How Safe Is Muskogee for Travel?

Updated On December 12, 2023
Muskogee, United States
Safety Index:
54
* Based on Research & Crime Data

Muskogee is an eastern Oklahoma city at the confluence of the Arkansas, Grand, and Verdigris Rivers.

With its deep roots in Native American culture and its enduring spirit of resilience, Muskogee has played a pivotal role in shaping Oklahoma’s identity.

The city’s history is intertwined with the stories of the Five Civilized Tribes – the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole – who were forcibly relocated in the 19th century.

These tribes brought with them their unique traditions, languages, and art forms, shaping the cultural tapestry of the region.

Muskogee became a thriving center of Native American life, fostering a spirit of community and resilience that continues to permeate the city today.

Muskogee also played a crucial role in the development of Oklahoma’s transportation infrastructure, serving as a major hub for railroads and highways.

The city also emerged as a commercial center, attracting businesses and entrepreneurs who contributed to its economic growth.

Today, Muskogee honors its past as much as the future, with plenty of places to visit and annual festivals that draw in thousands of tourists.

All that said, there are some serious safety concerns we need to go through before you visit.

Warnings & Dangers in Muskogee

Overall Risk

OVERALL RISK: MEDIUM

Muskogee comes at a medium risk, with crime rates that nearly triple national and state averages. You can find safe places to explore, but it's good you're here to read about some safety guidance.

Transport & Taxis Risk

TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW

Muskogee County Transit has fixed routes and on-demand service. I'd recommend you check out the website before relying on that. Taxis and rideshares are available, but a little less than you'd find in a larger city. Rental cars can be picked up at the regional airports. The safest option is to have your own vehicle, but you'll need to be extra cautious to lock it and leave personal items out of plain sight.

Pickpockets Risk

PICKPOCKETS RISK: LOW

Despite a high theft rate, pickpockets and purse snatchings averaged just two per year over the past five years. There's a much greater risk of your car being broken into.

Natural Disasters Risk

NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: MEDIUM

This is a medium risk due to the ongoing risk of weather dangers. Spring brings tornado season, which can create massive thunderstorms with dangerous lightning, rain, and wind. Tornadoes can easily spawn from these storms. Wildfires and flash flooding are other risks. Winter brings the chance of a snowstorm, blizzard, or ice storm. All dangers come with plenty of advance notice. You just need to pay attention to the weather forecast.

Mugging Risk

MUGGING RISK: LOW

The robbery rate here is the same as the national average, with 16% of those being highway robberies. While the statistical risk is low, you should still be on guard, especially if you are out at night. Even though much violent crime here doesn't target strangers, there are some violent people who won't think twice about seizing a crime of opportunity.

Terrorism Risk

TERRORISM RISK: LOW

This is a low risk, as a more remote area in Oklahoma. While domestic terrorism or mass shootings can happen anywhere, this shouldn't be your biggest concern in Muskogee.

Scams Risk

SCAMS RISK: LOW

The most recent scams involve people posing as police officers and threatening to arrest the caller unless they pay a certain amount of money. These calls are always bogus. While there's a low risk you'll be affected, it helps to know the current scams before you visit. The city and county law enforcement websites are updated with this information.

Women Travelers Risk

WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: MEDIUM

Statistically, women are slightly more likely to be a victim of violent crime. However, that's due to the increased domestic violence issues in Muskogee. The same medium risk applies here, and use personal safety standards as if you were in a larger, more dangerous city.

Tap Water Risk

TAP WATER RISK: LOW

The latest Water Quality Report posted online was from 2021, and just two minor violations were reported. All American cities are required to comply with the Safe Water Drinking Act, and tests are done throughout the year to ensure compliance. The risk is low that you'll have a problem. You can always call (918)682-6602 if you have more questions.

Safest Places to Visit in Muskogee

VisitMuskogee.com is the official tourism website for the city and county.

Check out their Visit Widget to map out your preferred locations, and that map also includes upcoming events.

The Five Civilized Tribes Museum is a museum that tells the story of the five Native American tribes who were forced to relocate to Indian Territory in the 19th century.

