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The 40 coolest neighbourhoods in the world for 2023 named by Time Out: Laureles in the Colombian city of Medellin is No.1, with Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle top in UK and Mid-City in New Orleans best in the U.S

Laureles in Medellín, Colombia, has been named the Coolest Neighbourhood in the World to visit right now by Time Out.

It offers an ‘authentic balance of laid-back vibes alongside some of the best nightlife in the city’ and tops a 40-strong ranking designed to showcase neighbourhoods that ‘have the best mix of cutting-edge culture, affordable great food and drink, street life, nightlife and community’.

Grace Beard, Travel Editor at Time Out, says: ‘What stands out with this year’s Time Out Coolest Neighbourhoods is that, while most of them have seen transformation over recent years, they remain resolutely local-at-heart. Exciting new openings across culture, food and drink are bringing in new crowds, but neighbourhood stalwarts – from old pubs to family greengrocers – keep it real. And they’re fun! These are places where the city comes to play, be it an all-night party, a spot of urban fishing or a nighttime bike ride.’

The top-ranked spot in America is Mid-City in New Orleans, while in Australia, the Brunswick East neighbourhood in Melbourne reigns supreme. Meanwhile, the UK number one is the Baltic Triangle in Liverpool. Scroll down to see where each neighbourhood ranks – and for the list in full…

12. Cours Julien, Marseille – France

Time Out has named the coolest neighbourhoods in the world to visit right now, with Marseille’s Cours Julien neighbourhood (pictured) ranking 12th overall 

‘A hotbed for graffiti in the early ‘90s when hip hop took root in Marseille, Cours Julien is as happening as ever three decades later,’ says Time Out.  

It adds: ‘The cobblestone streets are chock-a-block with vintage boutiques, indie designers, live music venues and eclectic cafés that are popular with the city’s booming creative class.’

For a perfect day out, Time Out recommends going people-watching at Black Bird Coffee, shopping for ‘vintage treasures’ along Rue Trois Mages, rummaging for records at Cave à Vinyle and sipping on drinks at Verre à Cruise.

11. Baltic Triangle, Liverpool – England

The UK’s top-ranking neighbourhood is the Baltic Triangle in Liverpool. ‘Fifteen years ago, what is now known as the Baltic Triangle was nothing more than a collection of largely abandoned shipping warehouses,’ says Time Out

A mural of Liverpool FC manager Jurgen Klopp in the Baltic Triangle

‘Fifteen years ago, what is now known as the Baltic Triangle was nothing more than a collection of largely abandoned shipping warehouses,’ says Time Out. ‘But thanks to a huge regeneration project, they’re now populated by some of the best restaurateurs, artists and creatives in the city.’

Affectionately termed as the Baltic, the area is a short walk from Liverpool’s ‘iconic Albert Dock’, the guide reveals. 

And it’s the place to experience the ‘city’s younger side,’ it claims, ‘as lots of 20-and-30-somethings call this corner of Liverpool home’.  It continues: ‘Skateparks, independent coffee shops and small galleries occupy the space between street art-adorned warehouses. There’s also a budding food scene in the area, including the newly-opened Manifest, which has already been given the nod from Michelin.’

The perfect day? That would entail waking up in one of The Baltic Hotel’s boutique bedrooms and grabbing a pastry from the nearby Baltic Bakehouse, says Time Out.

10. Tomigaya, Tokyo – Japan

Time Out says that Tokyo’s Tomigaya district, which ranks 10th, offers plenty of ‘trendy cafés and stylish stores’. Above is the area’s Trunk Hotel Yoyogi Park 

Tokyo’s Tomigaya district ‘seems a world apart from the frenetic pace of the world’s busiest pedestrian crossing’ – Shibuya Crossing – despite being less than a 15-minute walk away.

So says Time Out, which describes the district as feeling ‘more relaxed’ with ‘more independent businesses’ and ‘quiet residential streets’.

Despite the area’s ‘unassuming low profile,’ the guide adds, ‘there’s no shortage of trendy cafés and stylish stores here, burrowed in side streets among fantastic restaurants and local grocers’. 

The ‘perfect’ itinerary should include stopping off at Beasty Coffee ‘for fresh roasts and matcha terrine’ followed by lunch at the family-run Katsudonya Zuicho and an evening cocktail at The Bellwood, says Time Out.

9. Amsterdam-West, Amsterdam – Netherlands

Ninth in the ranking is Amsterdam’s Amsterdam-West neighbourhood, which is praised as ‘resolutely local-centric’ by Time Out ‘ 

‘Amsterdam-West has it all,’ says Time Out, describing the neighbourhood as ‘hip, cosy and creative’ with ‘a unique blend of Dutch heritage and international energy.’

