The Amazon River running through Brazil
Skip These Dangerous Destinations When Visiting South America
This country has been in turmoil since 2018, when the presidential election was suspected to be fraudulent, resulting in thousands of arrests of government opponents.
Currently, the U.S. Department of State has issued a Do Not Travel warning to citizens out of concerns that wrongful imprisonment would likely be long and unpleasant.
Colombia has a lot of beauty and culture but also has dangerous criminal organizations, and one of them calls the northwestern provinces of the country home.
Northwest Colombia
The Gulf Clan reportedly has more control than the government in Antioquia, Chocó, and Cordoba. For five days in 2022, they swarmed and occupied cities in 11 provinces.
The siege was due to the Gulf Clan's leader being sentenced to 45 years in prison in the U.S.; a continuing grievance could endanger American tourists.
Brazil has some of the world's best beaches, but income inequality, poverty, crime, and police brutality make certain areas, known as favelas, dangerous.
Favelas In Brazil
Favelas are shanty towns where the impoverished gather in improvised, temporary housing. Already unsafe, the police brutalize the residents often, resulting in massacres.
In 2023, masked gangs terrorized Natal, the capital of Rio Grande do Norte, forcing people from their homes at gunpoint, ending in death and destruction.
Other Parts Of Brazil
This run of violence swept the entire province in what authorities believe were coordinated attacks. There's evidence that a very dangerous organization is operating in the area.
Like Natal, Mossoro is dangerous, with the most murders per capita in Brazil as of 2022. The city averaged over 60 murders per 100,000 people.
Most of Ecuador is relatively safe and would make an exciting vacation destination, but its most dangerous city, Guayaquil, should be avoided.
Guayaquil, Ecuador
With around 1,400 murders in the first six months of 2023, the crime appears to stem from the spread of drugs and drug-related gangs throughout the country.