6.9 out of 10

North Loop

Ranked 23rd best neighborhood in Austin
30.3129079556113 -97.7166530345469
Great for
  • Internet Access
  • Shopping Options
  • Eating Out
  • Neighborly Spirit
  • Nightlife
Not great for
  • Childcare
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Medical Facilities
  • Pest Free
  • Schools
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Hipsters
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish

Reviews

4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Hyde Park look-a-like, with plenty of convenient shopping & groovy coffeeshops"

North Loop is a great neighborhood, generally considered a sub-set of Hyde Park. Convenient to UT, and all the businesses and amenities aimed at students (including the 24-hour H-E-B grocery store), the North Loop has plenty of great places within its borders.

My favorite places are the Tamale House (85 cent breakfast tacos!!!) and Flightpath Coffee—a large, well-lit coffeeshop with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating and a quiet laptop atmosphere. There’s also the Coldtowne movie theater, Monkey Wrench Books, and Epoch Coffee—one of three 24-hour coffeeshops in Austin.

This neighborhood is bike-friendly, quiet, and quaint with small houses, lots of gardens, and a pleasant atmosphere.

There are a few fine dining options—including Foreign & Domestic which has a very creative and socially-conscious menu. And there’s a great juice bar with a Buddhist meditation room not far from here.

This is an ideal neighborhood for anyone with ties to the University of Texas-- especially grad students and professors. Living in the North Loop will give you a quick commute, and plenty of like-minded neighbors.
Pros
  • Tamale House breakfast tacos
  • 24 hour coffeehouse
  • Great eclectic vibe
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Affordable Austin Chic"

If you'd like to experience the cool and hip factors of Austin, Texas without draining your bank account, the North Loop neighborhood north of the downtown area is one option you should consider. Single family homes here run for the most part from about $110,000 to $300,000 and there are also affordable apartment options in the neighborhood as well. There are a number of funky vintage shops in the area and coffee shops where you can see the artistic side of the neighborhood. This is not the best or worst area for a family, but it most definitely leans toward the trendy and artsy types.

The neighborhood is also home to a number of students from the University of Texas at Austin, so there is a young vibe and energy in the area. There is some nightlife in the area that caters to a young adult crowd and a number of different dining options. There is an Italian market, a Mexican food restaurant, and hip burger joints that have good food at reasonable prices. It is a relatively safe neighborhood for an inner city and has that cool Austin chic attitude that defines the capitol city of Texas.
Pros
  • Unusual shops
  • Vintage shops
  • 24 hour coffeehouse
  • Great eclectic vibe
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 3/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 3/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"Hip and trendy without breaking the bank"

When people think of trendy Austin hotspots, neighborhoods on the north side aren’t the first to come to mind. But the North Loop area has a thriving art scene, plenty of nooks and crannies and local color to experience and explore, and a price tag that keeps it accessible for nearly everyone.

Not necessarily an ideal choice for someone who’ll need to make a long commute, but the area has plenty to offer, especially for those who’ll be spending most of their time nearby. Coffee shops, some nightlife, comedy clubs, and shopping abound.

This isn’t the most family-friendly part of town, and parts of the area are actually considerably run down, but for trendy, artsy chic at a friendly price, few other neighborhoods can really measure up. And as far as happening places to be on the north side of town, this is definitely one of the best, where you’ll never be at a loss for new things to do and places to go. It’s safe, and fairly convenient, with easy, immediate access to major roadways. It’s a great spot for people just starting out, for artists looking for a funky place to hang their hats, and for students who’d rather live a ways off campus.
Pros
  • Unusual shops
  • Vintage shops
  • Great eclectic vibe
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Singles
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 4/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 4/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
2yrs+

"Eclectic and funky in the north part of town"

For those looking to live in the central part of Austin, the biggest challenge is finding something attractive and affordable. Sure, the rents at Bluebonnet Court on the edge of Austin’s highly desirable Hyde Park neighborhood may be low, but you also have to live in squalor with transient neighbors.

