The East Village is located east of Greenwich Village, north of the Lower East Side, and south of Gramercy and Stuyvesant Town. Several smaller neighborhoods are within the East Village, including Alphabet City and the Bowery.
Once part of the Lower East Side, the area began to develop its own culture and identity in the 1960s when artists, musicians, students and hippies began moving into the area. Considered the center of New York's counterculture, the East Village is the birthplace of many artistic and political movements.
Today, the area is known for its diverse community, vibrant nightlife and artistic sensibility. It hosts some of the most unique retail stores and gift shops in New York City, and is one of the most visited restaurant districts in the city.