplant Bella Pizza delivered fresh from Pine Hills Pizza. Or taste spicy appetizers like Onion Bhaji and Mulligatawny Soup before digging into delicious Chicken Curry at Curry House Inc.

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Moving to Albany? Extra Space Storage has self storage facilities throughout the Capital Region that can help make your move easier. Find affordable storage solutions in Albany!

Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes.

About Mike Beutler

Mike Beutler is a writer and digital content specialist who transitioned to self storage in 2020 after several years in the airline industry. His travels cultivated a passion for exploring cities across the U.S. and abroad and inspired him to learn more about practical insights for urban living. With 14 moves under his belt, both locally and cross-country, he also has a passion for minimalism and organization, and sharing tips to help others make any space feel like home while staying organized.

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