The 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Arizona For 2021

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

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Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2021. This is our seventh time ranking the best cities for families in Arizona.

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Living in Arizona is not painful like falling into a cactus in the Saguaro National Park would be. Actually, it's quite the opposite. The Grand Canyon State is super safe and extremely family friendly.

Speaking of the Grand Canyon, there's ton of family friendly activities everywhere you turn in Arizona. The Copper State is just one big playground for little kids and big kids alike. For example, you and your family can hike Camelback Mountain in Phoenix and snowboard in Flagstaff in the same day. Now if that doesn't wear out your kids, you can stop in Sedona and check out some great art on the way to whitewater raft the Colorado River in Page: mountain biking in Payson along the way would just be extra icing on the cake.

There are also really great camps that ask that your kids to stay a week. We recommend Sky Y in Prescott. There's nothing wrong with a little husband, wife or partner time; so after you drop off the kids, head to one of the many relaxing spas in Scottsdale to celebrate your new found freedom. In all seriousness, Arizona has some of the best schools in the country. Blue ribbon elementary schools, gold star high schools, and colleges like University of Arizona, Arizona State, and Northern Arizona, have been delivering the next generation to work at major Arizona companies like the McDonald's Corporation, Banner Health, Intel Corporation, and American Airlines.

Now don't count yourselves out of the mix, parents. There are plenty of jobs available in Arizona for everyone--they have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country. And with a $53,000/year household median, there's plenty of cheddar to keep your family happy, healthy, and having fun year round. To take a closer look at the top ten cities on our family friendly Arizona cities for 2021, grab your family, a no-mess carne asada burrito, and head to a sunny spot on Lake Havasu and read on.

The 10 Best Cities To Raise A Family In Arizona For 2021

  1. Maricopa
  2. Coolidge
  3. Florence
  4. Somerton
  5. Chandler
  6. Prescott
  7. Avondale
  8. Apache Junction
  9. Nogales
  10. Sierra Vista

To narrow down the most family friendly cities in Arizona, we looked at several factors: crime, education, family friendly activities and percent of households that currently have children. The cities also had to have a population of at least 11,000.

There were 35 said family friendly cities in one of the largest states in the Southwest. But what was the best place for families in Arizona? Without further adieu, the most family friendly city in Arizona for 2021 is Maricopa.

So, if you care about your family living where crime is low, schools are awesome, and a there's a ton of stuff to do, take a look at the list below. The Valentine State is calling.

Check out some more reading about Arizona and the best places for families in the country:

The 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Arizona For 2021

Maricopa, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 48,629
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 36
Closest Major City: Chandler
Households with kids: 41.4%
More on Maricopa: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Coolidge, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 12,685
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 52
Closest Major City: Gilbert
Households with kids: 45.8%
More on Coolidge: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Florence, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 26,420
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 55
Closest Major City: Gilbert
Households with kids: 20.1%
More on Florence: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Somerton, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 16,146
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 54
Closest Major City: Chula Vista
Households with kids: 55.1%
More on Somerton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Chandler, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 252,692
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 50
Households with kids: 37.0%
More on Chandler: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Prescott, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 42,785
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 72
Closest Major City: Scottsdale
Households with kids: 13.0%
More on Prescott: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Avondale, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 84,736
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 51
Closest Major City: Glendale
Households with kids: 46.9%
More on Avondale: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Apache Junction, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 40,592
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 42
Closest Major City: Mesa
Households with kids: 19.1%
More on Apache Junction: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Nogales, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 20,201
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 43
Closest Major City: Tucson
Households with kids: 42.8%
More on Nogales: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Sierra Vista, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 43,398
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 39
Closest Major City: Tucson
Households with kids: 31.0%
More on Sierra Vista: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

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

To give you the places in Arizona 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 Grand Canyon 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 Arizona, 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 11,000 people. For Arizona, that meant a total of 35 cities. You can download the data here.

There You Have It - The Best Places To Raise A Family In Arizona

If you're looking for a breakdown of cities in Arizona 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 Arizona according to the data:

  1. Marana
  2. Goodyear
  3. Phoenix

For more Arizona reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places For Families In Arizona?

Rank City Population Amenities Score
1 Maricopa, AZ 48,629 53
2 Coolidge, AZ 12,685 45
3 Florence, AZ 26,420 61
4 Somerton, AZ 16,146 33
5 Chandler, AZ 252,692 67
6 Prescott, AZ 42,785 82
7 Avondale, AZ 84,736 58
8 Apache Junction, AZ 40,592 37
9 Nogales, AZ 20,201 44
10 Sierra Vista, AZ 43,398 66

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.