Safe, quiet, green neighborhoods. Great restaurants and coffee shops, a thriving arts scene, and public transportation that whisks you to the heart of Boston in 20 minutes. Sound too good to be true? Well, it isn’t. It’s all here in Arlington – part small town, part hip urban center.
Arlington is a charming, historical town six miles from Boston that has evolved over the past few decades into a sought-after, cultured, inclusive community of young professionals and families. It retains a decidedly small-town feel with leafy yards, parks, and neighborhood schools, while offering the proximity of Boston and its numerous colleges, museums, concert halls / theatres, and nationally-ranked sports teams. You can attend Town Meeting and have a say in local government one night, and the next night meet local authors at the popular Arlington Author Salonat Kickstand Café, one of the five coffee shops in town.
“You feel connected to the city and the events going on there, but it’s a place where you can have a yard and raise a family.”
Recreational and athletic opportunities abound!
With 35 town-maintained parks and athletic fields, one of the highest hills in the Boston area (the 375-foot Park Circle Reservoir hill), and the Minuteman Bikeway running through town, it’s very easy to be active in Arlington. Sidewalks make walking easy in Arlington and you’re sure to meet your neighbors walking to the library in Arlington Center or to Starbucks for a cup of coffee on Saturday morning. Cyclists favor Arlington for its challenging hills, and many ride to work or connect to bus and subway at Alewife T Station in Cambridge. Arlington has its own skating rink with its popular Friday night free-skate. At Spy Pond, you can rent canoes or kayaks or watch the Arlington-Belmont Varsity Crew team practice. In winter, families head to the hill at Robbins Farm Park for some of the best sledding in the area (not to mention breath-taking views of the Boston skyline).
Miles from Boston
Familes in Town
Residents in Arlington
Community is the Key in Arlington!
Residents range from young families to professional singles to the elderly, with cultures across the globe reflected in authentic cuisine along the main street, Massachusetts (known as “Mass.”) Ave. Volunteering is popular, and you’ll find your neighbors tending tomatoes at the local community gardens, helping clean up the playgrounds in the Spring, leading the local Brownie troop or coaching youth soccer, or dressing up like 18th century Minutemen to reenact the beginnings of the Revolutionary War on Patriot’s Day.
Arlington prides itself on its local foodie scene, and the “flavor” of Arlington is reflected in destination restaurants and cafes run by top chefs, bakeries where you can buy homemade cookies, cakes or bagels, a weekly Farmers Market from June through October, as well as the convenience of grocery shopping at Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, or Stop and Shop right in town.
Arlington Neighborhoods at a Glance
Arlington has no shortage of neighborhoods that reflect the diversity of people that live here, each with its own unique character. Which one would you live in?
Located on the western border which Arlington shares with Winchester, Morningside homes are characterized by bigger plots of land, and quiet streets. Most of Arlington’s newer homes are located in this neighborhood.
Along with Morningside, this is the least densely populated part of Arlington. Yes, turkeys roam the woods of this pretty neighborhood, but you’ll also find places for running, dog-walking, picnicking, and bird-watching.
Set along both sides of Mass. Ave., Arlington Heights is a historic neighborhood characterized by Victorian and Colonial Revival homes, parks and playgrounds, and the Arlington Heights business district with a post office, shops, bakeries and restaurants. Easy access to Rt. 2 as well as public transportation make this part of Arlington a favorite with commuters.
Located near the borders of Lexington and Winchester, Mount Gilboa boasts its own 10-acre conservation area in its midst with trails for walking and bird-watching. The homes in Mount Gilboa are a mix of old and new with something for everyone.
Little Scotland gets its name from the fact that the streets are named for places in Scotland. The late 19th century developer of the neighborhood, T.B. Munroe, was in fact Scottish, but he claimed the theme was literary, reflecting the popularity of Sir Walter Scott’s romantic novels at the time. With easy access to the Arlington Heights shopping district, this neighborhood is popular with families.
Characterized by classic, grand Victorian homes, leafy streets, and nearby Menotomy Rocks Park for dog-walking and picnicking, this close-knit neighborhood is also walking distance to Arlington Center with its many cafes and shops, not to mention the beautiful and historic Robbins Library.
With its pretty post-World War II colonials and capes sitting on the edge of Spy Pond, this neighborhood is a tightknit community with its own nonprofit association, complete with bylaws and a social committee – something rarely found these days. Neighborhood potlucks and annual celebrations like a Halloween Party, Easter Egg Hunt, and Book Swap help everyone get to know their neighbors.
East Arlington is known for its walkability and access to public transportation. It’s the most urban of the Arlington neighborhoods and a diverse mix of graduate students from Harvard and Tufts, young professionals, and multi-generational families live here. Local gems like the Fox Branch Library, Quebrada Bakery, Maxima Gift Shop, Barismo Coffee and the Capitol Theater cluster along Mass. Ave.