Are you considering moving to the City of Brotherly Love?
This vibrant city is located in the southeast of Pennsylvania, right on the border with New Jersey. Residents have easy access to Washington, DC, New York City, and a wide range of other destinations.
- The Top Safest Neighborhoods in Philadelphia
- Chestnut Hill
- Fox Chase
- Fairmount and Spring Garden
- Bella Vista
- University City
- East Falls
- Mount Airy
- Staying Safe While Exploring Philadelphia
- Getting around Philadelphia
- Want to Compare the Safety of a Few Other US Cities?
- Final Thoughts
What Do You need to know before moving to Philadelphia?
Philadelphia is the historical heart of the United States and has undergone a facelift in recent years. The city boasts excellent shopping and entertainment options, as well as major renovations to its important historical attractions.
So, let’s take a closer look at the safest places to live or visit in Philadelphia. And to discover what each area has to offer you personally.
The Top Safest Neighborhoods in Philadelphia
This is known for being the safest of all areas in Philadelphia and is a great choice for families and young couples. Bustleton is comfortably close to the city center and offers a diverse mixture of housing options. The area is also scattered with green zones, business opportunities, restaurants, cycling paths, and pretty walking trails.
Need to commute?
Well, the close proximity to the city center makes Bustleton an excellent choice for commuters. The crime rate is around 67% lower than the average for the city, and the area is particularly family-friendly. And while violent crime is virtually non-existent here, property crime is also very low.
This safe and pretty area of the city is arranged into several different neighborhoods. And one of the great things about Somerton is that it offers some of the most affordable housing in the whole of Philadelphia. This makes the area a popular choice among first-time home buyers.
Plus, even though the cost of living is lower in this part of the city, there are numerous job opportunities. Commuters are provided with quick and easy access to the downtown area of the city. Work opportunities in New York City, Baltimore, and Lakewood are also within easy reach.
But you never have to leave if you don’t want to!
Residents of Somerton are provided with an excellent range of amenities right on their doorstep. This includes universities, pretty parks, museums, and zoos. This is an excellent area for business professionals and families to relocate to.
The crime rate in Somerton is around 36% lower than the citywide average. There are just under .03 crimes per person who lives in this section of the city. This includes .007 violent crimes and .02 property crimes per individual.
Located on the northeast side of the city, Chestnut Hill boasts an affluent community and numerous upscale residences. The cost of living is fairly high here, and most people are attracted to the pretty parks and wide streets. Walking and cycling through this part of the city is very safe, even after dark.
Places of interest…
Chestnut Hill College is one of the most notable landmarks in the area, along with Chestnut Hill Baptist Church. The area is also served by Chestnut Hill West SEPTA Station, which can be found on Germantown Avenue. This bustling station provides residents with quick and easy access to the rest of the city.
The crime rate in Chestnut Hill is around 60% lower than the average for the city. And despite the number of wealthy residents, property crime is very low. This is due, in part, to the close-knit community and a series of communal initiatives.
Covering an area of just under three square miles, Fox Chase can be found in the northeastern part of the city. The area has a number of pretty parks and other green zones for residents to explore. Activities such as cycling, hiking, horseback riding, and walking are all popular here.
Who lives here?
The largest sector of the community is composed of young business professionals and families. The number of people living below the poverty line here is also much lower than the citywide average. These factors combine to make Fox Chase a very safe and pleasant area to live in. In fact, the crime rate here is 59% lower than the citywide average.
Fairmount and Spring Garden
This section of the city is home to a large collection of famous art museums and stately homes. Fairmount is often known as the Art Museum area and attracts the city’s culture vultures. If you take a stroll through the area, you will see stunning Victorian architecture, historical sites, and impressive European paintings.
As a result, this part of the city tends to attract more affluent and intellectual residents. And this has translated into a very safe and close-knit community. The violent crime rate here is around 60% lower than the citywide average.
Including the surrounding areas…
In fact, several charming neighborhoods can be found in this section of the city. However, Spring Garden is one of the safest and most picturesque places to live. This small neighborhood is home to the Rodin Museum and the Central Library of Philadelphia.
Lying west of Center City on the banks of the Schuylkill River is the National Historic District of Manayunk. This is a popular dining and shopping district among both residents of the city and visitors. Manayunk is blessed with numerous chic boutiques as well as dozens of excellent restaurants.
This is a vibrant community that is scattered within stunning Victorian-style homes, as well as more modest accommodation options. Residents are treated to food trucks and bars right on their doorstep, which gives the area a lively feel. Festivals and other events are also held here throughout the year, attracting both residents and tourists.
But is Manayunk safe?
Definitely, it’s on my list of the Safest Neighborhoods in Philadelphia, after all. Manayunk is a safe place to both live and explore, even after dark. The danger rating is roughly 36% lower than the average for the city, and violent crime is virtually unheard of. Property crime is also very low, and the figure is roughly only .02 per person.
This part of the city is home to a little over 26,000 residents and has a fairly low crime rate. A large proportion of the people who live here are either retirees or families. Home prices are also particularly affordable here, making Whitman a great place to relocate to for those on a budget.
What else can you expect?
This part of the city is scattered with green zones, which are popular places for residents to gather. There is also an excellent collection of schools, public libraries, and other amenities. Mifflin Square Park is a great place to gather on a sunny day, and residents can also easily catch a Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park.
