Africa unsafe countries

Worldly | What are the safest and most dangerous countries in Africa?

Africa is a fantastic travel destination with many unique spots, ancient culture and beautiful natural areas. Africa has many faces. Yet there are many world travelers that this special continent leave it to the left. Because, they say, there is war in many countries, terrorist organizations are everywhere and the chance of robberies is too great. Perhaps understandable after all the negative news stories that continue to haunt Africa. However, this image is not always correct. In many African countries you can experience the most beautiful holidays, as long as you know where to be. So do you want to go to Africa but don't know where to go? We remove all doubt and present the top 3 safest and most dangerous countries in Africa.

Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Central America?
Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Europe?
Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Africa?

Top 3 safe countries in Africa


Located in southeastern Africa Malawi† It is one of the safest countries in Africa with about 13 million inhabitants. Malawi is surrounded by Zambia, Tanzania en Mozambique and is the ideal place for a very relaxed and relaxing holiday. Lake Malawi is the great beating heart of the country. It is considered one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. A boat trip on the rippling water is therefore an absolute must. Around the lake you will find green hilly areas.

Also read: How many countries does Africa have? List of countries + number of inhabitants

Green, hilly areas in Malawi
Green, hilly areas in Malawi

Of course you can also visit various national parks. For example, travel to Nyika National Park and look for the magical Big Five. It is best to rest in one of the coastal towns along the lake such as Nkhata Bay. Cocktail in hand, a blazing sun in the blue sky and a beautiful environment to marvel at. Malawi shows you how peaceful, safe and carefree Africa can be!

Malawi shows you how carefree and safe a trip to Africa can be
Malawi shows you how carefree and safe a trip to Africa can be


In the Indian Ocean lies the beautiful and safe African island Mauritius† About 850 km east of Madagascar and 1800 km from the mainland. This island has only 1,3 million inhabitants. No African chaos here or overwhelming crowds, but calming beaches and a special underwater world. You can dive here like no other and – if it's your thing – the golf courses on this island are worldly. Mauritius has a few islands, such as the eponymous Mauritius, Rodrigues, the Agalega Islands and the Cargados Carajos. All African beauties. The capital is Port Louis, a reference to the French king Louis XV. In Mauritius you are in the right place if you come for a relaxing holiday with amazing views over the endless waters of the Indian Ocean.

Mauritius - A safe island 1800 km from the mainland
Mauritius – A safe island 1800 km from the mainland


Namibia is perhaps the great unknown in this top 3 safest countries in Africa. This country, which lies on the southwestern side of the continent, has unimaginably beautiful scenery and an authentic African environment. Namibia remains far away from all unrest and has been offering travelers a wonderful place to travel and relax for years.

Namibia, a safe and unprecedentedly photogenic country
Namibia, a safe and unprecedentedly photogenic country

Visit the thousands of seals at Cape Cross or be intoxicated by the deserted landscapes at Damaraland. The Kaokoveld in the northwest is also a beautiful nature reserve that shows Africa in all its beauty. Fish River Canyon is the second longest canyon in the world after the Grand Canyon. And so Namibia has more surprises in store for the adventurous world traveler. Time to find out what those are!

Also read: Itinerary Namibia in 2, 3, 4 or 5 weeks | Must sees and example routes

Top 3 dangerous countries in Africa

Central-African Republic

In the middle of the gigantic continent lies the Central-African Republic† If you don't want to be anywhere right now, it's in this country bordering Chad, Sudan, South Sudan, Congo-Kinshasa, Congo-Brazzaville and Cameroon. In the Republic, an apparently insoluble conflict has been raging for years, which is fought to the bone by the many ethnic and religious groups.

Central African Republic - Still a very unsafe country in Africa
Central African Republic – Still a very unsafe country in Africa

In 2021 it is still seen as one of the most dangerous countries in Africa. The violence used here is simply horrific. The population is ravaged by armed militias and extremely violent rebels. Hundreds of thousands of refugees daily look for a way out in this traumatized country.

Even emergency aid does not reach the Central African Republic, according to the Parool earlier this year. You only want to go here if you think you can offer help through one of the many human rights organizations, even if even providing help in 2021 seems an impossible task.


Also in Mali the situation is very threatening and life-threatening. The country has been high on the list of most dangerous countries in Africa for years. Not only is war raging here continuously and many jihadists threaten violence and terror, the life-threatening Ebola disease is also present here. Mali is located south of the Sahara in northern Africa and is one of the poorest countries in the world. Tensions have been running high for years, as has the blistering temperature.

In Mali, the situation is still very threatening and life-threatening
In Mali, the situation is still very threatening and life-threatening

There are indeed Dutch people here, but they are not here to enjoy a well-deserved holiday. The Dutch in Mali are among the deployed soldiers who are part of the UN mission in this country. The civil war, terrorism, appalling conditions, the many refugees and the risk of Ebola infection are all reasons to skip this country when looking for a suitable travel destination.


