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Old May 13, 07, 8:30 pm   #1
 
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PERU/LIMA safety issues

Just a general question:
I used to live in Lima in the 80's and despite the military government always thought it was relatively safe.
I would like to go back for a visit but have heard many horror stories.
So, is Lima and Cuzco less safe than other places in the world? or is it just the same be careful/traveler beware kind of thing.
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Old May 14, 07, 4:05 am   #2
 
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I go to Lima once or twice a year.
I find it relatively safe, of course if you use common sense.
It seems to me that petty theft is much more of a threat than being held up or kidnapped as in Mexico City.
For instance having a baby carriage snatched off of the top of your car at a stop light (actually happened to my wife). Chain snatchings are seemingly popular as well, and of course pickpockets in Miraflores.


I take the taxis alone all of the time and even drive around the city.
Something I would never, ever do in Mexcio City.
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Old May 14, 07, 9:23 pm   #3
 
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It really is the same old "be careful" routine. Avoid flashy jewellry and wallets in easy-to-pickpocket places, stick to the better areas and, if you're walking around at night, take $200 cash and nothing else...that will leave the mugger satisfied, and you'll be little worse for the wear.

I lived for four years in Peru (until mid-2004) and I was never robbed. Not to say that it can't happen, but with basic precautions the risk is quite manageable. And Lima has improved a lot since the 80s, so travel and enjoy!
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Old May 14, 07, 10:41 pm   #4
 
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I do agree with the previous responders about the continued safety there. I visit about 5 times a year. Some ex pats friends living there have warned me of a new attempt at extortion, coming from taxi drivers. To be safe, if a taxi driver uses his/her cell phone for an incoming/outgoing call, demand that he/she disconnect the call immediately, and if he/she refuses, demand to get out of the car. While my friends are a bit protective, and I have never felt threatened in Lima, there were reports on the news (while I was there) of kidnapped tourists in Lima from taxi drivers.
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Old May 14, 07, 10:44 pm   #5
 
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I found Cuzco a very safe place and a city I want to visit again. If you stay around the city center I am sure you will be fine. As for Lima the hotel I stayed in near the airport would not let us out of the mini van until we were inside the gates. I went out onto the balcony and herd loads of screaming and unpleasant sounds. I asked the hotel staff about going for a walk and they said it is not safe enough. Like all cities in the world I am sure there are safe and unsafe places. I picked an unsafe one!
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Old May 15, 07, 10:16 am   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hobarthoney View Post
I found Cuzco a very safe place and a city I want to visit again. If you stay around the city center I am sure you will be fine. As for Lima the hotel I stayed in near the airport would not let us out of the mini van until we were inside the gates. I went out onto the balcony and herd loads of screaming and unpleasant sounds. I asked the hotel staff about going for a walk and they said it is not safe enough. Like all cities in the world I am sure there are safe and unsafe places. I picked an unsafe one!
Callao (the area around the airport) is definitely not a safe zone, especially after dark. You are much better off staying in one of the hotels in the nicer areas of San Isidro and Miraflores. Avoid Callao, except transit to and from the airport.
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Old May 21, 07, 8:57 am   #7
 
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Lima is dangerous. Mugging, instant kidnapping/mannapping, pickpocketing. Callao, the harbour district, is very dangerous. But also the center (Plaza San Martin) and the green districts Miraflores and San Isidro are not save.
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