South America, a land of breathtaking natural beauty and rich cultural heritage spanning thousands of years, has an undeniable allure for travelers from all corners of the globe. However, concerns about safety often loom large, casting a shadow over its many attractions.
It’s important to note that safety varies widely across the continent. Some nations, like Uruguay, consistently rank high on global safety indices, while others, such as Colombia and Venezuela, grapple with unique challenges. Blanket statements about insecurity across the entire continent are not only inaccurate but also do a disservice to the diverse experiences each of its 13 countries has to offer.
Read More: Global Warming Concerns
Before embarking on a journey or considering relocation to South America, it’s crucial to take the time to understand the distinct safety dynamics and nuances of each Latin American country. Let’s explore these differences in more detail.
Top 10 Safest Countries in South America
1. Uruguay (GPI 1.795)
In a notable change of rankings, Uruguay has secured the top spot as the safest South American country. Impressively, it now holds the 46th position out of 163 nations in the 2022 Global Peace Index. This somewhat underrated destination is steadily gaining popularity as more and more travelers uncover its myriad attractions.
2. Chile (GPI 1.84)
In a shift in the rankings, Chile has claimed the title of the second safest South American country, standing at the 55th position on the 2022 Global Peace Index. Over the past few years, Chile has witnessed a notable increase in tourist arrivals, particularly since the subsiding of the protests that occurred from 2019 to 2020.
3. Argentina (GPI 1.911)
Shifting gears in the rankings, Argentina proudly claims the third-safest spot among South American countries, securing the 69th place on the 2022 Global Peace Index on a global scale. It’s no wonder that tourists flock to this captivating destination, drawn in by the vibrant tapestry of Latin American culture, tantalizing cuisine, lively nightlife, and breathtaking landscapes.
4. Paraguay (GPI 1.976)
In the latest ranking update for 2022, Paraguay emerges as the fourth safest South American nation, securing the 77th position globally on the Global Peace Index. Often considered a hidden gem, Paraguay beckons to those seeking one-of-a-kind experiences in a less-explored corner of South America.
5. Ecuador (GPI 1.988)
In the latest ranking update for 2022, Ecuador has claimed the title of the sixth safest country in South America, securing the 79th spot on the Global Peace Index worldwide. With its captivating mix of diverse landscapes and attractions, Ecuador continues to be a cherished destination for travelers seeking an unforgettable experience.
6. Bolivia (GPI 1.989)
In a notable shift between 2021 and 2022, Bolivia has made impressive strides in its ranking, catapulting from the 105th position to the 80th. This remarkable improvement now places Bolivia as the eighth safest country in South America.
7. Peru (GPI 2.091)
There’s been a substantial change in Peru’s safety ranking recently. It has slipped from the 86th position to the 101st spot on the Global Peace Index. This decline can be attributed to the ongoing protests in the country.
8. Guyana (GPI 2.14)
In a noteworthy shift, Guyana, the sole English-speaking country in South America, now holds the 107th position on the 2022 Global Peace Index. Despite its magnificence, this hidden gem has often been overlooked by many travelers, but it’s gradually beginning to capture more attention.
9. Brazil (GPI 2.465)
In the latest rankings for 2023, Brazil has secured the ninth spot as the safest country in South America and currently stands at the 130th position on the Global Peace Index. While Brazil faces its share of challenges, it remains a country renowned for its vibrant culture, warm-hearted locals, and a wealth of both natural and man-made wonders waiting to be explored.
10. Colombia (GPI 2.729)
Colombia has held its ground with a rank of 144th on the Global Peace Index for the year 2022. Remarkably, this nation, once considered off-limits for tourists, is now swiftly emerging as one of South America’s most enticing destinations. It’s gaining particular popularity among backpackers and thrill-seekers drawn to its adventurous offerings.
The Bottom Line
In conclusion, South America unfolds as a diverse collection of destinations, each with its own distinct allure and set of considerations. While the Global Peace Index provides a useful perspective on safety, whether you’re a traveler or an expat, it’s essential to stay well-informed and exercise caution wherever you go. Wishing you safe and wonderful travels!