Georgia : Safety by City
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This is not THE Woodstock where 400,000 people gathered in the late 60s to spread peace and love, but this is Woodstock, Georgia, with peace and love all its own with Southern charm.
The city’s branding slogan is “A City Unexpected” and is home to 35,000 people who want the convenience of city life while being surrounded by the great outdoors.
To call it simple would be an understatement of the modern amenities it holds.
With flawless simplicity, it does have a lure of its own with outdoor adventures that don’t need big neon signs to draw you in.
The outlet mall of Atlanta sits tucked alongside the major interstate in this community, offering visitors a chance to explore the city without going off the beaten path.
Unique shopping awaits in the historic downtown as well as 20 restaurants with chefs all trying to outdo each other.
There isn’t one big reason to visit Woodstock, Georgia, but there are a million little things that make it worth the trip.
Safety is also paramount here and the crime numbers reflect that.
Warnings & Dangers in Woodstock
OVERALL RISK: LOW
There's a low risk here. Crime numbers are a fraction of national and state averages. There's also a lot more to do here to keep people moving.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
The Xpress bus system can get you around the Atlanta metro area and connect you to the MARTA system (there is no MARTA stop in Woodstock), but there isn't a public transportation system in town. There is a trolley that goes through the downtown area. You can get a taxi or rideshare, but this is one Georgia city that actually caters to bicyclists. There's a low risk in any selection.
PICKPOCKETS RISK: LOW
There was just one purse snatching reported in 2020, so there's a low overall risk of this happening. There are a lot of events in Woodstock throughout the year, and you should always use extra caution when in crowded areas, no matter how safe a city is.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: MEDIUM
Severe thunderstorms and tornadoes are the biggest concern. Those can happen any time of year but are most likely in the spring. The occasional winter storm might hit here, dropping 1-2 inches of snow. This causes complete chaos across the Atlanta metro area as nobody is accustomed to driving in snow. There's a medium risk, mostly due to tornadoes.
MUGGING RISK: LOW
Five robberies were reported in 2020 and only one of them was in public, which is a low risk for a city with 35,000 people. Half of all violent crimes happened in private homes. Even with less of a chance of being a victim of a violent crime, you should still always pay attention when in an unfamiliar city, especially at night.
TERRORISM RISK: MEDIUM
There's a medium risk, but it's the low end of medium and it's only because of proximity to Atlanta. High-population centers like Atlanta are always going to be a hard target for an attack.
SCAMS RISK: LOW
There's a low risk of a tourist being scammed, but there are plenty of attempts to scam locals, especially the elderly. Basic rules to avoid scamming - never wire money to anyone to secure a rental, never buy gift cards under pressure from someone claiming you owe them money, and always cover your PIN securely when you are entering it in a store or at a gas pump. I go as far as to open my jacket and create a tent of sorts to enter the number. Do I look stupid? Yes. Do I care? No. I know that thieves can use long lenses to see my PIN from across the street.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: LOW
Women have a low risk when traveling here. The sexual assault rate is lower than the national average, but there are places to party here, so always protect your drink from tampering and never leave your purse on a hook or the back of your chair.
TAP WATER RISK: LOW
The City of Woodstock Water System passed all required tests by the state of Georgia and the Environmental Protection agency. There's a low risk when using the water.
Safest Places to Visit in Woodstock
Woodstock offers a variety of things to do and we can separate them whether you are an indoor or outdoor person.
You’ll love the downtown Woodstock historic district with 20 restaurants and nearly 40 stores, all locally owned and operated.
You won’t find any chain stores here.
You also aren’t locked to one location as you can walk freely with an open container of alcohol here.
Stop by the visitors center while you’re here.
Blue Ghost arcade is a great way for the whole family to enjoy arcade games and see if you still have those Mrs. Pac-Man skills from your younger years (talking to you, GenX!).
Art lovers should stop by Reeves House for traveling art shows.
There are classes offered as well from time to time, so check the upcoming events before you visit.
The Outlet Shops at Atlanta is the outlet mall for the entire region, so you know you’ll get great deals from popular brand names.
It is an open-air mall, so you’re going to sweat a bit while walking through it in the summer months.
The city is filled with a variety of parks and green spaces.
What’s really cool about Woodstock is that there is an interactive map of the entire park region showing the trails.
You can search for certain locations to see what trail options exist.
It’s a growing system, so it might be expanded by the time you visit.
The Greenprints Trail System is the most popular route for a morning run, long bicycle ride through nature, or rolling through on a skateboard.
Try out the mountain bike trails at Old Rope Mill Park.
There are several levels of difficulty here, so you can choose the one that fits your skills.
Lake Altoona is about 15 minutes away.
Wonder if it’s worth the trip?
More than seven million people visit here each year.
There’s hunting, hiking, fishing, boating, and swimming here, along with almost 600 campsites.
The Little River Marina has boats, kayaks, and paddleboards for rent.
On the far west side of the lake, you can visit Red Top Mountain State Park.
