I lived in Hartford for many years, once in an apartment near Hartford Hospital, also an apartment just off of Park Street. My advice to anyone wanting to travel here is to stay away. 37 years ago when I used to work in downtown Hartford I was robbed while waiting to take the bus home from just in front of the Old State House which is downtown Hartford. I was followed home by a robber when I went to the drug store on Farmington Ave. but I managed to get away, get into the condo building before he could rob me. I lived off of Farmington Avenue in a building called The Willoughby. Back then it was apartments, but now it is condominiums. The area was bad back then but is much worse now, drug dealers breaking into the condominium building, hookers doing tricks on the steps inside the building. It's such a shame. I don't understand why the police are not out in full force cleaning up these areas. I'm sure years ago Hartford was a very nice place to live. Years ago I would drive to the North end with my husband to go to a Jamaican bakery but no longer. That area was dangerous back then, but with all the crack heads now, much much worse. My advice to you, if you do decide to visit any part of Hartford, take pepper spray with you. The Mark Twain house is worth a visit, also the Wadsworth Atheneum art gallery. But if you are a woman, do not carry a pocketbook, keep your money hidden.
Ok, I know you guys are just sharing opinions,but you're making my hometown (City) look bad.If you don't like it here don't come.We don't need you anyways,our community is perfectly FINE.Considering you guys are all from rich and better town's (communities) because of what you have doesn't mean you can go about trashing our city.To whoever would like to come and visit just come into the scenery areas or wherever you wish to go.Stay out of the neighbor hood's and,sure i'm POSITIVE all the other city's everyone would advise not to go about walking the streets of Hartford at night.So, it's not just us. ANYWAYS going on about this, “Hartford is the ghetto.” Many people have been murdered there” Blah BLAH BLAH!Nothing I haven’t heard before sure that isn’t the best .If you get to know the neighborhood’s before judging them.You can actually see that most of the people are friendly.Sure there are some crack heads and drug attics but so what? Let them be -.-
Person of Hartford!
I'm ashamed to admit I'm from Connecticut and fear going into most areas of Hartford. On one occasion I was in the North End of Hartford during the day and stopped at a gas station to get directions to the Wadsworth Athaneum (Art Museum) so I could do work for a class. The gas station attendant told me to get into my car and never get out in the North End if I could help it.
On another occassion a friend and I stopped to get directions to a concert and were aproached by a rather large crack head lady who said "GIVE ME MONEY I'M HUNGRAAYYYY" We were terrified, got back in the car and sped off. DO NOT GET OUT OF YOUR CAR!!!!
In the past few years things have gotten better downtown near the Capitol building/Bushnell theater area but still use precaution and don't ever walk alone.
Don't walk anywhere alone after dark in Hartford. Everyone who lives in Hartford has been or knows somebody who has been robbed, stabbed, raped or killed in the city.
I stopped at a gas station on Albany Ave near downtown one night to use an ATM. I was robbed immediatley upon leaving the gas station by a woman who appeared to be a crackhead.
I was able to flag down a cop who drove by the gas station mere seconds after the incident occured, however the officer made no attempt to find the woman or recover my stolen purse. Instead he asked me: "What is a white girl like you doing here? You better get out of here before this robbery becomes a homicide". The Hartford police just seem so jaded, robberies are nothing to them apparently.
Also my boyfriend was jumped on Capital Ave by two guys in a car. They stole the earrings out of his ears and broke his nose and mouth open.
The north end is very dangerous. Even if you do not get out of your car, it is common for a thug to smash your window. Try not to go through here especially at night. Also avoid the windsor/hartford border because there is crime there too, and also near the airport in windsor locks, there has been many murders and even an italian mob hit, i wouldnt go north of hartford unless on the highway.
Hartford is known for many things. Unfortunately, one of these things is Crime. Hartford has been ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the Country, peaking at #7 in 2004. Most of this violence is contained in the Frog Hollow, Upper Clay Hill/Arsenal, Northeast, and the Upper Albany areas.
Generally, most attractions are outside of these areas anyways, but a few myths should be cleared up about some of these areas.
Park street, the main street in Frog Hollow has copious shops and resturaunts. Park street is vibrant and does not need to be avoided, as it is literally one of the most vibrant areas of the city. The side streets should be avoided, however.
Albany Avenue, which runs through Clay Hill/Arsenal, Upper Albany, and a bit of Blue Hills is another tough one. Several crimes are committed in this area, but generally not on the actual Avenue. There are alot of shops/resturaunts here too, as well as a larger police presence because a large station is located somewhere around the midsection of the avenue. Generally, I would avoid the part nearest to downtown, which is the least vibrant, and most dangerous (located in the highest crime/poverty zone). This is unfortunate because the rest of Albany Avenue has merit, and acts as Hartford's 125th street, but it can only be accessed by car, as all the hotels are seperated from the midsection by the slums.
