California Takes Ten Spots on the Top Twenty Best Neighborhoods to Live in the United States

Jessica Lynn
Photo by Sterling Davis on UnsplashPhoto by Sterling Davis on Unsplash

If you are lucky, you live in California. Yes, each state in this beautiful nation has something unique to boast about. Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado have those Rocky Mountains. There's nothing like the red brick-colored mountains in Arizona and New Mexico, sometimes with bits of snow atop. The South also has warm weather and beaches. The east has New York City. What more could you want if you have NYC?


California has those. All over the state. California arguably has the best climate all year round, the sweetest air that is almost indescribable and delicious. California farms grow the most flavorful vegetables in their rich soil. You can find restaurants that serve cuisine from other parts of the world and urban and state parks to rival other states' parks.

My love for California runs deep. I may be biased. I've lived in California for more years than any other state for most of my adult life. First in San Francisco and then settling in Los Angeles.

When I was doing a little bit of research about the top ten neighborhoods in Austin to live in, I was curious about the top 20 neighborhoods in the country. While scrolling through the list, it read California, California, California. With Texas, Florida, and Arizona each making the list.

Santa Monica, CA, takes four spots on the list as well as number one and two. I'm in Santa Monica often for the beaches and restaurants and bars along the 3rd Street Promenade.

Below are the top 20 ranked by Niche. They all receive an A+ Ranking. Niche bases their research on specific criteria like:

  • Quality of schools
  • Crime rates
  • Cost of living
  • Housing trends
  • Employment statistics
  • Local amenities
  • Nightlife
  • Good for families
  • Diversity

Niche pulls data from the Census, the CDC, and the FBI to determine each neighborhood's livability score. I found myself lost on this website for a few hours.

Here is the complete list of the 2021 Best Neighborhoods to Live in America:

  1. City Center - Neighborhood in Santa Monica, CA
  2. Ocean Park - Neighborhood in Santa Monica, CA
  3. Cottonwood Creek South - Neighborhood in Richardson TX
  4. Bluemont - Neighborhood in Arlington, VA
  5. Hyde Park, Spanishtown Creek - Neighborhood in Tampa, FL
  6. Radnor/Fort Myer Heights - Neighborhood in Arlington, VA
  7. Broadmoor - Broadway - Neighborhood in Tucson, AZ
  8. Harbour Island - Neighborhood in Tampa, FL
  9. Sammamish Valley - Neighborhood in Redmond, WA
  10. Mid-City - Neighborhood in Santa Monica, CA
  11. Ventura - Neighborhood in Palo Alto, CA
  12. University South - Neighborhood in Palo Alto, CA
  13. Wilshire/Montana - Neighborhood in Santa Monica, CA
  14. Beverly Estates - Neighborhood in Overland Park, KS
  15. Ballston/Virginia Square - Neighborhood in Arlington VA
  16. Presidio of San Francisco - Neighborhood in San Francico, CA
  17. Old Palo Alto - Neighborhood in Palo Alto, CA
  18. Downtown North - Neighborhood in Palo Alto, CA
  19. The Port - Neighborhood in Cambridge, MA
  20. College Terrace - Neighborhood in Palo Alto, CA

Do you live in California? Does this ring true to you? If not, tell us about your community and why you think it is the best place to live.

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Writing on all things California and Texas. It unfolds here. Your daily dose of local news. From politics to food, from celebrity culture to current events. Follow me for the latest updates. Twitter: @girl_thriving

Los Angeles, CA

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