What is The Most Dangerous City in Brazil? 3 Places To Avoid

What is The Most Dangerous City in Brazil?

As a Brazilian born and bred, I can assure you that most of the cities and tourist destinations in Brazil are very safe, and as long as you use common sense, you’ll be fine.

That being said, I would be irresponsible with you If I did not tell you that there are some cities you should avoid, like the most dangerous city in Brazil.

Maracanaú is the most dangerous city in Brazil according to the Atlas of Violence of 2020. Located in the state of Ceará, the murder rate in the city of Maracanaú is 145,7 per 100,000 inhabitants, one of the biggest rates in the world.

Comparing with the data of the WorldAtlas, Maracanaú is not only the most dangerous city in Brazil but in the world! That’s crazy, but this is not the only location that you should avoid while visiting the country.

In this article, there is a list of 3 places that you should avoid visiting while traveling to Brazil. Also, you’ll discover which are the Brazilian capitals with the biggest homicide rates and why Brazil is a safe country for you to visit (even with the pandemic going on).

Top 3 Dangerous Cities in Brazil

Brazil is a safe country to visit and live in. There are problems around here like any other country, but in most parts of the cities, you’ll be safe.

Although, it’s important to notice that there are places that you should avoid visiting. It’s not that you’ll be killed instantly in one of these cities, but as they’re not touristic destinations not visiting them will not hurt.

CityStateHomicides per 100,000
MaracanaúCeará145,7 per 100,000 inhabitants
AltamiraPará133,7 per 100,000 inhabitants
São Gonçalo do AmaranteRio Grande do Norte131,2 per 100,000 inhabitants

Maracanaú

What is The Most Dangerous City in Brazil?

Maracanaú, a city located in the state of Ceará is the most dangerous city in Brazil. Located in the metropolitan region of Fortaleza, the capital of the state, Maracanaú homicide rates per 100,000 inhabitants in the highest on the planet, according to the data from the Brazilian Atlas of Violence and the Brazilian Public Security Forum.

The study shows an incredible rate of murders in the city: 145,7 per 100,000 inhabitants. If you look at the ranking of the WorldAtlas, you’ll see Tijuana, Mexico, as first place with 138 homicides per 100,000. With 145,7, Maracanaú is probably the most dangerous city in the world.

But the reality in Maracanaú maybe is not that bad. Some say that the numbers for the year 2017 should be considered “outliers” due to wars between rival factions that have raised the homicide rate in the city. The numbers for 2017 are really unbelievable: 5,100 homicides in just 1 year, an average of 14 violent deaths per day.

Altamira

What is The Most Dangerous City in Brazil?

Altamira was already considered the most violent city in Brazil. With a population of 113,195 people and located in a strategic position in the North of the country, this place was not even listed between the top 100 most violent cities in Brazil a decade ago.

Things started to change after the construction of the Belo Monte power plant. Before that, the territory of the city was divided by the drug dealers and other criminals of the city, with rivals living in their respective controlled areas.

After the construction of the power plant, part of the population needed to resettled, a movement that made mortal enemies live side-by-side. It started a war that lasts until today, making the city the number 2 in the ranking of most violent and dangerous in Brazil, with a murder rate of 133,7 per 100,000 inhabitants.

São Gonçalo do Amarante

According to the Atlas of Violence, published by The Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA), São Gonçalo do Amarante, in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, is the third most violent city in Brazil in a universe of those with more than 100 thousand inhabitants.

With a murder rate of 131,2 per 100,000 inhabitants, this city is being overwhelmed by criminals. In the words of a resident, “the safety levels here are below zero. It’s dangerous to go out any time of the day. Even going out with a cellphone is high risk”.

The residents of the city suffer the consequences of a police force that is working with 30% of the necessary workforce. They’re doing their best, but with a region with 11 boroughs and extensive territory, this is a war that they’re not going to win.

What is The Safest City in Brazil?

