Risky Cities

Ambato, Tungurahua, Ecuador

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Ambato is a charming city located in the Tungurahua province of Ecuador. It is also known as the "City of Flowers and Fruits," due to the extensive cultivation of flowers and fruits in the area. As of 2021, the estimated population of Ambato is around 320,000 people.

In terms of crime rates, Ambato is considered to be a relatively safe city compared to other urban areas in Ecuador. The crime rate in Ambato has been declining in recent years, thanks to the efforts of the local government and the police force. However, like any city, there are still some areas that visitors should avoid and some safety precautions that should be taken.

As for the history of crime in Ambato, the city has experienced some high-profile incidents over the years. In 1999, for example, a terrorist attack targeted the city's annual Carnival celebration, killing 5 people and injuring over 100 others. This event had a significant impact on the city and its people, and security measures have been improved since then to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future.

In terms of dangerous areas to avoid, there are a few places in Ambato that visitors should be cautious about. These include the neighborhoods of Huachi Grande and Pishilata, which are known for their higher crime rates. It is also advisable to avoid walking alone at night, particularly in the more secluded areas of the city.

On the other hand, there are some areas in Ambato that are considered to be safer than others. The central part of the city is generally safe during the day, particularly around the main square and the surrounding streets. There are also plenty of police officers stationed in the area to ensure the safety of locals and tourists alike. It is still advisable to take precautions, such as keeping valuable belongings out of sight and not flashing large amounts of cash in public.

When it comes to other safety advice specific to Ambato, visitors should be aware of the possibility of earthquakes in the area. Tungurahua province is located on the Andean Volcanic Belt, which means that earthquakes and volcanic activity are not uncommon. Visitors should familiarize themselves with emergency procedures and evacuation routes, particularly if they are staying in a high-rise building.

Another important safety concern in Ambato is traffic. The city's roads can be chaotic, particularly during rush hour, and pedestrians should be extra careful when crossing the street. It is also advisable to avoid hailing taxis on the street and instead use licensed taxi services or ride-sharing apps like Uber and Cabify.

Despite these safety concerns, Ambato is a wonderful city to visit with plenty of things to see and do. The city is home to several museums, including the Casa Museo del Montubio, which offers a glimpse into the culture of the local indigenous people. The Parque Juan Leon Mera is also a popular attraction, offering beautiful views of the city and the surrounding mountains.

While Ambato is generally a safe city, visitors should still take precautions to ensure their safety. By familiarizing themselves with the city's layout, staying aware of their surroundings, and taking common sense measures like keeping valuables out of sight, visitors can enjoy all that this charming city has to offer.