November 20, 2023 | Miles Brucker

The Delicate Balance of Safety in Popular Tourist Destinations


High Risk Tourist Destinations

A group of touristsNejron, Adobe Stock

Traveling to exotic locations can be an enriching experience, offering a glimpse into diverse cultures and stunning landscapes.

However, safety remains a paramount concern in certain popular tourist destinations, where venturing outside the confines of a resort can pose risks.

This article explores ten such destinations where travelers are advised to stay within the safety of their resorts, discussing the reasons behind these safety concerns.

Acapulco, Mexico

city and beach in Acapulco, MexicoAdobe Stock

Once a glamorous getaway, Acapulco has seen a rise in corruption rates in recent years.

According to the 2021 Mexican Government report, Acapulco had one of the highest rates of intentional loss of life in Mexico, primarily attributed to gang-related brutality.

While the tourist areas and resorts generally remain safe, venturing into the city can be risky.

Safety Tip: If you must leave the resort, consider a guided tour with a reputable company known for prioritizing tourist safety.

Kingston, Jamaica

Kingston, JamaicaAdobe Stock

Kingston, known for its rich reggae music heritage, unfortunately, faces challenges with brutal corruption.

The U.S. State Department's 2021 travel advisory placed parts of Kingston at a Level 3 Travel Advisory, citing brutal corruption such as armed burglary and loss of life.

Safety Tip: Use transportation arranged by your resort and avoid walking in less populated areas, especially at night.

Roatán, Honduras

Resort in Roatan, HondurasAdobe Stock

While Roatán is a beautiful Caribbean destination, Honduras has one of the world's highest intentional loss of life rates. Issues with substance trafficking and gang brutality spill over to affect security.

Safety Tip: Stay within the resort, especially after dark, and only participate in excursions organized by trusted operators.

Caracas, Venezuela

Caracas, VenezuelaEagle, Adobe Stock

Caracas faces significant political unrest, alongside high rates of brutal corruption, including one of the highest intentional loss of life rates globally. The economic challenges have exacerbated safety issues in the city.

Safety Tip: Ensure your resort has robust security measures and seek advice from hotel staff before planning any local excursions.

Nairobi, Kenya

Nairobi, KenyaAdobe Stock

Nairobi, while a gateway to Kenya's stunning wildlife reserves, has areas with high corruption rates, including vicious robberies. According to the Overseas Security Advisory Council, street corruption and carjackings are significant concerns.

Safety Tip: Use pre-arranged transportation for safari trips or visits to tourist sites, and avoid displaying valuables in public.

Manila, Philippines

Cityscape Manila, PhilippinesAdobe Stock

Manila, the capital of the Philippines, struggles with corruption, including burglary, cons, and occasional vicious incidents. Travel advisories often warn tourists to be cautious in certain areas of the city.

Safety Tip: When exploring popular spots like Intramuros, always go with a group and stay in well-lit, busy areas.

Baltimore, USA

John WatersWikipedia

Baltimore, despite its attractions, has high corruption rates in certain areas. The FBI's 2020 Corruption in the U.S. Report cited Baltimore as having one of the highest intentional losses of life rates among major U.S. cities.

Safety Tip: Stick to tourist-friendly areas and use transportation provided by your hotel for city tours.

Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Port-Au-Prince, HaitiAdobe Stock

Haiti’s capital faces challenges with gang brutality and political instability. The U.S. State Department often issues travel warnings, advising against unnecessary travel to Haiti.

Safety Tip: If traveling to Haiti, staying within the resort for the duration of your stay is advisable. Ensure your accommodation has reliable security.

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town, South AfricaAdobe Stock

Cape Town is renowned for its beauty, but it also has areas with high corruption rates, including physical brutality and robberies.

Safety Tip: Visit well-known tourist destinations during the day and always in groups. Utilize transportation services provided by your resort.

São Paulo, Brazil

São Paulo, BrazilAdobe Stock

São Paulo, a bustling metropolis, experiences high levels of corruption in certain neighborhoods, including theft and armed burglary.

Safety Tip: Keep your belongings secure and use resort-arranged transportation. Be particularly cautious when using public transportation.

Final Thoughts

Something Wasn’t Right factsPixabay

Traveling to new destinations is always exciting, but it's crucial to prioritize safety. By staying informed and taking necessary precautions, travelers can enjoy the beauty and culture of these locations without compromising their well-being.


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