Growing up I was often a part of my dads world travels, right up until the point where life got too dangerous and then we’d be shipped away. As a child I lived through martial law in Burkina Faso and came close to the border war between Mauritania and Senegal (I only experiences these conflicts through the eyes of a child, the local sweet shop owner left town because he feared for his life and that of his family, making Senegal the most dangerous country in the world for him and his family).
Since that time my dad has continued to live and work all over the world, in places as diverse as Cambodia (during their civil war, when phone calls were interrupted by the sporadic sound of machine gun fire), Nigeria (where taking an armed SUV to the airport is considered standard practice for people in the oil industry) to Peru (I heard more stories of people being kidnapped when I lived there than was healthy). In fact any of these places could have been considered the most dangerous country in the world.
Without exception my dad never had any problems during his travels in places often considered to be the most dangerous country in the world, well apart from two exceptions; he got pulled over by the police in Nigeria for not having any ID on him and was pickpocketed in Ecuador; not really disasters, more like minor hiccups.
Now Switzerland, a country of rich people, nice chocolate and neutrality is not a place that you’d expect to find trouble, I certainly never had any trouble when I was exploring Geneva. Well that was the famous last thought my dad had before he was robbed at an ATM. So what am I getting at here? I’m not saying that Switzerland is the most dangerous country in the world, neither am I saying that any of the other countries are either; although I’d stop short of saying going to a country where there’s a civil war is either safe or sensible.
The thing to remember when you travel is be aware of your surroundings. The reason why he got robbed in Switzerland and never had any problems elsewhere had everything to do with not paying attention. My dad decided to take money out late at night by himself along a deserted road; not so clever right, but that’s when bad things tend to happen, when you’re doing things that aren’t so clever.
Good to see Poland is not on your list 🙂 What a relief! I’ve heard of the conflict, but don’t think Switzerland is that dangerous.
Poland missed the top ten 🙂
It’s really amazing how each place can turn into the most dangerous. I never know what to say when I’m sitting in… say Baghdad, and someone tells me to be careful, they’ve heard Costa Rica is dangerous. —Really, did you just say that?— But it really does put the world into perspective when you hear all the horror stories of one place just to get there and hear all the horror stories of the place you just left.
Great work. Keep it up!
Couldn’t agree more. It says a lot about human nature.
Everyone always tells me I am brave for going to developing countries like Guyana, Mexico, and elsewhere by myself. I always say that I feel safer there than driving my car in the USA or going to movie or going to the mall.
I’m sure there are a lot of people all over the world who think going to the USA for a holiday is equally dangerous because of all the gun crime.
Good advice. I too have traveled the world, even to some of the “scary” places, and never had a bit of trouble. One thing I always try to remember is that there are bad people in every culture but most people, and cultures, are great. I have however always been suspicious of the Swiss. People that neat and organized must be very pent up! (Joking, I love the Swiss)
Couldn’t agree with you more, especially when it comes to neat people 😉
Great to hear and no see my country.