The Most Dangerous Destinations To Avoid On Your Trip To Texas, According To Research

Planning to visit a new place can be daunting. However, if you know that you are going to an area that has been rated as dangerous, it can add an extra layer of stress that you can't shake off. But it's not as simple as labeling a city as safe or unsafe. There are several important factors to consider, such as the ratio of safe to dangerous neighborhoods, the most common types of crime, and the demographics of crime victims. In this article, we have listed several Texas locations rated poorly in terms of crime and overall safety. 

To avoid any trouble, it's best to steer clear of these areas. However, suppose you're feeling adventurous and willing to take the risk. In that case, we have researched and reviewed appropriate databases to understand why these cities are considered some of the most dangerous places in Texas, and we have included some tips for staying safe when visiting these destinations. We researched the FBI database, crime reporting websites, and news sites to get a good idea of what makes these places merit their ratings.


Nestled amidst the Texan landscape, Bellmead is a city with a crime narrative that's hard to ignore. With its 2020 crime rates clocking in at 2.4 times higher than the national average (as per City Data), it's no wonder that residents and visitors alike cast a wary eye over their shoulders. The city's misfortune largely falls into two distinct categories: violent crime and property crime. From the heartbreaking number of murders and assaults to the nerve-wracking specter of burglary and theft, Bellmead's streets can sometimes feel like a battleground for safety and security. Because of its high crime rates, locals and travelers should navigate the city and neighborhood streets cautiously and avoid wandering alone at night in unfamiliar neighborhoods.

Despite these concerning figures, Bellmead has managed to carve out a reputation for more than just its high crime. Its Parks and Recreation Division draws in visitors, providing year-round opportunities to engage in various outdoor experiences, community events, and recreational activities. With the allure of nearby Magnolia Market in Waco, Bellmead boasts attractions that entice travelers. However, despite its status as a significant urban center teeming with diverse economic opportunities, Bellmead grapples with income disparities contributing to higher poverty levels within the city's dynamic environment, adding another layer of complexity to its intricate setting.


Pasadena offers a vibrant array of attractions, but it's essential to recognize that crime levels vary significantly between neighborhoods. Here in Pasadena, a crime is committed on average every hour and 34 minutes, according to Crime Grade, with the northeast area being generally regarded as the safest. However, the website also notes that the likelihood of being a victim of crime ranges from 1 in 21 in southern neighborhoods to 1 in 37 in the northeast. Interpreting these statistics requires careful consideration, as different crime types may have varying rates and factors such as causes.

If it's considered dangerous, why do people visit Pasadena? Like every city, it has its good and bad neighborhoods, but most stop by Pasadena to check out its vibrant arts scene, dine at its eclectic eateries, and take in the natural beauty of its parks and gardens. To ensure a safe visit, it's advisable to stick to well-lit and populated areas, especially after dark. Avoid flaunting valuables, and be mindful of your surroundings at all times. Consider utilizing reputable transportation services and staying in accommodations with reasonable security measures in place. By staying informed and exercising caution, you can enjoy your trip to this destination, but if it's one you don't have to visit, it might be wise to keep it off your travel list.


Beaumont is rich in cultural heritage and unique attractions that make it a popular destination for tourists. The city is well-known for its vibrant arts scene, historical landmarks, and delicious cuisine, with something to offer visitors of all ages and interests. However, despite its many attractions, Beaumont is grappling with a concerning crime rate that is significantly higher than the national average. Statistics show that the city's crime rate is 113.5% higher than the national average, making it one of the most perilous U.S. cities, according to Area Vibes. The violent crime rate in Beaumont is also of concern, with 1,080 violent crimes per 100,000 people.

To address these issues, increased safety measures and community engagement are needed. Area Vibes indicates a worrying 9.1% year-over-year increase in crime rates, raising further concerns about the city's safety trajectory. Additionally, Beaumont's poverty rate of 18.9% exceeds the national average, presenting additional challenges in combating crime. Given the elevated crime rates and recent safety trends, travelers may want to reconsider including Beaumont in their Texas travel plans. However, for those still keen on exploring the city, staying informed, avoiding high-crime areas, and prioritizing personal safety are crucial steps to take.

