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10 Most Dangerous Places In South Africa

South Africa, known for its breathtaking landscapes and rich cultural heritage, is unfortunately also plagued by high crime rates in certain areas. While the majority of the country remains safe for tourists and locals alike, it is crucial to be aware of the more dangerous regions. In this article, we will explore the top 10 most dangerous places in South Africa, providing valuable information to help you stay safe and make informed travel decisions.

1. Johannesburg

As the largest city in South Africa, Johannesburg is known for its bustling streets and vibrant nightlife. However, it is also notorious for its high crime rates. Areas such as Hillbrow, Berea, and Yeoville are particularly prone to violent crimes, including robberies and carjackings. It is advisable to exercise caution, avoid walking alone at night, and stay in well-known, secure accommodations.

2. Cape Town

Cape Town, with its stunning beaches and iconic landmarks, is a top tourist destination. However, certain areas, like Khayelitsha and Mitchell’s Plain, experience high crime rates, including gang-related violence. Tourists should be vigilant, especially when visiting these areas, and avoid displaying expensive belongings in public.

3. Durban

Durban, a coastal city known for its warm climate and vibrant cultural scene, unfortunately also has areas with high crime rates. Townships such as Umlazi and KwaMashu can be dangerous, particularly at night. It is advisable to take taxis or use reputable transportation services rather than walking alone after dark.

4. Port Elizabeth

While Port Elizabeth is generally safe for tourists, certain areas, such as Motherwell and Gelvandale, have higher crime rates. Visitors should be cautious, especially when exploring these neighborhoods. It is recommended to stay informed about local news and advice from authorities when planning your activities.

5. Pretoria

Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa, is not exempt from crime. Areas like Sunnyside and Mamelodi have experienced high levels of robberies and other criminal activities. Travelers should exercise caution, particularly when walking alone or using public transport, and avoid displaying valuable items.

6. Bloemfontein

Although Bloemfontein is considered one of South Africa’s safest cities, certain areas, including Mangaung and Botshabelo, have higher crime rates. Visitors should be aware of their surroundings, especially at night, and avoid isolated areas or unlit streets.

7. East London

While East London is known for its picturesque beaches, certain neighborhoods, such as Mdantsane and Duncan Village, have higher crime rates. It is advisable to be cautious and avoid walking alone at night, especially in these areas.

8. Rustenburg

Rustenburg, located in the North West province, is a city renowned for its mining industry. However, crime rates in areas like Boitekong and Tlhabane are relatively high. Visitors should stay vigilant, avoid isolated areas, and be cautious when using public transportation.

9. Polokwane

Polokwane, the capital of Limpopo province, generally has lower crime rates compared to larger cities in South Africa. However, areas such as Seshego and Moletjie still experience crime, particularly theft and robberies. Travelers should take necessary precautions, such as securing their belongings and avoiding deserted areas.

10. Nelspruit

Nelspruit, in Mpumalanga province, is a gateway to the renowned Kruger National Park. While it is generally safe for tourists, certain areas like KaNyamazane and Matsulu have higher crime rates. Visitors should remain cautious, especially when exploring unfamiliar areas, and avoid walking alone at night.

It is important to note that despite the crime rates in these areas, millions of tourists visit South Africa each year without incident. By being aware, staying informed, and taking necessary precautions, you can still experience the beauty and diversity this remarkable country has to offer while ensuring your safety and well-being.

Note: The content provided in this article is for informational purposes only and does not guarantee the current state of safety in these areas. It is always advisable to consult local authorities and travel advisories before planning your trip.


Q: Which city in South Africa has the highest crime rates?

A: Johannesburg is known for its high crime rates, particularly in areas like Hillbrow, Berea, and Yeoville.

Q: What cities in South Africa have high crime rates?

A: Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, and Pretoria also experience high crime rates in certain areas.

Q: What precautions should I take when visiting dangerous areas in South Africa?

A: It is advisable to exercise caution, avoid walking alone at night, stay in secure accommodations, use reputable transportation services, and avoid displaying expensive belongings in public.

Q: Is Bloemfontein a safe city in South Africa?

A: While Bloemfontein is generally considered safe, certain areas like Mangaung and Botshabelo have higher crime rates. Visitors should be aware of their surroundings.

Anwar Abdi
Anwar Abdi
Anwar Abdi is a Canadian business executive and Digital Journalist. Anwar Abdi is the CEO of AMG Brands Network Inc. and the Current Editor-in-Chief of University Magazine. Previously He Worked as an Education contributor at HuffPost. Anwar received a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication at the University of Windsor.
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