You may know Orlando as one of the tourism capitals of America, and with good reason. After all, Disney World, Universal Studios, and countless hotels are located in Orlando. However, it’s not all fun and games in Orlando, and there are many neighborhoods in Orlando that are dangerous.
Roosevelt Park and Mercy Drive are the two worst neighborhoods to live in Orlando. Violence and property crime are prominent in both neighborhoods, and they both suffer from high unemployment rates. Malibu Groves, Johnson Village, North Orange, and Carver Shores are also among the worst neighborhoods in Orlando.
Just like any city, there are good and bad neighborhoods in Orlando, and some should be avoided. Each of these cities boasts high property and violent crime rates, as well as an element of poverty. Follow along as we dive into the worst neighborhoods in Orlando.
Table of Contents
1. Roosevelt Park
- Violent Crime Per 100k: 2,118
- Property Crime Per 100k: 7,469
- Population: 6,634
Roosevelt Park is a small neighborhood in Orlando, but sadly, crime is rampant. Property crime is more common than violent crime, but both are prominent. You are almost 5 times more likely to experience a crime in Roosevelt Park than the rest of Florida.
Roosevelt Park is much more dangerous than the rest of Orlando, and your chances of suffering a crime are doubled. The median rent is $929, and that’s below the national average, but it may not be worth it. Sadly, part of the cost of living in Florida is that you may have to live in dangerous areas like Roosevelt Park.
2. Mercy Drive
- Violent Crime Per 100k: 3,451
- Property Crime Per 100k: 11,043
- Population: 1,836
Mercy Drive is much smaller than Roosevelt Park, but it rivals the neighborhood in its danger. The average Mercy Drive resident-only earns $9,291 per year, and that helps drive the crime rate. Sadly, the unemployment rate is over 20% for Mercy Drive residents, and that coincides with a crime in many bad neighborhoods.
Households earn nearly $20,000 less on Mercy Drive than in the rest of Orlando. Because of that, many residents turn to crime to fuel addiction, lifestyle, and simply put food on the table. Mercy Drive is among the neighborhoods in Orlando that should be avoided at all costs.
3. North Orange
- Violent Crime Per 100k: 2,560
- Property Crime Per 100k: 11,641
- Population: 986
Despite a median household income that is higher than Orlando’s average, many North Orange natives turn to crime. Your average household in North Orange brings in $60,448 per year, but that doesn’t stop many residents from turning to crime. Violent crimes, such as assault, rape, and murder are common in North Orange at a rate of 2,560 per 100,000 residents.
Part of the danger in North Orange is that it’s such a small neighborhood that crime is almost unavoidable. Property crime is rampant in North Orange, with theft and burglary leading the way as the most common incidents. If you find yourself in North Orange, exercise caution and avoid walking around alone at night.
The one redeeming factor about North Orange is the great educational opportunities. Schools such as Hope Charter School and Legacy High Charter School are highly rated and well respected. Even still, North Orange is one of the worst neighborhoods in Orlando.
4. Malibu Groves
- Violent Crime Per 100k: 2,460
- Property Crime Per 100k: 6,982
- Population: 1,165
Malibu Groves feels uniquely urban and suburban at the same time, but it also feels dangerous. Over 15% of Malibu Groves residents are currently unemployed, and that could explain the crime. Single Malibu Groves residents that are employed only earn just over $12,000 per year, sadly.
The lack of high-paying jobs and employment opportunities is a breeding ground for crime in Malibu Groves. Rent is quite low in Malibu Groves at less than $900 per month, but it’s not quite worth it. Shootings, robberies, burglaries, and vehicle theft are all common in Malibu Groves, and it creates a scary environment to live in.
5. New Malibu
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 1,289
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 3,692
- Population: 408
Crime is 75% more common in the New Malibu neighborhood of Orlando than in the rest of Florida. Considering that only 408 residents can call New Malibu home, the high volume of crime is quite shocking. Sadly, 11% of New Malibu residents are unemployed and or live in poverty making it hard to get ahead.
New Malibu household only earns an average of $24,000, and that’s not enough to live in Florida. Orlando may be one of the most ghetto cities in Florida, but New Malibu is among the most dangerous neighborhood within it. Unfortunately, New Malibu residents do not have access to highly rated or regarded schools, and that also contributes to the cycle of crime.
6. Johnson Village
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 2,106
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 8,254
- Population: 1,011
Only a short 15-minute drive from Disney World, Johnson Village is a highly dangerous neighborhood. Vacationers visiting Orlando may never see Johnson Village, but it helps drive the city’s high crime rate that it’s known for. Nearly 16% of Johnson Village residents are unemployed, and those that are employed average $15,000 per year.
