Before I let on my trip to milwaukee last week.
I read some of the warnings. After I got there I found some to be overblown . My wife and i stayed in south Milwaukee near the airport.
We were told by another traveler at the hotel not you use any side streets in the city. only use the highways to get to where we had to go. My wife trusts what she calls my sixsence
about bad areas. so I did not take the advice of that traveler and took back streets to where
we had to go. and as you guessed nothing happened. the only area we were told not to go was the north west area of Milwaukee from a worker at the Cheese mart on old world 3rd. Every were you go in every city there are problems. The best way to find out where not to go is to talk to people that live or work in the area your at and also trust your own feelings. first golden rule is "IF IT DOES NOT FEEL RIGHT TURN AROUND UNTIL IT DOES".
On my last visit to Milwaukee I was heading for a restaurant on the east side when I noticed these two large rodents climbing up a steam-venting pipe.
It looks as if they are preparing to pour something down the stack. Perhaps Homeland Security should be notified?
Don't listen to the woman who says not to go to mayfair mall! It is the nicest mall in the city! I see she did not leave a name or email address so we can comment to her! What the hell would she know about Gang activity? Please. I think she is just scared of Black People.
I've done a lot of driving and walking in Milwaukee and the same rules apply for this
city as any other large one. It is a good idea
to have a good roadmap and plan ahead. The city is actually pretty easy to get around once you know some basics. There is pretty good logic to the series of one-ways downtown. Freeways are often under construction and delays can be long in rush hour traffic as well. If you are looking to head downtown from the west side in the afternoon, you may try what we did and come in on Wisconsin Avenue instead of the freeway. There are surprisingly few traffic lights and the route is pretty safe. I will add
that at least on Wisconsin Avenue there are times when many intersections will flash a
"NO LEFT TURN" Sign to keep the flow of traffic going. Know this in advance and you should do ok.
The downtown and riverwalk district is well-lit
and police presence is strong. I asked
a local officer about that area and he said
it's generally pretty safe. If I were a female,
I'd probably go in a group, but anything south of Juneau always seems decent. North of Juneau the buildings start looking rundown and we noticed enough rough looking characters to not wish to venture further. We spent a good deal of time in the riverwalk and Water Street section on this last
trip and nothing seemed even remotely out of place. Just the same, I would keep valuables hidden as car break-ins are frequent.
IT IS A LARGE CITY and serious crime does occur here.. Even in the better sections I wouldn't be stupid and walk around juggling a camera and a fistful of cash with a map in one hand. That would just be inviting trouble. If you have a few "street smarts," you should have a very enjoyable stay.
While I was at the Rock Bottom Brewery one night along Milwaukee's Riverfront, the bartender told us to be careful walking home. He continued to tell us about how a beautiful young waitress from his restaurant had died last year (1993) after leaving the restaurant. She was beaten with a tire iron raped, and then robbed.
This is a beautiful city, however it is a city, and cities always have their criminal element. My advise is just to always be aware of your surroundings, and travel with others, and not alone.
I looked into this story after I returned home, and have included the picture of the murderer below, as well as a website to the story about this tragic event.
I've lived in the suburbs of Milwaukee my entire life and within the city limits of Milwaukee for the past 5 years. I have never seen a crime take place. I've never had a crime happen to me or anyone I know with one exception - a friend recently had her wallet stolen at La Fuente, a local Mexican restaurant. Yes, there are areas of the city that are high crime areas; every city has them. But they certainly aren't going to be the areas you'll be vacationing in. And no, we do not have 3 shootings a day, even in the really bad areas.
It is common sense to use the buddy system no matter where you are. So when out at night have at least one other person with you.
Also, downtown Milwaukee is very well lit at night.
Milwaukee doesn't have all that much violent crime, during the day, it's generally a very safe city and even at night it's no worse than average for personal safety. However, there is quite a bit of property crime. Vehicles are broken into quite often. This is true in many areas of the city, so choose your parking arrangements carefully.
Don't be by yourself in Milwaukee at night and for the women, I would make sure there were at least 3 of us together, even then I wouldn't feel that safe. It is good to have at least one guy with you if you out cruising at night.
On the East side of Milwaukee, don't leave stuff that looks valuable to theifs in your car. I had my car stereo stolen, and I know someone that had their crappy old boom box stolen from their car. I don't know about other parts of Milwaukee, just the East side.