There are divine countries around the globe that offer unforgettable vacations and exhilarating adventures. On the other hand, there are other that are always steeped into political, economic, and religious chaos. Kidnapping in Venezuela, drug traffickers in Mexico, armed robberies in South Africa, and carjacking in Guatemala. Not long ago, these destinations were considered safe and exotic areas that lured tourists with their natural beauties, ecosystem preserves, and genuine people. Revolutions and terrorism haven’t stopped these countries from promoting tourism. Potentially fatal yet undoubtedly dazzling, will the risk be worth the trip?
A city of the developing world, Port-au-Prince is the most populated and capital city of Haiti. One of the most enchanting and vibrant destinations in the Caribbean, this city is also rocked by an ongoing political crisis, devastating earthquakes and organized crime. A striking blend of chaos, heritage, and adventure, it most certainly is a hot new travel destination. Yet, one question still remains: is it safe? Well, crime will most certainly be an issue since its murder rate is rocket-high, with 60 murders per 100,000 residents. With many political demonstrations that are a regular feature of this city, you’ll frequently come across road-blocks and shattered windows. Furthermore, additional risks include illegal drug trades, kidnappings, robberies, and sexual violence. The most high-crime areas are Cite-Soleil, Croix-des-Bouquet, Carrefour, and Bel Air. It is highly recommended to all U.S citizens traveling to Haiti to enroll into the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program in order to receive the most up-to-date security information.
#9 Lima, Peru
Founded in 1535, Lima is a marvelous city abundant in history, natural wonders, and archaeological sites. From Incan temples and opulent palaces to elegant cathedrals and beachfront areas. Lima is a dazzling shopping, dining, and adventure destination. An oasis of fascination to many museum aficionados, archaeology enthusiasts, and cuisine connoisseurs, Lima is also a cradle of danger. Demonstrations are common here and can turn violent in an instant. Moreover, drug trafficking is a serious crime, as well as terrorism and robbery. There have been many reports of rape, passport theft, bogus taxi drivers, bogus tour operators, and road-blocks. However, if you avoid the dangerous areas, keep an eye on your belongings, travel in groups, and apply your common sense, Lima will most certainly be an exhilarating and memorable experience.
A majestic kingdom of exotic wildlife, non-stop action, and unique culture, Bangkok is a tapestry of wonder. Here old-world charm and modern lifestyle collide to give you an unmatched holiday experience. The alluring skyscrapers, motorcycle taxis, mouth-watering cheap eats, Thai music, and Buddhist monks are only several of this destination’s exciting sights, sounds, and tastes. A blend of spicy, sour, sweet, and salty, Bangkok is an urban exploration of galleries, museums, temples, spas, and plush hotels. However, its hot weather, high pollution, and political instability that make it a less-than-ideal travel destination. With multiple explosions, incidents, and a high rate of terrorism, Bangkok is home to many road traffic accidents, date rapes, sexual assaults, and the locally transmitted Zika virus. If you’re planning on visiting this city, try to obtain as much information from U.S agencies on how to manage economic, political, and life-related risks.
Rio is lovely sunshine and thrilling sports. Rio is the samba nightlife and Copacabana Beach. It is a marvelous “marriage” of spectacular football matches, seaside beauty, and dazzling celebrations, where you can find satisfaction in just peacefully walking in the park, spotting exotic monkeys, and greeting the sunshine. A city that lives to the fullest, Rio de Janeiro bursts with deep history, national heritage, and natural wonders. As much as it is brilliant and vibrant, this enchanting travel destination is also dangerous and highly unsafe. The most frequent types of crimes are pick pockets and street muggings, and they often involve knives and guns. Express-kidnapping could sometimes be the issue, as well as many riots and protests. Furthermore, there is a heightened threat of terrorist attacks and local cases of Zika virus. When visiting Rio, try to travel in groups, be careful about public transportation at night, be aware of your surroundings, do not walk around wearing expensive items, and don’t leave belongings unattended.
Abundant in hard-laborers, artists, and exotic flora and fauna, Mumbai is India’s religious, economic, and financial epicenter. Known for its crowded streets, outdoor bazaars, and many religious sites, Mumbai is a blend of colors, bargains, and furious energy. From the Taj Mahal Palace and Elephanta Island to the Gateway of India and the Iskcon Temple, Mumbai is a sanctuary of intrigue to many travel enthusiasts. However, its pollution, high crime rates and demonstrations can sometimes be challenging or tourists. With an ongoing political rallies and demonstrations, tourists should exercise a degree of caution and security. There are various threats of terrorist attacks that are most commonly directed to festivals, tourist sites, hotels, markets and public transport. Moreover, safety of women is an additional issue with multiple sexual assaults reported by foreigners. Due to the dangerous drink spiking, pick-pocketing, and taxi scams, you should respect local dress codes and customs, avoid isolated areas, avoid travelling alone, take care of your passport and bank cards, and do not leave your belongings unattended.