Dangerous places do not represent Brazilian reality. Problems and crimes are happening here every day, but most of them also happen worldwide. Brazil is not the problem. Proof of that is the ranking of the safest cities in Brazil.

Jáu is the safest city in Brazil. A little city in the state of São Paulo, Jaú has the lowest number of violent crimes in the country. According to the data provided by the Atlas of Violence, published by The Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA), the murder rate in Jaú is 2,7 per 100,000 inhabitants.

Jaú

Jaú is a city located in the center region of the state of São Paulo. With a population of 150,252 and an HDI of 0,778, according to the Atlas of Violence from IPEA, this is considered the safest city in Brazil.

The murder rate in Jaú is 2,7 per 100,000 inhabitants. The lowest rate in a universe of cities with more than 100 thousand inhabitants.

Top 5 Safest Cities in Brazil

Of the top 5 safest cities in Brazil, 3 are located in the state of São Paulo and the other two are located in the state of Santa Catarina (which is one of the most beautiful and safe to visit in Brazil).

CityStateHomicides per 100,000
JaúSão Paulo2,7 per 100,000 inhabitants
IndaiatubaSão Paulo3,5 per 100,000 inhabitants
ValinhosSão Paulo4,7 per 100,000 inhabitants
Jaraguá do SulSanta Catarina5,5 per 100,000 inhabitants
BrusqueSanta Catarina5,8 per 100,000 inhabitants

Most Dangerous Capitals in Brazil

The Atlas of Violence published by The Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA) also ranked the most dangerous capitals in Brazil. Fortaleza, the first capital on the list, is located in the state of Ceará, the same state that Maracanaú, the most dangerous city in Brazil.

CityStateHomicides per 100,000
FortalezaCeará87,9 per 100,000 inhabitants
Rio BrancoAcre85,3 per 100,000 inhabitants
BelémPará74,3 per 100,000 inhabitants
NatalRio Grande do Norte73,4 per 100,000 inhabitants
SalvadorBahia63,5 per 100,000 inhabitants

Safest Capitals in Brazil

On the other hand, the safest capitals in Brazil are great cities and the first one of them is was a good surprise: despite being the biggest city in the country, São Paulo is the safest Brazilian capital.

São Paulo is followed the list by Campo Grande, a great city in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul with HDI levels of 0,784, which is considered high. Brasília, the capital of the country, is the third safest Brazilian capital.

The top 5 is completed by Curitiba and Belo Horizonte, some of my favorite cities in the country. I’m in Curitiba at least 15 times a year and in my opinion, is one of the best cities in Brazil.

CityStateHomicides per 100,000
São PauloSão Paulo13,2 per 100,000 inhabitants
Campo GrandeMato Grosso do Sul18,8 per 100,000 inhabitants
BrasíliaDistrito Federal20,5 per 100,000 inhabitants
CuritibaParaná24,6 per 100,000 inhabitants
Belo HorizonteMinas Gerais26,7 per 100,000 inhabitants

Is Brazil A Dangerous Place?

Although some cities in Brazil can be really dangerous, the country is safe to visit. There are problems here like anywhere else. So don’t lose the chance of knowing one of the greatest countries on earth because of problems that are also present where you live.

As a general rule, Brazil is not dangerous and is a safe country to visit. There are some cities and areas that you should avoid, but if you use common sense, don’t go out with all of your possessions and stay sharp you’ll be safe in most cities in the country.

While traveling to a different country you need to use some well-known pieces of advice. Be smart, try to don’t look like a tourist, don’t go out carrying all your possessions. This way you’ll not attract too much attention and will enjoy an amazing time.

Final Considerations

I hope that this article have solved all your doubts about the most dangerous cities in Brazil. Also, this 3 cities do not represent the reality of the entire country.

Brazil is a safe place to visit as long as you use the tips from this article.

That being said, I hope it gave you all the information that you needed about “What is The Most Dangerous City in Brazil?”.

If you want to read more incredible articles about Brazil, just click here and enjoy.

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