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My Top 6 Least Favorite Latin American Cities

Published August 20, 2020 in Personal Stories & Opinions - 0 Comments

Though there are many cities in Latin America that I have enjoyed being in…

There were others that I either did not really like being in at all.

Or places that I didn’t mind being in but they were just a little bit boring to me personally.

Which doesn’t mean they were bad places – in fact, just a few of them on this list I did enjoy visiting.

But that they don’t compare as well to most other cities I have been down to so far down here.

Either way, I also made sure to include a positive comment about each place so that it’s not all negative.

Because every place I have visited has a gem or two.

And if you like this article, check out this article I wrote on top 10 cities that I liked the most in Latin America.

So let’s begin!

Area 1: Potosi

For a more detailed description of my time to Potosi, Bolivia, read this article I wrote here.

But basically I was traveling by bus from a Bolivian city called Cochabamba to Potosi..

And our bus got stuck by a blockade and couldn’t turn around.

So I had to walk like 4 hours or more into the city.

And ended up being stuck there longer than I wanted.

And got a stronger sense of xenophobia among some of the folks there as well.

All the while being worried about money as I didn’t bring my whole bank with my nor my debit card with me.

While also being in a city that, at its very core, just felt like a dead place all around.

It had a certain depressing feeling to it that I think comes from the deeper poverty of the area and also the history behind the millions who have died there under Spanish colonialism in mining.

Regardless, the one positive thing I guess I can say then about Potosi is that the history of the place is quite fascinating.

Fascinating in a very dark sense but it is a place that has a history that really intrigues me.

So it is what it is.

Area 2: Naucalpan de Juárez

This is a Mexican city in the State of Mexico that is right next to Mexico City.

I once lived near Metro Cuatro Caminos of Mexico City.

Now, technically speaking, I think I actually lived on the side that was within Naucalpan de Juárez.

Because there’s basically two sides to the metro from what I remember.

You go down the corridor of one side and keep walking and you will be in Naucalpan de Juárez.

On the other side is in Mexico City and it looks much nicer.

Either way, this was the one area where I ended up getting robbed by the police.

And all around it looked much sketchier here than some other areas I have seen in Latin America.

In general, it was just a sketchy place all around that I didn’t enjoy as much being in overtime.

The one benefit I guess that comes with this area was that there was a nice taco stand relatively close to where I was living.

So that’s a little gem I guess in my time there.

Area 3: Oruro

Honestly, there wasn’t too much wrong with this Bolivian city.

Didn’t get blocked inside it.

Didn’t get robbed by the police either thankfully.

But the city itself just doesn’t look very nice from what I remember.

Just seemed very dead and desolate almost in my opinion.

On that of that, I noticed a little more xenophobia here than in other places.

So, in short, wasn’t a great place to visit.

On a positive note, I did notice someone who was nice in the city that was very curious about where I was from.

So there’s friendly people here like anywhere else!

Area 4: Juliaca

Here’s another city that is a bit dead from what I remember.

It just seemed like a very dusty and uninspiring city all around.

Really not much wrong with it to be honest but not really a place I would revisit.

I happened to stop by it once when I was traveling around Southern Peru.

On a positive note, I do remember that the city had a nice plaza.

I had to look it up since I forgot the name but I guess it was called Plaza de Armas.

Which was nice in a way.

Area 5: Guatemala City

I got a little story…

The last time I visited Guatemala City…

I was leaving Mexico City airport and had to do a visa run where I go to Guatemala and come back to Mexico in 3 days so I can get a new tourist visa.

I was with my last ex-girlfriend at the time..

Got into the taxi myself by la Reforma in the morning and on the way to the airport…

And I remember thinking to myself “why do I have to leave this wonderful place? Isn’t there some Mexican official I can bribe to get my new tourist visa without having to leave?”

Once I got to Guatemala City…

My girlfriend at the time asked me by Whatsapp “how is Guatemala? Tell me everything!”

And I replied “well, from the vantage point of my hotel window, it looks quite nice! I see some trees, a sky with some clouds, some old couple walking down the street….oh look, even some cars!”

She didn’t like that response…

Granted, I did go out and explore a bit eventually but just found the city to look very shitty all around.

Even in the touristy parts of the city, it looked like shit.

And I had been here before a few times back when I lived in Guatemala and just never found the place appealing.

On a positive note, there were two restaurants near where I lived that were nice.

A very cheap taco place that had the slogan “best tacos of the world.”

Now my girlfriend at the time didn’t agree with that but you know…

What does she know?

She never been to Guatemala.

And there was one burger joint also that was nice near me.

Area 6: Managua

For a better description of my limited time in Managua, read this article here.

To keep a story short, I got food poisoning and found the city all around to be very dusty and just not aesthetically appealing.

So, suffice to say, I don’t think Managua and I were ever going to be good friends.

On the flip side, I did find people in Nicaragua to be very friendly.

Probably some of the friendlier folks I have met yet in Latin America.

More so in Masaya but Managua too!

In Summary

In short, these were the places that stuck out most to me when I got thinking about which spots of Latin America I liked the least relative to other places.

Suffice to say, I couldn’t really come up with a “top 10” list of places I disliked the least similar to how I have a top 10 list of places I like the most in Latin America.

As you can read here.

As honestly, most places I have visited I liked enough.

Some better than others.

Either way, if you have any cities you didn’t like very much in Latin America…

Or if you disagree with me on a particular city on this list…

Let me know in the comments below.

And follow my Twitter here.

Thanks.

Best regards,

Matt

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