Corpus Christi

Corpus Christi, a coastal city known for its beautiful marine life and sandy islands, has its reasons for being on many traveler's beach bucket lists in Texas. However, despite its apparent allure, the city has some challenges that visitors should be aware of before planning a trip. Like most of the destinations listed in this article, Corpus Christi unfortunately has a high report of both violent and property crimes, surpassing the average across the nation. Corpus Christi also ranks among the worst places in the country concerning highway and street safety. This is due to the need for expansion and reconstruction of bridges and roads, which has become a significant headache for residents and visitors, driven by population growth.

According to City Data, Corpus Christi has a crime rate higher than 94% of American cities. While the suburbs offer relative safety, travelers should exercise caution when venturing into the downtown and inner city areas. Despite these challenges, travelers still go to Corpus Christi for its stunning beaches, rich cultural heritage, and numerous attractions. However, travelers must stay informed about safety concerns and take necessary precautions when visiting Corpus Christi. Altogether, you might be better off leaving it off your list of places to visit.


Often referred to as the "Live Music Capital of the World," Austin boasts a thriving music scene with numerous venues showcasing a variety of genres and gives visitors plenty of reasons to love the place. However, in the Austin Police Department reports for 2020, the rate of violent crime in Austin was 467 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is 4.6% higher than the statewide average and 20.4% higher than the national average.

Property crime is also a significant concern in Austin, with a rate of 3,631 incidents per 100,000 residents, indicating that people in Austin are at a higher risk of having their property stolen or damaged than in many other parts of the country. A KXAN interactive map shows that while homicides occur across the city, more happen in the north of town. Austin also has a significant homeless population, especially around Zilker Metropolitan Park and Barton Springs. Though possibly not crime-related, Inside Edition has reported that Lady Bird Lake has seen 10 drownings over the past 20 months, and caution should be exercised while visiting it along with these areas mentioned in Austin.


The city of Killeen boasts several attractive features that make it an ideal place for families to live. It has a robust education system, low crime rates in some areas, and a variety of amenities suitable for people of all ages. However, Crime Grade reports that despite these benefits, Killeen still experiences higher rates of violent and property crimes compared to the national average. Residents of Killeen need to be cautious and take extra precautions to ensure their personal safety and property security.

One of the primary concerns in Killeen is property crimes. The lack of consistent police presence is also a safety issue. Unfortunately, Killeen receives a D+ grade on Crime Grade's violent crime map, indicating higher-than-average rates compared to other US cities. The city is in the 25th percentile for safety, emphasizing the importance of residents taking extra precautions to ensure their safety and property security. These numbers make Killeen a place that might be better off leaving off your travel destination plans unless you need to visit.


Despite being the 15th largest city in Texas, Amarillo has been grappling with alarming crime statistics, although it is important to note that the city has made significant strides in reducing crime rates. However, a 2022 presentation hosted by the Amarillo City Council claimed that Amarillo was ranked as the fourth most violent city in the state. In 2022, Area Vibes reported that the city's violent crime rate was twice the state average, reaching 42 incidents per one thousand residents. This places it among the highest crime rates in the nation, especially in specific neighborhoods, such as San Jacinto, Eastridge, the Barrio, and The Flats.

Broader concerns such as work, family, and financial issues, including housing and food insecurity, often overshadow reported crime concerns in Amarillo and the Texas Panhandle. City Data reports that Amarillo's crime rates surpass those of over 94% of the nation. Specifically, when compared to cities in the area, Amarillo's combined violent and property crime rate significantly exceeds the average. Despite these challenges, the city is on a path to a more secure future. Amarillo proudly embraces its cowboy town heritage through various cultural expressions, including museums, performances, and renowned steakhouses, drawing in tourists year after year. Unfortunately, it continues to be one of Texas' most dangerous destinations.


Texarkana is a city in the east of Texas with a crime rate of 33 incidents per 1,000 residents, Neighborhood Scout reports, making it one of the highest in America. The likelihood of falling victim to either violent or property crime in Texarkana is one in 30, which is higher than more than 92% of the communities in Texas of similar size. Comparing Texarkana to communities of similar size reveals elevated combined violent and property crime rates. Although most violent offenses are domestic, Crime Grade's maps highlight higher rates on the south side, especially in the New Boston neighborhood and southward on the Texas side. Property crime is also a concern, with theft being the most common offense.

Despite offering attractive spots like the 1894 City Market, safety precautions are advised throughout Texarkana. It is recommended to lock the doors when driving, secure valuables, and leave cars empty and locked when parked. While most residents commenting on Reddit feel safe in Texarkana, some perceive the Texas side as more challenging, particularly around College Hill and specific apartment complexes. Local authorities work hard to maintain safety and security for all residents, and there is an active police presence, while the Texarkana Crime Stoppers program allows residents to report crime anonymously. To stay safe while living or visiting Texarkana, remain vigilant and aware of your surroundings.