The museum exhibits artifacts, photographs, and documents that tell the story of the tribes’ history, culture, and art.

Another place to learn about history and heritage is the Three Rivers Museum.

It’s located in the restored Midland Valley Railroad Depot.

The museum’s exhibits chronicle the evolution of the Three Rivers area, encompassing the convergence of the Arkansas, Grand, and Verdigris Rivers.

Through interactive displays, captivating artifacts, and insightful storytelling, the museum tells the story of Muskogee’s past.

Cross the river to step back in time at Fort Gibson, a historic military outpost that played a pivotal role in the American West.

Explore reconstructed buildings, immerse yourself in captivating exhibits, and uncover the stories of soldiers, Native Americans, and pioneers who shaped the frontier.

The Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame is a museum that honors the history and legacy of Oklahoma music.

The museum exhibits artifacts, photographs, and recordings by some of the most famous Oklahoma musicians, including Woody Guthrie, Bob Wills, and Merle Haggard.

The Castle of Muskogee is a medieval-style castle that is a popular tourist attraction.

The castle is open to the public for tours and events.

I strongly recommend checking out their Halloween and Christmas displays and festivals.

The Arkansas River Trail is a 20-mile paved trail that follows the Arkansas River through Muskogee.

The trail is a popular spot for walking, biking, and running.

Honor Heights Park is the highlight of the park system in Muskogee, with several hiking trails, a lake, and seasonal activities like holiday lights and a butterfly display.

For a larger outdoor experience, head 30 minutes north to Sequoyah State Park.

You can also choose to stay at the lodge there while exploring 225 miles of shoreline.

Places to Avoid in Muskogee

As a general guideline in Muskogee, stay on the roads to and from the entertainment districts, museums, and historical sites, and don’t go into the neighborhoods.

It’s not that large of a town to specifically avoid certain areas.

Most of the hotels are along Highway 69, which is in a safer part of the community.

With a poverty rate of 25% and an average household income of $41,000, you’ll be able to tell when you’re in a less-than-desirable part of the community.

Safety Tips for Traveling to Muskogee

  1. Muskogee has its own police department. If you have specific safety concerns, email them at mpd@muskogeepd.org or call (918)683-8000. They are also on X (formerly Twitter) @muskogeepd.
  2. At the same time, I’d also follow Muskogee County Sheriff on Facebook @MuskogeeCountySheriff. Their phone number is (918) 687-0202.
  3. Use the HyperReach program to sign up for emergency alerts in Muskogee. This will cover the city and county. The sign-up is free, and you can choose if you want emails, phone calls, or text messages. Be sure to click the community alerts and weather alerts.
  4. Muskogee Police have crime mapping technology on their website. I can’t get it to work for me, but you might have better luck. When these systems are working, it’s a great way to see more recent crime trends. The data we provide comes from the official annual reports, which cover the previous calendar year.
  5. With such a high crime rate here, there are certain incidents where you can file an online report instead of calling a police officer. This includes minor car accidents, car break-ins, or identity theft. If you are ever unsure about if you can use the online form, call the number listed above.
  6. Crime Stopper is a free and anonymous program where you can report any suspicious activity or crime information, such as graffiti or the aftermath of a store break-in. Contact them at 918-682-COPS or email
    crimestoppers@muskogeepd.org
  7. Anglers need a license from the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. You can purchase that online and carry a digital version with you anytime you are fishing. This goes for any body of water in the state.
  8. Lock your car each and every time you park. Remove all personal items from inside, even phone chargers and GPS holders. Don’t leave rental car paperwork inside since there’s so much personal information on those documents.
  9. The city has a Citizen Action Center on its website where you can report safety issues, like potholes, downed trees, or malfunctioning traffic lights. Also, if there’s ever a water or sewer emergency, call (918)684-6380.
  10. Read the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality website before you swim in any local lake or river. The Arkansas River is notoriously swift and polluted. The lakes can have harmful algae blooms in the summer.

So... How Safe Is Muskogee Really?

Oklahoma already has a violent crime rate that is already 6% higher than the national average.

