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The Best Neighborhoods in Phoenix – a Newbie’s Guide


Phoenix is one of the fastest-growing cities in the country. Between the natural beauty of the surrounding Sonoran Desert and it’s growing business community, people are moving into the area from all over the country. If you’re new to the area and looking for a place to settle down, or if you’re thinking about moving to the area, finding the right neighborhood can seem like a daunting task.  Fortunately, there really is something for everyone in the region. We’ve compiled the best neighborhoods in Phoenix to help start you on your journey.

Table of contents

  1. The best neighborhoods in Phoenix for families
  2. The best neighborhoods for singles
  3. The best neighborhoods for people who don’t drive
  4. The best neighborhoods for sports fans
  5. The best neighborhoods for active people
  6. The best neighborhoods for retirees
  7. The best neighborhoods for shoppers
  8. The best neighborhoods for starving artists and musicians

The best neighborhoods in Phoenix and surrounding areas

While the neighborhoods listed below each have their own unique qualities and special perks, all of them are constant standouts among locals and our real estate experts at CENTURY 21 Northwest.

The best neighborhoods in Phoenix for families

The Phoenix area is growing rapidly, largely due to being a very popular area for families. Below are a few of the best neighborhoods in Phoenix that offer great amenities for families, and help them get access to everything they need to live comfortably and enjoy life.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Arrowhead Lakes (Glendale)

The Arrowhead Lakes area is one of those fantastic communities that feels just perfect for families. Not only does it have a great HOA that helps to keep the neighborhood secure, but it’s also close to great schools and family amenities such as parks, basketball and volleyball courts, and more. There are plenty of trails nearby for your family to explore, especially with Thunderbird Conservation Park being close-by. Plus, you can’t beat the view of the man-made lakes (which are injected throughout the community) and the mountains that surround them in the background.

Click here to view homes for sale in Arrowhead Lakes!

Paradise Valley Village (North Central Phoenix)

Located in North Central Phoenix, Paradise Valley Village is an ideal location for families. Not only is it close to great schools, but it’s close to everything from shopping malls and districts to recreational parks like the McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park and the Phoenix Mountain Preserves. It definitely has what families need to grow and to thrive. Paradise Valley Village also has the distinction of being one of the safest neighborhoods in the Phoenix area.

Click here to view homes for sale in Paradise Valley Village!

Val Vista Lakes (Gilbert)

Val Vista Lakes is one of those neighborhoods that really stands out to families. It’s quiet enough that you can feel safe, but lively enough that you won’t miss out on a community. Families love the Gilbert school district, which was voted 4th Best School District in America (National Council for Home Safety and Security) in 2017. Val Vista Lakes is an ideal suburban location for families who are looking for a cozy and small town feel with the amenities of being near a big city.

Click here to view homes for sale in Val Vista Lakes!

The best neighborhoods for singles

The best neighborhoods in Phoenix for singles tend to attract a young and professional crowd, many of whom are looking for chances to make new connections and set the tone for their lives and careers. Whether you’re looking to meet someone new or to give yourself the chance to make other social connections, you’ll want to take a look at what these great Phoenix neighborhoods for young professionals have to offer.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Roosevelt Row (Downtown Phoenix)

Absolutely one of Phoenix’s trendiest areas, you can’t beat Roosevelt Row for its singles scene. Whether you’re into art, music, or just spending time in the hottest areas of the city, you’ll find what you need here. Though a little pricey, it’s the most popular area for Phoenix’s younger set for a reason. Roosevelt Row is famous for hosting the First Fridays Art Walk where artists from all around the Valley gather to showcase their work to the public. The Phoenix Public Market, the area’s most popular open air farmers market, is also a couple blocks south of Roosevelt Row. Also be sure to walk around and view some of the famous Downtown Phoenix Murals that are spread throughout the neighborhood.

Click here to view homes for sale in Roosevelt Row!

Oldtown Scottsdale

Generally considered one of the hottest areas around the Valley, this area is always a hit with young professionals. It tends to attract an upscale crowd, so it’s as good for networking as it is for finding friends. Oldtown is famous for its nightlife, attracting locals and celebrities alike and is just a short trip from ASU’s main campus and another popular single’s destination, Mill Ave. Both reside in neighboring Tempe.

Click here to view homes for sale in Oldtown Scottsdale!

Mitchell Park (Tempe)

Speaking of Tempe, college students and young professionals alike can’t get enough of the city which is home to ASU’s main campus. Singles love the Tempe area due to its wealth of young and vibrant inhabitants as well as the multitude of bars, clubs, and activities in the area. We chose Mitchell Park because of its proximity to the ASU Campus, the light rail, and Mill Ave.

Click here to view homes for sale in Mitchell Park!

The best neighborhoods for people who don’t drive

Not everyone drives. If you’re from a big city – or if you’re just not a fan of cars – Phoenix may still be a city for you. While some of the city’s great neighborhoods do require a bit of a drive, there is still plenty that is walkable. Whether you prefer a bus or you just want to walk to the corner store, these are the neighborhoods for you.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Medlock Place (Midtown Phoenix)

Medlock Place is a tiny community ride in the middle of Midtown Phoenix and lies just north of Camelback Rd in between Central and 3rd Ave. Not only is everything you need close by, but you’ll so rarely have to leave that you won’t even worry about public transportation. The neighborhood sits caddy corner to Uptown Plaza which is home of Lou Malnati’s Pizzaria, Huss Brewing Co., AJ’s Fine Foods, Flower Child restaurant, and so much more within walking distance.

Click here to view homes for sale in Medlock Place!

Evans Churchill (Downtown Phoenix)

As you might imagine, living downtown is often the best way to live car-free. Not only will you have better access to public transportation, but you’ll be living in an area that’s designed more for pedestrians than anyone else. Evans Churchill is also home to the previously mentioned Roosevelt Row, which is the perfect area to spend an afternoon or evening on a pub crawl.

Click here to view homes for sale in Evans Churchhill!

Encanto-Palmcroft (Midtown Phoenix)

Midtown tends to offer many of the same benefits as downtown, but with a different price tag. A good fit for those who are bigger fans of public transportation than commuter cars, midtown gives residents access to the light rail and other popular forms of public transportation. Many of the homes in Encanto-Palmcroft were built before World War 2, so the city has designated this community as a historic distric. Every spring, many residents open their homes to the public for the annual Home Tour and Street Fair which features a trolly ride, street fair, food vendors, and a beer garden!

Click here to view homes for sale in Encanto-Palmcroft!

The best neighborhoods for sports fans

Phoenix is a sports fan’s paradise. Not only is it near some great professional and college sports teams, but it’s also got a huge community of fans nearby. Below are some of the best places to live for sports fans.

best neighborhoods in Phoenix

Camelback Ranch – (Glendale)

Camelback Ranch is the perfect location for sports fans who want to get out and see a game. Just minutes from State Farm Stadium and Westgate, you’ll get a chance to see some great games played, ranging from our own Arizona Coyotes hockey team, to a game of football if you’re more of a Cardinals fan. If baseball is more up your alley, Spring Training for both the White Sox and Dodgers is just a short drive away. Topgolf is even just across the highway from State Farm Stadium if you feel like getting out and practicing your own swing.

Click here to view homes for sale in Camelback Ranch!

Bellair (North Phoenix)

While Bellair might not be quite as close to the actual sporting events as some of the neighborhoods in the area, it is located to some of the best-rated sports bars in the Valley. This means that you’re never too far away from great places like Santisi Brothers, Zipps and Padre Murphy’s, which means that you’ll always be able to find a crowd to watch the big game with.

Click here to view homes for sale in Bellair!

