In this Florida travel guide, we have answered all the questions you might have as a tourist, including how safe Florida is to travel, the safest places, some places to avoid, dos and don’ts, and more.
So, without any further ado, let’s get started –
How safe is Florida for travel?
Florida, also known as “The Sunshine State,” is located in the Southeastern region of the United States. Florida has been one of the most famous tourist destinations because of the world’s best-known theme parks, including Disney World, SeaWorld, and Universal Studios.
Besides that, Florida’s attractive beaches are another popular reason tourists are drawn to Florida. From water sports to boating, to snorkeling, to sunbathing, the beaches of Florida provide the best amusement you can have.
The state’s climate is also a reason this place is adored so much. It is home to beautiful parks and landscapes that fascinate people with their natural beauty.
On top of that, Florida is an inexpensive holiday destination you can have. It is friendly to all budgets, which is one of the interests of the common family. The state is a perfect holiday destination with cost-effective restaurants, attractions, and pocket-friendly entertainment options.
These are some of the reasons Florida is so popular but is Florida safe? Well, it is, especially if you follow the tips mentioned in this article.
Warnings and Dangers in Florida
Overall Risk – Medium
If we talk about overall risk, it comes out that some Florida cities are not the safest in the United States, but few are extremely safe. Major cities of Florida have good and crime-deprived areas. Therefore, the overall risk involved is medium. If you follow general precautions, you will be quite safe traveling in Florida, especially in new locations.
Transport and Taxis Risk – Medium
Public transportation in the state has a medium risk, especially during busy hours or when the vehicles are crowded. The main risk involved is pickpockets and not violent crimes. It would be best to take licensed taxis. However, the problem is that there are plenty of unlicensed cabs that exist in Florida, and therefore, we recommend you use reliable ride-sharing apps to get a taxi to avoid any type of mishaps.
Pickpockets Risk – Medium
The pickpocket risk is medium in the state. As visitors’ belongings always attract thieves in crowded areas, you should be careful with expensive items. It will help if you leave all valuables in a hotel safe except your essentials. You can also prioritize online transactions and avoid keeping your wallet in your back pocket.
Natural Disasters Risk – Medium
The natural disaster risk depends on where you are in the state. However, the overall risk is medium. The east coast of the state frequently experiences floods, hurricanes, and tornadoes because of its direct exposure to the Atlantic Ocean. Therefore, we suggest you study the weather conditions and learn safety measures for instances of a natural disaster.
Mugging Risk – Medium
The state has a medium mugging risk. Armed robberies of tourists occur in some top-in-crime cities of Florida. These robberies mostly take place in empty parking spaces at night or in some underdeveloped parts of the cities. So it would help if you don’t roam alone late at night and avoid displaying precious items in public. In case you are attacked, follow the attackers as they say and try to contact the police immediately.
Terrorism Risk – High
Sadly, Florida has high terrorism risk. Being a famous tourist spot in the United States, the state is often targeted. Therefore it would be best if you avoid mass exhibitions and public gatherings. Try to note all government warnings. Also, we suggest you know about the political environment of different Florida cities before traveling.
Scams Risk – Medium
There exists a medium scam risk in Florida. Scams occur to get sensitive data. Please keep your documents in the hotel room or safe and credit cards in your bag.
Women Travelers Risk – Low
There is a low risk for women travelers. However, they should avoid wandering alone at night and getting drunk in bars. It is recommended not to attract too much attention with extra ornaments and outfits. Women should note that drugging takes place in bars and clubs, so we highly recommend you don’t leave your drink unattended.
Tap Water Risk – Low
Florida has a low tap water risk, especially in major cities. However, it would be best to pay attention to the water advisories to assure your safety, but water issues in the state are rare.
Taking note of these warnings and dangers and following the safety tips can ensure your safety while traveling to Florida.
Safest Places to visit in Florida
If you have already planned to visit Florida, you must have made your itinerary. However, if possible, we recommend you include these places in your itinerary to make your journey to Florida safe and risk-free.
The top among the list is the city of Satellite beach. It has the lowest crime rate. This city is located along the east coast of central Florida. This city has been named so for being located along the Space Coast. It would interest you that NASA launches its satellites into orbit from this place.
This place is best known for its long sandy beaches and whale sightings. Other famous places in the city include Pelican Beach Park, Hightower Beach Park, Hangars’ Beach, etc.
The next on our list is Key Biscayne in Florida. It has a low rate of violent crimes and is located just outside of Miami.
However, the city is quite expensive. The top tourist spots in the city are Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, Cape Florida Lighthouse, Crandon Beach, Crandon park, Crandon Park Marina, etc.