The North Loop neighborhood just north of Hyde Park is one option for those looking to enjoy a neighborhood with an Austin vibe in a convenient central location without breaking the bank. Defined as 51st Street to the south, W. Koenig Lane to the north, North Lamar to the west and Airport Boulevard to the east, this is a neighborhood with strong Austin roots and an active community. For years it sat in the path of flights leaving Austin’s main airport, rendering it less attractive to those who didn’t care to have their conversations interrupted every few minutes. But when the airport moved south, North Loop’s desirability skyrocketed.

Still, it is possible to find homes more affordable than in neighborhoods a bit closer to Austin’s core. Most homes were built in the 1950s and are modest but well-built and charming bungalows that average in the mid-$200s. Schools in the area include Ridgetop Elementary, Lamar Middle School and McCallum High School. This is a neighborhood popular with young professionals, small business owners and families who are attracted to the area’s funky vibe. There is an eclectic mix of retail shopping and restaurants found here, some of which have withstood the test of time, such as the long-standing Mrs. Johnson’s Donuts, serving donuts since 1948.

North Loop is the kind of neighborhood that is able to support a local bookstore, Monkeywrench Books, which describes itself as “an all volunteer, collectively-run radical bookstore.” You’ll also find vintage second-hand shops, a lingerie store, rocker pizza parlour and of course, coffee shops. You’ll feel at home here if you love to soak up Austin’s weirdness on the central north part of town.
Pros
  • Great eclectic vibe
  • Vintage shops
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Students
  • Trendy & Stylish
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
2yrs+

"They have houses here? Huh."

This is one of my favorite Austin neighborhoods (admittedly I have many…). To tell you the truth, I haven’t much noticed the actual residences in this area. It’s three things that make the North Loop awesome. First: Barfly’s. This is a little dive bar that has dirt cheap drinks and a great jukebox. You can play a game of pool with a 65-year old ex-hippie and his lady with the curious tattoos and have a grand old time. Second: Flightpath. This is one of the most inspirational places to have coffee and work on your great American novel. You’re writing one of those, right? Third: Coldtowne Theater. This is Austin’s alternative comedy theater and improve class explosion of awesomeness. It’s similar to the Groundlings or Upright Citizens Brigade in its style of performance and target audience. Okay, so maybe these places mean I’m too hipster for my own good, but I don’t care. I’m just lucky I don’t actually live in this neighborhood, or else I’d probably never leave. If you’re not totally cringing by this point in my review, you should definitely check out this neighborhood. Then if you find a great house here, you probably won’t mind if I crash on your couch sometimes?
Pros
  • 24 hour coffeehouse
  • Unusual shops
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Tourists
  • Hipsters
  • Students
4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 4/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 4/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 4/5
  • Nightlife 4/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 3/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 2/5
2yrs+

"Trendy Out of the Way Community"

Though the density of the neighborhood almost qualifies it as a suburban area, do not think that the North Loop is lacking in the funk and weirdness that is Austin. The North Loop, which technically speaking is also 53rd Street, has some of the most unique spots in the city. Within a three block stretch are over half a dozen vintage shops where Austinites and visitors can shop for the most outrageous in fashion without hurting the wallet and on one of the corners is Epoch, one of Austin's 24 hour coffee shops. Another unique feature about the neighborhood is Quality Seafood, a seafood warehouse on Airport Blvd. where seasonal catches are available in bulk and include everything from tilapia to alligator.

The North Loop has many houses that are at mid-range prices for both buying and renting, with many renters paying around $850 per month. There are no parks in this neighborhood, put there is a pilates studio and martial arts studio. There are several restaurants, including Phara's Mediterranean, which is a local favorite for smoking hookah. Monkeywrench Books on E. North Loop is a collectively operated anarchist bookstore that holds regular discussions and screenings to discuss the latest issues in social justice. Though an eclectic neighborhood, the resident population is highly concentrated with higher income single individuals with many fitting the hipster stereotype. Easy access to Highway 290, Airport Blvd. and I-35 make traveling in and out of this out of the way, yet trendy community extremely easy.
Pros
  • Vintage shops
  • Unusual shops
  • 24 hour coffeehouse
Cons
  • Far from Downtown
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Tourists
  • Gay & Lesbian
  • Hipsters
  • Trendy & Stylish

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