Then Muskogee shatters that by having a rate nearly three times as high.

Muskogee is in the top 10% of violent cities in America.

You have a one in 90 chance of being a victim of violent crime and a 1 in 29 of being a property crime victim.

Now, let’s add some context to that.

Muskogee is a city of 37,000 people.

The crime rates have to be per 100,000.

That means the smaller cities have a greater margin for error due to a few crimes in either direction.

Then you have to consider how many people visit a city.

Large tourist destinations like Las Vegas don’t consider visitors when calculating crime rates – it’s still “per 100,000 residents.”

When we factor in the 300,000 or so people who come through Muskogee each year, those rates will go down.

I rarely say this about any small city, but even factoring in the tourists, I can’t rest easy ranking this as anything but “Muskogee isn’t really that safe.”

That doesn’t mean you should not visit.

It means you need big city street smarts, common sense, and situational awareness while you visit.

To give a little more comfort, almost 60% of crimes here happen in private homes.

Oklahoma is well-known for having domestic violence problems, and Muskogee County is one where the Mexican cartels have infiltrated the drug scene.

Over the past five years, every one in four violent crimes was against a stranger.

By 2022, that number was down to one in five.

Thefts are 61% higher than the national average.

42% of those can be dismissed as shoplifting, but it does mean people capable of stealing are around you.

27% of thefts were related to car break-ins or accessory thefts, like catalytic converters.

About two cars a week are stolen in Muskogee.

There are some great historical spots and tourist places to visit here, and I’d recommend you stick to those areas.

You can learn a lot here and have a great time, but mind your own business and don’t go looking for trouble.

Muskogee certainly has more than its fair share of trouble.

How Does Muskogee Compare?

CitySafety Index
Muskogee54
Dallas64
Memphis54
Orlando64
Las Vegas62
San Francisco61
Philadelphia60
Vienna (Austria)88
Hong Kong (China)70
Manama (Bahrain)54
Tianjin (China)67
Brussels (Belgium)60
Shanghai (China)66

Useful Information

Visas

Visas

To enter the country, international travelers must obtain either a visa or a visa waiver. You can check your eligibility for a visa waiver by visiting the U.S. State Department website. A passport must be valid for six months from your departure date, so double-check that as well.

Currency

Currency

Only the U.S. Dollar can be used here, and that goes for the entire country. Plan to get currency exchanged at home, as the airports in this region don't offer currency exchange. Besides, your home bank will offer the lowest fees.

Weather

Weather

Pack for the season, but temperatures can fluctuate a lot throughout the year. Spring and fall can have freezing temperatures one day and 60s F the next. Bug spray is needed from spring through fall. You can dress casually and comfortably here. This is a laid-back area with versatility beating fashion.

Airports

Airports

Tulsa International Airport is less than an hour away. You can opt for Oklahoma City's Will Rogers World Airport or the Northwest Arkansas National Airport, but those are both two hours by car.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

When booking trips where weather could impact your itinerary, purchasing travel insurance is advised. Check your health insurance coverage in the U.S. If it's not valid, consider supplemental insurance in case of emergencies. Rental car customers should know what is covered for accidents, roadside assistance, and weather damage.

Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Muskogee Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 3° C
Feb 6° C
Mar 12° C
Apr 17° C
May 21° C
Jun 26° C
Jul 28° C
Aug 28° C
Sep 23° C
Oct 17° C
Nov 10° C
Dec 5° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
High
°C
91218232731343429231610
Low
°C
-3-15101520222117104-1
High
°F
485464738188939384736150
Low
°F
273041505968727063503930

Oklahoma - Safety by City

CitySafety Index
Ada82
Ardmore54
Bartlesville86
Broken Arrow68
Broken Bow48
Claremore82
Edmond77
El Reno78
Elk City77
Enid67
Grove82
Guthrie84
Hennessey87
Lawton58
McAlester70
Midwest City74
Moore75
Muskogee54
Norman68
Oklahoma City53
Owasso81
Stillwater70
Tahlequah83
Tecumseh83
Tulsa77
Weatherford77

Where to Next?

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