Month: November 2017

9 Insanely Dangerous Countries to Travel To

There are particular countries that are feared by many tourists. In fact there are some who swear that they simply can’t visit these destinations. Most such countries have one thing in common: they are plagued by some calamity of sorts.

War, terrorism, civil unrest and crime are all reasons why some countries belong to the tourist’s blacklist. Often, citizens in these countries are wallowing in dire poverty which increases their propensity to engage in crime so as to sustain their basic needs.

But most such countries also have a lot to offer travellers. Save for the safety concerns, there is a lot to see and learn from here. This is what makes them tempting and ideal for adventure seekers.

If you are only careful about the places you visit in these countries, you may end up having the experience of a lifetime.

Here are some of the most dangerous countries to travel to in the world, and what makes them viable destinations:

Dangerous Countries to Travel To

  1. Estonia

Estonia is as famous for its ancient structures as it is famous for crime. It is blesses by nature with beautiful scenery, great natural features and extremely clean water. Water sports are the order of the day in most Estonian tourist destinations.

What makes it dangerous are the high levels of crime in the country. The two greatest concerns for travellers should be pick pockets and getting robbed.

You should be wary of strangers who get too close to you. Also, be on the lookout for people who may be following you. There is no telling what they can do if they eventually corner you when you are alone and vulnerable.

  1. Iraq

Most people the world over associate Iraq with terrorism and extremism, and they are not wrong in their assumptions. Iraq is one of the most war torn countries in the world, and has been so for decades.

Given that the Iraqis are not particularly in good terms with Americans, American citizens have good reason to fear visiting the country. Why, there are some acts of violence that have been proven to be targeted at American travellers to Iraq.

  1. Afghanistan

Afghanistan map

This is yet another Asian country that has remained war- torn for ages. It is because of the unceasing war that the country’s economy is in ruins and the tourism industry is almost non- existent.

Taliban attacks and kidnapping are the order of the day in the country. The volatile political climate in the country is a real cause for concern for people who want to visit.

But all is not that gloomy. Although crime is rampant here, you might be relieved to learn that it rarely ever targeted specifically at tourists and if you stay in main population centers, rather than the outskirts you can increase your chances of travelling safely.

For the adventurous souls who aren’t afraid to explore places others won’t, Afghanistan has a lot to offer. The changing landscape in particular is very intriguing. Mountains, lakes, deserts- Afghanistan has it all.

  1. Yemen

Like Iraq and Afghanistan, terrorism makes many afraid to visit Yemen. It is common to see armed groups strutting around in many parts of the country. This sight can inspire untold fear in the heart of any tourist.

But if you strain to see beyond the face of war that taints the country, you will realize that the Yemenis are a warm and friendly people with a vibrant culture. There is truly a lot one can learn about humanity and kindness from these resilient people who have gone through it all.

  1. Pakistan

Yet another country plagued by terrorism, Pakistan may not rank as a favorite destination for most people. Even sadder is the fact that sometimes these acts of terror are targeted at foreigners.

However, in the more peaceful parts of the country, you will get to experience the beauty of nature at its best. You can also engage in countless adventures and water sports.

  1. North Korea

This might not be a hotbed of terror, and neither is crime a concern for any tourists, but the lack of freedom that pervades this country is almost unbearable. This can be largely attributed to the lack of peace between North and South Korea.

You may not have to worry about your safety while here, but you have to put up with the lack of privacy accorded to foreigners. Basically your every move is watched and stepping out of line can have disastrous consequences.

  1. El Salvador

El Salvador’s beauty lies in the rich culture of its natives, the ancient ruins and the raw beauty that nature has endowed it with. Sounds like a perfect destination, doesn’t it? So why did it make it to this list?

The danger in visiting the country is the high crime rate. Kidnapping is quite common, as are organized gangs that walk around brandishing guns.

  1. Burkina Faso

This Western African country was one of the most peaceful countries in the region until recent times. Now, it features on the list of some of the most volatile and poorest countries in the continent.

Political unrest has robbed the country of what little it had in terms of financial prosperity. However, very few countries can boast a culture as rich and music as vibrant as this one does.

  1. Chad

Chad is often associated with the desert, which is no surprise since part of it forms the Sahara. Dry winds and sand are common place here. It is a haven for those who want to experience the beauty of desert life in all its goodness.

However, Boko Haram activities in the country have impeded tourism here. It is also common for tourists to get kidnapped in exchange for ransom.

Even though most of these countries may appear to be extremely dangerous, it can be extremely rewarding to visit them. You need to be vigilant and to ensure that you have a well-conversed tour guide in order to enjoy your trip. Additionally, make sure that you only visit parts of the country that are safe. For the daring souls that decide to visit these countries, stay safe!

How to Pack Lightly For Your Overseas Holiday

globe-in-hand

Packing is perhaps the most agonizing part of traveling. It is hard to decide what to carry and what to leave behind, especially if you are traveling somewhere for the first time.

Although indecision may dog you as you pack up your luggage, it is important that you travel as lightly as you possibly can. You certainly don’t want to be weighed down by baggage that is absolutely unnecessary. Here are a few tips to help you pack light when traveling:

How to Pack Lightly When Traveling

  1. Use a Small Suitcase

When you use a small suitcase or bag, you will be forced to pack as little as you can make do with. The lack of extra space means that you can only pack in the things you consider necessary.

If you choose a big suitcase, you will be very tempted to carry items that you may not need during your trip. Nothing feels half as bad as carrying heavy items half across the globe and not using them at all.

  1. Pack For Your Location

Your location should also determine what items you carry with you and those that you don’t. If you are going to a cold region, then simply pack warm clothes. There is no need to carry a sundress that you may never wear during your trip.

If you need certain protective wear for your journey, then be sure to include that in your suitcase as well. Just ensure that you carry what you will truly need.

  1. Don’t Carry Extra Clothes Just In Case

You cannot always be prepared for everything, even when you are traveling. If you only think about the things that could go wrong, you may end up packing a lot of things in preparation for your imagined calamities.

Just carry the clothes that you will need for the length of time you will spend in your destination. If the weather changes or you desperately need a particular type of clothing, you can always buy it at your destination.

  1. Pack Clothes that Serve a Dual Purpose

Another tip to help you pack lightly is to carry clothes that can be worn twice for different occasions. Jeans are particularly helpful in this respect, since they are quite versatile. You can wear them to different occasions without being inappropriately dressed.

  1. Only Bring Two Pairs of Shoes

Shoes can add unnecessary weight to your luggage, so you should carry as few of them as you can. In fact, try your ultimate best to carry only two pairs of shoes.

Two pairs of shoes are more than enough for a trip overseas. Just make sure than they are versatile and you can wear them to virtually anywhere.

  1. Don’t bring multiple devices

Another important way to save on space and weight is to carry just a few devices. Since you can pretty much do everything on your smartphone, why do you need to carry your laptop with you? Or even your tablet for that matter?

  1. Don’t Pack Heavy Books and Guides

You can also save on some space by not carrying books and guides. Why would you burden yourself when you can download eBooks and even guides to virtually any part of the world?

  1. Never Add after Weighing Your Bag

After you have finished packing, it is important that you weigh your bag. If you find that it’s heavier than it should be, remove some things. But if it is more on the lighter side, just leave it as it is.

Packing lightly is not an easy task. However, you will be immensely grateful if you don’t have to drag a heavy suitcase around with you. Follow the tips above on how to pack light and you will not regret it.