Has the reputation for being a residential suburb.

Needham Real Estate

Suburban charm, leafy, walkable, and private neighborhoods, and a high-tech vibe just a short commute from Boston.
Nestled along the Charles River about half an hour from Boston, Needham has the reputation for being a residential suburb—but in recent years, it has evolved into a high-tech town—PTC and TripAdvisor are based here. Most of your neighbors are friendly and look out for each other, and aren't afraid to pony up large sums for a new house. One reason why residents are so willing to pay for real estate is that the public schools here are among the best in the country.

What to Love

There's a lot to love about Needham, but residents find these characteristics to be the best things about living here:
  • Close to Boston but quiet, private, and peaceful
  • Inclusive sense of community
  • Quite walkable
  • Lots of activities for outdoor enthusiasts

Local Lifestyle

Needham is a tight-knit community of about 40,000, but almost 25% of that population is under 18—so there's definitely a kid-friendly vibe here. The town is also home to the Charles River Peninsula, where the river makes a 180° bend, so plan to purchase a canoe or kayak for days on the river, or simply stroll the many trails by the water—the walkability factor here is high. Needham Parks and Rec offers lots of activities for adult and kid's rec leagues and programming.

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

The professional sports and world-class entertainment of Boston are just a short trip away, but Needham has quite a bit to keep you well-dressed and well-fed right here, too. Sweet Basil, an Italian bistro just a block or two from the YMCA, is noted for their chef's collection of cookbooks as well as their upscale menu. Brunch in Needham is a social event, so make your reservation at Blue On Highland for both their great menu and the live jazz to accompany your Bloody Marys. Take the kids to Fuji Steak House for an authentic experience of tableside Japanese cooking.
If having the neighbors over is more your thing, find the best local produce at Volante Farms, the farmers’ market. There's also a café if you want a quick snack while you shop.

Things to Do

There's plenty to do on the weekends, from lakeside picnics to carnivals. Rosemary Lake is a reservoir in the middle of town that's been converted into a pool and recreation complex, where you can swim laps, play in the water park, picnic, and just relax. If you’d rather kayak or hike, Cutler Park Reservation is an 800-acre park with a large freshwater marsh for paddle sports. Needham Reservoir is a great place to spend the day fishing—or leisurely strolling the hiking trails admiring the wildlife.
Every summer, residents await the return of the Needham Carnival, an old-school fair that the Rotary Club sponsors in late July. The carnival has a midway with rides for kids of all ages, lots of games, and food vendors offering all the fried doughy eats you'd never eat anywhere else. The carnival is held at Needham High School.


Great Schools ranks the public schools here in the 9/10 range, so it's no surprise that the quality of education is one big reason people are willing to pay a premium to live here. There are also single-sex private options, secular, and Catholic schools—so you can be sure that whichever you choose, your children will receive a comprehensive education. These are the top three schools in Needham:
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