How Safe Is Iraq for Travel?

Safety Index:

Iraq is a country located in the Middle East.

It is situated at the north end of the Persian Gulf with a small coastline in the southeast of the country.

It shares its borders with Iran to the east, Kuwait to the south, Saudi Arabia to the southwest, Jordan to the west, Syria to the northwest, and Turkey to the north.

Unfortunately, Iraq has been through tough times in the past 40 years and its tumultuous history has taken a toll on its travel industry.

After the fall of the Saddam Hussein government, known for being extremely hostile to the Shia religion, the holy sites of southern Iraq and in particular the spiritual home of Shia Islam in Karbala welcomed the hordes of religious pilgrims mostly from the Middle East, Iran, and Central Asia.

Religious pilgrimage is still unsafe, but it’s definitely safer than it used to be and knowing the Arab region is also quite useful as it will make you feel safer.

Warnings & Dangers in Iraq

Overall Risk


Generally, Iraq isn't a safe country to visit, because of its complicated political situation and turmoil that took over the country and its neighbors. It is strongly recommended that you do not travel to Iraq at this time.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Terrorist groups make transportation through the country rather difficult. You might get pulled over at any second. Air traffic isn't safe either. In January 2015, a commercial flight arriving into Baghdad International Airport was fired upon by the rebels.

Pickpockets Risk


Petty crime in Iraq exists and if you do leave your accommodation for whatever reason - even though this is also strongly advised against - be careful in crowded places such as bus and train stations and keep your valuables in your accommodation.

Natural Disasters Risk


As for natural disasters, floods are Iraq's most severe threat. In 2015, a state of emergency was declared in Iraq due to torrential rains resulting in severe flooding.

Mugging Risk


Violent crime has actually been on the rise during the past three years. There have also been some kidnappings involving foreigners. Traveling in groups is recommended in Iraq. Avoid any suspicious parts of the country or going out at all after dark.

Terrorism Risk


Terrorists are very likely to try and carry out attacks in Iraq. The biggest threat is coming from the extremist groups like Daesh that are responsible for the majority of attacks. Remain vigilant at all times.

Scams Risk


Scams are the least of your problems if you're in Iraq, but yes, there are scammers here that will try to trick you. Double-check your change, never pay anything upfront and negotiate everything in advance. Be very careful around ATMs and be wary of people trying to distract you.

Women Travelers Risk


Iraq isn't dangerous for women particularly, but it is advised for tourists in general, regardless of their gender, not to walk around Iraq, be it during day or night, as the country is essentially in the state of warfare.

So... How Safe Is Iraq Really?

Iraq is not safe to travel to.

All travel to Mosul, Al-Qaim, Hawijah, etc is strongly discouraged and governments are advising their citizens world-wide against traveling to Iraq.

Though traveling to areas like Basra, Najaf, Karbala, and the majority of Kurdistan is safe, and the north-east provinces which comprise Iraqi Kurdistan can be considered somewhat safe, you should still travel to this country only in cases of absolute necessity.

If it is necessary to visit Iraq, then remain cautious and aware of your surroundings at all times, and consult your embassy before you leave.

If you go to Iraq and you have certain opinions on its history, religion and the sectarian warfare that has been going on for over a decade, keep it to yourself as expressing these opinions in certain areas can end with fatal consequences.

Rule of thumb is to avoid any religious or political discussions.

Keep in mind that Iraq, being a war zone, has minefields pretty much everywhere in every area of the country, so do not stray anywhere, do not walk into fields, especially unmarked ones unless you’re guided by someone who knows the area or is absolutely sure that it’s safe.

It would be best not to go anywhere without an escort from the Iraqi army.

Useful Information

  • Visas - Most countries do need a visa in order to enter Iraq. Make sure your passport is valid for at least the next six months. If you are not sure about your visa status, visit which will let you know whether or not you need a visa based on your nationality and the country you want to visit.
  • Currency - The Iraqi dinar is the official currency in Iraq. ATMs exist throughout the country and are mostly located outside of banks.
  • Weather - The climate in Iraq is mostly mild, though extremes to both ends can occur. The average temperature in Iraq can range from higher than 48 degrees C in July and August to below freezing in January. It receives plenty of precipitation, mostly within a period between December and April. Rain is more abundant in the mountainous region.
  • Airports - Baghdad International Airport, formerly referred to as Saddam International Airport, is Iraq's largest and main international airport. It is located about 16 km west of downtown Baghdad.
  • Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Iraq, since it covers not only the costs medical problems but also theft and loss of valuables.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Iraq Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 10° C
Feb 13° C
Mar 17° C
Apr 23° C
May 29° C
Jun 33° C
Jul 35° C
Aug 35° C
Sep 31° C
Oct 25° C
Nov 17° C
Dec 11° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Where to Next?

