The US State Department has issued a new warning for two states in Mexico and updated travel advisories for regions popular among travelers.
According to the official information recently published on the US Embassy page, the new alert is related to local crime. The US government has also shared a few recommendations for those visiting the areas affected.
The event description states that confrontation between criminal organizations has been reported due to the arrest of a leader and that US visitors will encounter more presence of the Mexican police and special security forces in the zone.
Below we share more relevant information for travelers and about touristic destinations in these states.
Sinaloa Travel Alert
The State Department is reminding US citizens that the current travel warnings, for Sinaloa is a level 4, “do not travel”
The state of Sinaloa, right on the Pacific coast and facing the Gulf of California has been considered dangerous for travelers due to increasing crime and the rivalry between criminal organizations.
The State Department does not advise travel and states: “Violent crime is widespread. Criminal organizations are based in and operating in Sinaloa. U.S. citizens and LPRs have been victims of kidnapping.”
There is also a special notice for popular destinations for tourists like Mazatlán, Los Mochis, and Topolobampo.
Despite the warnings regarding the region, the beach destination Mazatlán —known for its beautiful beaches, warm waters, and delicious weather— is still a safe destination. Other popular beaches in Mexico like Cancún have been facing worrying safety issues, the Mexican government recently deployed 300 army soldiers to keep tourists safe.
The US State Department allows government employees to travel to Mazatlan but recommends that US citizens limit their visits to the Zona Dorada and the historic town center using safe transportation methods.
Regarding Los Mochis and Topolobampo, the American government has advised employees to travel only by air or sea, and direct routes between both locations. Other areas in Sinaloa are not recommended, especially for travelers who are not familiar with the place.
Sonora Travel Warning
The State Department is reminding US citizens that the current travel warnings, for Sonora is level 3, Reconsider Travel
Sonora, another beautiful state in the north of Mexico, right next to Sinaloa, is known among tourists for its beautiful beaches, deserts, and mountains. Unfortunately, it is also known for its active local criminal organization.
According to the State Department, this state represents a “key location used by the international drug trade and human trafficking networks”. The government also shares travel advice for employees that are relevant to travelers.
Travel by car between cities should be done during day time and through main highways. Travelers should avoid secondary routes even when visiting popular destinations like the capital Hermosillo, Puerto Peñasco o Nogales —where taxi services are not recommended either.
Travelers should also avoid dangerous areas near the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the north of Altar municipality, and the east of Sonoyta. Visitors should opt for safe and popular locations.
Recommendations For Travelers
With the recent security alert, the US State Department also shared a few general recommendations for citizens. These are the main considerations for those already in the area:
- Stay up to date with news and local media. Monitor updates and call 911 in case of emergency.
- Stay alert and beware of your surroundings.
- Keep a low profile and stay vigilant.
- Follow instructions from local authorities.
- Review personal security plan.
Travelers who have plans to visit these states should reconsider travel and avoid risky situations. Other institutions are also providing relevant travel information and resources.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States has recently issued alerts for travelers interested in visiting Mexico because COVID-19 cases have increased. US travelers must stay up to date with the government’s travel advisory and current events.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com