Marco Island is located along the Gulf of Mexico to the western coast of Florida. Marco Island is one of the safest places in the state, with a very low number of violent crimes.
It is another expensive place in Florida. The Island is mostly loved for its wonderful white sandy beaches. The popular places to visit in this city are Tigertail Beach, Marco Island Historical Museum, South Public Beach, Marco Island Center for the Art, etc.
North Palm Beach
This is another safest place in Florida with the lowest violence-related crimes. Apart from offering the safest place, the beach provides a stunning view of the Atlantic Ocean.
The place is liked for its sunny and beautiful environment. The beach also offers fishing and boating with large sailboats. The place provides views of palm trees, manatees swimming and sea turtles hatching on the beach.
This city is situated South of North Palm Beach. As the name suggests, the city is full of parks. Apart from being one of the safest places to live, the place is famous for games like baseball, basketball, soccer, football, and tennis.
The city has enormous playgrounds and dog parks, and the place has an equestrian center for horseback riding. On top of that, the city offers a quiet and peaceful atmosphere. Loxahatchee Everglades Airboat Tours, Parkland Airboats Rides, and Barkland Dog Park are a few interesting places to visit in this city.
This city is located in southwest Florida. It is a coastal town that provides another safe spot to visitors in Florida and is known for its beaches. Naples is famous for its beach bars, mostly visited by boaters, and islands like Keewaydin Island.
The city has famous tourist spots like Naples Botanical Garden, Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, Naples Pier, Lowdermilk Beach, and Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park.
Lynn Haven is one of the safest places in Florida as the place has a considerably low violent crime rate, and the city is known to offer great employment in the state.
The popular tourist attractions in the city involve Kaleidoscope Theatre, Adonia, Americana Cafe Sundays, Annie’s Hideaway Pub, etc.
Oviedo is present on the outskirts of Orlando in Florida. This city offers a safe community atmosphere through several events like movie nights and food truck festivities.
The popular tourist spots in this city are Lukas Nursery and Butterfly Encounter, Pappy’s Patch U-Pick Strawberries, Center Lake Park, Econ River Wilderness Area, Barr Street Trailhead, Oviedo Antique Mall, etc.
Sebastian city is located on the Atlantic Coast and is one of the safest cities in Florida. The place is famous for bass fishing and deep-sea fishing. The city of Sebastian is home to Pelican Island, America’s first national wildlife sanctuary, which was established in the early 1900s.
The sanctuary protects the home of wildlife and fish. Other places to visit in this city include Laporte Farms, Riverview Park, North County Aquatic Center, St Sebastian Catholic Church, Sebastian Fishing Museum, Sebastian Area Historical museum, etc.
The last in the list of safest cities in Groveland. Groveland is located on the west side of Orlando and is an inland city in central Florida. The city offers a decent and quiet rural environment with a wide-open landscape. The city got its name from the citrus orchards that surround the area.
The famous places to visit in this city are Lake Catherine Blueberries, Paradise Airsports, Jack Travers Sunset Lakes, Arnold Brothers Boat Ramp, Cypress Ridge Hunting Preserve, etc.
These were some of the safest places you can visit in Florida.
Places to avoid in Florida
As mentioned earlier, there are some extremely dangerous places in Florida that are not safe for tourists. Check our list of places to avoid in Florida to prevent yourself from falling victim to hazardous risks and violent crimes.
The first on the list is the city of Homestead. This city has topped three times in a row on the list of dangerous places in Florida to avoid. The chances of falling victim to violent crimes in this city are high, 1 in 76.
The next on the list is Daytona Beach. This city has long been a popular tourist spot in Florida. The rate of violent crimes per 1,000 residents is more than twice as high as the rest of Florida and three times that of the national average.
This city is third on the list of most dangerous places in Florida. Visitors have a high chance of becoming victims of violent crimes, which is 1 in 84.
Lake Worth city is the next on the list. According to NeighborhoodScout’s crime index, which records violent and property crimes, 97% of US cities are safer than the city of Lake Worth.
Fort Myers is another dangerous place to avoid in the state. This city reported 776 violent crimes in the previous year. This rate is twice as high as the rest of Florida.
Fort Pierce is known as Sunrise city. Though Sunrise City is placed at sixth position in the list, there is still a high risk in visiting the place, the chances being 1 in 93 that you will become a victim of a violent crime.
Along with making it to the favorite tourist spot Maimi has also made it on the list of most dangerous cities in Florida. With enormous crime in the city, the crime index states that 96% of cities in the United States are safer than Miami.
Though placed at eighth position in the list, this place is considered one of the most unsafe in Florida. The place recorded a shocking 897 violent crimes the previous year.
Tallahassee is the capital city of Florida. Sadly this city had a horrible 1,790 violent crimes, which included 1,255 aggravated assaults last year.
