Best big-city neighborhoods

What's the best place to live in NYC? L.A.? Based on NeighborhoodScout.com data, city visits, and talks with locals, we named these top areas, listed by overall city population.

Park Slope, New York City
best places neighborhoods park slope
Median household income: $101,000
Median home value: $854,300
Typical 2-bedroom rental: $3,000

Pros: Historic brownstones and proximity to 585-acre Prospect Park make this area a favorite of New Yorkers looking to escape Manhattan shoeboxes. The new Barclays Center arena is a close walk but still removed from the heart of the neighborhood.

Crime rates are akin to those in the suburbs, and transport options include a 40-minute subway ride to Midtown Manhattan. Locals love the award-winning restaurants, food co-op, farmers' markets, and homegrown bakeries and shops.

"I could go weeks without leaving," says Nancy Liao, founder of a pet-food business.

Cons: Newbies may struggle to adjust to the lack of big-box retail or supermarkets. And the real estate market is brutal (this is New York City): Homes are the priciest on our list, though still lower than in many areas in Manhattan. --Pieter Van Noordennen

What's your favorite NYC neighborhood and why? Send a photo of the area and tell us why you love it to bestplaces@cnnmoney.com or #mybestplaces and your top pick may be featured in an upcoming CNNMoney gallery.

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Source: NeighborhoodScout.com, MONEY research, Maponics, OnBoard Informatics, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Methodology: Reporters began by looking at walkability, green spaces, public transport, a variety of housing, a diverse group of neighbors, easy access to stores, eateries, culture -- and more. After narrowing the list, we crunched dozens of data points from NeighborhoodScout.com to see which 'hoods rose to the top, and then visited to find our top 10 here.

Notes: All median data are for Q1 2013. Considered data include education (local school quality), crime (total crime and crime relative to other U.S. neighborhoods), housing (appreciation, vacancy rate, affordability, and diversity of choices), ease of living (walkability, family-friendliness, population density, and features like green spaces, grocery stores, and movie theaters), and diversity (language, racial, and age).
  @Money - Last updated August 14 2013 11:12 AM ET
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