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Anyone been to RIO or SANTIAGO?

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1. Posted by miketurner (Budding Member 26 posts) 11y

I'm going to Rio and Santiago, Chile in a few months. I've read various reports saying Rio isn't safe.

Has anyone been? Any bad experiences?

Like most cities, they can be dangerous if you are unlucky and in the wrong place at the wrong time. Is Rio any worse?

please let me know.

Thanks,

2. Posted by snatterand (Travel Guru 454 posts) 11y

I don't think so. Haven't been yet, but have been given lots of warnings about being careful in all South American cities. Though, I really don't think they are any worse than other cities of similar size around the world. I wouldn't stroll around drunk and silly in the middle of the night (happens occasionally at home ) if I were alone, of course. But I think using common sense is probably sufficient...

//Susanna

3. Posted by edee (Budding Member 11 posts) 11y

Hi,been to both and heard bad stories particularly of Rio. Nothing happened to either myself or my friend while we were there for 8 days,(both girls) or our friends when they were there a couple of weeks later (3 guys). However we did meet a couple who were mugged on copacabana beach at 6pm, it gets dark there really early. Heard a few stories along a similar vein, but we never felt threatened.
Moral of the story is just to be caustious. dont walk on the beach at night as thats prime area, dont flash your stuff around, and stay in ipanema, its the nicest area :)

4. Posted by csfreixo (Full Member 83 posts) 11y

Mike, definitely all big cities deserves a concearn about safety. Edee and Susana are absolutely right!
I lived in Rio for 15 years (W/O any problem) and here are some advices:
- Enjoy you stay above all. If you are scared about reports of violence, dont come!
- If you think you are able to deal with it:
1) Dont carry useless tourism objects: cameras, expensive watches, fashion tennis shoes, etc.
2) Be informed the places you can walk around in the dark and avoid wandering alone. (avoid neighborhoods like copacabana - crowded of tourists - crowded of pick pockets.)
3) In case you are under a threat (what is extremelly improbable if you respect the above itens) DO NEVER REACT!!!
Rio de Janeiro (and Cape Town - South Africa) are the two of the most beautifull cities in the world... you must not miss it!

Cassiano

5. Posted by igetlost (Full Member 89 posts) 11y

stay away from santiago!! ok thats abit extreme. but chile is a place were they take your money and smile while there doing it.
santi is nice for a few days but theres much better.
rio is fine just be careful if your a tourist at twilight.
i have friends just back...i wont tell you what they saw but they were doing work in the favaelas. not reg touristing.
north argentina,like salta-very good.

6. Posted by jackboy (Inactive 350 posts) 11y

Hi
Yes,travelled them both by myself and really enjoyed them both as they both came over as very friendly to me.
From my Hotel to Copacobana beach I learned to walk to the beach in swiming trunks,flipflops and towel over shoulder as thats "all the locals have" as first day I had my beachbag nicked from the beach.
Try a Plastic bag with a little money stuck down your swiming trunks or just have a couple of bottles of water and an apple or two for something to eat on show.
Nightime just take the usual precautions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and one of the best is KNOW EXCATLY WHERE YOU ARE GOING and walk confident and reasonably fast,but you can only try.
If we where to listen to every printed warning about DO NOT DO THIS or DO NOT GO THEIR we would never leave the house.
I find the more you trave the more confident you get and stopped listening to all the old wifes tales.
Have a great Rio and Santi travels and enjoy yourself,when you come back let us know how you got on.
al de bes

7. Posted by kurwah (Full Member 60 posts) 10y

I have been to both Rio and Santiago. Both are lovely places and as with all cities one must take care and be sensible. I often walked along the foreshore in Rio and never felt unsafe. I even had my day pack and camera around my neck at night taking photos of the sand sculptures. (How often are you told not to do those things?) Common sense prevails.
The ride to the aiport in Rio was an adventure and as the taxi driver said "This is Rio. Happens everyday."

8. Posted by Shante (Inactive 18 posts) 10y

Hey Are you talking about Santiago de Cuba? If yeah! I was there for on vacation and visited the the city and its outskirts. I didn't have any bad experiences, the people were kind.. but theres alwatys someone wanting you to give them your clothes... stay alert! Good luck

9. Posted by miguel_es (Full Member 114 posts) 10y

Rio: Don´t by Grass at the beach, the seller sell you to the police. Don´t walk by the road (allways by sidewalk). Be carefully with your camera, money, don´t visit by your self "As FAvelas".
Don´t forget to eat "al espeto", to buy cheap surfwear at "arpoador". Go to the clubs in the area of "lagoa de Rodrigo freitas".