Alaska’s 5 Safest Cities of 2021

The SafeWise Team is pleased to release the seventh annual Safest Cities report.

Here are the 5 Safest Cities in Alaska for 2021

1. Unalaska
2. Sitka
3. Homer
4. Palmer
5. Soldotna

See if your city made the full list.

For the second year in a row, there were no changes in rankings for Alaska’s safest cities. The Alaskan violent and property crime rates are above the national average and top the charts for the Pacific region.

2021 Alaska crime rates

The good news is property crime has dropped steadily since 2019, starting at 35.4 per 1,000 people to this year’s low of 29.1 per 1,000. But only two of the five safest cities in The Last Frontier had property crime rates well below the national average.

Level of concern and experience with crime in Alaska

Only 34% of Alaskans worry about their safety on a daily basis and 52% say they feel safe in the northernmost state. Despite Alaskans’ confidence in their safety, the state sees the highest levels of violent crime in the nation (with the exception of Washington DC).

Experience with property crime is 55% higher in Alaska than the national average.

We did see improvements from our survey respondents. Percentages of those who experienced violent crime, property crime, and gun violence dropped significantly from last year. However, package theft remains a big problem in Alaska with 27% having experienced it in the last 12 months.

Crime concerns in Alaska

We asked Alaskans which crimes they worry may happen to them. See if Alaska residents are concerned about the same crime issues as the rest of the country.

View the complete 2021 State of Safety report.

Violent crime in Alaska: Fear vs. reality

Despite Alaskans being less concerned with crime overall, violent crime in The Last Frontier is higher than the rest of the Pacific region and the national average. Alaskans are also more likely to use some form of personal protection than most Americans.

  • After Washington DC, Alaska has the highest violent crime rate in the nation.
  • All the safest cities in Alaska had violent crime rates below the rest of the state, region, and nation.
  • Unalaska only saw 7 violent crimes and 39 property crimes.
  • 47% of Alaska residents say they use some form of personal protection like pepper spray or stun guns, well above the 34% of Americans who say they do the same.
  • 26% of Alaskans say their personal safety has been affected by the pandemic.
  • Aggravated assault was the most common violent crime in Alaska statewide compared to murder, rape, and robbery—it accounted for 68% of the state’s violent crime.

Property crime in Alaska: Fear vs. reality

Only 30% of Alaskan residents are concerned with property crime, yet the state’s rates are above the national average.

The good news is property crime has dropped in the last three years in Alaska and throughout the US.

  • The property crime rate in Alaska is 29.1 incidents per 1,000 people compared to the US average of 21.1.
  • While 63% of Alaskans think crime has increased, property crime has slowly decreased since 2019.
  • Larceny-theft was the most common property crime in Alaska, with 574 incidents in the five safest cities alone.
  • Unalaska had only 39 incidents of reported property crime in 2020. That’s 129 fewer incidents than the second safest city, Sitka.
  • 72% of Alaskans use some type of property protection, with almost half of them favoring firearms as their method of choice.
  • 17% of Alaskans say the security of their property has been affected by the pandemic, much less than the 29% of Americans who have felt the change.

A closer look at the safest cities in Alaska

For the purposes of this report, the terms “dangerous” and “safest” refer explicitly to crime rates as calculated from FBI crime data—no other characterization of any community is implied or intended.

  • Each of the five cities are repeats from the previous year without any changes in ranking.
  • Violent and property crime dropped across the board in all five cities. The biggest improvement came from Homer where the property crime rate dropped by 12.6 points.
  • Palmer saw the most violent crime out of the safest cities. But its property crime rate was lower than Soldotna, allowing it to keep its spot at number four.

The 5 Safest Cities in Alaska

map image of unalaska,ak
#1
Unalaska
(
-0-
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    4,513
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $92,273
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    1.6, 3.7, 3.4
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    8.6, 10.8, 6.5
map image of Sitka, AK
#2
Sitka
(
-0-
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    8,512
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $69,635
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    1.9, 2.4, 1.6
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    19.7, 26.4, 18.7
map image of Homer, AK
#3
Homer
(
-0-
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    5,913
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $59,837
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    2.0, 2.1, 1.9
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    24.7, 37.3, 36.8
map image of Palmer, AK
#4
Palmer
(
-0-
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    7,490
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $60,350
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    2.8, 3.5, 2.8
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    27.2, 33.0, 34.0
Soldotna, Alaska
#5
Soldotna
(
-0-
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    4,756
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $61,723
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    2.7, 3.8, 7.0
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2021, 2020, 2019
    29.9, 35.3, 49.6

How we determined the safest cities

Learn how we identified the safest cities on our methodology page.

How to make a safe home anywhere

Whether your city made our list or not, we encourage everyone to be proactive about home security. Learn more about your home security options—and find out which companies we recommend for every budget and lifestyle in our roundup of the Best Home Security Systems.

Didn't find your city in the top 5?

We calculated crime rates for every city in the state that met our population threshold, based on the state’s median population. See how the remaining cities ranked in the list below.

NOTE: If you don’t see your city on the list, it means that it was below the population threshold or didn’t submit a complete crime report to the FBI in 2019.

2021 Rank
City
Population
VC per 1,000Icon Tooltip  Dark
PC per 1,000Icon Tooltip  Dark
6North Slope Borough9.80K12.57.3
7Kodiak5.95K8.231.9
8Ketchikan8.32K4.850.6
9Fairbanks31.49K7.843.0
10Wasilla10.92K4.453.1
11Juneau31.81K9.140.6
12Bethel6.54K19.920.2
13Anchorage287.73K12.442.6
14Kenai7.86K9.556.7

Find the safest cities in each state

Click on the state image or dropdown menu below to check out the safest cities for each state.

Related articles on SafeWise


Sources

FBI: Uniform Crime Reporting Program, “2019 Crime in the United States,” Accessed March 15, 2021.

US Census Bureau, "Data Explorer," Accessed November 18, 2020.

Best Places, “Find a Place Search Tool,” Accessed January 6, 2021.

SafeWise, “2021 State of Safety survey,” Accessed March 15, 2021.

Gun Violence Archive, “Past Summary Ledgers,” Accessed January 6, 2021.

Gun Violence Archive, “General Methodology,” Accessed March 15, 2021.

Melody Hicks, Ben Stickle, Joshua Harms, American Journal of Criminal Justice, “Assessing the Fear of Package Theft,” January 04, 2021. Accessed March 15, 2021.

For definitions and more on data sources, see our methodology page.

Rebecca Edwards
Written by
Rebecca Edwards
Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for SafeWise.com. She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past eight. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month poring over crime reports and spotting trends. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her expert advice and analysis in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Miami Herald, NPR, HGTV, MSN, Reader's Digest, Real Simple, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips.

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