Where to Live if You Work in Bethesda

Home to two Fortune 500 firms, Lockheed Martin and Marriott International, Bethesda, MD boasts a workforce of more than 50,000. Additionally, Bethesda plays host to several major U.S. government entities, including the National Institutes of Health and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. With its proximity to Washington, D.C. and impressive roster of employers, it's no wonder Bethesda has grown to be a major international business hub. Unlike working in D.C. or Northern Virginia, a job in Bethesda offers significantly more options in where to live and commute.

Approximately seven miles northwest of the nation's capital, the unincorporated community of Bethesda has grown into Montgomery County's primary urban center, with a distinct downtown featuring mid-and high-rise office and residential buildings. Numerous cultural attractions and a burgeoning food and entertainment scene solidify Bethesda's place as an employment center and entertainment destination.

Below are the most sought-after communities in Southwest Maryland and Northwest D.C. to live in if you work near Bethesda.


Commute to Downtown Bethesda:

Downtown is within walking distance of most neighborhoods east of Bradley Boulevard — the farthest point of the community is less than a 10-minute drive away.


While it may be unincorporated, Bethesda's unique layout and infrastructure set it apart from its more prominent neighboring cities. Downtown Bethesda offers an eclectic mix of residential areas, including the Woodmont Triangle neighborhood and the Bethesda Row mixed-use development. The principal thoroughfare, which travels into neighboring D.C. before terminating at the Potomac River in Georgetown, also serves as Bethesda's easternmost border.

This distinctive layout allows Bethesda's bucolic, residential neighborhoods to the west to maintain their peaceful, low-key vibe. Many of these communities provide residents the best of both worlds; a serene setting of winding streets under a lush, green canopy, with Bethesda's urban conveniences well within reach. The longest commute within Bethesda to downtown is from the Westlake neighborhood near Burning Tree Golf Club. From there, it's a 10-minute drive to downtown. Everywhere else, it's less than five minutes.

Chevy Chase

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

5-10-minute drive, walkable from some neighborhoods

Part of a trifecta of communities that form southeast Montgomery County's most popular D.C. suburbs, Chevy Chase is the closest community to downtown Bethesda. In fact, two of Chevy Chase’s residential neighborhoods are located just across Wisconsin Avenue from downtown Bethesda and within walking distance of many Bethesda restaurants.

Chevy Chase offers a number of upscale residential options, including traditional single-family homes and luxury condos, and townhomes.


Commute into downtown Bethesda:

10-15-minute drive
With just over 2,000 residents, Kensington is a quaint small town located a few miles northeast of downtown Bethesda. Featuring two distinctive residential communities, Kensington is home to an attractive array of single-family homes that provide abundant space in an idyllic suburban setting. While you'll need to travel elsewhere for a more vibrant nightlife scene, Kensington does feature a myriad of excellent restaurants and a well-appointed commercial and retail district with all the essentials.

The primary draw to Kensington is its eclectic neighborhoods and proximity. The well-traveled Connecticut Avenue bisects the community without being intrusive and provides easy, indirect access to several destinations, including Bethesda.

Silver Spring

Image courtesy of Visit Montgomery 

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

15-minute drive

Silver Spring is considerably larger than Bethesda, boasting an established economic footprint which is home to a number of  U.S. agencies and Government entities. The most prominent and arguably one of the most popular of Washington, D.C.'s suburbs, Silver Spring boasts some of the area's most distinctive and architecturally rich neighborhoods. With good schools and affordable homes (both luxury and modest), particularly when compared with neighboring communities, there is always a high demand for Silver Spring real estate.

Most notable, however, is Silver Spring's vibrant and ever-expanding downtown. A dense yet welcoming urban core, downtown Silver Spring is home to numerous vibrant restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues. An assortment of  mid-rise and high-rise buildings offer both office and residential space and only heighten the urban aesthetics of the area.

North Bethesda

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

20-minute drive or 10 minutes via the Metro
With over 50,000 residents, North Bethesda is very much its own entity. Recent development has positioned North Bethesda as a major commercial hub and a high-end retail destination for its Montgomery County neighbors. At the heart of the growth is the Pike and Rose mixed-used development. Similar to other Montgomery County initiatives in downtown Bethesda and downtown Silver Spring, this growth continues to transform the once quiet residential community of North Bethesda into a hub of activity.

The Pike and Rose mixed-use community includes 500,000 square feet of office space, playing host to a 10-story lab facility, a Hilton hotel, over 50 shops, restaurants, and a number of event and entertainment venues. In addition to downtown’s residential mid-and high-rise options boasting sleek and stylish condos, North Bethesda's popular residential neighborhoods include sought-after large-lot mansions, both stately and modest homes, and pockets of well-appointed townhome communities. The nearby White Flint Metro makes commutes to Bethesda and Downtown DC easy!

Dupont Circle, Washington, D.C.

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

30-minute drive; 15 minutes via the Metro
For the Bethesda workers interested in living in the nation’s capital, there are two options within a 30-minute drive of Bethesda.

Dupont Circle is a storied small community popular among residents of Montgomery County. Though it's a 30-minute drive from Dupont Circle to Bethesda, even while traveling against the flow of traffic, taking the Metro can cut your commute time in half. This opens up the distinct possibility of seeking out a home not just in Dupont Circle but the trendy Logan Circle neighborhood, exclusive high-end Kalorama, or the always lively Adams Morgan corridor.

Georgetown, Washington, D.C.

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

30-minute drive
Although riding the Metro from Georgetown proper into downtown Bethesda is not currently practical, commuting via car is a viable alternative should you want to call this historic D.C. location home. And certain areas of Southeastern Georgetown are easily walkable to GWU Metro, by which a Metro commute is indeed possible.

Traveling north on Wisconsin Avenue, the 6-mile trek from Georgetown to Bethesda, requires an average of about 30-minutes in the car. If you don't mind a longer commute, Georgetown is an idyllic D.C. neighborhood that many are proud to call home.

McLean, Virginia 

Commute into downtown Bethesda:

20-40-minute drive
With everything you'd expect from one of Washington, D.C.'s most sought-after suburbs, McLean is a mix of traditional luxury neighborhoods and rural developments. Whichever option you choose, you'll have access to exemplary schools, outstanding shopping, and dining options, and several outdoor pursuits via Scott's Run Nature Preserve and Turkey Run Park.

Of course, if you work in Bethesda, McLean might feel remote, but the communities are surprisingly close. For your daily commute, the 10-mile drive can take between 20 and 40 minutes, depending on your route.

Searching for homes for sale near Bethesda?

Whether you’re ready to sell, or explore purchasing, across Bethesda’s many vibrant neighborhoods, or nearby adjacent communities, please reach out to the Sarro Georgatsos Group for assistance any time!  Our Team of DC and Bethesda real estate agents will provide top-notch service, coupled with our deep local expertise  -  which will guide you efficiently through the DMV home buying or selling process.  We will work to ensure your journey with us is both rewarding and stress free. . Contact the Sarro Georgatsos Group today.  We would love to work with you!!

*Header image courtesy of Visit Montgomery

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