Carmel, IN downtown aerial shot

2021 Top 100 Best Places to Live In America Sponsored by: See homes for sale on Movoto by OJO

liv score
How We Calculate Our Data
Civics 83
Demographics 37
Economy 29
Education 50
Health 69
Housing 71
Infrastructure 46

#51. Carmel, IN

Located north of Indianapolis, Carmel, IN has award-winning schools, a strong economy and a warm, welcoming vibe. The city is home to 100,000 residents – and counting. There’s always something to do in Carmel with vibrant amenities like the Center for the Performing Arts, the Carmel Arts & Design District and the Monon Trail.

Top Colleges/Universities: Butler University in nearby Indianapolis.

Top Industries & Employers: Insurance, banking and finance are vital industries in Carmel.

Weekend Plans: Ride bikes along the 27-mile Monon Trail, a rails-to-trails route that also travels past several restaurants, breweries and distilleries in case you get hungry or thirsty.

Favorite Place to Feast: Juniper on Main, which puts its own Midwest twist on satisfying Southern coastal dishes like shrimp and grits and Savannah crab stew.

Beloved Beverage: Everything served along the Brews & Barrels Trail, which highlights Carmel’s independently owned craft breweries, distilleries and wineries.

Outdoorsy Activity: Playing golf at one of Carmel’s many public and private golf courses: Brookshire Golf Club, Plum Creek Country Club, Prairie View Golf Course, Crooked Stick Golf Club, Twin Lakes Golf Club and Woodland Country Club.

Rooftop Bar: 3UP Rooftop Lounge, a date night-worthy spot that serves high-end cocktails, pizzas and bar snacks.

Why Your Pet Will Love It, Too: With the silhouette of a dachshund as part of its logo and “Coffee. Unleashed.” as its tagline, Indie Coffee Roasters is a fun local hangout for humans and dogs alike. They even call their coffee shop “the doghouse!”

Remote Work Perk: Want to take some of your conference calls while getting a little fresh air? Head to Coxhall Gardens, a scenic 125-acre park with plenty of trails for wandering.

One More Thing … Carmel is home to the unique Museum of Miniature Houses and Other Collections, where visitors can peruse teeny-tiny pieces of furniture, rooms, houses and other fine art miniature items.

– Sarah Kuta

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