Odessa is located in the western part of Texas, known for its rich culture and history. With a population of around 120,000 people, it has a C- grade on Crime Grade, indicating a higher crime rate, and is considered one of the most dangerous cities in America. The city's landscape features barren land, oil wells, and shuttered businesses, reflecting its history as a bustling oil town. Despite its cultural significance, Odessa reportedly has elevated crime rates per 100,000 individuals, hinting at potential safety concerns in specific areas. This data encompasses property and violent crimes, making it essential for residents and visitors alike to exercise caution, secure their homes, and remain vigilant.

It's important to note, however, that the majority of reported incidents are either drug-related or domestic, dispelling the notion that random individuals are frequent targets in Odessa. The city's law enforcement agencies are working hard to address these issues, and there have been some significant improvements in recent years. Despite these challenges, Odessa remains a vibrant and culturally rich city home to many friendly and welcoming people. Visitors to the city can enjoy a range of attractions, including the famous "Friday Night Lights" phenomenon, the Presidential Museum and Leadership Library, and the beautiful parks and gardens that dot the city. However, unless you plan to exercise extreme caution, especially in certain neighborhoods, Odessa might be better left off your travel plans.


If you're considering a trip to Texas and are thinking about adding Lubbock to your itinerary, you should keep a few things in mind. While there are certainly positive aspects to this city, like its vibrant arts scene, friendly community, and the presence of Texas Tech University, several factors might make it less appealing to some visitors. One major concern is the city's weather. Lubbock is located in what's known as "Tornado Alley," which means it's prone to hazardous weather conditions like tornadoes, lightning strikes, hail storms, floods, and other unpredictable weather patterns. This is something to consider if you're planning a trip during the spring or summer months when severe weather is more likely.

Another issue to consider is the city's crime rate. According to FBI data, Lubbock has a high rate of both violent and property crimes. While it does have fewer murders than other cities listed here, Lubbock's crime rate is still higher than 97.1% of other cities in the country, as per City Data. Despite this destination's appeal, this is something to keep in mind if you're concerned about safety while traveling and may want to consider other options.

San Antonio

San Antonio is renowned for its well-preserved Spanish colonial architecture, with notable examples including the San Fernando Cathedral and the Spanish Governor's Palace. It boasts several safe suburbs, including Helotes, Selma, and Alamo Park. However, despite being a bucket list destination for history buffs, it's important to be aware of the city's overall crime landscape if you're planning a visit. U.S. News gives the city an overall crime rate of 469.2, while the FBI data for 2022 claimed that 12,935 violent crimes were reported that year, an increase of 16% from the year before. Neighborhood Scout data also suggests the odds of becoming a victim of property crime in San Antonio are 1 in 20.

It is generally advised to avoid the west side of San Antonio, where Area Vibes shows that the crime rate tends to be the highest. While crime nationwide is slightly decreasing, the opposite is true in San Antonio. If you're planning a trip to San Antonio, it is essential to be vigilant, particularly late at night. Stay informed, and exercise caution.


A city in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, Mesquite has many positive aspects, such as great restaurants and shopping centers, but it also faces some notable safety challenges. According to Crime Grade statistics, Mesquite has a crime rate of 32.51 per 1,000 residents, surpassing the national average. Despite these challenges, Mesquite remains a dynamic community with various offerings for residents, although the disparities in crime rates across neighborhoods highlight the need for caution. While there are safe pockets, the overall crime scenario might impact the enjoyment of what Mesquite offers. 

Staying informed about crime levels and exploring alternative destinations within Texas can contribute to a more secure and enjoyable travel experience. It's important to note that while Mesquite may have safety challenges, it's not the only city in Texas with high crime rates. Research what neighborhoods are safest in Mesquite, like Cantura Cove, and avoid their more dangerous ones, like Harvard Drive.


To understand what denotes a destination as dangerous, we studied the crime rating reports from sources such as the FBI Crime Data Base, Crime Grade,  Area Vibes, Neighborhood Scout, City Data, and others, along with various news sites. We considered that while these locations have high crime rates, they also have safe neighborhoods, and visitors can enjoy visiting them while exercising caution.