Risky Cities

Ashgabat, Turkmenistan

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Ashgabat, the capital city of Turkmenistan, is a vibrant and bustling metropolis situated in the southwestern part of the country. Known for its grandiose architecture and wide boulevards, Ashgabat is a city that combines the rich history of the Silk Road with modern development.

Ashgabat is home to a population of approximately 1.2 million people. The city has experienced significant growth over the years, with a rise in both residential and commercial developments. As the capital, Ashgabat serves as the political, economic, and cultural hub of Turkmenistan. Its population is diverse, consisting of Turkmen people as the majority, along with ethnic groups such as Russians, Uzbeks, Kazakhs, and others.

When it comes to crime rates, Ashgabat is generally considered a safe city. Turkmenistan, as a whole, has a relatively low crime rate compared to many other countries. However, it is always important to remain cautious and aware of your surroundings, regardless of the city you are in.

In terms of historical crime records, official statistics are not readily available, making it difficult to provide specific details on crime trends in Ashgabat. However, it is worth noting that the Turkmen government maintains a strict control over information and often portrays the country as crime-free. While major crimes may be rare, petty crimes such as pickpocketing and theft can occur in crowded areas, particularly in tourist hotspots.

To ensure your safety in Ashgabat, it is advisable to exercise caution and take basic precautions. Keep your valuables secure, avoid displaying expensive items, and be aware of your surroundings in crowded places. It is also recommended to use well-known and reputable transportation services. Like in any city, it is wise to avoid walking alone in poorly lit or isolated areas, especially at night.

While Ashgabat is generally safe, there are a few areas that may warrant extra caution. For example, some outskirts of the city and more impoverished neighborhoods might have higher levels of poverty and associated issues. As a visitor, it is best to stick to well-known tourist areas and the city center, where security measures are typically more visible.

In terms of safe times to be out, Ashgabat experiences a warm climate with scorching summers, so many people prefer to stay indoors during the hottest part of the day. It is common to see people out and about in the early mornings and evenings, when the temperature is more comfortable. However, it is essential to remember that safety precautions should be taken at all times, regardless of the hour.

As with any travel destination, it is advisable to familiarize yourself with the local laws and customs of Ashgabat. Turkmenistan is known for its strict regulations, and it is essential to respect and abide by them to avoid any potential issues. For example, photography restrictions may be enforced in certain areas, including government buildings and military installations.

Furthermore, it is important to note that political discussions and criticism of the government are heavily discouraged. Freedom of speech is limited in Turkmenistan, and any activities deemed to be against the state or its leadership can result in severe consequences. Visitors should exercise caution and avoid engaging in politically sensitive conversations.