The total number of crimes in this section of the city is 31% lower than the citywide average. Plus, violent crime is practically non-existent here and is 227% lower than the city average. This makes Whitman one of the safest and most interesting places to relocate to in the whole city.
This charming area can be found in the south of the city and is home to around 6,000 people. Bella Vista is a popular place for both residents and visitors to the city to grab a bite to eat. In fact, there are numerous notable restaurants here, including Pat’s King of Steaks and Genos.
Visitors also regularly head to Bella Vista to explore the historic Italian Market. This is the oldest outdoor food market in the whole of the United States. People who love authentic Italian cuisine are sure to feel right at home in this part of the city.
Bella Vista also hosts some of the best bakeries in the whole of Philadelphia. And the area has a welcoming and relaxed atmosphere that is very enticing. The crime rate is around 41% lower than the citywide average, making Bella Vista a suitably safe place to live.
This is one of the oldest sections of the city and can be found to the east of downtown. University City takes its name from the large number of universities that can be found here. Notable institutions include the University City campus of Saint Joseph’s University and the world-famous Drexel University.
Do only students really live here, then?
The area has around 50,000 residents, which are an eclectic mix of students, young professionals, and professors. This gives the neighborhood a vibrant atmosphere that is very inviting for some. The crime rate is relatively low and is around 23% lower than the citywide average.
Next, on my rundown of the Safest Neighborhoods in Philadelphia, set on the banks of the Schuylkill River, East Falls can be found on the edge of Fairmount Park. Many of the area’s residents are attracted by the proximity to this large and lovely green zone. The park hosts numerous residents who enjoy getting back to nature during their leisure time and attend interesting events.
Some may not know…
This area is famous for being the childhood home of Grace Kelly, and the Kelly Family House is a popular attraction. But this is just one of the many large and attractive homes that can be found in the area. The crime rate in East Falls is also very low, and this is known for being a safe and attractive area. In fact, the chances of being involved in a crime here is around 1 in 47.
Set right on the edge of Germantown, Mount Airy hosts a number of attractive European-style homes. The area is connected to the rest of the city by two train lines. This makes the area popular among professionals who want to commute into the heart of the city.
The streets here are wide and well-lit, and strolling through the area is a safe and interesting experience. In terms of overall crime, Mount Airy is around 44% safer than the citywide average. And the risk of falling victim to some form of crime here is around 1 in 40.
Staying Safe While Exploring Philadelphia
Like most big cities, crime is not uncommon, although sensible practices can prevent harm or loss. While simple scams operate in the city, they are easy to avoid by residents in the know. These scams include stories about being robbed and needing money for train fare.
Pickpocketing can happen anywhere in the city, especially downtown, at crowded events or clubs, or while riding in mass transit. Muggings can also happen anywhere, so it is best to stick to wide streets at night. Moreover, Philadelphia’s main roads are separated by smaller streets and alleyways that may be havens for lurking criminals.
Getting around Philadelphia
The sheer size of the city can feel a little overwhelming when you first move there. Fortunately, there is an excellent transportation network that connects most residential areas. Using public transportation is usually safe, and this is a quick and easy way to get around.
The city includes an efficient but limited subway and elevated train system, which is supplemented by buses and trolleys. The Broad Street subway runs north to south, with the stadium complexes situated at the southernmost station.
The Market-Frankford line runs underground and above the street from east to west, then stretches north along the Delaware River. The Market-Frankford El stops at Fifth Street/Independence Hall, and one stop east of this stop is Old City.
Need to find a place for the night in a hurry?
Both lines stop at City Hall, which is near many hotels and the downtown shopping and dining area. The public transit system is managed by the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority and is commonly referred to as SEPTA. It’s all very reliable and well run, but the trains and trolleys stop running around midnight, after which mass transit riders must switch to the bus system.
Both Amtrak and SEPTA offer train services throughout the city. Stations are situated along Broad Street, and the main terminal at 30th Street Station. Train travel is easy and particularly useful for trips to visit nearby cities such as New York City and Washington, DC. Generally speaking, traveling by train in Philadelphia is safe, even late at night.
SEPTA buses run throughout the city, and exploring the city by bus is generally very safe. However, waiting times can be just five minutes outside of rush hour and up to an hour during the early hours of the morning. Bit buses run around the clock every day of the week, meaning that it is always easy to get home.
Want to Compare the Safety of a Few Other US Cities?
If so, you might want to read about the Safest Cities in Texas or the Safest Places to Live in Florida? Or how about the Cheapest Places to Live in California or the Most Dangerous Neighborhoods in NYC you need to steer clear of when traveling through New York?
Relocating to Philadelphia?
If so, then you may also wish to take advantage of our guides to current job-hunting trends, including How to Get a Job in Another State, the Best Times of Year to Apply for Jobs, How to Use LinkedIn to Find a Job, LinkedIn Cold Messages: How to Reach Out About a Job, and the Best LinkedIn Headline Examples For Job Seekers for 2023.
Ok, back to today’s US city safety analysis…
While Philadelphia is a fairly safe city to live in, crime rates are rising in the City Center area. Generally speaking, it is best to choose a quieter, more suburban area. However, safe areas can still be found in the beating heart of this mighty metropolis.
The areas of Rittenhouse Square and Society Hill are relatively safe and boast numerous entertainment options. Families who want to relocate to this city will find that there are several enchanting areas to choose from. Not only are these areas very safe, but they also have a strong ‘community feel’ that is very attractive.
Enjoy your visit, or move to Philly!