Off-Limits Destinations: 12 Countries American Tourists Should Avoid
Traveling is a deeply enriching experience, allowing one to explore new cultures and horizons and actualize personal development and growth. However, it’s also important to be mindful of the dangers, specifically with unsafe destinations.
Here are 12 countries American tourists should avoid for various reasons, such as unstable governments and on-the-ground risks.
1. North Korea
With no embassy or diplomatic ties to this country, Americans are advised to avoid North Korea. If there were to be a situation involving U.S. tourists, the government would be unable to provide emergency services. The U.S. is severely limited in how much they can intervene.
Extremist factions are active in the northern regions of Mali. They include groups like Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and Ansar Dine. As a result, exploring as an American tourist in this country could be quite hazardous.
Afghanistan remains a highly volatile country due to ongoing conflict and political instability. The presence of extremist groups, armed conflicts, and the risk of terrorism pose significant threats to personal safety.
With a global peace index of 3.55, travels to Afghanistan are strongly discouraged for Americans.
Iraq has faced many security challenges recently, making it a risky destination for American travelers. The country still grapples with political instability, armed conflict, and extremist groups. Americans are especially warned against traveling to the Kurdistan Region, where the insecurity concerns are at their peak.
Syria is another country of grave concern. Ongoing civil war and political unrest make it a perilous country for Americans. Moreover, the situation remains unpredictable, with constant armed conflict and the presence of various armed groups.
Terrorism, risk of unjust detention, civil unrest, and kidnappings pose significant risks, and the U.S. Department of State strongly advises against all travel to Syria.
Terrorism takes center stage in Yemen. Terrorist targets include Yemeni Government interests, ministries, security patrols, and parades. In addition, the country is embroiled in a complex conflict and faces significant security challenges.
You might be watching or have watched the news about the particular societal issues plaguing Somalia. The country has grappled with political instability, terrorism, and widespread violence for years.
The country lacks a stable government and is a hotspot for piracy and kidnappings. As a result, travelers are at a high risk of being targeted, and the U.S. Department of State advises against all travel to Somalia.
Libya has experienced significant instability since the overthrow of its former government. The level of crimes committed in the country increases daily, including kidnap threats for ransom.
As an American, you should know the target of these crimes are usually Westerners and U.S. citizens. So take caution if you ever want to try visiting this place. In fact, the U.S. Department advises against visiting.
9. Central African Republic (CAR)
Political unrest, armed conflicts, and high levels of violence characterize the Central African Republic (CAR). Criminal activities that are prevalent in the country include armed robberies and kidnappings. The security situation is unpredictable, and the U.S. Department of State advises against travel to CAR.
10. South Sudan
South Sudan continues to face internal conflicts, resulting in violence and civil unrest. In places like Juba, the security environment is volatile and porous, leaving room for possible deterioration with little warning.
The country has a high crime rate, and armed clashes can occur without warning.
The crime rate in Venezuela is out of the ordinary. Other social unrest plaguing the country include street crimes such as armed robberies, kidnapping, and the arbitrary enforcement of local laws.
Also, the country is experiencing a severe economic and political crisis, which fuels increased crime rates and social instability.
Haiti has long grappled with political instability, high crime rates, and a fragile security situation. As a result, the U.S. Department advises all its citizens against traveling to the country.
In light of the current security situation, U.S. citizens in Haiti are also advised to consider departing the country through whichever channels are available. Kidnappings, armed robberies, and civil unrest are significant concerns; you do not want to get caught up in the crosshairs.
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Where indicated, some images courtesy of Depositphotos.com.