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Best Neighborhoods in Riverside for Families in 2024

Moving to Riverside? The birthplace of the California citrus industry has great attractions, comfortable housing, and tons of family-friendly things to do. Here are the five best places to live in Riverside for families!

Canyon Crest

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  • Home Price: $475,387 median purchase price; $1,945 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 86% of Riverside neighborhoods

If your family is looking for a scenic spot with plenty of outdoor recreation, there’s no better place to live than Canyon Crest! This Riverside neighborhood resides near the Sycamore Highlands and is bordered by the Box Springs Mountain Reserve, which is the perfect place for exploring dense nature and walking trails. Canyon Crest itself is full of lush greenery and hiking spots—including the expansive 1,500-acre Sycamore Canyon Wilderness Park—and tons of beautiful local parks. This family-friendly Riverside neighborhood provides local families with access to good schools like Castle View Elementary School and Taft Elementary School. And to top it off, homebuyers can choose from spacious Craftsman, Spanish, and Mission-style homes.

Things to Do in Canyon Crest

Play basketball or watch your kids climb on the playground against the backdrop of the mountains at Sycamore Highlands Park. Go hiking and biking with the family on the 3.5-mile loop of Sycamore Canyon Park Trail. Get a membership for some of the finest 18-hole golf in Riverside or check out the youth sports camps at Canyon Crest Country Club. Explore Canyon Crest restaurants, boutiques, and other businesses—or attend community events at the Canyon Crest Towne Centre. Start your morning off right with Cinnamon Apple Pancakes, Sensational Waffles, and French Toast Supreme from Crest Cafe. Bite into flavorful grab-and-go cupcakes at Isabella’s Cupcakes & More, with flavors like Vanilla Rainbow Sprinkles, Red Velvet, and Triple Chocolate. Load up on comfort food favorites like Brisket Grilled Cheese and Nashville Hot Chicken Sandwiches, or order Wyatt’s Kid Tenders for the little ones at Smoke and Fire Social Eatery. Or pull out a chair for all-you-can-eat sushi using Salmon, Albacore, Escolar, and more from Vanilla Fish.

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La Sierra

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  • Home Price: $329,070 median purchase price; $1,641 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 36% of Riverside neighborhoods

Originally known as Rancho La Sierra de Sepulveda, La Sierra has transformed from land once used for grazing cattle into a dense suburban destination on Riverside’s western edge. This family-friendly SoCal neighborhood offers recreational facilities, business districts, and a world-renowned amusement park. For housing, La Sierra primarily offers ranch and Spanish-style homes. Children can learn the basics at Riverside public schools like Stokoe Elementary School and La Sierra High School, or seek higher education at La Sierra University. But the most desirable aspect to living in La Sierra for families—especially those with healthcare workers—is the close proximity to Kaiser Permanente Riverside Medical Center.

Things to Do in La Sierra

Check out the Flying Animals and Rockin’ Tug rides, enjoy rounds of mini-golf, or play interactive arcade games like Ghost Blasters at Castle Park. See fine artifact collections or taxidermy displays of amphibians, birds, reptiles, and more at La Sierra University’s World Museum of Natural History. Find great dining, shopping, and a local farmers market—or attend movie night at bustling Riverside community hub Galleria at Tyler. Practice your baseball pitch, swing on the playground, or picnic under the California sun at La Sierra Park. Treat the family to authentic Korean food in Riverside with Tofu Soup, Kimchi Tofu, Beef Bulgogi, and more from Ok Tofu House. Grab feel-good vegan meals like Taquito Plates, Zucchini Pupusa, and the Jack Stack at one of the Inland Empire’s premier plant-based diners, Oasis Vegetarian Cafe. Fill up on appetizing Salvadoran food like Camarones Aguachile, Sopa de Gallina con Chipilin, Chicken with Cheese Pupusas, and more at Restaurante Salvadoreno. Or dine on Mexican fare with the Queso Flameado, Chicken Enchiladas, Costillas, and more from Anchos Southwest Grill and Bar.


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  • Home Price: $478,844 median purchase price; $2,234 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 96% of Riverside neighborhoods

Linked with Riverside’s history in the California citrus industry, Orangecrest is a master-planned community with a sprawling residential section and a lively commercial hub. It’s also one of the best neighborhoods in Riverside thanks to its lush green spaces, businesses located in walking distance, and plenty of education options for growing families. Residents can enroll their children in high-quality schools named after famous Americans—like Mark Twain Elementary School, Amelia Earhart Middle School, and Martin Luther King High School. In addition to these assets, families will appreciate the fitness and recreation opportunities available at Orange Terrace Community Center. And for military families, Orangecrest is just a stone’s throw from the March Air Reserve Base—which also houses an iconic aeronautical museum even the kids can enjoy.

