Neighborhood Guide: South Lake Morton

From a swan-filled lake to mid-century modern architecture, see why South Lake Morton was named the #7 best neighborhood. If you haven’t explored, it might be time to rediscover why so many people love to call it home.

A crane flies over the shore of Lake Morton while several cranes stand under a palm tree.

Lake Morton wildlife at sunset

Photo via @thehikerdad

Table of Contents

Charming, quaint, and full of history, South Lake Morton continues to grow as “#7 best neighborhoods to live in Lakeland.” Since its early days, this neighborhood has quickly become a local’s favorite part of town that attracts families. If you haven’t explored, it might be time to rediscover why so many people –– maybe even you –– love to call it home.

Need to know

You’re not the only one with your eyes set on South Lake Morton. In 2022, the area’s population grew to 3,555. Wondering why? While we can’t say for sure, South Lake Morton is known for its beautiful, swan-centric lakeview, its accessibility to local’s favorite businesses, such as Black & Brew at the Lakeland Public Library, and is in close proximity to some of Lakeland’s best public schools.

A black and white photograph of two swans with three young cygnets in the water.

Swans + cygnets on Lake Morton circa 1970

Photo courtesy of Special Collections at the Lakeland Public Library

The early days

Like much of Lakeland, the Lake Morton Historic District is known for its “architectural integrity and historical elements.” As early as 1906 through the 1920s, construction of this Mediterranean inspired neighborhood attracted newcomers from all over the country who desired to live in Florida. In addition to its romantic cobblestone roads, this area has become quite the dream as one of the United States’s most beautiful college campuses, Florida Southern College, resides in this district. The college’s mid century modern architecture by Frank Lloyd Wright influences both the exterior and interior design of bungalow style homes in this area.

Can’t miss

Running low on time? A trip to South Lake Morton isn’t complete without a stop at the Polk Museum of Art to peruse the gallery halls that have featured classical artists, such as Picasso, so be sure to factor it into your day. You’ll thank us later.

Outdoors

Love the smell of fresh air and catching sun? This neighborhood is the perfect area for taking walks –– especially around the lake. Here are landmarks to look out for!

Eat + drink

From bistro style sandwiches and salads to fresh seafood with a glass of wine, South Lake Morton features some delicious options if you’re looking for a place to eat.

Arts + culture

For all of you art aficionados, you can find a few local galleries and festivals to enjoy throughout the year in South Lake Morton.

What’s new

South Lake Morton is constantly growing. Just these last few years, several new restaurants opened their doors.

  • Black & Brew opened its second Lakeland location at the Lakeland Public Library, offering a similar yet unique twist to their menu. You gotta try their BLT-ish sandwich!
  • Unfiltered Coffee is coming to 801 E. Main Street to open their first Lakeland location. They’re bringing craft coffee and an artful bookstore experience.
  • The Joinery, our local food hall, recently opened up nearby featuring a variety of cuisine options, from Japanese-style ramen to American-style burgers.

Where to live

If you’re sold + looking to buy a home in the area, here are some housing options currently on the market:

  • 611 McRorie St. | 3 BD, 1 BA | $399,000 | This 1923 home features a front porch, back courtyard, and artist’s workshop.
  • 838 S. Tennessee Ave. | 3 BD, 1 BA | $485,000 | Renovations have been done this historic home with a detached studio apartment.
  • 938 Success Ave. | 5 BD, 3 BA | $699,000 | Character fills this three-story home with an outdoor dining area.