The Top 5 Family-Friendly Neighborhoods In Boston, Massachusetts

While metropolis cities that attract many tourists aren't typically the first thing that comes to mind when you consider ideal places to raise children, Boston is an exception — consistently proving to be one of the best cities for families.

A Wallet Hub study recently ranked Massachusetts as the best state in the country to raise a family, receiving high scores in the categories of affordability, education and childcare, health and safety, and overall level of family fun. The study also pointed to the state's parental leave policies, the quality of public schools, and the number of children's hospitals per capita as contributing reasons Massachusetts snagged the top spot.

According to Extra Space Storage, Boston is no exception to the state's high ranking due to its high level of safety compared to other metro cities. The city also offers plenty of family-friendly activities for families with children of all ages, as well as some of the best schools in the country, both for elementary-aged children and those pursuing higher education.

And while Boston is a popular destination for families, your experience as a resident will ultimately depend on which neighborhood you end up in — having the potential to make or break your family's move to the city. Here is a breakdown of the top five most family-friendly neighborhoods in Boston.


Of all of Boston's neighborhoods, Brighton may be the best for young couples with families.

According to Coastal Neighborhoods, Brighton, located in the northwestern part of the city, is an excellent destination for first-time homebuyers and young families — a demographic that tends to be on a tight budget. Because of the neighborhood's high population of young families, first-time home buyers, young professionals, and college students, the area has its fair share of reasonably priced eateries — something that can be difficult to find in other parts of the Massachusetts metropolis.

While Brighton is known for being quiet and residential, Boston University reiterates that the area is a perfect place to spend a leisurely afternoon and grab a drink or a bite to eat at one of the many pubs or restaurants, as there are plenty of options to choose from. The area even has a popular nightlife scene if you enjoy a night out on the town, receiving an impressive A+ score from Niche in the nightlife category (and an overall score of A+ after averaging the area's scores in other categories).

Coastal Neighborhoods adds that the neighborhood is an easy commute to other areas of the city due to its proximity to public transportation and offers a unique experience with access to the river. Niche also notes that Brighton's public schools rank above average and that the area has plenty of parks and playgrounds for those with children.


If you and your family are drawn to American history, the oldest neighborhood in Boston might be for you.

Similarly to Brighton, Charlestown has a high population of young families. However, it's also a popular destination for history buffs, as it was the location of one of the most important battles of the Revolutionary War, the Battle of Bunker Hill (per Boston University). Built in 1797 and holding the title of the oldest floating ship in the world, the USS Constitution also still sits in the Navy Yard in Charlestown.

According to Coastal Neighborhoods, Charlestown is north of downtown Boston, making it an excellent, quiet area for those who work in the city's center to settle down. It is also known for its family-friendly housing options, as Niche notes that as much as 47% of the neighborhood's population owns their home — a number much higher than other areas of the city that are confined to renting.

The area is home to plenty of parks, restaurants, and coffee shops, and residents can take the footbridge across the river to the other side. The neighborhood also provides world-class views of the Boston skyline along the riverfront.

Hyde Park

Hyde Park is among the quietest neighborhoods in Boston and therefore is ideal for those with families and young children. Though the area is quiet, it's an easy commute to other, more lively areas since it is a part of the city's commuter rail.

Niche reports that 59% of Hyde Park residents own their home, making it a good option for families looking for a yard for their children or pets or who simply want more space for their families than a downtown rental can provide.

According to Extra Space Storage, Hyde Park has some of the best school systems in Boston and has plenty of fun activities for children to take advantage of at places such as the Blue Hill Observatory Science Center, Ron's Gourmet Ice Cream & Bowling, and Riverside Theatre Works where they can take a performing arts class.

The neighborhood is also perfect for nature lovers, and the Stony Brook Reservation is a great place for you and your family to spend quality time outdoors. The kids can also burn off some energy on the 12 miles of hiking trails! The reservation is also littered with plenty of sports fields and prime fishing spots, making Hyde Park the perfect destination for families who love the great outdoors.


Located next to Hyde Park, the neighborhood of Roslindale is also among the best in Boston for families.

Roslindale offers a more suburban feel than many areas of the city, and Extra Space Storage reports that the neighborhood provides larger home and yard options than are available in more congested neighborhoods that tend to be more common throughout Boston and other metro areas.

Unlike many urban areas, Roslindale feels like a true community. One example is the Roslindale Village Main Street program that brings community events to the area, including the popular weekend farmer's market.

Space Wise also reports that Roslindale is a safer neighborhood to live in than 81% of all other Boston neighborhoods, making it attractive to families who worry about the level of crime that metro areas tend to attract.

Though quiet and small, the area offers its fair share of eateries, bars, and coffee shops, as well as the Franklin Park Zoo and the Arnold Arboretum, two of the most popular destinations in Boston for families.

West Roxbury

If the safety of your family is your main priority when determining which Boston neighborhood to settle down in, West Roxbury should be at the top of your list.

Safer than 94% of other neighborhoods, as reported by Extra Space Storage, it's clear why West Roxbury is a popular area for families with children. It is also home to two of Boston's top-rated schools, The William Ohrenberger School and The Joyce Kilmer Upper School.

According to Coastal Neighborhoods, West Roxbury offers plenty of affordable housing options, both to rent and buy. Niche notes that most people in this family-friendly neighborhood actually own their home — as many as 62% of them. If you have children and pets and are craving yard space, look no further than this suburban feel neighborhood.

Though the commute to Boston's city center is about a half hour, there is still plenty to do right on West Roxbury if you don't want to take the rail, as Boston Magazine writes. The area has several staple coffee shops and plenty of places to grab a bite to eat. In fact, you can get some of the best steak in the city at the neighborhood steakhouse, Sofia. Additionally, Boston's Millenium Park in West Roxbury boasts miles of walking trails, sports fields, and a canoe launch for a day of family fun out on the water.