Things to Do in Orangecrest

Spend an afternoon walking the park loop, practicing tennis, or picnicking at the beautiful Thundersky Park. Check out the latest fiction and nonfiction releases, reserve a study room, or participate in Family Storytime at the Orange Terrace Library. Discover Riverside’s citrus cultivation roots by exploring genuine orange groves or picking up fresh produce at family-owned Gless Ranch. Tee off or get a Junior Golf Membership for your little one to develop their skills on 18-hole courses at nearby General Old Golf Course. Order mouth-watering Mexican dishes like Trio Combo Fajitas, Carne Asada Steak, and Enchiladas Morelia at Pepito’s Mexican Restaurant. Dine on quality Riverside sushi like Cajun Salmon Sushi, Seared Tuna Sushi, and Spicy Scallop Sushi at Amagi Sushi and Bar. Sip a Horchata Cream Cold Brew or Oogie Boogie Thin Mint Cold Brew while eating a Blueberry Lemon Cupcake at The Cupcake & Espresso Bar. Or pick up house-made sandwiches for lunch in Riverside with D’Whole Pounder, D’Sicilian, D’All American Club, and more from D’Elia’s Grinders.


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  • Home Price: $440,117 median purchase price; $1,813 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 82% of Riverside neighborhoods

Located in the middle of the city, Victoria is a historical neighborhood with a quaint, residential vibe. Flush with cozy parks and open spaces, as well as restaurants and recreation along Riverside Pkwy, Victoria is a perfect place for families to settle down. The neighborhood features a mix of modern and historical Spanish-style homes on tree-lined streets. As for education, kids can learn at great schools like Louisa May Alcott Elementary School, Matthew Gage Middle School, or Riverside Polytechnic High School. The neighborhood is also home to Riverside’s division of the California School for the Deaf, which promotes inclusive education for deaf and hard of hearing students.

Things to Do in Victoria

Play on any of the ten championship tennis courts or enroll in all-ages tennis programs at the renowned 30-acre Andulka Park Tennis Center. Purchase a membership at the exclusive Victoria Club to take part in golfing, tennis, pickleball, swimming, and more. Guide your child through a collection of diecast toy cars from renowned brands like Hot Wheels, Johnny Lightning, and Greenlight at Riverside’s House of Cars. Solve live escape room scenarios like The Heist, The Panic Room, and Captain’s Dungeon at Inland Empire Escape Rooms in Riverside. Appreciate delicious Pakistani food like Tandoori Chicken, Beef Seekh Kabob, and Chicken Karahi at Al-Karam Pakistani Cuisine. Order up slices of Riverside pizza like Toma Beefo, Fiesta, or Meat Lovers from Antonious Pizza. Make a quick stop for Mexican-American eats like a Ground Beef Burrito, Taco Burger, or Monterey Chicken Sandwich from a California staple, Baker’s Drive-Thru. Or stop by Riverside seafood buffet, La Cruda Mariscos, and enjoy Cevi-Verde, oysters, El Crudo, and more.

Wood Streets

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  • Home Price: $401,700 median purchase price; $1,481 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 57% of Riverside neighborhoods

Connected to Downtown Riverside by Magnolia Avenue, Wood Streets is a tight-knit locale just minutes from some of the city’s most notable attractions—including The Mission Inn Hotel & Spa and Riverside Art Museum! Originally used for orange groves, Wood Streets was first established as a neighborhood in 1913 and contains architecture reflective of a 1920s-era aesthetic, as well as a gridded street system and beautiful landscaping. Home styles include everything from Spanish and Mission-style houses to 20th-century Craftsman homes. Kids can start their education at Magnolia Elementary School, while adults can finish their degrees at Riverside City College. Plus, Wood Streets is home to the Riverside Community Hospital for regular check-ups and medical care.

Things to Do in Wood Streets

Enjoy a shaded picnic, test out the athletic fields, or take your kids to the playground at Ryan Bonaminio Park. Trek to the picturesque peaks of Mt. Rubidoux for great views of the city and to see historical attractions like the Peace Bridge and Serra Cross on the family-friendly Mt. Rubidoux Trail. Travel just South of Wood Streets for dozens of high-quality dining options and some of the best shopping in Riverside at Riverside Plaza. Get the whole family tickets to seasonal performances of plays like Frozen, Grease, and Cinderella at Performance Riverside. Bite into sandwiches like Corned Beef & Swiss on Rye, Hot Pastrami on Onion Roll, and Chipotle Mayo Turkey Bacon at Butch’s Grinders. Dine on a unique mixture of Japanese and Mexican cuisine, including Spicy Crunch Rolls, Baked Lobster Rolls, and Shrimp Ceviche Tostadas at Sushingon. Savor delicious rotisserie chicken with the Thigh & Leg meal, Breast & Wing meal, or Family Pak meal from Juan Pollo. Or snack on refreshing Raspado and Diablito snowcones, Super Nachos, and more at Tuxies Juices.


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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes.