Birmingham, Alabama

Magic City

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The Area

Snuggled inside of the Jones Valley, Birmingham is its own urban oasis in northern Alabama. Although there are just over 200,000 people within the city limits, the greater Birmingham area is home to roughly a million total people living in a wide variety of neighborhoods and suburbs that stretch up into the mountains around Magic City. Birmingham is at the crossroads of a number of state and interstate highways that lead locals directly to cities like Nashville (north), Atlanta (east), Montgomery (south) and Chattanooga (northeast) in a straight shot.


College Students

Several colleges, such as the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and Birmingham-Southern College call Magic City their home. The Southside is one of the best neighborhoods for college aged folks not only due to its proximity to UAB, but on account of its vibes as well. It’s both affordable while still being upscale and modern. A hot restaurant and bar scene also pervades throughout the neighborhood.

  • Southside
  • College Hills
  • Five Points South

Highland Park

Young Professionals

Despite what others might say about the south, young professionals can find an urban environment to call home in the heart of Birmingham. Highland Park is a great place to start looking for young professionals. It’s close to downtown for those looking to work in the city, and its proximity to the Entertainment District, Five Points South, and UAB gives the location a leg up for those looking to be close to work and the social scene. The aforementioned Five Points South neighborhood itself is also a solid option for young professionals. The nightlife home of Birmingham, Five Points offers its residents the opportunity to be right in the heart of the action for a reasonable price.

  • Highland Park
  • Five Points South
  • Lakeview

Five Points South


An aptly named neighborhood due to its proximity to the action, Central City is one of the best neighborhoods for those without kids, and likely offers the most urban feel in the Birmingham area. Replete with bars, restaurants, parks and coffee shops, there’s always something to do for those without kids. Renters and buyers alike will be happy to hear that prices are more palatable here then comparable downtown neighborhoods in similar cities.

  • Five Points South
  • Highland Park
  • Fountain Heights



Despite being a southern metropolitan dominated by suburbia, Birmingham is known for being a relatively liberal and inclusive area. Homewood is likely the best of liberal Birmingham but more expensive while offering a dense suburban feel. More generally, Birmingham is home to one of the largest Pride celebrations in the south, Central Alabama Pride, and Birmingham’s local chapter of the national PFLAG organization is known for providing support, education, advocacy, networking opportunities, and resources to LGBTQ communities.

  • Homewood
  • Crestwood
  • Central City

Mountain Brook


The expansive suburbia around Birmingham is the knee-jerk for most families to move. Given the layout of the city, some of these suburbs are closer to downtown than other neighborhoods in the city itself. One suburb that is particularly popular is Mountain Brook. A ten minute drive from downtown Birmingham, Mountain Brook has a great school system and the lowest crime rates in the metropolitan area. It also has a pretty good variety of excellent restaurants and lots of shopping options.

  • Mountain Brook
  • Vestavia Hills
  • Homewood