Best Areas to Live in Lahore, Pakistan
After living in Lahore for over three years, I’ve seen many of the different areas. If I had to look for a new place to live, these are the areas I would focus on. I prefer quiet residential areas that are clean and generally not affected by political turmoil.
Defence Housing Authority (DHA)
Most foreigners choose to live in DHA, and for good reason. This newer suburb of Lahore has wider streets, cleaner air, and is a lot quieter and less chaotic than central areas. There are several different phases, with Phase I being the oldest and Phase VI and VII currently being developed. The newer the phase, the newer the house. Read more about living in Defence Housing Authority here. If you’re thinking about living in Defence, keep in mind that this area boasts some of the highest rental prices in Lahore.
In Pakistani cities, the Cantonment is the army area. If you are a foreigner, you may notice on your Pakistani visa that you are not allowed access to Cantonment areas. This includes the actual army bases, but you can visit or live in the residential areas. Houses in Cantonment will be older than houses in Defence, but aside from commercial areas Cantonment is a quiet and peaceful area. It may be difficult to find houses to rent or buy in this area as most houses are occupied by locals affiliated with the army.
Model Town is know for its lovely parks and wide avenues. There are great shopping areas here along Link Road and in C Block market, and rent prices are much lower than Defence. Houses are older, but the cost of living is lower here and Model Town is closer to central Lahore.
Canal Housing Societies
There have been many different housing societies popping up along the Canal going towards Thoker Niaz Baig (motorway). Eden Villas, Canal View and others have set up housing communities that many times include shopping areas, fitness centers and private security. Some of these societies are closer to central Lahore than others, but you must take into account the fact that traffic on canal road can be busy.
Similarly, housing societies have also sprung up along the road to the airport. Airport Road itself (coming from Ghazi Road through Bhatta Chowk) is a frenetic area, but a new overpass is being built to go straight from the airport into the newer areas of Defence. Since these housing areas are a bit farther from the main city, you can rent a larger house or portion for a lot less than you can in Defence.
Punjab Housing Society
For the more budget conscious, Punjab Housing Society is a good option. It is located on Ghazi Road, directly next to Defence. Houses are a bit closer together than in Defence, and roads are narrower. There isn’t much yard or garden space in houses, but you may pay half as much in rent. Other services are cheaper in Punjab Society than in neighboring Defence as well, and you’d still be close enough to Defence to enjoy its supermarkets and coffee shops.
Lahore is developing rapidly. Please leave comments on any other up and coming housing areas in Lahore. I’ve left out Bahria Town simply because it’s so far from central Lahore, but if you’re willing to commute at least one hour daily, Bahria Town is also a good option.