Downtown The central business district of the city of Los Angeles, Downtown is also home to the city's Grand Avenue cultural corridor. Like many city centers, the advent of the automobile and freeways led to the neighborhood's slow decline. However, in recent years, the area has seen a booming revival led by new residential buildings, with trendy hotels, bars, shops and restaurants.
Eastside A funkier area north of downtown and east of Hollywood that's rapidly gentrifying.
Hollywood The place where movies are made. It has received quite a makeover in recent years, sparked by the construction of Hollywood & Highland and the return of the Academy Awards.
San Fernando Valley The northern suburban portion of Los Angeles, lying in a valley northwest of downtown, containing various districts.
South Central It's long had a reputation for gang violence and is famed for the Rodney King riots, but while it remains off most peoples radar, there are a handful of things to see and it's slowly working to repair its bruised image.
Westside Generally more affluent area of town near the ocean
Wilshire Home of the historic architecture of the Miracle Mile District, the Farmer's Market and The Grove shopping areas, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CBS Television City, and the famous La Brea Tar Pits.
Allston and Brighton (Allston-Brighton) Located west of Boston proper, these districts (especially Brighton) are primarily residential, and are home to many students and young professionals. Brighton is abutted Boston College, which is the terminus of the Green Line's B Branch. The border between the two is a fuzzy subject of debate, so they are often considered as one neighborhood by outsiders.
Back Bay This upscale area of Boston has fine shops, fine dining, as well as sites such as the Prudential Center, Copley Square, and Hynes Convention Center.
Beacon Hill Once the neighborhood of the Boston Brahmins. Beacon Hill has real gas-lit street lanterns on many of the streets, as well as many original bricks dating back to age of the city itself. Because the Massachusetts State House is located here, "Beacon Hill" is often used as a metonym to refer to the state government or the legislature.
Charlestown Across the Charles River to the north, this is the site of the Bunker Hill Monument.
Chinatown Great Asian food, great herbalists and next to downtown and the theater district. 4th largest Chinatown in the United States.
Dorchester ("Dot") A large working class neighborhood often considered Boston's most diverse. It includes the JFK Library, UMass Boston, and many wonderful eateries.
Downtown This is the hub of tourist activity with Faneuil Hall, the Freedom Trail, Boston Public Garden, and Boston Common. It is also the center of city and state governments, businesses, and shopping.
East Boston (Eastie) On a peninsula across Boston Harbor from the main bulk of the city and the location of Logan Airport. Several underwater tunnels connect East Boston to the rest of the city. Large Latin American population.
Fenway-Kenmore (The Fens, Kenmore Square) Fenway Park is the home of the 2004 and 2007 world champion Boston Red Sox.
Financial District Boston's business and financial center, this area has plenty of restaurants, bars, and tourist attractions such as the New England Aquarium.
Hyde Park (HP) The southernmost neighborhood in Boston, with suburban characteristics.
Mattapan A residential neighborhood that is home to the city's large Caribbean population.
Mission Hill A residential neighborhood, with a very high student population.
North End The city's Italian neighborhood with excellent restaurants. It is also the location of the Old North Church.
Roslindale (Rozzie) Residential neighborhood, also a large Greek population.
Roxbury (Rox,The Bury) The historical center of Boston's black community.
South Boston (Southie) This is a proud residential neighborhood with a waterfront district and the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center on its north side. Home to one of the largest Irish and Irish American populations in the country.
South End Just south of Back Bay, has Victorian brownstones and a bohemian atmosphere. Large Gay population.
West Roxbury (Westie, West Rox) With mostly single family homes, West Roxbury has a suburban feel in an urban setting.
Uptown The literal and figurative "center of things". Uptown is Charlotte's central district, and the location of its somewhat oversized skyline. It is generally agreed that the word "uptown" refers to anything inside the I-277 loop, though some adjacent entities might describe themselves that way. Uptown is the center of Charlotte's commerce, culture, and government. As recently as the mid-1990s, the area was a virtual "office park" -- home to a lot of business but very few residents -- but is rapidly repopulating with highrise condos. The district is home to several Fortune 500 headquarters, museums, nightclubs, restaurants, parks, city and county government offices, theaters... pretty much anything you'd expect to find in a city center. Most of the bustle is centered around Tryon St., the "Main St." of the city. Note that most east-west streets are numbered, whereas most north-south streets have proper names. It is well worth noting that Uptown is statistically one of Charlotte's safest areas, due in large part to a large flow of human traffic at most hours.
