Reader Does Not Believe Me on Dominican Republic Violence, So Here is a List of Violence in DR
Great vid Andy. Always appreciate your info and experiences.
I've been going to Lago Atitlan (primarily San Pedro) since 2008. I've never been robbed for felt like I was in danger. I'm not oblivious to the fact that it can happen. Bust most crimes in San Pedro are crimes of opportunity... primarily theft. Don't let your guard down and you should be fine. I also lived in Ghana for a year -- and had no problem whatsoever.
Your not going to stop a professional criminal but 99percent (not a verified fact but used to illustrate my point) of issues faced by travelers are crimes of opportunity. These CAN be prevented fairly easily. Don't set your wallet/cell phone on the table (turning to talk to someone or just sitting close to the street and it's gone), don't leave your luggage unattended anywhere/always have the strap or have it locked. Use a security kit like this http://www.amazon.com/HoboTraveler-com-Travel-Security-Training-Pieces/dp/B00N590IBE/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8andqid=1434037906andsr=8-3andppl=freshandkeywords=hobotraveler.com#customerReviews
Robbed at gunpoint on the road between San Pedro La Laguna and Santiago Atitlan. Footage caught on head-cam of my British girlfriend and I (Canadian) being robbed on my motorcycle as we headed back to San Pedro La Laguna from Antigua. April 10, 2014. The guy ahead of us ran out of the bushes and pointed a gun at us, the guy to the right had a machete.
We have uploaded this video clip to serve as a warning...........
I remember that incident.
Not to blame you, but if you had asked around, I'm sure people would have told you that road isn't safe and you should get a police escort. Everyone I know who travels that road either gets an escort or carries a minimum of valuables.
It doesn't help you now, but it's a good reminder that if you're ever worried about your safety, ask around. It can help avoid situations like you faced.
Sadly, shit can happen no matter where you are. Sometimes, it's just dumb luck -- and there is very little you can do about that.
Hello DougM, i found the video on YouTube, its not my video... i live in Hungary, but i like to sell everything here in Hungary and than perhaps moving to Lake Attitlan.
Robbery on route between Santiago and San Pedro:
Avoid the dirt road from Santiago Atilan to San Pedro in Guatemala:
Safety and Security:
Most Maya are honest and peaceable. And most parts of the lake are safe, though you want to play attention after 10 PM no matter where you are in the world. Here, avoid taking anything of value on hikes, even guided tours, to isolated areas such as Indian Nose. Of course you’re going to carry the camera, so back up your photos before heading out.
On shuttle and buses, conceal most of you cash and cards on your person and carry a dummy wallet with a little money. Never ever take the back road between San Pedro and Santiago without an armed police escort.
Google: back road San Pedro police escort:
Where is Bruce Lee when you need him!!! Those little shits need a serious jumbo can of Whoop Ass opened all over them!
This road is DANGEROUS, that Arnold pointed out between San Pedro and Santiago is sort of leaving the lake, and is where the one guy was robbed in a ran I talked about in the video. There is no doubt that traveling the road, especially by your own care in Mexico, Central or South America is extremely dangerous. Yet, the majority do get lucky, and make it. Getting robbed is always a problem, and Europe is a champ, while Asia it take real work to get robbed. Here in Togo, it almost takes a genius idiot to get robbed, each country is different. Thank for pointing out robbery in Guatemala. Truly Latino countries are the champions of robbery on the planet. Yet, in the end, it is about choosing a neighborhood, not a country. I was laughing, a American man wanted me to come look at his Hotel on the road to Santiago, it was recommended on "TripAdvisor," I was saying, "You are isolated,," you are "Volunteering to be robbed." He kept saying Tripadvisor, and I was thinking, another "Tripadvisor Idiot" Reviews can suck you in, and screw your eyes out, good on the ground understanding is needed, Isolation in any country, including the USA can be dangerous.
some gringos seem to be in denial about DR... everything is nice and sunny and no problems... yeah if only!
Well latest situation in DR- On the Northern coast things have got worse and worse by the month. I consider Puerto Plata now a no go area, Used to be problems at night on the Malecon, but now even daytime is dangerous.
Malecon at night reckon you have 80-90 percent chance of being robbed... standard procedure two guys on Motorbike. If you fight back you will get knifed or shot! They have no mercy and dont care! Speaking from experience here, I fought back and got knifed ...fortunately superficial wound or I would not be writing this!
Recent incidents a German shot dead in broad daylight in PP supermarket car park , woman with throat slashed found dead on Malecon etc Sosua not as bad yet, but getting there, numerous break ins and robberies. 3 days ago two women found two guys with machetes in their house at 6.30 in the morning! While ago round the corner from me guy was murdered in a bar, someone spiked his drink, often happens here with prostitutes, but this time was fatal.
Never leave your drinks unattended in DR!!
Just read about another tourist robbery in broad daylight in PP... however this time unusual outcome , the robber was actually chased and caught by some motorcycle taxi drivers and got a good kicking before cops arrived. Seems even the locals have had enough of all the criminality which seems out of control. There have been quite a number of vigilante actions against criminals of late all over DR, in one town they even killed one of the robbers. With cops either unwilling or unable to do anything, people have just had enough and are starting to take the law into their own hands.
I'm late to the discussion here, but I want to make the additional point that not only are statistics subject to manipulation, you also cannot generalize in reverse from them. For example, knowing what the murder rate is in Guatemala tells you nothing about the murder rate around Lake Atitlan.
there is safe hubs id imagine in all dangerous countries. Common sense will carry you pretty far but sometimes luck catches up to you. Maybe that is part of the attraction. It seems I am attracted to dangerous places for some odd reason.