The conditions in Afghanistan are unstable and unpredictable at best.
For the past several years, the country has been in a state of war with terrorists.
Women have no rights and are treated as property.
Attacks could strike at any moment with no warning.
Anybody can be a potential victim of kidnapping, murder, vandalism, or theft.
The whole country is considered a dangerous area at this time, according to the United States government.
Although Afghanistan as a whole is dangerous, here are 10 of the most dangerous cities in Afghanistan.
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities in Afghanistan
- 5 Safety Tips for Traveling to Afghanistan
- Afghanistan Safety Overview
- Frequently Asked Questions
10 Most Dangerous Cities in Afghanistan
Kabul is the capital city of Afghanistan, making it the powerhouse of the whole country.
As the capital city of Afghanistan, it attracted the attention of the Taliban, making it the central spot for the never-ending fight going on.
After America’s involvement in the war ended in 2021, anyone seen as enemies of the state disappeared without a trace.
Women were banned from educational settings and public places, and there are rumors of state-funded torture of protesters.
Unfortunately, there are little to no signs of any police, and there is a high risk of getting kidnapped, killed, or tortured.
Mazar-i-Sharif, also known as Mazar for short, has been a large part of the war with the Taliban since 2001 when it fell into the control of Allied forces.
At this point in time, Mazar-i-Sharif was filled with political assassinations, massacres, and suicide attacks.
Along with the physical attacks, the city sits directly on top of a major fault line.
This means that they have a high chance of major earthquakes that can cause a massive amount of damage and injury.
However, the biggest threat remains the fight against the Taliban.
Herat currently has a population of 695,000 people.
Although it is considered one of the safer countries on the most dangerous list, there are still a high number of threats in Herat.
Locals are more than likely to solve issues with gun violence and other means out in the open.
It would be a bad time to get caught in the middle of one of those disputes. Just like with most of the country, the Taliban is in control and has very strict laws.
It is illegal for women to work or go out in public without a covering, thieves get amputations, and if you are gay, you are put to death.
Although it is advised not to visit, Herat is home to a variety of historical sites, including the royal tomb of the Timurid Dynasty.
Kandahar was one of the first cities that the Taliban got control of in their reign of terror.
Unfortunately, it is common to see displays of violence in the squares, including floggings and executions.
Just like the rest of the country, basic rights are not available for women or the LGBTQ community.
There is a high crime rate and a high chance that you could get kidnapped or tortured just for being there.
Like most of Afghanistan, it is recommended that you don’t visit Kandahar at this point in time.
This city is filled with violence and geological threats.
Aside from the ever-present Taliban threats, Jalalabad has a high risk of earthquake activity.
At least two earthquakes are recorded each week.
Despite the high earthquake activity, the city lacks basic infrastructure and building requirements, making it a dangerous place to be if an earthquake strikes.
Along with the high seismic activity, the level of violence and political unrest is soaring.
There is a high chance that you could become a victim of a violent crime as a visitor to the city or the country.
Kunduz is the 5th largest city in Afghanistan with an estimated population of approximately 300,000 people.
This city was considered relatively safe during the war but has quickly declined in recent years since the Taliban gained control.
The United States government and the United Kingdom have both posted advisories to stay out of Afghanistan, including Kunduz. It is considered unsafe to visit due to all of the violence and crime.
Because of the Taliban’s control of Kunduz, there is a high level of violent crime and kidnappings, making it one of the top ten dangerous cities in Afghanistan.
The Taliban captured Sharana on August 14, 2021, making it the twentieth capital to be overtaken by the Taliban.
Because of the Taliban’s hold on Sharana, it is one of many dangerous cities in Afghanistan.
There is a high number of violent crimes in the city, making it extremely unsafe for other people to visit.
Another thing that makes Sharana dangerous to visit is its location.
Sharana, along with most of Afghanistan, sits in an earthquake zone, adding more dangerous elements to an already dangerous location.
If you dismiss the warnings and decide to visit Sharana anyway, be prepared for anything and everything that might happen.
Chaghcharan is the capital city of the province of Ghor.
The recorded population was approximately 143,200 people in 2018.
Aside from the Taliban threat, the city of Chaghcharan has severe winter weather that makes most of the roads inaccessible and dangerous to drive on.
Aside from the severe winter weather, the city has the threat of violent crime and the control of the Taliban.
The city is filled with threats of theft, vandalism, murder, kidnappings, drug trafficking, and much more.
The United States and UK Governments advise against visiting this location at this time.
Ghazni deals with the industries of furs, livestock, agricultural products, and silk, making it one of the chief industrial centers of Afghanistan.
Other names for Ghazni include Ghazna and Ghaznain.
Along with the rest of Afghanistan, Ghazni is considered a dangerous place due to the Taliban’s control.
Most countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia all have advisories against visiting this area.
If you have to visit, it is essential to take every safety precaution possible to make sure you aren’t in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Mehtarlam also spelled Mihtarlam, is considered the 16th largest city in the country.
Mehtarlam has a total of 144,162 people as of 2020. This city sits approximately one hour from Jalalabad.
Mehtarlam was taken over by the Taliban on August 13, 2021, making it city number 23 under the Taliban’s control.
Because of the strict control that the Taliban has on most of the cities in Afghanistan, there is a lot of violence and civil unrest.
The violence and strict rules make things unpredictable for the people and any potential visitors.
5 Safety Tips for Traveling to Afghanistan
- Keep a watch on any advisories and the media for any changes to the situation in Afghanistan.
- Pay attention to your surroundings at all times.
- Make sure you are following all of the rules to avoid getting arrested or punished in some way.
- Keep your trip as short as possible.
- Stay out in public as much as possible to avoid becoming a victim of crime.
Afghanistan Safety Overview
READ THE FULL REPORT: Afghanistan Safety ReviewSafety Index:
- OVERALL RISK: HIGH
- TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: HIGH
- PICKPOCKETS RISK: HIGH
- NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: HIGH
- MUGGING RISK: HIGH
- TERRORISM RISK: HIGH
- SCAMS RISK: HIGH
- WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: HIGH
Frequently Asked Questions
How bad is the situation in Afghanistan?
The situation in Afghanistan is bad enough that the governments of multiple different countries have put out advisories and recommendations against all unnecessary travel to the country.
In most of the cities in Afghanistan, women are banned from working or taking part in pretty much anything.
The rules and laws are very strict and punishments are harsh and often public.
Is the situation in Afghanistan improving or escalating?
According to The UN Refugee Agency, the situation in Afghanistan has started to improve slightly after the United States dropped out of the fight in 2021.
There are still many remaining challenges, but things are starting to improve.
The casualties of civilians have gone down dramatically, and places that have been inaccessible for many years have now become accessible to humanitarian efforts.
What started the United States' involvement in the Taliban war?
On September 11, 2001, terrorists attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, killing thousands of people.
In October 2001, President Bush announced the involvement of the United States in the war against terrorists from the Middle East.
The United States stayed involved in the chaos for almost 20 years, equal to two decades until they pulled out of the fight in 2021.
How long has the fight against the Taliban been going on?
The Taliban war lasted a total of almost 20 years.
It started on October 7, 2001, and ended on August 15, 2021, when the United States government backed out of Afghanistan.