It continues: ‘Bordering the tourist havens of the Jordaan and Museumkwartier, Amsterdam-West remains resolutely local-centric, despite the area being jam-packed with the sort of aesthetic and architectural qualities you regularly associate with Amsterdam.’

Strolling into Westerpark ‘to soak up some nature’ and heading for ‘a delicious brunch’ at Dignita will make for ‘a perfect day’ there, according to the guide.

8. Isola, Milan – Italy

While in eighth-place Isola in Milan, Time Out recommends enjoying a ‘traditional Milanese brioche with an espresso’ at L’Ile Douce pastry shop followed by lunch at Deus Cafe. Above is the area’s Bar Frida 

‘Fun fact: the name Isola – island – derives from the fact the district was “cut off” from the rest of Milan from the railway line that runs by it,’ Time Out says.

It continues: ‘And before the 2015 Expo [a World Expo hosted by Milan, partially in Isola], many people wouldn’t have had a reason to cross that railway line. Seven years and a whole requalification later, Isola is claiming the title of Milan’s coolest district.’

The ‘perfect day’ in Isola starts with a ‘traditional Milanese brioche with an espresso’ at L’Ile Douce pastry shop followed by lunch at Deus Cafe and an afternoon spent ‘exploring artistic tombs and monuments at Cimetero Monumentale’, it adds.

7. Mid-City, New Orleans – U.S

Sliding into seventh place it’s Mid-City (above), which sits ‘midway between the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain’ in New Orleans 

Above is the Swirl Wine Bar and Market in Mid-City, New Orleans 

Mid-City lies close to the French Quarter of New Orleans and sits ‘midway between the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain’, Time Out reveals. 

What can you expect from the neighbourhood? The guide says: ‘You’ll find artsy crowds and colourful houses in the Bayou St. John area, historical landmarks along Bayou Road, and centuries-old oaks in City Park.’

Here, the ‘perfect day’ comprises a stroll around City Park, coffee and beignets at Cafe du Monde, a visit to the New Orleans Museum of Art, and a shopping trip to jewellery and gift shop Home Malone, according to the guide. ‘Wrap up the night with dancing and bowling at the legendary Rock ‘n Bowl,’ it adds.

6. Brunswick East, Melbourne – Australia 

Brunswick East, pictured, is described by Time Out as a ‘fast emerging’ corner of Melbourne. It ranks sixth overall 

Above is The Beast live music venue and bar in Brunswick East

‘Move over Brunswick, Fitzroy and Carlton,’ says Time Out. ‘This eclectic – and increasingly cool – Northside neighbourhood is ready to emerge from the suburban shadows.’

The guide describes Brunswick East as a ‘fast emerging’ corner of Melbourne, and ‘a vibrant go-to hub for multicultural eateries, live music venues and cosy bars that you’ll find yourself returning to again and again.’

For ‘the perfect day’, according to Time Out, get ‘coffee and carbs’ at Wild Life Bakery followed by shopping at Lygon Street Nursery and ‘the best tacos in the city’ at CDMX.

5. Sheung Wan, Hong Kong

‘You’ll find hipsters and their pets in chic cafes, while older generations explore bustling wet markets and seafood stalls,’ Time Out says of fifth-place Sheung Wan in Hong Kong 

‘Once a neighbourhood known for its coffin shops and funeral-related services, Sheung Wan is now one of Hong Kong’s liveliest districts,’ says Time Out.

‘This is the only place in Hong Kong where you can find a mix of historic temples, antique stores and dried seafood stalls alongside contemporary art galleries, Melbourne-style cafes, stylish boutiques, and contemporary restaurants,’ it adds.

The guide continues: ‘You’ll find hipsters and their pets in chic cafes, while older generations explore bustling wet markets and seafood stalls that stretch all the way to Sai Ying Pun.’

4. Havnen, Copenhagen – Denmark

Time Out describes Havnen in Copenhagen, pictured, as ‘the place where the city comes to play, whether that’s on boats, floating rafts, paddleboards, kayaks or in its swimming pools’. It’s fourth in the ranking 

Time Out says: ‘Copenhagen’s city architect Camilla van Deurs describes Havnen, Copenhagen’s harbour, as the city’s living room – and we can’t disagree. It’s the place where the city comes to play, whether that’s on boats, floating rafts, paddleboards, kayaks or in its swimming pools.’ 

Wondering how to plan a perfect day in the neighbourhood? The guide recommends waking up at Kaj Hotel, a floating houseboat hotel, before walking to Opera Park via the harbour, enjoying lunch at La Banchina and taking an afternoon dip in the harbour. 

