8 Most Dangerous Countries In Latin America In 2024, According To GPI Data

7 Most Dangerous Countries In Latin America In 2023

Latin America is a wonderful region to explore. It is rich in culture, hosts magnificent natural reserves, and offers some of the best cuisines in the world.

Social difficulties, poverty, and a high crime index continue to plague parts of the continent, leading travelers to ask: Which Latin American countries are the most dangerous to visit in 2024?

GPI MAP: Most Dangerous Countries In Latin America

Without further ado, these are the 8most dangerous countries in Latin America according to Global Peace Index:

8. Peru – 123

This nation was ranked at position 123 on the GPI.

Peru, while a captivating destination with its rich history and breathtaking landscapes, can present safety challenges for tourists. One of the primary concerns is petty theft and pickpocketing, especially in crowded tourist areas and public transportation hubs. Tourists may also encounter scams and fraud, such as overpriced services or fake tour operators.

In some regions, particularly remote areas and border regions, there may be issues related to civil unrest, protests, or strikes, which can occasionally disrupt travel plans and pose potential risks to tourists’ safety.

Altitude sickness can affect visitors in higher-altitude locations like Cusco or Arequipa, so acclimatization is crucial before engaging in physical activities.

Moreover, instances of petty crime and drug-related problems might exist in certain neighborhoods of major cities like Lima.

7. El Salvador – 122

This nation was ranked at position 122 on the GPI.

The U.S. State Department advises citizens to reconsider travel to El Salvador due to violent crime, including armed robbery, homicide, and sexual assault which are of concern throughout significant portions of the country.

El Salvador is a relatively safe destination at the time of this article’s publication. El Salvador is known for its gang-related crime. Nevertheless, visitors to El Salvador should be warned that while most conflicts are between gangs and the police, violence can occur anywhere in the country.

El Salvador currently reports its lowest murder rate in more than a decade, which should mean the country is safer than ever.

Latest News from El Salvador:

March 16: The government of El Salvador has increased its efforts to combat gang violence by transferring an additional 2,000 suspected gang members to a maximum security prison in the country.

6. Honduras – 123

This nation was ranked at position 123 on the GPI.

best beaches in honduras

If you join a guided tour, Honduras is a safe destination, but if you travel on your own, you may encounter security issues. Petty theft and violent robberies, which can occur at any time, are common safety issues.

Pickpocketing and purse snatching are commonplace on the streets, in airports and outside hotels. Gangs often target vehicles passing through empty areas and demand items and cash from tourists.

Assault, kidnapping, rape, and murder of visitors are common forms of violent crime, as are petty thefts. In addition to these crimes, there are other security problems in Honduras, such as:

  • Natural disasters like earthquakes and slides
  • Accidents caused by poor road conditions
  • Injury during demonstrations
  • Credit card and ATM fraud
  • Spiked food and drinks
  • Scams

5. Nicaragua – 123

This nation was ranked at position 123 on the GPI.

Travelers can feel safe in Nicaragua. However, it is advisable to use common sense, just as in any other country. Despite government efforts to increase security in tourist areas, social and political unrest in the country is a serious problem.

The United States issued a Level 3 travel warning for Nicaragua. This is mainly due to the political climate in the country and the lack of healthcare options.

Other countries, including Canada and New Zealand, have also issued Level 3 and Level 2 recommendations for travel to the region. In addition to political unrest, you could also be affected by a crime or natural disaster. Since 2018, there have been more cases of violent crimes such as armed robberies and sexual assaults.

Latest News from Nicaragua:

January 16, 2024: U.S. updated its Travel Advisory for Nicaragua

The U.S. Department of State updated its Travel Advisory for Nicaragua on January 11, 2024, maintaining a Level 3: Reconsider Travel status. This update highlighted concerns about wrongful detentions, limited healthcare access, and arbitrary law enforcement in Nicaragua. The advisory specifically noted that the Nicaraguan government and law enforcement target those perceived as opposing President Daniel Ortega and Vice President Rosario Murillo. Reported issues include restricted movement, searches of personal devices, and targeting of various groups and individuals for political reasons.

4. Brazil – 132

This nation was ranked at position 132 on the GPI.

Brazil is relatively a safe country to travel to, but you need to be much more careful than in other tourist hotspots.

Many governments advise their citizens to exercise increased caution when traveling to Brazil because of the country’s high crime rate, including muggings, kidnappings and theft.

Despite this, Brazil welcomes millions of visitors each year without incident. Travel warnings are in effect for nationals of several countries who wish to travel to Brazil. Australia advises its nationals to travel to Brazil only with great caution.

According to the World Bank, there were 22.45 murders per 100,000 inhabitants in 2020, which is a high crime rate. Many governments have also issued travel warnings for certain regions.

3. Mexico – 136

This nation was ranked at position 136 on the GPI.

Mexico is generally safe for visitors as long as they exercise reasonable caution, do their homework, and use common sense. However, there are significant regional differences in the security situation in Mexico.

The U.S. State Department has increased travel warnings due to crime in many tourist-friendly states in Mexico. In Mexico, female solo travelers may need to take extra precautions. On the other hand, Mexico receives more than 35 million tourists annually, most of whom travel there safely.

If travelers use common sense and educate themselves about the region of the country they are traveling to, Mexico is generally a safe place. Heightened travel warnings are in effect for many parts of Mexico due to crime. Therefore, it is important for visitors to Mexico to be mindful of their personal safety, keep abreast of current political issues, and take the usual precautions.

Suggested: Most dangerous cities in Mexico

2. Venezuela – 140

This nation was ranked at position 140 on the GPI.

There is a lot of poverty in the nation, which can cause some people to act in desperation. Venezuela has a substantially higher crime rate than other South American nations.

Robbery is a major worry for any visitor to Venezuela. The political climate in Venezuela is another issue related to safety. For many years, there has been unrest throughout the nation. There have been large-scale protests, and the government has a reputation for violently repressing them.

It is advised to stay away from political gatherings and demonstrations if you are visiting Venezuela. To be informed of any potential instability in the places you travel to, it’s also imperative to stay current with the news.

The current status of the economy in Venezuela is the final issue to think about in terms of safety. Due to the nation’s economic crisis, many essentials, including food and medicine, are in limited supply.

Latest News from Venezuela:

March 15: According to both the United States and a report from Insight Crime, there has been a significant expansion of illicit crop cultivation and processing laboratories under the administration of Nicolás Maduro.

Suggested: Most dangerous countries in the world

1. Colombia – 140

This nation was ranked at position 140 on the GPI.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of tourists travel to Colombia, and the vast majority of them have no problems. A small percentage of visitors become victims of crimes such as pickpocketing, drugging, and armed robbery.

The likelihood of something going wrong is greatly reduced by the wise traveler who is aware of the dangers and knows how to avoid them. Major cities are where most crimes are committed.

Knowing which areas to avoid and keeping a low profile will keep you safer, as it is often opportunistic.

Latest News from Colombia:

The latest travel advisory for Colombia, issued on January 2, 2024, advises travelers to reconsider travel due to crime, terrorism, civil unrest, and kidnapping. Specific regions like Arauca, Cauca (excluding Popayán), Norte de Santander, and the Colombia-Venezuela border are highlighted as areas with higher risks, and travelers are advised not to visit them.

The advisory underlines the widespread nature of violent crime and organized criminal activities, as well as potential risks from terrorist groups and civil demonstrations, which can disrupt transport and public services. For detailed information, please refer to the travel advisory on the State Department’s website here.