That being said, the Northeast and Clay Hill/Arsenal sections do not have any merit and are especially dangerous. Some census blocks have been ranked as more dangerous than the most dangerous areas of the South Bronx. But again, you'd have to go out of your way to go here - there is nothing to see.
Also, be careful around the webster. This serves as the non-huge name concert venue for Greater Hartford, but is unfortunately also in an area of crime. People have been mugged, beat up, or had their cars stolen. But, all one has to do is stay on the main rd within a few blocks of the venue, and preferably pay to park the cars.
Hartford really doesn't have a single non intimidating area minus the area when you get into West Hartford. Hartford's north end is scary even during noon. At night there are crack heads everywhere, drug dealing, prostitution, and gang activity. There is a shooting or stabbing that happens in this area every night. If you drive through there at night it is very possible people will try to sell you drugs, people in the streets will shout something at you, and crack heads will come up to your car. So lock your doors, DON'T LEAVE YOUR CAR, and better yet just avoid this neighborhood overall.
The Park St. area (known as Frog Hollow section of town) is also another ghetto. The Frog Hollow Section has a problem with homeless, gang violence, and drug dealing. Again, do the same as you would do when your traveling the north end.
While these are the two bad sections, they make up around 75% of the city. The only nice part of Hartford is the West End which is filled with beautiful mansions and some nice restaurants. But even the West End has its bad areas (the areas where the West End goes into the Frog Hollow area). And as for downtown, it is extremely shady at night. Nights when I would walk from the downtown bars to my car, me and my friends would always run into shady characters asking for money or threatening us.
This is a small CITY, not a small TOWN. I agree with the other member's comment about the North End--Homestead Ave. & north(the "North Meadows" is not the same thing). Also be especially careful in the Parkville area (basically all of Park St. & the few blocks on either side of it). Use the same common sense you should use in most cities--when driving, keep doors locked & windows up; pay attention to the people around you, especially when stopped at traffic lights; remember you have an out of state license plate that marks you as a visitor, although if the plate is from Mass., no one will think much of it as there are many Mass. cars in Htfd all the time; try to ACT like you know what you're doing, not nervous which will attract attention.
When walking & driving, WATCH OUT FOR CARS--the people in this city drive like there's no such thing as licenses, cops, traffic laws! Red lights & stop signs mean "stop if you feel like it," and they seem to think there's a special rule for Hartford that you can go right, LEFT, and STRAIGHT at any red light!
Also, don't cross any cops. I've encountered more than one that was a little overenthusiastic about exercising his power & authority. (I wasn't beaten up or anything, just had unreasonable demands made of me.) I don't mean you won't find ANY that are helpful, just do whatever they tell you without protest, no matter how unreasonable, illogical, unfriendly, etc. There's a few that I think if you look at them cross-eyed they'll arrest you!
I must say, that in my various wanderings about many cities and towns, I have never come across a system of "Walk" lights for pedestrians that was so ineffective! Not knowing the local traffic patterns and practices, I decided to play it safe and press the "walk" button at almost every one of the intersections that I came to. It never seemed to matter, the cars just kept coming from all directions! Eventually, I noticed that the locals seemed to venture across the various streets whenever the coast appeared to be clear, so this was the method that I finally adopted in the interests of maximizing the limited amount of exploration time that I had available to me! The streets are quite wide, mostly 4 lanes, but the downtown traffic is quite light in comparison to most cities. Also, the drivers seem to be aware of our plight!
When you are on a budget, you should be certain to make your hotel reservations in advance. I'm not certain what "special event" was going on, but there were no lower cost hotels remotely close to the airport. In this instance, a hotle manager overbooked his place and agreed to let us stay on a floor that was under major reconstruction. No locks on the windows or doors - most rooms didn't even have doors.
If your out of town don't go on Albany Avenue US 44 through Hartford in the North End roughly from Scarbourough Ave and Albany avenue meet and points up from there in Hartford. Avoid Granby Street as well. Many people walk on the street aimlessly and will have no fear in walking in the middle of the road. Don't get out of your car here either for gas,food etc alot of muggings, killings,drug dealers and gangs are out in this area. Lock your car doors keep your windows up and don't look at anyone in the face. Best Advice don't go where you feel your standing out!
Are you afraid of ghosts?
Rumor has it that an 'image' of former Governor Buckingham has been seen often in the halls of the capital building. Strange thing is, he never governed in this building.....
One area of Hartford you need to try to avoid is what is called the North End. If you need to travel through that area, or if you're lost and end up there, just keep driving. It is NOT advisable to get out of your car, or to even roll your car window down to ask for directions. Keep the car doors locked as this is a high crime area. You're an easy target if you look lost or don't take these precautions.
Just like any other big cities in US, there are some areas in Hartford that you should avoid. Read the tips on the Hartford section to get a good understanding of traffic issues, areas, etc.,...