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Safety, Nicaragua

Travel enthusiast Pawel Jaworski
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Many people are surprised to learn that the United Nations ranks Nicaragua as the second safest country in all of Latin America (behind Uruguay). Many of our customers have related to us that before their visit to Nicaragua they were shown concern by family or friends about safety issues in Nicaragua. Is the negative image of Nicaragua justified? Is it dangerous here?

The easiest way to diminish negative feelings about Nicaragua is to visit and see for yourself. Since you are viewing this site you may soon have that pleasure. The second best way to learn more about safety in Nicaragua would be to talk to a friend who has been here. Many do not have that opportunity, so a comparison with other countries is useful. Statistics are an imperfect science, but they do serve to put things in perspective, especially with a country like Nicaragua, whose image is so much the opposite of its reality.

According to Interpol in 2001, crime rate per 100,000 was 9,927 for England, 7,736 for Germany, 4,161 for the USA and 1,750 for Nicaragua. According to Interpol Nicaragua is home to less than half the crime of the USA and a quarter of the crime in England or Germany. Murder rates are a good measure for a country's level of violent crime as murders rarely go unreported. The world's homicide rate is currently estimated at 8.86 per 100,000. Latin America is quite a bit rougher, with an average of 22.9 murders per 100,000 in the region. Most neighbor countries of Nicaragua in Central America are on the upper end of the world's scale, exactly where the world might expect Nicaragua would be located. Countries like El Salvador at 117 per 100,000, Guatemala at 45 per 100,000 and Honduras at 41 per 100,000. In North America, the US murder rate is 7.1 per 100,000, yet its cities weigh in at 14.8 per 100,000 for Los Angeles, 21.9 for Chicago, 31.7 for Atlanta, with Washington, D.C. at 41.8 and New Orleans at 43.3. Costa Rica is at 7.2, the same as the US nationwide and significantly safer than most other Central American republics. But what about Nicaragua? Nicaragua suffers only 3.4 per 100,000, making it the least violent country in Central America and one of the safest in the entire hemisphere.

Despite their usefulness in making comparisons, statistics can do nothing to help demonstrate the Nicaraguan people's interminable sense of humor, warmth and hospitality. Nor do numbers highlight Nicaragua's love for poetry or their amazing, daily reinvention of the Spanish language. Percentages do little to reveal Nicaragua's unique cultures of dance, music, and great food. These are all qualities that carry no numerical value. Nicaragua is one of the safest places to visit in the Americas thanks to her unique people. No writer can do them proper justice with a long list of numbers. Some qualities can only be felt, experienced first hand. Only a visit to Nicaragua can provide that pleasure.

Source: http://www.toursnicaragua.com

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