A city in which colonial meets urbane, Bogota is a vibrant, exhilarating, and fast-paced capital. From the historic downtown to the contemporary area, Bogota is a beautifully preserved blend of lavish hotels, exquisite restaurants, historic museums, and chic entertainment districts. Diverse and multicultural, the city’s many verdant parks and grand mountains further enhance its beauty and splendor. An explosion of creativity and individuality, Bogota seems to have its darker side as well. Due to the growing divide between the rich and the poor, Bogota battles with high rates of street crime. A risky travel destination, the most common issues include pick-pocketing, muggings, armed robberies, and drink spiking. The capital is a center of violent and passionate protests, as well as car bombings, threat of terrorism, and guerrilla activities. If you have a trip planned to Bogota, try avoiding the hillside developments due to flooding and landslides, keep a low profile, use the public transport, and travel in groups.
A hectic cosmopolitan city, Kingston is plentiful in sunshine, exotic jungles, and historic buildings. This marvelous tourist destination will impress and thrill with its vibrant music, cultural sights, art museums, and exclusive neighborhoods. Always authentic and never boring, travels to Kingston reveal delicious meals, breathtaking views, and Bob Marley’s influence. In spite of the general poverty, the city still bursts with optimism, music, and laughter. However, there is also danger in paradise. Here crime is a growing problem and thieves are always on the lookout for cash, valuable electronics, and jewelry. With sky-high murder rates per capita, these deadly acts are not limited to locals. Further issues include sexual assaults, gang violence, drug smuggling, police corruption, and possible protests and demonstrations. It is advisable to stay away from the inner city areas, avoid wandering around alone, and take great care on the roads.
Luring tourists with its Maya temples, modern art museums, and botanical gardens, Guatemala City’s attractions vary from archaeological sites to contemporary culture. Energetic, chaotic, and dazzling, this people-friendly city features a wide range of exquisite restaurants, galleries, attractive cafes, and vibrant bars. In spite of its spectacular volcanoes, flamboyant markets, and ancient ruins, Guatemala City has a questionable reputation for security. Being one of the Latin countries with highest violent crime rates, theft and armed robberies are the most frequent problem here. No area is immune to these assaults that can sometimes turn violent. Due to the general poverty, there is an abundance of weapons, weak low enforcement and judicial systems. Additional issues include carjacking, rape, sexual assault, kidnapping, and murder. Another serious threat are the narco-trafficking gangs and the organized crime groups. Speed limits and traffic signs are often ignored, and there is a lack of cross walks. Driving outside of urban areas at night is dangerous and not recommended. Moreover, avoid using public ATMs, walking alone, travelling on public buses, and all demonstrations.
Cape Town is the spectacular flower blooms, the sandy beaches, and the coastal roads. Cape Town is the vibrant markets, delicious cuisine, and mountain bike trails. A Christian, Muslim, Jewish, and Hindu blend that coexists delightfully, Cape Town is an explosion of gorgeous natural landscapes, botanical gardens, street art illustrations, and fun picnics outdoors. While its bountiful vineyards and majestic vistas capture people’s hearts, its high crime rates break it in thousand little pieces. Due to the widespread poverty, robberies are quite common here, as well as car hijacking and pick-pocketing. More than 4 people are being killed every single day, and every hour of everyday a woman is being sexually assaulted somewhere in the city. Stick to the main tourist locations, avoid going off-track and exhibiting pricey belongings, but most of all…don’t be alienated by negative hype.
A party town, exotic haven, and a honeymoon destination, Acapulco is the “Pearl of the Pacific”. Brilliant, romantic, and overdeveloped, this city is a real of world-class botanical gardens, secluded beaches, 17th century fort, and countless nightclubs. The perfect place to sample authentic dishes, get golden tan, and meet beautiful people, Acapulco is the most spectacular and the most dangerous resort city in the world. Acapulco’s reputation has been stained by years of violent battles and ongoing drug wars. With sky-high homicide statistics, the main issue here are the gang battles for supremacy. These gun fights occur even in broad daylight on streets and public venues. These criminal organizations are also culpable of many kidnappings, carjacking, and highway robberies. Victims of traditional kidnappings are held captive until ransom is paid, while victims of “express” kidnappings are held for a short time and forced to withdraw money from ATMs. Furthermore, demonstrations are common and happen in all parts of the city and can escalate into violence in an instant. Exercise extreme caution when traveling throughout the area, lower your personal profile, avoid displaying indicators of wealth, maintain awareness of your surroundings, and keep away from situations in which you may be isolated or stand out as a potential victim.