The world’s most dangerous destinations have several black marks on their records—from terrorism and kidnappings to deadly animal attacks and natural disasters. We suggest you think twice before planning a holiday to one of these 10 destinations:
10) Port St. Johns, South Africa
In recent years, South Africa’s “Wild Coast” has lived up to its nickname. Since 2007, every shark attack occurring on Port St. John’s Second Beach has been fatal, making it the world’s most dangerous beach. Fortunately, shark attacks are scarce, so most tourists can look forward to a quiet, rustic getaway with no hospital stays or holiday accident claims to make once they return home.
9) Kathmandu, Nepal
What makes this capital city so dangerous isn’t something that’s currently happening, but could at any moment. A study carried out by GeoHazards recently predicted that an earthquake with a magnitude of 6.0 or higher could kill a whopping 69,000 people in Nepal, largely due to inadequate building preparations.
8) Yakutsk, Eastern Siberia
This capital city has an extreme subarctic climate that’s not for the faint of heart. With average lows dipping to minus forty degrees Celsius in January, a burst heating pipe or a breakdown on a remote roadway could prove to be fatal. In summer, temperatures move to the other extreme, making it a tricky destination to pack for.
7) Grozny, Chechnya, Russia
At times referred to as the “Most Destroyed City on Earth,” warfare in Grozny from the mid-1990s through 2006 left this city a former shell of what it used to be. Organized crime is still prevalent, including a high number of rapes, kidnappings, and murders.
6) Port-au-Prince, Haiti
While Haiti is taking strides to join the ranks of the Dominican Republic and neighbouring islands as a worldwide tourist destination, it remains one of the poorest and most troubled nations in the Western Hemisphere, with high murder rates, car-jackings, armed robberies, and a thriving drug trafficking industry.
5) Azad Kashmir
The home of some of the world’s most stunning natural landscapes—snow covered peaks, lush valleys, and serene rivers and streams—Kashmir is rocked by military conflict. Sadly, continued suicide bombings, organised crime, human trafficking, and abduction make travel unsafe for tourists.
4) Mogadishu, Somalia
While conditions in Mogadishu have begun to improve and some embassies have even reopened their doors over the past year, the city is still riddled with political unrest. More than one million people have lost their lives as a consequence of the civil war and famine in Somalia since 1991, making it a place that’s still a long way from being safe for leisure tourists.
3) Ciudad Juarez, Mexico
In recent years, Ciudad Juarez has established a notorious reputation as one of the world’s most violent places. The Mexican government has reported murder tolls of up to 5,000 over the past two years. Drug trafficking pervades the city, and its cartels are violent and ruthless.
2) San Pedro Sula, Honduras
In 2012, San Pedro Sula took on the unfortunate title of the “Murder Capital of the World.” Estimates suggest that a violent death takes place every 74 minutes in Honduras, forcing most civilians to carry a weapon for protection. Tourists are especially advised to stay away from the city, as they are obvious targets of robberies and violent crimes.
1) Baghdad, Iraq
Iraq continues to be home to one of the world’s most unstable political climates, with major suicide bombings, gunfire, car bombs, and other coordinated attacks occurring on almost a weekly basis. For this reason, most travel departments strongly suggest avoiding all—or at least all non-essential—travel.