For any outdoor park in Woodstock, call Murphs Rentals and they’ll bring you a paddleboard or kayak.
Talk about making a trip easy for a tourist, right?
Places to Avoid in Woodstock
As with 99% of every travel safety story I’ve ever written, the highest crime numbers are along the major interstate that goes through the city.
I-575 is a busy route and the east side of the interstate has the highest number of crimes.
This is also the most crowded part of the city, so it makes sense that more crimes would happen there.
You want to avoid overexerting yourself in any activity if you don’t do a lot of hard workouts at home.
There’s a lot to do here and with the humidity, especially in the summer, you can quickly become dehydrated or injured.
Plan your events so you can have ways to cool down throughout the day.
Avoid being at any of the outdoor attractions with storms predicted or overhead.
You’ll need to check the forecast each day and the Atlanta local television market is one of the best in the nation with experienced meteorologists.
There’s danger in the lightning overhead and flash flooding that can happen during a severe storm.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Woodstock
- Get a hunting or fishing license as soon as you get to town if those are on your “to-do” list. Your home fishing license isn’t going to cut it. Check out the details on the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Division ahead of time.
- At Lake Altoona, there are 23 life jacket loaner stations throughout the park. This is so you and the kiddos can save money by not buying a lifejacket or having to risk going on the water without one. It’s on the honor system that you’ll return the jacket when you are done.
- You are welcome to pan for gold at Lake Altoona, but you’ll only be able to use a pan and shovel. You can only pan for gold in the creek beds. Good luck!
- Tube kiting is banned on the waters of Lake Altoona. This is a newly popular recent activity, so don’t let a local talk you into it. The tube kiting activity has taken at least two lives. Don’t risk it.
- If you get knowledge of a crime after the fact in Woodstock or see a non-emergency crime happening, call the anonymous tip line. That number is (770)592-6021. A city like Woodstock keeps its safety rating because of good people like you who help keep it safe.
- The mountain bike trails in the city are safe for trail runners and walkers, but everyone must yield to bicyclists. It’s worth pointing this out, because normally pedestrians have the right of way, but not on these trails. On regular streets in Woodstock, the pedestrian does have the right of way.
- If you are visiting during a busy weekend or city event, parking might be hard to find. In Woodstock, you are allowed to park on the street in residential areas. The city website has a map of the exact neighborhoods where this is allowed.
- When parking on the street during the week downtown, there is a two-hour time limit. Park in one of the nearby garages if you don’t want to have to watch the clock.
- Georgia has some of the meanest mosquitoes you can find and they love to go after sweaty humans. Wear bug spray with DEET anytime you are spending time outdoors and re-apply as needed because, again – you will sweat a lot here.
- You’ve probably heard of the notorious Atlanta traffic. Don’t think just because you’re 30 miles north of the city you’ll be able to escape this nightmare. In the city of Woodstock and the interstates going into Atlanta, the traffic can get intense. Be patient. If you’re planning to visit Atlanta, plan for at least an hour to get there. I once drove through Atlanta at 5 am, and I was thrilled to escape the massive traffic. However, the other people on the road drive like they were blindfolded and had a foot duct-taped to the gas pedal. I remember tweeting “Atlanta drivers – you all need Jesus.”
So... How Safe Is Woodstock Really?
This is a city that hasn’t had a homicide since 2018 and hasn’t had more than one homicide in a year since at least 2010.
There are generally fewer than seven robberies a year.
Here are the risks of being a victim of a crime:
- Violent Crime: 1 in 574
- Robbery: 1 in 7013
- Theft: 1 in 116
As far as thefts go:
- 30% are shoplifting
- 25% are from vehicles
The rest of the thefts fall into a category of “other”, which means something stolen from a campsite, a yard, or anything left lying around in a public or private place.
Woodstock is one of the safer cities in the Atlanta metro region.
Keep in mind the crime risks change city by city here, so if you’re traveling outside of Woodstock you should read our reviews of those other specific cities.
We have the entire metro area covered for you.
How Does Woodstock Compare?
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You won't need to process your Visa in Woodstock. That's all handled when you enter the United States.
The U.S. Dollar is the only currency you can use here. Exchange any currency at the Atlanta airport if you are arriving there. It's the easier and most dependable location.
You'll need to have clothing that can handle large amounts of sweat, especially in spring through fall. The average humidity in the state is 70%. In winter, the weather can change often. It might be 70° one day and a frost warning the next morning. Bring a jacket in the winter. Don't feel bad if you see people dressed like there's a blizzard coming. Cooler temperatures make Georgians dress as they live in Alaska.
The massive Atlanta airport is the best option. It's 40 minutes away, but it's also along highways and interstates that can have bumper-to-bumper traffic. I'm getting anxious just thinking about it. Allow yourself plenty of time to get to the airport.
Travel insurance is a great idea when visiting this area. There are a lot of activities that could lead to injury and weather can cause delays and road closures.
Woodstock Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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Georgia - Safety by City