Low wages and high unemployment rates go hand in hand with an endless crime in any neighborhood. Rent costs below $800 per month in Johnson Village, on average, but it’s simply too good to be true. If you consider the move to Johnson Village for the low rent, think about whether or not it’s worth your safety.
7. Carver Shores
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 1,893
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 6,702
- Population: 1,389
When the crime is 245% above the national average in a single neighborhood, you know it’s a bad place to live. Sadly, that is the case with Carver Shores, one of the worst neighborhoods in Orlando. Even scarier is the fact that violent crime is just shy of 400% more common in Carver Shores than in the rest of America.
With less than 1,400 residents, crime is deeply condensed in Carver Shores. Just over 7% of Carver Shores residents are unemployed, and those that are employed earn an average of $17,000. The combination of low rent, high unemployment, and gang violence makes Carver Shores a dangerous neighborhood to live in.
8. Lake Sunset
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 2,032
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 7,674
- Population: 1,268
With a name like Lake Sunset, it is easy to imagine a pleasant neighborhood to live in. However, with such a high crime rate and poor reputation, Lake Sunset is far from the idyllic space you may imagine. Single residents of Lake Sunset earn an average of $15,278 per year, and many people supplement that with crime.
Besides being one of the worst neighborhoods in Orlando, Lake Sunset is one of the worst places in Florida as a whole. Lake Sunset is the 13th most dangerous neighborhood in all of Florida. Theft, assault, and burglary are the most commonly reported crimes in Lake Sunset.
9. Washington Shores
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 1,874
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 6,825
- Population: 1,024
Washington Shores is known for having high unemployment and low wages for those that are employed. Households in Washington shores earn nearly half of Orlando’s average at $26,023 per year. Low yearly incomes and crime go hand in hand, and that is exemplified by Washington Shores in Orlando.
Property crime is much more common than violent crime in Washington Shores. With that said, violent crimes such as burglary are common in this dangerous neighborhood. Because the cost of living in Washington Shores is so low, it can be tempting to move there, but it’s also a dangerous prospect.
10. Signal Hill
- Violent Crime Rate Per 100k: 1,787
- Property Crime Rate Per 100k: 9,123
- Population: 1,780
Signal Hill is a neighborhood in Orlando that is best traversed during the daytime. Otherwise, it’s wise to travel in a group if you find yourself in Signal Hill at night. Both violent and property crimes are double the rate of Orlando in Signal Hill, and there’s no rhyme or reason.
The crime in Signal Hill can be partially explained away by the poverty that is common in the neighborhood. For example, single residents only earn $18,040 per year, but 9% of residents are currently unemployed. Orlando is already relatively unsafe as it is, but Signal Hill is one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in the city.
- Violent Crime Rate Per 1K: 7.59
- Property Crime Rate Per 1K: 50.00
- Reported Crimes: 16,553
- Population: 280,832
Orlando is a big city with a high population and an even higher crime rate. There are 150 crimes per square mile in Orlando, and most of them are property crimes. Of said property crimes, theft is the most common one with 11,581 reports recently in Orlando.
Orlando residents risk a 1 in 20 chance of experiencing theft, burglary, or vehicle theft. Violence is also common, and there were 2,182 recent violent crimes in Orlando. The majority of those violent crimes were assaults which made up 1,403 reports.
Unfortunately, 1 in 132 Orlando residents will fall victim to a violent crime. The best way to avoid violent crime in Orlando is to avoid many of the neighborhoods mentioned in the list above. Of course, not all of Orlando is bad, but pockets of crime and violence are spread throughout the city.
What is the safest area in Orlando?
Bay Hill and Doctor Phillips are the two safest areas to live in Orlando, Florida. Both neighborhoods are notable for being affluent and relatively crime-free at any time of the day or night. Hunter’s Creek, Gotha, and Lake Hart are also notable for being safe from both violence and property crime.
Is Orlando safe?
Orlando is not considered a safe city to live in, and property and violent crime are rampant. Residents of Orlando risk a 1 in 20 chance of property crime and 1 in 132 chance of violent crime. Gangs, drugs, and poverty drive the high crime rates in this tourist-friendly city.
What Did We Learn?
Orlando is the second most dangerous city in Florida, and Roosevelt Park is the worst neighborhood. Mercy Drive, North Orange, Washington Shores, and Lake Sunset are also among the most dangerous neighborhoods in Orlando. Each of the most dangerous neighborhoods in Orlando has poverty, violence, and property crime in common.
Neighborhoods such as Bay Hill, Gotha, and Doctor Phillips are the safest neighborhoods in Orlando. As a whole, Orlando is the second most dangerous city to live in Florida. If you find yourself in Washington Shores, Signal Hill, or Carver Shores, avoid going out alone at night.
Pay attention to local crime maps if you move to or vacation in Orlando. The darkness in Orlando doesn’t overshadow the fun times that can be had, but it’s worth keeping in mind.