Top 10 Most Dangerous Cities in the World

Los Cabos, Mexico is the world’s most dangerous city with a murder rate of 111.33 per 100,000 inhabitants.

When planning your next trip, you may want to avoid some of the cities we are about to mention. In 2017, they ranked among the world’s most dangerous places on the basis of murder cases per capita.

The World’s Most Dangerous Cities

Los Cabos, Mexico is the most dangerous city in the world with a murder rate of 111.33 per 100,000 people. This city’s position on the list of the world’s most dangerous cities is indicative of the increase in crime that Mexico has experienced over the last year. In 2017 and 2018, the resort town of Los Cabos has made headlines news for a string of alarming murders. The majority of the violence in Los Cabos has mostly been related to the drug trade, and tourists have not been the target. Nonetheless, the instances of violence are still drastic, and have earned the popular vacation destination a spot on the top of the list of the world’s most dangerous cities.

Caracas, Venezuela, is the second most dangerous city in the world. With 111.19 murders per 100,000 people, it formerly claimed the top spot. In third place is Acapulco, Mexico, with 106.63 murders per 100,000 people. Violence brought on by drug trafficking and organized gangs have been blamed for the relentless violence in these cities, although the factors are generally quite complicated. Unfortunately, none of these cities are strangers to the top three positions, except for maybe the resort town of Acapulco, where violence from other regions of the country has been spilling into in recent years.

The Most Dangerous Cities in the United States

Four cities in the United States are counted among the world’s most dangerous. The cities are, in descending order of homicide rates, St. Louis, Missouri (65.83), Baltimore, Maryland (55.48), New Orleans, Louisiana (40.10) and Detroit, Michigan (39.69). In the United States, the relaxed laws surrounding gun ownership is often a subject of much debate. In the United States, gun violence is responsible for tens of thousands of deaths nationwide annually.

One city that is a notable omission from the list is Chicago. Although the city of Chicago has had a reputation for crime in recent years, its homicide rate is 27.22 murders per 100,000 residents. It is important to note that although the city of Chicago experienced an overall decrease in violent crime in the early 2000s, as of the 2010s crime again seems to be on the rise. A full report of the most dangerous cities in the United States can be found here.

Latin American Cities

Of the entries on this list, many cities can be found in a region of the world known as Latin America. Latin America generally refers to countries in Central and South America, where the predominant language is Spanish (or in the case of Brazil, Portuguese). The factors for the dominance of these countries are varied and complicated. Violence related to drug trafficking and income inequality, corrupt politicians and officials, and residue from a history of brutal colonialism have all been indicated as factors that encourage violence.

South African Cities

Three cities in South Africa also make it to the list of the world’s most dangerous cities: Cape Town (62.25), Durban (38.12), and Nelson Mandela Bay (Port Elizabeth) (37.53). South Africa, which occupies the southernmost part of the massive African continent, has often garnered publicity for its high crime rates, including murder rates. Factors such as high unemployment rates and systemic racism have been blamed for the violent trends in South African cities.

Where is the Most Dangerous City in the World?

Los Cabos, Mexico is the world’s most dangerous city with a murder rate of 111.33 per 100,000 inhabitants.

The 50 Most Dangerous Cities

RankCityCountryHomicide Rate (Per 100,000)
1Los CabosMexico111.33
6La PazMexico84.79
8Ciudad VictoriaMexico83.32
9Ciudad GuyanaVenezuela80.28
11Vitoria da ConquistaBrazil70.26
13St. LouisUnited States65.83
15Cape TownSouth Africa62.25
17San SalvadorEl Salvador59.06
19Feira de SantanaBrazil58.81
20Ciudad JuárezMexico56.16
21BaltimoreUnited States55.48
24Guatemala CityGuatemala53.49
26San Pedro SulaHonduras51.18
30Joao PessoaBrazil49.17
32San JuanPuerto Rico48.70
35Distrito CentralHonduras48.00
39Porto AlegreBrazil40.96
41New OrleansUnited States40.10
42DetroitUnited States39.69
44DurbanSouth Africa38.12
45Campos dos GoytacazesBrazil37.53
46Nelson Mandela BaySouth Africa37.53
47Campina GrandeBrazil37.29

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