Downtown Phoenix

It’s very hard to talk about sports-friendly areas without looking at Downtown Phoenix. Not only is it obviously quite close to The Diamondback’s home at Chase Field, but it’s home to Majerle’s Sports Bar and Grill when you’re looking to get a few drinks after the game. Next door to Chase Field is the home of The Phoenix Suns, Talking Stick Resort Arena. Proximity to two major sports teams and plenty of places to visit before and after a game make downtown an ideal home base for major sports fans.

Click here to view homes for sale in Downtown Phoenix!

The best neighborhoods for active people

There are a number of great communities for active people around Phoenix. Whether you’re looking to push yourself hard in the mountains or you want a bit of fitness mixed in with your luxury, you will find the best neighborhoods in Phoenix to meet your needs here.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Moon Valley (North Phoenix)

Located close to Lookout Mountain and North Mountain, Moon Valley is the go-to location for hikers. With many great trails that are perfect for outdoor enthusiasts of all ages, this is the place to live for those who think that a nice walk involves a little light mountaineering. Whether you want a challenge or you just want the option to take a walk in some of the country’s most beautiful mountains, you will find what you need here.

Click here to view homes for sale in Moon Valley!

Paradise Valley (In between Piestewa Peak and Camelback Mountain)

Another great area for active adults, you’ll find quite a bit to like in Paradise Valley. Not only will you get a chance to get out and use some of the areas’ great fitness amenities, but you’ll be close enough to Piestewa Peak and the Camelback Mountains to get the full advantage of your natural surroundings. If you’re into outdoor adventure, this might be the place for you.

Click here to view homes for sale in Paradise Valley!

McCormick Ranch (Scottsdale)

Located near the Scottsdale Greenbelt, McCormick Ranch is absolutely at the center of the region’s active amenities. Not only can you get to some great fitness areas by bike, but you can take a short drive up to the Camelback Mountains, McDowell Mountains, and a number of other great fitness areas. In terms of sheer choice, this might be the most fitness-friendly area in the region.

The best neighborhoods for retirees

Phoenix has become an incredibly attractive area for retirees. While the weather is great and the scenery is breathtaking, a great deal of the interest does come down to the great neighborhoods in the region. Whether you’re looking for golf, relaxation, or just luxury, you’ll find it in one of these communities. While they all cater to a 55+ crowd, each of these communities has unique features that speak to certain retirees.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Victory At Verrado (Buckeye)

Luxury is quite important to many who are looking to retire to the Phoenix area, and Victory at Verrado has it in spades. Victory at Verrado is nestled against the White Tank Mountains so the views from the golf course homes are absolutely stunning. And, not only does the community have great amenities, but it also has fantastic housing with modern design. There’s quite a bit to love here, from fantastic group classes to the kind of small touches that really make life more livable. If you want to retire in style and comfort, this may be the right community for you.

Click here to view homes for sale in Victory at Verrado!

The Trilogy At Vistancia (Peoria)

Generally known as one of the best communities for golfers in the region, The Trilogy at Vistancia is an absolutely amazing community for retired people. It goes above and beyond what most would expect for a “retirement community”, instead giving its residents a chance to really grow and embrace their post-work years. The Trilogy is one of the communities that resides in the Vistancia Master Plan which is located in Northwest Peoria, just south of the Sonoran Mountain Preserve. Vistancia is home to two award winning golf courses: a private club called Blackstone at Vistancia and a public course which is called The Trilogy.  Whether you’re a golfer who wants access to a great course or someone who wants a chance to meet great people who share similar lifestyle goals, you’ll find what you’re looking for at Vistancia.

Click here to view homes for sale in the Trilogy at Vistancia!

CantaMia At Estrella (Goodyear)

Located in Goodyear, CantaMia is one of the best active adult communities in the region. This is also another community nestled next to the mountains, this one being the Estrella Mountains. Racing fans can enjoy living in close proximity to the ISM in nearby Avondale, which is host to two annual Nascar events. If you looking to retire to a semi-secluded community but have plenty of entertainment options and activities, CantaMia at Estrella has you covered.

Click here for homes for sale in CantaMia!

