The ultimate guide to Groningen’s top 6 neighbourhoods

Discover the 6 best neighbourhoods in Groningen and find out how they rank based on the quality of life, safety and internationality.


5 minute read
Updated on 7 Mar 2024

Thinking of moving to Groningen?

The city's motto is 'Er gaat niks boven Groningen', which literally translated from Dutch means 'There's nothing that tops Groningen' and this should already give you an impression of the city.

Its location: Groningen is the seventh-largest city in the Netherlands and the capital city of the northern part of the country.

Its spirit: the streets lined with typical Dutch houses, hide a young and modern soul that has made it stand out on the international scene.

With a population of over 230,000 residents, 25% of who are students, it's hard to get bored in Groningen.

If you're thinking of exploring homes for rent in Groningen for your next adventure, continue reading this guide on the 6 best neighborhoods in Groningen to find the one that suits you best!

Overall Safety

If the Netherlands is a favourite candidate for your next destination, safety is one of its many plus points and Groningen is in the same vein.

According to official Dutch police statistics, the crime rate is low and the city is generally safe. During the night it is not uncommon to see police troops monitoring the city streets - some of them even on horses - which contributes to a general sense of protection. That said, the usual rules of common sense, especially if alone, also apply to picturesque Groningen.

Bike theft is very common, so make sure to always double-lock your bike!

Overall Internationality

Groningen is popular with its internationality, thanks to the numerous higher education institutions in the city and the thriving start-up scene.

Dutch remains the official language, but you’ll be able to get around if you only speak English. Almost everyone is friendly and patient towards internationals, so you won’t feel out of place.

The Netherlands ranks as the best non-native English speaking country in the world outside of the UK.

Being home to 3 colleges and universities, Groningen is popular among local and international students alike. In fact, 25% of the total population of the city is made up of students, with 20% of them being international.

With so many students around, you’ll have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world. If you don’t feel like leaving things to chance, you can take advantage of activities and events, such as Noorderzon, KEI week and ESNS.

If you’re done with your studies and are thinking of moving here for work experience, Groningen has plenty to offer to you too. With more than 9000 companies, universities of international calibre, and a thriving start-up scene, Groningnen could be a great destination for the next chapter of your career.

Getting around in a breeze

Groningen is a city on a human scale, meaning that it is built with extreme consideration of bicycles. Thanks to that, Groningen is world-famous as the 'World Cycling City', with 57% of its residents using bikes on a regular basis.

If biking isn’t your thing, the city offers an efficient bus service for longer journeys and it’s well connected to the rest of the country by trains.

The city centre is a large pedestrian zone where you can walk around without worrying about cars and noise.

Groningen Neighbourhood: Centrum

The Centrum is the main and most typical area of Groningen. It’s home to the main university buildings and nightlife.

Quality of life

The Centrum neighbourhood is ideal if you’re looking for the typical Dutch city experience with traditional houses, bicycles and canals all around. From the main square - Grote Markt - to the streets with shops, university faculties, bars and restaurants, this is where the main activities services can be found.

As you can imagine, this is one of the most expensive areas in the city when it comes to rental prices. This is what you can expect from the average rental prices.

  • Room: €450
  • Apartment: €1,250
  • Studio: €700

Groningen Neighbourhood: Oosterparkwijk

Located northeast of the city centre, Oosterparkwijk is a former working-class area. Nowadays, it’s very popular among students due to its affordable rental prices and proximity to two major parks.

Quality of life

This part of the city is home to some of the main public parks, including Oostpark, from which it takes its name. In this park, you’ll find also the Oospark Stadium. Not far away is Pioenopark, which is a serene experience when it’s sunny outside.

Oosterparkwijk is also where you’ll find the UMGC, the city's main hospital where many lessons of the med school take place.

The rental prices in Groningnen’s Oosterparkwijk are a bit more affordable. You should be ready to pay the following prices:

  • Room: €400
  • Apartment: €1,100
  • Studio: €600

Groningen Neighbourhood: Paddepoel

Located north of the centre, the Paddepoel district is home to the Zernike Campus and the famous Groningen’s colourful houses.

Quality of life

Often favoured by students attending the Zernike Campus, the Paddepoel neighbourhood and the closeby Selwerd offer a good number of housing options and prices are affordable.

This area is also home to the ACLO sports complex and the famous colourful houses. They are located in Reitdiephaven, a neighbourhood and marina in the north end of the city. If you like photography, they are well worth a visit.

If you decide to settle in this part of the city while in Groningen, the prices you can expect are:

  • Room: €400
  • Apartment: €1,100
  • Studio: €550

Groningen Neighbourhood: Korrewegwijk

Located north of the centre between Oosterparkwijk and Selwerd you’ll find Korrewegwijk, the area of Groningen famous for its predominantly student population.

Quality of life

Groningen residents often refer to this area as Korrewegwijk, but the closeby district of Indische Buurt is also often considered part of this area.

Groningen is a multicultural city, with this area being one of the top examples of the influences of the oriental culture. The city's largest Asian supermarket is located here, in case you're planning spring rolls night!

Prices are average for the city and lower than in other areas. This is what you can expect:

  • Room: €400
  • Apartment: €1,000
  • Studio: €600

Groningen Neighbourhood: Oosterpoort

Just south-east of the city centre you'll find Oosterpoort, the alternative district of Groningen.

Quality of life

Oosterpoort is a neighbourhood with different souls, which the inhabitants of Groningen refer to as 'a city within a city'.

You'll find many typical Dutch houses here, including the so-called 'fishermen's houses' (‘Schipperswoning’ in Dutch). Its streets are also teeming with trendy bars and restaurants that attract students, artists and alternative minded people, making it one of the liveliest neighbourhoods in Groningen.

If you're interested in theatre, music and concerts, the famous ”The Oosterpoort” - one of the city's main artistic landmarks - is also located here.

If you think Oosterpoort could be your next destination, here are the average prices you can expect in this part of the city:

  • Room: €450
  • Apartment: €1,200
  • Studio: €650

Groningen Neighbourhood: Schildersbuurt and Zeeheldenbuurt

Often referred to as the city’s main green lungs, Schildersbuurt and Zeeheldenbuurt are just west of the city centre.

Quality of life

Schildersbuurt and Zeeheldenbuurt will welcome you with their neat streets and typical 19th-century Dutch-style houses. These are two quiet neighbourhoods that are also popular with families and locals. If you're looking for accommodation in this part of the city and you're lucky enough, you may even find a house with a garden!

In this neighbourhood you'll find Noorderplantsoen, one of Groningen’s largest and most popular parks. A not-to-be-missed Dutch experience is a BBQ around here when the sun is out!

The average rental prices in Schildersbuurt and Zeeheldenbuurt are:

  • Room: €400
  • Apartment: €1,100
  • Studio: €600

An Overview: What’s the best neighbourhood in Groningen for you?

If you want to live in the beating heart of the city, the Centrum is the district for you.

For its more affordable prices and its proximity to the UMGC consider Oosterparkwijk.

If you need to be close to the ACLO sports complex and the Zernike campus, Paddepoel might be a good choice for you.

Korrewegwijk is famous for its eastern influences, while Oosterpoort is considered the most alternative district of Groningen.

The proximity to the Noorderplantsoen and its typical Dutch houses will welcome you if you choose to live in Schildersbuurt or Zeeheldenbuurt.

Now that you know the top 6 neighbourhoods, you’re all set to explore rental homes in Groningen.

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