Adams Morgan

Columbia Road and Calvert Street NW
Washington, DC

Submitted by: Dan Malouff

Not the typical neighborhood that you would expect to find in Washington, DC.

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Why It Works

Vivacious. Georgetown may be more famous, but city-dwellers know the real place to be is Adams Morgan. It's hip but not yuppified, diverse but not preachy, safe but still gritty, cool but not uppity, and fun but not taken over by Starbucks and Disney. Adams Morgan is, for many, the toast of the DC urban experience.

Physically, Adams Morgan benefits - or suffers from (depending on your point of view) - a location just north of the original planned city, and is sandwiched between the Georgia Avenue corridor and Rock Creek Park. That all means two things: 1) Adams Morgan is off the proverbial beaten path, hidden from suburban gentrification; and 2) its street network is based on European design rather than the grid, which has created a more intimate, less predictable environment. Thus, Adams Morgan is in many ways an antithesis to Washington at large. It's not monumental nor is it high-profile. Rather, it caters to the resident and the sidewalk vendor.

Adams Morgan represents not just a hip hang out; for many it represents an ideal. It's fantastically interesting, unmistakably urban, dense and busy, but still manages to pander to the person rather than the group.

What Makes Adams Morgan a Great Place?

There is no direct Metro access, but Woodley Park, Dupont Circle and Columbia Heights are all easy walks.

Adams Morgan is off the grid. It's not the kind of neighborhood one expects to find in DC.

Very mixed. There is a lot to do in this walkable neighborhood, great shops, restaurants, bars, and more.

Since it's somewhat off the beaten path, Adams Morgan isn't heavily visited by tourists. Even many "local" suburbanites don't seem aware it exists.

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