The best neighborhoods for shoppers

For some, the definition of a great day is one that ends with a trunk full of bags and a handful of new goodies. If you’re looking to move to a place that provides great shopping opportunities and a chance to really flex your shopping muscles, you’ll find several great neighborhoods here. The neighborhoods below are among the best for shopping in the Phoenix area due to their proximity to some of the region’s best stores and malls.

best neighborhoods in phoenix

Arcadia (Central Phoenix)

Located right between the Biltmore and the Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall, Arcadia is a great location for anyone who wants to spend his or her days shopping in some of the Southwest’s most luxurious stores. There is also plenty to do besides shopping which is why this community is one of the most popular in town.

Click here to view homes for sale in Arcadia!

Arrowhead Ranch (Peoria)

Located on the border of Glendale and Peoria, this shopper’s paradise gives you many of the great benefits of living in Glendale as well as a fantastic shopping experience. Very close to the Arrowhead Mall and a short drive to Westgate, this is a great place to live if you enjoy mall-walking or just a little bit of retail therapy. It’s hard to beat Arrowhead Ranch when it comes to sheer proximity to multiple stores, but even the non-shoppers in your life will be hard-pressed to find any faults with this fantastic neighborhood with big homes on decent sized plots of land.

Click here to view homes for sale in Arrowhead Ranch!

Desert Ridge (North Phoenix)

Desert Ridge’s biggest selling point is its proximity to the Desert Ridge Marketplace, a fantastic place to take care of some of your most important shopping. It’s also very close to Paradise Valley Mall and just a five-minute drive to Scottsdale 101. As far as many residents of the area are concerned, Desert Ridge might as well be in the center of the Phoenix shopping universe. Commuters also enjoy the location as it’s conveniently located off the 101 and 51 freeways. This is one place that you must check out if the thought of shopping-filled days fills your heart with longing.

Click here to view homes for sale in Desert Ridge!

The best neighborhoods in Phoenix for starving artists and musicians

Phoenix can be a fantastic place to live if you’re into art and music. While artists and musicians might not have a reputation for having a lot of cash-on-hand, there are actually a few neighborhoods in the area that are perfect for those who want to live a more artistic lifestyle without worrying about making a huge mortgage down-payment. The neighborhoods listed below will all give you a taste of the best neighborhoods in Phoenix for your artistic side.

best neighborhoods in Phoenix

Garfield (Downtown Phoenix)

Garfield is definitely one of the hottest spots for artists and musicians in the area. Not only is it next door to Roosevelt Row, home of the First Friday art walk, but it’s also very close to a number of the area’s most promising music venues and some of its best art galleries. It’s also far more affordable than most might think, with housing that’s far more budget friendly than what you’d find in some of the city’s other trendy districts. This is a great place for artists and musicians alike.

Click here to view homes for sale in Garfield!

Melrose (Midtown Phoenix)

Melrose is an incredibly eclectic and diverse neighborhood that’s sure to appeal to artists of all stripes. Whether you’re looking for new collaborators or just a scene that’s artist-friendly, you’ll find it here. The neighborhood is also very close to the light rail, which makes it much easier to get around town if you don’t drive. This is definitely one of the best places to live if you’re looking to embrace a more bohemian lifestyle.

Click here to view homes for sale in Melrose!

West Side-Clark Addition (Mesa)

The West Side-Clark Addition definitely brings all of the benefits of living in Mesa to its residents. Not only is the area quite affordable, but it’s got easy access to local transportation and you can easily hop over to Mill Avenue in Tempe by taking the light rail. Located conveniently near downtown and full of historic homes, this area is close enough to a number of music venues that locals will never have a shortage of inspiration – or places in which they can play.

Click here to view homes for sale in West Side-Clark Addition!

Use CENTURY21 Northwest to find new home

There are a number of great areas to look at when you’re ready to move to Phoenix. When you’re ready to buy a new home in the best neighborhoods in Phoenix, don’t try to do so on your own. Instead, make sure to visit the professionals at CENTURY21 Northwest to find the perfect place to relocate.


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