Connecticut : Safety by City
- East Hartford
- New Haven
- New London
- Old Saybrook
- West Hartford
- Windsor Locks
Milford, Connecticut is affectionately known as the “Small Town with a Big Heart” and lies on the central coast of Connecticut, an hour between New York City and Hartford.
Milford has the most coastline of any Connecticut city and there are five public beaches for tourists to explore, including an island just offshore.
Whether you want toes in the sand, a fishing rod on the pier, or a boardwalk adventure, it’s all here for you in this classic coastal town.
Don’t get too wrapped up in the beach to miss the city.
There’s a historic district with sophisticated homes from bygone eras that tell the stories of the city’s founding fathers.
You’ve got more than 100 restaurants winding through a five-mile stretch of the city.
Shoppers can hit the modern-era mall or the knick-knack stores of the idyllic downtown.
There’s a thriving arts scene here too, with painted, sculpted, and performance options to enjoy.
The small town might be much different than it was in the founding days, but it seems to have gotten everything just about right for locals and tourists throughout all eras.
Warnings & Dangers in Milford
OVERALL RISK : LOW
There's a low overall risk here. This charming community has been able to keep crime levels down, aside from one category that sticks out. There's a lot to do with little effort and you can feel safe at night enjoying the bars.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
The Milford Transit District provides bus routes around town and the train station here is on the Metro-North rail line to New York City and Hartford. Taxis and rideshares might not be as voluminous as in bigger cities, but both are options. All of these come with low risk.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
There's a low risk and no pickpockets were reported in 2020. That chance might go up during the annual Oyster Festival when a lot of people come to town.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
You're going to face the risk of hurricanes or tropical storms being on the coast. Those will come with plenty of warning ahead of time to evacuate or hunker down. The city gets nearly 30 inches of snow a year and it can be bitterly cold with a sea breeze in the winter. Connecticut is well prepared for winter weather, even to the extreme. There's a low risk of any event catching you off guard or putting your safety at risk.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
Just two public robberies were reported in 2020, so there's a low risk. There were only 33 violent crimes in that year too. This just isn't a city with an overwhelming amount of crime.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Milford itself wouldn't be a target, but the bigger cities of New York and New Haven might be due to the large population and big attractions. Because of that, much of the northeastern area is at medium risk.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
There's a low chance of a tourist getting scammed here. The common scams involve phone calls and emails, the same as are probably happening in your home city.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Women should feel safe here, but not careless. One rape was reported in 2020. You still don't want to walk around a strange city after dark alone, but traveling with a partner or a group should be a low risk for all involved.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
The tap water in this whole region meets or exceeds requirements at state and federal levels. There's a low risk. If there is any kind of contamination, the city is quick to alert citizens and visitors.
Safest Places to Visit in Milford
There are five public beaches to enjoy here, some larger than others.
Silver Sands State Park is the biggest and most popular.
This is great for people who want to fish or birdwatchers.
The State Parks Department website even has a “Beginner Bird Nerd” guide to get started at spotting unique birds in this area.
Downtown Milford has a variety of restaurants with all kinds of cuisine, from fancy to flip-flops, it would take a month to eat your way through this foodie community.
This is where you can also find some unique boutiques for shopping.
To get more name-brand shops and restaurants, head down Boston Post Road near the Connecticut Post Mall.
There’s a nature sanctuary at the Audobon Coastal Center at Milford Point.
This also connects to Charles Wheeler Salt Marsh and Wildlife Management Area, which is 840 acres.
The historic district near the longest green in New England has three homes to tour, one thought to be the first home built in Milford.
This district also has a collection of Native American artifacts and a country store for even more shopping.
Check with the Milford Chamber of Commerce before you visit to see what art events are coming up.
They host everything from parades to craft shows to live performances.
You’ll also see art vendors on the green in the warmer months.
The firehouse gallery is a former fire station now decorated in bright colors with art and demonstrations for all to see.
Places to Avoid in Milford
The one category that really sticks out as being higher than average in Milford is thefts.
There were 884 in 2020.
The highest crime areas aren’t downtown, they are at the public beaches.
This makes sense as the biggest number of thefts happen from car break-ins.
There is another pocket of higher crime areas along I-95 on the east side of town.
That’s also where a lot of the retail shopping is.