The last on the list is North Miami. The city reported 580 violent crimes last year. However, the city is tenth on the list; 95% of other cities in the country are safer than North Miami.
You can avoid these top dangerous places in Florida to have a safe and comfortable trip.
However safe the place is, it would always help if you follow some recommended safety tips in your journey. So, below, you can look for some safety tips for traveling in Florida.
Safety tips for traveling in Florida
- Avoid risky areas – You should avoid wandering in dangerous areas in some cities. We suggest you survey your area before traveling and look for places to avoid to ensure your safety.
- Check the weather before moving – It will be best if you plan your day according to the weather in Florida. Therefore, you must check weather updates daily, so you don’t fall into hurricanes or thunderstorms.
- Stay away from animals – This is the other thing you must take care of while visiting any place famous for creatures. Let’s say if you see a gator, maintain distance. They attack humans when hungry. If you wish to touch them, visit a gator farm where trained professionals will help you.
- Avoid leaving expensive items in cars – You must not leave your valuables in parked cars where anyone could break the window and steal your belongings. You can leave such things in your hotel room to keep them safe.
- Take care of your belongings – You must also take care of your belongings and should not leave them on any bench or such place when you go for a dip in the ocean. If you do so, you provide thieves with the opportunity they want. So, find a safe place for your belongings if you need to leave them behind.
- Don’t go into the Everglades alone – You should not wander into the Everglades alone as several bugs and animals can be dangerous to humans. We suggest you book a tour with a good company to assist you.
- Never leave drinks unattended – Be careful while enjoying a night out in Florida at bars or clubs, as you can be easily trapped by some people who may try to ruin your fun. This tip would especially help female visitors. As mentioned, never leave your drink unattended in bars and nightclubs to prevent yourself from taking drugs.
- Pack Accordingly – It is always a decent idea to carry extra clothing and rain gear irrespective of when you are traveling. You can also carry a good pair of sunscreens to protect yourself from the hot sun.
- Wear sunscreen – The summer months in Florida can be severe. Serious sunburns are common for beachgoers. So, applying sunscreen can help avoid it. You can also wear it during the milder winter months.
- Stick to campsites – While camping in Florida, it is advised to remain at your campsites and not go in the wild as there can be a danger to your life. We suggest you register with the park ranger before camping in any park in Florida.
These are a few safety tips you can consider while traveling to Florida.
Is Florida safe to travel alone?
The answer is yes, Florida is safe to travel alone. Except for some major cities (mentioned above), Florida offers a safe tourist spot.
You can travel to Florida alone, keeping in mind all the necessary precautions and safety measures required to follow to be safe at any place.
Is Florida safe for solo female travelers?
The answer is yes. Florida is safe for solo female travelers.
By abiding by all the safety tips and taking extra care, women can visit Florida alone.
However, the crime rate against women in a few cities of the state is more than the average, so avoid such places. However, apart from these unsafe places, Florida provides a great touring experience to solo female travelers.
After we discuss all the important aspects of Florida regarding safety, let us see how truly safe Florida is for travel.
So, how safe is Florida for Travel?
If we talk about overall safety, Florida is a moderately safe state.
Visitors can avoid dangerous places in certain cities of the state to ensure their safe trip.
However, like in every state, all major cities have good and bad. One important issue in the major cities of Florida is drug trafficking, especially in Miami due to its location in the Caribbean. Drugs enter Miami on a boat at midnight. Though this does not affect tourists, the related crime can cause danger to visitors.
The state’s tourist areas are mostly safe, even at night.
Other crimes in the state are robberies, theft, assault, etc. Thieves often target rental cars. So it is advised to leave valuables at home or in the trunk and always lock the car doors. You can prefer taxis or water taxis when returning to your hotel late at night to avoid any problems.
Also, note that all major cities of the state have prostitutes and drug dealers, both of which are illegal. So you must stay away to avoid inviting trouble.
It would be best to research and analyze the high-crime areas of the cities you visit before traveling.
Lastly, it would help if you never walked into low-lit or remote areas of cities.
Florida can be an amazing holiday destination due to its captivating charm, peaceful weather conditions, exciting nightlife, wonderful shopping, and many other reasons.
There you have it – a detailed Florida safety guide covering all your queries, such as how safe Florida is to travel, famous yet safe destinations, and more.
As the opportunities offered by Florida for its visitors are worth visiting, most travelers do not have an issue traveling to this state. Florida is a good and safe place to travel if you are with all your senses and following every necessary precaution while traveling since the place does demand using some common sense while being there as a visitor.
With that said, here I am wrapping up this article. If you have any questions, feel free to shoot them in the comment section below. Our team will try to respond ASAP.