Top 10 Most Dangerous Travel Destinations - URBANETTE: Lifestyle Magazine & Blog


Top 10 Most Dangerous Travel Destinations

The most incredibly dangerous places to visit — and why.


In case you hadn’t heard, there’s a new breed of travelers. They’re known as the “anti-tourist”. Instead of going to beautiful places promoted for tourism, these free-spirits love to visit areas that are not only discouraged by travel advisories, but are also deemed “forbidden”. The more the media makes a fuss about the place, the more the trip becomes exciting. With no police assistance or ambulance to a local hospital, they want to encounter danger, up close and personal.

Top 10 Most Dangerous Travel Destinations

The anti-tourists find thrill primarily from the difficult and dangerous experience, rather than from being in the new environment.

Remember that invincible feeling you had when you were a teenager? When you were excited to see the gritty and more dangerous places of the world? Well, for some people that feeling doesn’t dissipate, but grows stronger over time.

A travel psychology expert named Michael Brein identifies this behavior as “macho tourism”. When danger is being reported in a particular part of the world, the anti-tourists then desire to visit that place in order to A) prove that they’re tougher than the rest of us, and/or B) get an adrenaline rush and feel more alive. Remember the time of your childhood when your mother told you not to go to a seemingly creepy place, but you went anyway? And then you came home safe and said “Look Mom, I made it”? The anti-tourists are said to be relieving that early feeling of triumph.

No big surprise, but Instagram and Facebook may have contributed to this anti-tourism behavior. When people are able to travel to the baddest badlands around the world without being harmed, they are most likely to brag about it on their social networking sites, which encourages their ‘friends’ and followers to attempt similar feats for bragging rights.

Top 10 Most Dangerous Travel Destinations

When visiting the forbidden, the anti-tourists risk being kidnapped for ransom or held captive by terrorists; they often get caught in wars and strife arising in unstable territories, get lost and killed in deadly terrains, encounter wild and deadly animals, get robbed and or murdered by opportunistic local serial thieves and killers, or become infected with exotic diseases. Sounds fun, right? (jk!) But for as long as the craving for excitement exists, the anti-tourists will continue to ignore cautionary travel alerts, and will take critical travel advisories as a “go” signal.

There are also anti-tourists who risk their lives for a “personal mission”. Maria Rychlicki, a municipal government worker in Los Angeles, spent time in Lebanon, Egypt, Israel and Columbia when these countries were on State Department alert lists. She knows she has been picking trips that are on advisory lists, but she sees this as an opportunity to represent America.
“Visiting countries on the advisory list means I am not spending money to meet other American tourists. I have often felt I am a good ambassador of the American people. I have been, at times, the first American that people (in a foreign land) have met,” she claims.

We’re not encouraging people to travel to the “forbidden” and risk being kidnapped or killed, but if you are one of the few travelers who love to go to places that other people are afraid of, then these dangerous areas are ideal for you. Enter at your own risk.

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Originally from Denver and now living in NYC, Angie has been writing since she was small. She lives in the Flatiron district with her partner Tanya and their mutt Sparky (always adopt!) In her spare time she loves to paint (mostly abstract) and talk to random people on the street to find out what's interesting to them.

Reader Discussion: 113 Comments

  1. Hannah Mayers

    “There is a charm about the forbidden that makes it unspeakably desirable.” – Mark Twain 

    I believe the “anti-tourists” find something special and exciting with the fact that they are traveling to “not-so-safe” areas. After successful trip to these areas, they can even say with pride, “oh! that is not a dangerous place.”

  2. Courtney Watson

    I love going out of the country and exploring new places, new food, new dress, new events and other “new things.” But my very reason for going out of my country is “relaxation.” I want to get away with my routine.

    When I travel, I make sure to check first via travel authorities if it’s safe to go to a particular place.

    But how would I feel relaxed if danger is at hand?! This article is really helpful and I’m adding these places to my list of places to “watch out for.” Definitely, there will be changes, who knows, after 10 years, these places can be safe places to visit and I can have them listed in my “places to see and explore.”

    But for now, thank you Urbanette for this warning 🙂

  3. I love traveling but I'm completely against going anywhere dangerous. I'm afraid of certain places in America I wouldn't travel out and make the risk higher lol. I was reading an article o Grozny and it said the city has been fully rebuilt and I saw some pictures, it looks really beautiful especially their mosque. But It's still a no-no on my list.

  4. Jen Spillane

    This article is very eye-opening. It's definitely a reality check. I like to go off the beaten path, but I don't think I'll be visiting any of these destinations any time soon.

  5. Gabrielle Williams

    The risk adds to the thrill of the travel experience in the same way we classify extreme sports, I guess. It’s not for the faint-hearted but it must have a higher purpose than just doing it for the heck of it.

  6. Randie Cadiogan

    Love this article! I honestly have the tendency to “ignore” travel advisories and travel to anywhere I wanna go. I just feel it adds more to the excitement of going to another country!

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