There aren’t any neighborhoods to avoid here and the city is relatively safe on every corner.
Even with a buzzing nightlife, you don’t have a big risk of getting mugged as you walk out at closing time.
Connecticut is sometimes very particular about the price of admission or parking, giving a discount to Connecticut residents.
Avoid trying to lie just to get the discount.
They verify the residency in various ways and it’s definitely not based on the honor system.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Milford
- Be sure to check the water quality at the state park beaches before you go. Bacterial or other pollution in the water can make it dangerous or close down the water to swimmers.
- You’re going to pay $15 – $22 to park at Silver Sands State Park, so be sure to make a day of it when you go. You can’t pay by the hour, just by the day.
- Lock your car door and roll up the windows when you go to the beach. Take all your belongings with you or put them in the trunk. Leave nothing in plain sight in the car to avoid a break-in.
- Fishing is going to require a license here too, and you guessed it – it will cost you more as a non-resident. At least it’s easy to get. Just go to the website of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and buy it there. You can print it out or just save the document on your phone.
- There is a public marina and then some private yacht clubs. Don’t try to get into the membership-only places unless you are a legitimate guest of a resident. This falls in line with trying to fake being a local. This might be a nice, laid-back town, but it’s still Connecticut, where people pay a large price for the privacy of their own beach or boating area.
- You’ll want to use the CT Alert app for weather emergency notifications, road closures, traffic issues, or civil emergencies. It’s easy to download and then you can remove it when your trip is over.
- There isn’t as much traffic in Milford as some other cities, like New Haven, but all bets are off when you hit I-95. It’s notorious for having aggressive drivers who don’t use blinkers and speeding tailgaters trying to push you along in the lane. Don’t give in to road rage. This is just how people drive in this part of the United States. (And I thought Florida drivers were bad, but this takes the cake!)
- Sports fans will love to know that the Dan Patrick show is hosted in Milford. In 2019, it moved to a bigger studio but, stayed in Milford, where Patrick lives. As of this writing, there are no scheduled tours, but ask when you get there if there are any new tours available.
- As of early March 2022, Milford Police were warning people about a rash of car thefts, robberies, and catalytic converter thefts near the larger retail areas and at gas stations. You are asked to stay off your mobile device when you are in the parking lots and pay attention to your surroundings.
- When visiting the local parks or walking through the woods, you should know that ticks are a big problem here. Wear bug spray before going into the woods and do a full-body scan when you are done to make sure there isn’t a tick stuck on you. These annoying critters can spread the West Nile virus and we don’t need another virus going around, AM I RIGHT??
So... How Safe Is Milford Really?
It’s one of the safer areas close to New Haven you can find.
It’s also one of the more popular coastal regions that isn’t overrun with tourists in the summer.
Here’s how the risk of being a crime victim stacks up:
- Violent Crime: 1 in 1577
- Robbery: 1 in 2018
- Theft: 1 in 58 (but if you don’t have a car or practice perfect car safety, that risk goes down exponentially)
There have been just four homicides in this city since 2010.
It is really a small town with a big heart.
There’s a lot of community pride and events here.
People who live here like it for the small-town feel with bigger cities close by.
The cost of living here is nowhere near as high as you might think and the average household here makes nearly $100,000.
How Does Milford Compare?
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- Visas - You will take care of the Visa at your airport of choice or port of entry. No additional processing is needed in Milford.
- Currency - The U.S. Dollar here is the only currency accepted. Most places accept credit cards or mobile pay, and there's little reason to carry cash around, much less a large wad of cash.
- Weather - If only the summers here could last all year long, but they don't. The winter is long and cold, so pack warm layers with waterproof shoes or boots for when it snows. For summer, boat shoes and water shoes are good too to keep your feet safe from slipping on deck or slicing a foot on a cracked seashell.
- Airports - Tweed-New Haven Airport is about 20 minutes east, but you'll be in that I-95 traffic, so give yourself some extra time. For people flying in and out of the New York area, plan for about a 90-minute train ride and another hour or two to get to the airport and check in.
- Travel Insurance - Weather can just screw up all the travel schedules in the northeast for various reasons throughout the year, so it's best to get travel insurance for your trip to Milford, Connecticut.
Milford Weather Averages (Temperatures)
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