3. Carabanchel, Madrid – Spain

Time Out says that third-place Carabanchel in Madrid (above) is ‘buzzing with trendy art galleries and cutting-edge creative spaces’ 

‘Once known as a proper working-class area outside Madrid’s ring road, Carabanchel has turned into the city’s latest version of Soho,’ says Time Out.

‘It’s now buzzing with trendy art galleries and cutting-edge creative spaces.’

An ideal day in the area, according to the guide, comprises ‘a banging brekkie’ at Merinas’ cafe and a visit to Sabina Amrani Gallery followed by a cheese board at La Griferia, where you can ‘discuss the art over a glass of wine’.

2. Smithfield, Dublin – Ireland

Smithfield in Dublin, which ranks second is ‘filled with independent bars, vegan-friendly restaurants, artisanal cafés and sourdough pizza shops’

Above is the popular Light House Cinema in Smithfield 

Heaping praise on silver medal winner Smithfield, Time Out says: ‘This Dublin 7 neighbourhood is a space where tradition and activism meet.’ Giving examples of this, the travel site notes that the neighbourhood is home to establishments such as The Cobblestone, a ‘historic pub known as the home of traditional Irish music in Dublin’, and Third Space, a social enterprise café that ‘serves homemade sausage rolls with bacon jam, all-the-while making the neighbourhood a better place to live’.

Time Out continues that it’s also ‘filled with independent bars, vegan-friendly restaurants, artisanal cafés and sourdough pizza shops – deeming the area a must-visit for anyone swayed by no-frills, post-industrial charm’.

Wondering when to visit? Time Out recommends making it to the Smithfield Fleadh on the last weekend of August, a two-day event that offers ‘live Irish music, local art and hazy, summer evening pints’.

1. Laureles, Medellin – Colombia

You’ll discover the Estadio Atanasio Girardot, pictured, in the world’s coolest neighbourhood – Laureles in Medellin, Colombia 

The coolest of them all, Laureles is ‘is home to the famed nightlife strip known as La 70’ and ‘Estadio Atanasio Girardot, Medellin’s main fútbol stadium and concert venue’, Time Out reveals.

It continues: ‘While you might think all of this would make Laureles a bit noisy and hectic, the neighbourhood actually has a pretty laidback reputation. The area outside of La 70 offers tranquillity in the form of parks, tree-lined streets, yoga studios and countless coffee shops.’

The guide adds that ‘Laureles still has a traditional Colombian neighbourhood feel, despite its growing popularity’, adding: ‘Fruit vendors push their carts through the circular streets like they have for decades.’ It recommends grabbing a morning coffee at Rituales Café, stopping for lunch at Saludpan and dancing salsa at the ‘no-frills’ Tíbiri Bar.


 1. Laureles, Medellin (Colombia)

2. Smithfield, Dublin (Ireland)

3. Carabanchel, Madrid (Spain)

 4. Havnen, Copenhagen (Denmark)

5. Sheung Wan, Hong Kong

6. Brunswick East, Melbourne (Australia)

7. Mid-City, New Orleans (U.S)

8. Isola, Milan (Italy)

9. West, Amsterdam (Netherlands)

10. Tomigaya, Tokyo (Japan)

11. Baltic Triangle, Liverpool (England)

12. Cours Julien, Marseille (France)

13. Arts District, Los Angeles (U.S)

14. Chinatown, Singapore

15. Fort Greene, New York City (U.S)

16.  Leith, Edinburgh (Scotland)

17. Enmore, Sydney (Australia)

18. Costa da Caparica, Almada (Portugal)

19. Hyde Park, Chicago (U.S)

 20. West End, Glasgow (Scotland)

21. Sea Point, Cape Town (South Africa)

22. Neukolln, Berlin (Germany)

23. Haut-Marais, Paris (France)

24. King’s Cross, London (England)

25. Hannam-dong, Seoul (South Korea)

26. Coral Gables, Miami (U.S)

27. Richmond District, San Francisco (U.S)

28. Vinohrady, Prague (Czech Republic)

29. El Clot, Barcelona (Spain)

30. San Miguel Chapultepec, Mexico City (Mexico)

31. Exarcheia, Athens (Greece)

32. Bebek, Istanbul (Turkey)

33. Ponsonby, Auckland (New Zealand)

34. Zhongshan, Taipei (Taiwan)

35. Bonifacio Global City, Manila (Philippines)

36. Downtown, Montreal (Canada)

37. Dotonbori, Osaka (Japan)

38. The Annex, Toronto (Canada)

39. Song Wat, Bangkok (Thailand)

40. Cantonments, Accra (Ghana)

Source: Time Out  

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