10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Maryland For 2018

We used science and data to determine which cities in Maryland 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 Maryland? We’ve got the answers here.

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

  1. La Plata (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Bowie (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Hampstead (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Takoma Park (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Glenarden (Homes For Sale)
  6. Annapolis (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Frederick (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. New Carrollton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Hagerstown (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Taneytown (Photos | Homes For Sale)

If you’re thinking of making a move to Maryland, 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 Maryland and the best places for families in the country:

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

To give you the places in Maryland 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 Old Line 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 Maryland, 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 5,000 people. For Maryland, that meant a total of 31 cities.

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

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La Plata, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,059
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 64
Closest Major City: Arlington
Households with kids: 38.2%
More on La Plata: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

La Plata is a town in Charles County, Maryland, United States. The population was 8,753 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Charles County.

Bowie, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 57,633
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 54
Closest Major City: Washington
Households with kids: 34.8%
More on Bowie: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Bowie is a city in Prince George’s County, Maryland. The population was 54,727 at the 2010 U.S. Census. Bowie has grown from a small railroad stop to the largest municipality in Prince George’s County, and the fifth most populous city and third largest city by area in the U.S. state of Maryland. In 2014 CNN Money ranked Bowie 28th in its Best Places to Live in America list.

Hampstead, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,352
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 48
Closest Major City: Baltimore
Households with kids: 38.7%
More on Hampstead: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Hampstead is a town in Carroll County in the U.S. state of Maryland. The population was 6,323 at the 2010 census.

Takoma Park, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 17,567
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 39
Closest Major City: Washington
Households with kids: 36.6%
More on Takoma Park: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Takoma Park is a city in Montgomery County, Maryland. It is a suburb of Washington, D.C., and part of the Washington metropolitan area. Founded in 1883 and incorporated in 1890, Takoma Park, informally called “Azalea City”, is a Tree City USA and a nuclear-free zone. A planned commuter suburb, it is situated along the Metropolitan Branch of the historic Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, just northeast of Washington, D.C., and it borders the neighborhood of Takoma, Washington, D.C. It is governed by an elected mayor and six elected councilmembers, who form the city council, and an appointed city manager, under a council-manager style of government. The city’s population was 16,715 at the 2010 national census.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,110
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 45
Closest Major City: Washington
Households with kids: 33.8%
More on Glenarden: Homes For Sale | Data

Glenarden is a city in Prince George’s County, Maryland, United States. The population was 6,000 at the 2010 census.

Annapolis, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 39,009
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 97
Closest Major City: Baltimore
Households with kids: 28.8%
More on Annapolis: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Annapolis is the capital of the U.S. state of Maryland, as well as the county seat of Anne Arundel County. Situated on the Chesapeake Bay at the mouth of the Severn River, 25 miles south of Baltimore and about 30 miles east of Washington, D.C., Annapolis is part of the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area. Its population was measured at 38,394 by the 2010 census.

Frederick, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 68,229
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 68
Closest Major City: Arlington
Households with kids: 32.5%
More on Frederick: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Frederick is a city and the county seat of Frederick County in the U.S. state of Maryland. It is part of the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area. Frederick has long been an important crossroads, located at the intersection of a major north-south Indian trail, and east-west routes to the Chesapeake Bay, both at Baltimore and what became Washington, D.C. and across the Appalachian mountains to the Ohio River watershed. It is a part of the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is part of a greater Washington-Baltimore-Arlington, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA Combined Statistical Area. The city’s population was 65,239 people at the 2010 United States Census, making it the second-largest incorporated city in Maryland, behind Baltimore. Frederick is home to Frederick Municipal Airport, which primarily accommodates general aviation traffic, and to the county’s largest employer U.S. Army’s Fort Detrick bioscience/communications research installation.

New Carrollton, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 12,727
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 31
Closest Major City: Washington
Households with kids: 36.7%
More on New Carrollton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

New Carrollton is a city located in central Prince George’s County, Maryland, in the United States. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, the population was 12,135. New Carrollton is located 12 miles east of central Washington, D.C.

Hagerstown, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 40,325
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 66
Closest Major City: Arlington
Households with kids: 35.9%
More on Hagerstown: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Hagerstown is a city in Washington County, Maryland, United States. It is the county seat of Washington County. The population of Hagerstown city proper at the 2010 census was 39,662, and the population of the Hagerstown-Martinsburg Metropolitan Area was 269,140. Hagerstown ranks as Maryland’s sixth largest incorporated city.

Taneytown, MD

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,755
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 39
Closest Major City: Baltimore
Households with kids: 34.7%
More on Taneytown: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Taneytown is a town in Carroll County, Maryland, United States. The population was 6,728 at the 2010 census. Taneytown was founded in 1754. Of the town, George Washington once wrote, “Tan-nee town is but a small place with only the Street through wch. the road passes, built on. The buildings are principally of wood.” Taneytown has a history museum that displays the history of the town for visitors and citizens to see. The Bullfrog Road Bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.

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

If you’re looking for a breakdown of cities in Maryland 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 Maryland according to the data:

  1. Fruitland
  2. Mount Rainier
  3. Cambridge

For more Maryland reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places For Families In Maryland

Rank City Population Amenities Score
1 La Plata 9,059 50
2 Bowie 57,633 51
3 Hampstead 6,352 44
4 Takoma Park 17,567 47
5 Glenarden 6,110 50
6 Annapolis 39,009 93
7 Frederick 68,229 84
8 New Carrollton 12,727 49
9 Hagerstown 40,325 55
10 Taneytown 6,755 46
11 Riverdale Park 7,221 33
12 Brunswick 6,101 50
13 Cheverly 6,390 44
14 Hyattsville 18,262 62
15 Laurel 25,703 32
16 Easton 16,637 39
17 Westminster 18,665 40
18 Thurmont 6,435 51
19 Elkton 15,687 64
20 Frostburg 8,718 59
21 Salisbury 32,338 62
22 Greenbelt 23,623 50
23 Baltimore 621,000 100
24 Cumberland 20,290 53
25 Bladensburg 9,505 47
26 Aberdeen 15,361 36
27 Ocean Pines 11,676 48
28 Havre De Grace 13,505 36
29 Cambridge 12,552 63
30 Mount Rainier 8,364 38
31 Fruitland 5,151 46

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One thought on “10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Maryland For 2018

  1. i don’t know how you did your homework, but you left out Columbia Md,
    I was born and raised and lived here my whole life. From Riverdale, and have lived in many other places in Maryland. five counties, and i know Maryland fairly well. No place can beat Columbia , in Howard co.

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