NoDa NoDa, short for North Davidson Street, is one of Charlotte's most eclectic and original neighborhoods. Also known as the Historic Arts District, NoDa is about two miles north of the center city. The district grew up around a large textile mill that closed in the 1970s, sending the surrounding neighborhood into a long period of decline. After artists began moving back into the neighborhood in the 1980s, they began to revitalize and preserve the old brick buildings and quaint mill houses. Even the old Highland Mill, next to the Johnston YMCA, is being renovated for both residential and retail/office space. Enjoy street level art galleries, several restaurants and other unique shops in the district. There is a "gallery crawl" every first and third Friday that attracts many visitors to NoDa.
South End This neighborhood is located close to Uptown in the corridor formed by Tryon St. and South Blvd. It was previously a mill district located along the railroad tracks, but has gradually converted into a hip, semi-upscale entertainment/cultural district. The addition of trolley tracks and light rail connecting it to Uptown has helped spur expansive development here. Possibly the best place in town to take a walk with children, as the neighborhood features ice cream shops, a trolley museum and several kids-oriented stores. Also home to Charlotte's emerging design industry, South End features several galleries and a "gallery crawl" parallel to those in NoDa.
Plaza-Midwood Similar in some ways to NoDa and South End, but a little rougher around the edges. Plaza-Midwood (named in part for its location along The Plaza) prides itself on its "old Charlotte" feel, and a grungy underbelly that has resisted gentrification. This neighborhood has quickly become a vibrant alternative to the upscale scene, and is home to several local institutions (including the legendary Penguin restaurant).
Myers Park Once located altogether outside the city, Myers Park is near the heart of modern-day Charlotte. Its reputation as an "old money" neighborhood is accentuated by its cathedral-esque tree canopy and slowly winding avenues. It is home to some of Charlotte's oldest and most expensive homes (formerly country estates), as well as Queens University of Charlotte and Freedom Park. A driving tour of Myers Park is a popular way for tourists to get acquainted with the city, but bring a map; some of Charlotte's most difficult intersections are located here.
Dilworth Charlotte's first "streetcar suburb", Dilworth has never lost its reputation as a desirable place to make a home. In recent years the neighborhood has blossomed into an upscale district dotted with eateries and galleries. The promise of increased public transit service has added even more development to this already walkable neighborhood.
SouthPark An affluent district in south-central Charlotte, and home to the city's second-largest business district. SouthPark is a newer suburb whose development has mostly occurred in the last 40 years, but it has quickly developed into a semi-urban concentration of office buildings, high rise condos, hotels and entertainment options.
Elizabeth Just outside of Uptown, Elizabeth reflects a transition between elegant Myers Park and gritty Plaza-Midwood. Its tree-lined streets and quiet residential blocks provide an air of relaxation, but its commercial blocks are among the city's most colorful. Sometimes characterized as "a poor man's Dilworth", Elizabeth is coming into its own as a center of activity.
University City A sprawling 1970s-style suburban district, focused around the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. This area is on the city's northeast side and encroaches somewhat into southwestern Cabarrus County. University City (or UC) is largely an area in transition, having formerly been mostly rural or affluent suburbs; today's growth patterns reflect an influx of minority groups and young families. Aside from the University and related research centers, this area is also home to Verizon Wireless Ampitheatre, a well-defined "downtown" cluster of hotels and retail centers, and many square miles of sprawling shopping centers.
East Charlotte A somewhat ambiguous, but distinctive, area covering a large portion of the city's eastern end. East Charlotte contains the city's largest concentration of immigrants, and is mostly a middle- to lower-class area. Much of the east side is depressed and unattractive, but it contains some of Charlotte's most interesting cultural development. Virtually any kind of ethnic food can be found here, and much of the city's "street life" gravitates toward this area.
Ballantyne The most recent large-scale development in Charlotte, Ballantyne is located at the far southern edge of the city. Sprawling and suburban in nature, it is noted for its luxurious "mini-mansions", upscale retail, large hotels and corporate buildings, and distinguished country club. Ballantyne is mostly residential in nature and most tourist attraction is generated by the Ballantyne Resort. Visitors to this section of Charlotte find that most attractions center around the intersection of Johnston Rd and Ballantyne Commons Pkwy.