17 Reviews on Iraq

  1. A
    Anonymous says:

    it’s amazing

    I went to Iraq this summer with my mom, my two sisters, and me. it was perfectly fine. there was not one moment where I felt unsafe.

    I was in the Baghdad area. everyone was living normally. it was beautiful. it makes me sad to see that my home country is always thought of as very unsafe when it’s legit perfectly good.

  2. A
    Anonymous says:

    Don’t go

    there’s literally a war there, you are dumb if you choose to go and you’re just asking to get killed

    1. E
      EvilWhiteMan says:

      (Ob)liberated by the USA

      This is what happens to countries who have been “freed” by the USA. Destroyed, raped and robbed for all eternity. Afghanistan and Libya are another fine example of “liberation”.

  3. P
    Polarbear says:


    Iraq looks beautiful Because I like Mosques And The Sulaymaniyah Area Is cool My most Liked Thing Is Baghdad In Baghdad you sede domes an its A cool Area I Think Iraq Is Better than Iran But I guess Yemen Is cooler

    1. A Great Place to Visit

      I have been on holy Pilgrimages in Iran as well as Iraq and Iran was definitely cleaner. Both places are peaceful and I walked on the street and ate the food and enjoyed the culture. The people are so friendly and welcoming. I would visit again, anytime.

  4. P
    PolarBear says:


    I think Iraq Is better Than Lebanon To My Opinion But I think Both Of them are cool Sometimes I Like It Or not like It These are my favorite Countries: Yemen Iran Iraq Lebanon Pakistan Austria Iceland France And Russia are my Favorites

  5. H
    Hadoosh Iq says:

    Iraq is safe for tourists you can see YouTubers videos when they visited it

    1. X
      Xavier Lauzac says:

      You got the wrong message

      No it’s not. Just because people have enjoyed their trips, doesn’t mean it’s safe. Iraq is a warzone, and I don’t have to have been there to know that.

      1. Q
        Qasim Gondal says:

        is sad

        is you are wrong and correct but youtubers can not go there

    2. Terrible message.

      Uh no, those youtubers most definitely had protection, and absolutely knew what they were doing. Just because some youtuber goes does not mean tourists will be safe.

      It’s a warzone, that should tell you a lot.

  6. warning: do not travel to iraq because of terror. also because of warzones in the deserts ever since united states of america invaded baghad and deserts of iraq

  7. I can't wait to go back!

    I visited a family member in Erbil last year. The scariest part of the trip was trying to get lunch in Chicago before I got to the airport. Erbil is a very safe city at any hour, with a very low crime rate. Compare their murder rate with any major American city and many small towns! There are many beautiful places to see and friendly people everywhere.

  8. Iraq is definitely not a safe country. you don’t know what might happen when you’re outside from sexual harassment, assaulting, robbing, bombing, kidnapping..etc. No freedom No safety.

  9. e

    I’m confused how this is the 5th most dangerous country on the website but it has 1 safe city?

    1. It actually has about 4-5

  10. P
    PolarBear says:

    Not safe

    Hello I don’t want to go here anymore, it’s a season of a big war.

  11. E
    Ewan Maher says:

    Kurdistan Iraq is rather safe. This report ignores that region!

    A very slanted and conjectural report. Sure, Baghdad and most of (Arab-speaking) Iraq to the south is very unsafe indeed.

    But to the north, in Iraqi Kurdistan, which includes such cities of Duhok, Zakho and Erbil, it is pretty safe with many natural wonders and vistas that are visited by many Kurds and Assyrians living abroad. Last time I checked, they all came back in one piece. Some even go there and live for a few years. Sure, these areas are still not the safest in the world, but are still fairly safe for WORLD STANDARDS!

    Such a shame that your report or review on Iraq was purely based on its Arab-populated, defunct, dangerous cities like Baghdad, Mosul, Kirkuk and Basra.

    Either revise this report (where you include Duhok) or just make one solely for Iraqi Kurdistan. I’d personally give that region 55-60 out of 100.

Rated 3.35 / 5 based on 17 user reviews.

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