Somalia has been at the top of the list of most dangerous countries in Africa for years. The poverty and the many rebel groups create unimaginably sad situations here every day. Everyone now knows the images of thousands and thousands of people trying to flee the country. Somalia is located in the Horn of Africa on the eastern side of Africa and borders Djibouti, Ethiopia en Kenya† The capital is Mogadishu.

Somalia - Sadly still a very unsafe country in Africa
Somalia – Sadly still a very unsafe country in Africa

The famine has been causing dire situations in Somalia for years. The many civil wars have also left the helpless country in a serious crisis. An end to the many conflicts seems an unimaginable scenario for the time being. Traveling here is absolutely not recommended at the moment and probably in the coming years.

Of course there are a lot of other African countries where you should or absolutely should not want to go. Do you know where you can or cannot travel to? The website of the central government always offers up-to-date travel advice for all countries in the world. Learn more about the world† Then take a look at our worldly page. See you there!

Check your vaccinations

We also strongly advise anyone who travels to a country or area where Malaria or another annoying disease may prevent that you should not jump to conclusions from this or other articles. Always make an appointment with one of the specialists at Vaccinations While Traveling or the GGD. The information they have is always up-to-date and that is why they can advise you specifically based on the specific travel plans you have.

We can also absolutely recommend taking the 'optional' one, since you don't want to be tied to certain places or countries during your world trip. It often happens that your plans change along the way, and for that you definitely want to be well prepared in terms of vaccinations.

Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Central America?
Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Europe?
Also read: Which are the safest and most dangerous countries in Africa?

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Wereldreizigers.nl (World Travelers dot NL)

Wereldreizigers.nl | Everything about long-distance travel, world travel, travel news, travel photography, backpacking, travel tips and more.


  • I think the photos in this article are really poorly chosen. The photos at 'safe countries' show only palm trees, sand and a white man in a canoe. And in the photos with dangerous only meaningless photos of black people. In this way you contribute to a negative image of black people. With other photos including the people at the safe countries you can paint a much better picture and also illustrate the unsafe places better than with innocent black faces that now (hopefully unintentionally) get a bad load by only showing 'dangerous' faces to see…

    • Hi Jolene,

      All photos need to be replaced because the resolution is very low, they date from the time World Travelers was not in my possession (2015). So I just replaced them all.

      But besides that I don't completely agree with you, since the photo with the men with weapons does say something about the situation there… The photo of the women behind the fence are refugees fleeing the violence and the children are also refugees who ended up in a camp. The photos come from official news sources and in 2015 also made the front pages of various news websites such as Telegraaf and Trouw. I think they showed exactly what is going on in those countries. That there is a white man in a canoe near a safe place was just a coincidence.

      Best regards,


  • A little about Mali. A whole story about war and Ebola. Only there has never been Ebola in Mali. Ebola was prevalent in Guinea (Mali's southern neighbour), Liberia and Sierra Leone. There may have been one or two cases of Ebola in Mali. That was from travelers who had visited Guinea and contracted the infection there. There are still tourists who visit Mali. The capital Bamako and everything west of it are safe. It is also doable from Bamako to the east to the city of Segou. Tourists also continue to Dogon country, Djenné (the city of the famous mosque) and Mopti. Timbuktu is visited by a single tourist by plane.

  • I have experienced Namibia as safe. Well it was over 6 years ago that I was there.
    I can understand that the poster above compares somewhat to South Africa in terms of security.
    Knowing where you are, which area and which neighborhood (in a city)
    Matters a lot.
    Kind of like Mali has parts where it's safer.
    And in general, common sense is always good to carry.
    Know when to hit the road or not and where. Dark is always more dangerous than daytime.
    Don't go alone especially if you are unfamiliar somewhere or at night.
    Don't be too flashy with expensive stuff.

    What I'm surprised about is that lists never mention Ghana as a safe African country.
    But Kenya is mentioned as safe. While there are parts with negative travel advice.
    E.g. around Malindi and Lamu and towards the Somali border.
    And Nairobi isn't that safe in terms of crime either. Had a somewhat negative vibe for me 6 years ago.

    But good memories are not so recent.
    If you have a trusted local that is usually your best source for current info…

  • Namibia is not a safe country at all. The murder rate is 17.5 in 100.000. Malawi, on the other hand, is safe with a murder rate of 1.7 in 100.000
    It could just happen to you that you are killed in Namibia by robbers or thieves in the night. Even in beautiful Windhoek, relatively many people are murdered. Namibia is a bit like South Africa in that respect and is therefore not a safe country at all.
    Kenya and Uganda and Tanzania are relatively safe countries with a murder rate of about 5 in 100.000 inhabitants. Although there is relatively much going on in Kenya.
    The Gambia is also relatively safe with a murder ratio of 2.2 to 100.000. Senegal is also safe.
    Nigeria is very unsafe. Gabon is also very safe.

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