10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Connecticut For 2018

We used science and data to determine which cities in Connecticut have the best set up for children: a lot to do, good schools, and no crime.

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If you’re like the rest of us, you’re looking for the perfect place for your family. But you have a strict criteria; the city has to be safe, affordable, and stimulating. Basically, the place you move – or even visit – has to be outright perfect.

Is that attainable? Perhaps not, but we’ll get you as close as we can.


According to the United States Census, the number of American families who move is trending downwards Why is that? Perhaps it has to do with the ‘safety net’ factor: We get comfortable where we live, and we’re afraid to try a new move. What if the schools are bad? What if it’s dangerous?

Well, we can pretty much guarantee that if you choose the cities we’re mentioning below, you won’t lose any sleep whatsoever.

So, where are the best cities for families in Connecticut? We’ve got the answers here.

These are the best cities to raise a family in the Constitution State:

  1. Willimantic (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Westport (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Darien (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Orange (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Greenwich (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  6. Shelton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. West Hartford (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. Ansonia (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Windsor Locks (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Bristol (Photos | Homes For Sale)

If you’re thinking of making a move to Connecticut, and want a family-friendly place, we’ve got you covered. And if you already have kids, we’re surprised you made it this far into the article and hope your little ones give you a couple of more minutes of free time.

Keep on reading for a detailed methodology.

Or, check out some more reading about Connecticut and the best places for families in the country:

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How do you determine which place is best for families in Connecticut anyways?

To give you the places in Connecticut which are best for families, we have to look at a handful of metrics. Of course, we want to measure the type of people who live in each city, and make some assumptions about what’s family-friendly and what isn’t.

So we researched the internet for a database that contains all that information.

How we crunched the family friendly numbers for the Constitution State

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using U.S. Census data produced for the state of Connecticut, we looked at every single city in the state. We paid particular attention to:

  • Crime (Both violent and property)
  • Quality of local schools
  • Distance to a major city without necessarily being in it
  • % of households with children
  • Family-friendly amenities nearby (museums, libraries and colleges)

We then gave each city a Family Score.

The higher the score, the better the city is for families. We also limited our results to cities with populations over 12,000 people. For Connecticut, that meant a total of 34 cities.

Read on to see why Willimantic is where all the families are headed, while Meriden is probably a place made for singles.

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Willimantic, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 17,339
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 68
Closest Major City: Boston
Households with kids: 35.2%
More on Willimantic: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Willimantic is a census-designated place, former city and borough, and special-services district. It is located in the town of Windham in Windham County, Connecticut. The population was 17,737 at the 2010 census. It is home to Eastern Connecticut State University and the Windham Textile and History Museum. Willimantic was incorporated as a city in 1893; the city was superseded in 1983 by the Willimantic Special Services District/Willimantic CDP. It is also the birthplace of former U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd of Connecticut.

Westport, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 27,511
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 62
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 41.1%
More on Westport: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Westport is a town located in Connecticut, along Long Island Sound within Connecticut’s Gold Coast in Fairfield County, Connecticut. It is 47 miles northeast of New York City. The town had a population of 26,391 according to the 2010 U.S. Census, and is ranked 22nd among America-s 100 Richest Places as well as second in Connecticut, with populations between 20,000 and 65,000.

Darien, CT

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Population: 21,519
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 54
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 52.9%
More on Darien: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Darien is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. Located on Connecticut’s “Gold Coast,” the population was 20,732 at the 2010 census. Darien is one of the wealthiest communities in the U.S.; it was listed at #2 on CNN Money’s list of “top-earning towns” in the United States as of 2010.

Orange, CT

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Population: 13,941
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 59
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 33.2%
More on Orange: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Orange is a town in New Haven County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 13,956 at the 2010 census. The town is governed by a Board of Selectmen.

Greenwich, CT

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Population: 13,429
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 67
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 28.2%
More on Greenwich: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Greenwich is a town in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. As of the 2010 census, the town had a total population of 61,171. The largest town on Connecticut’s Gold Coast, it is home to many hedge funds and other financial service companies. Greenwich is the southernmost and westernmost municipality in Connecticut as well as the six-state region of New England. It takes roughly 40-50 minutes by train from Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan. CNN/Money and Money magazine ranked Greenwich 12th on its list of the “100 Best Places to Live in the United States” in 2005. The town is named after Greenwich, a borough of London in the United Kingdom.

Shelton, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 40,979
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 36
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 28.6%
More on Shelton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Shelton is a city in Fairfield County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 39,559 at the 2010 census.

West Hartford, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 63,187
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 47
Closest Major City: Boston
Households with kids: 32.6%
More on West Hartford: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

West Hartford is an affluent suburb located in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. Located 5 miles west of downtown Hartford, the population was 63,268 at the 2010 census.

Ansonia, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 18,950
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 55
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 29.6%
More on Ansonia: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Ansonia is a city in New Haven County, Connecticut, United States, on the Naugatuck River, immediately north of Derby, and about 12 miles northwest of New Haven. The population was 19,249 at the 2010 census. The ZIP code for Ansonia is 06401. The city is served by the Metro-North Railroad. Ansonia Station is a stop on the railroad passenger commuter service’s Waterbury line, connecting to New York’s Grand Central Terminal. Ansonia also is served by the Connecticut Transit bus carrier. Connecticut Route 8 serves Ansonia.

Windsor Locks, CT

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 12,537
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 43
Closest Major City: Boston
Households with kids: 24.5%
More on Windsor Locks: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Windsor Locks is a town in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. As of the 2010 census, its population was 12,498. It is the site of Bradley International Airport, which serves the Greater Hartford-Springfield region and occupies approximately 1/3 of the town. Windsor Locks is also the site of the New England Air Museum.

Bristol, CT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 60,437
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 66
Closest Major City: New York
Households with kids: 28.5%
More on Bristol: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

There You Have It – The Best Places To Grow Up In Connecticut

If you’re looking for a breakdown of cities in Connecticut ranked by criteria that most would agree make a place a great spot for families, this is an accurate list.

Here’s a look at the best cities for singles Connecticut according to the data:

  1. Meriden
  2. Waterbury
  3. Torrington

For more Connecticut reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places For Families In Connecticut

Rank City Population Amenities Score
1 Willimantic 17,339 69
2 Westport 27,511 57
3 Darien 21,519 53
4 Orange 13,941 61
5 Greenwich 13,429 48
6 Shelton 40,979 45
7 West Hartford 63,187 74
8 Ansonia 18,950 45
9 Windsor Locks 12,537 38
10 Bristol 60,437 48
11 Trumbull 36,477 38
12 Norwich 40,057 67
13 Stamford 127,410 68
14 Bridgeport 147,022 77
15 Hartford 124,320 78
16 New London 27,218 48
17 Danbury 83,890 41
18 West Haven 54,972 42
19 Norwalk 87,930 42
20 Middletown 46,933 69
21 New Haven 130,405 88
22 Manchester 30,364 65
23 Stratford 52,300 40
24 North Haven 23,888 61
25 East Hartford 50,834 51
26 Milford 52,005 63
27 Derby 12,755 32
28 Naugatuck 31,625 60
29 East Haven 29,015 51
30 New Britain 72,876 67
31 Newington 30,590 43
32 Torrington 35,227 62
33 Waterbury 109,211 52
34 Meriden 60,203 47

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