Is Colombia safe? That is the one question everyone asked me, in some cases before asking if I had a good time. Of course Colombia is safe just as it is dangerous. Just like every country, city, state and town around this world. One thing that will always amaze me as a traveler is when a person tells me a country is dangerous and they’ve never been. Sadly so many travel with the mentality that a countries past must still be the same in the present – the violence that plagued Colombia in the 80’s and 90’s must still be the same in the twenty-first century, right? WRONG!!!
There’s no denying Colombia has a violent past. It was once in the grasp of drug lords like Manuel Noriega, Pablo Escobar with city streets littered with dead bodies and a government that couldn’t stop it. Well it did stop it and the country made a comeback that few people, except Colombians ever thought it would make. The country is alive and thriving and at no point was I ever concerned about my safety. Like any country, city, state and neighborhood wherever you live you know where to avoid.
Bogota, Medellin and Cartagena are absolutely fascinating places and the Colombian people couldn’t be any friendlier. They are proud and ready to share their culture with everyone. People are not being robbed in broad daylight. Men aren’t jumping into cabs demanding all your money and and tourists are not being kidnapped. Anyone that tells you that having never been to Colombia or any other country is a person you should not be listening to.
This is another country that has been destroyed by the media because the only time you hear about it is when an act of violence has taken place. As I have written in the past there are two countries people that said I was crazy to visit Colombia and Israel. And when I asked ‘why am I crazy?’ The response – because it’s dangerous well travel is dangerous but the moment you allow others to talk you out of visiting any given place, or you talk yourself out if it. When you allow those that cause these acts of violence and dictate where you will and will not go – they don’t win, you lose.