While many people think traveling to Europe consists of only beautiful beaches, ancient ruins, and pristine cities, there are still some countries that can be dangerous for travelers.
In 2023, these seven countries have been identified as the most dangerous in Europe, according to the Global Peace Index ranking.
Keep this list in mind if you’re planning on traveling this upcoming summer season.
Suggested: Most dangerous countries in Asia in 2023
Kosovo ranks 71 on the GPI, with violent clashes in northern Kosovo and incidents of grenades and vehicle explosions in northern Mitrovica. Use caution and avoid public gatherings, especially near the Austerlitz Bridge, which connects north and south Mitrovica.
Bomb threats in Kosovo have increased, especially against transportation centers. Keep an eye on the news and follow the recommendations of local authorities.
We advise extreme caution throughout Kosovo as politically motivated violence may occur, especially in the northern regions.
Armenia sits at number 83 on the Global Peace Index, with a long history of political unrest and armed conflicts with its bordering countries, including Turkey and Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan’s recent takeover of Nagorno-Karabakh has increased tensions in the region, with a high risk of violence and armed conflict for both citizens and tourists.
In addition, Armenia is now a threat level 2 according to the U.S. Department of State due to bombings within the country. While Armenia is known for its religious sites, tourists should be aware of the potential risks associated with traveling to this country.
Latest News from Armenia:
– Armenia: Russia’s peacekeepers failed mission in Nagorno-Karabakh
Bordered by Russia, Turkey, Armenia, and the Black Sea, Georgia is a crossroads for some of the most dangerous Eastern Europe countries, many of which are in conflict with each other. As of 2022, the country is listed at rank 95 on the Global Peace Index due to its relationship with Russia.
While it remains a threat level 1 according to the U.S. Department of State, tourists should remain aware of the potential risk to their safety while traveling here. This is especially true in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, where tourists should be wary of Russia’s troops, crime, and even land mines.
Belarus is an Eastern European Country bordered by Poland, Ukraine, and Russia. Unfortunately, increased strongholds of authoritarianism in the region on behalf of the Russians have placed this country on the Global Peace Index at position 116.
The U.S. Department of State also puts the country of Belarus at Level 4, meaning there is a strict no travel advisory in place due to the ongoing political unrest. This means travelers should avoid all non-essential travel to Belarus, due to Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine from the country.
Latest News from Belarus:
– Russia, Belarus Kick Off Joint Air Force Drills
According to the U.S. Department of State, Azerbaijan is currently at a Level 2 threat alert due to ongoing armed conflicts with Armenia. It’s recommended to steer clear of Nagorno-Karabakh and the border with Armenia. While many visitors flock to Azerbaijan due to its capital city of Baku and the surrounding Caspian Sea, there are still safety risks associated with this city. It currently ranks 128 on the GPI.
Due to terrorist attacks in Ankara and Istanbul, Turkey has become an increasingly dangerous country for travelers. With a Global Peace Index rank of 145, visitors to the country should be aware of potential risks. Armed assaults, suicide bombings, targeting attacks on religious centers, and more leave this country on a precarious footing.
Turkey also has a storied history with the surrounding country of Armenian, accused of genocide and denial of the Armenian genocide. Political tensions between these two countries have only risen, which makes traveling to Turkey a potentially hazardous endeavor as well.
Ukraine is located in Eastern Europe just bordering Russia. With a long-standing civil conflict between pro-Russian separatists and the Ukrainian government, Ukraine now finds itself, as of 2022, in the midst of a war with Russia, and has been struggling to maintain peace. It ranks 153rd on the Global Peace Index, making it an especially risky place for tourists.
As war and political unrest plague this city due to Russia’s overtaking, it is imperative to remain vigilant when traveling here. Many refugees are now seeking shelter outside of Ukraine to escape the conflict, and there has been a significant rise in cases of bombings, mass killings, and attacks in the region.
Latest News from Ukraine:
– Ukraine war live updates: Kyiv says it must use every day to ramp up defenses at the front, ahead of Russian offensive
Russia sits at number 160 on the Global Peace Index, a measure of the safety of a country. With a long tradition of ethnic conflicts, political corruption, and organized crime, it is, as of 2022, the more dangerous country in Eastern Europe. In addition, the recent war with Ukraine has made certain parts of the country especially risky for travelers.
While Russia is known for its rich culture, its capital city of Moscow and St. Petersburg, and other popular tourist destinations, it is extremely dangerous to travel here due to Russia’s ongoing efforts to control Ukraine.