The Safest Countries in the World

Discover the 10 (well, 11) most peaceful destinations to visit according to the 2017 Global Peace Index.

By: Ryan Reed
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10: Japan (tie)

One of many islands to break into the top 10 with a 1.408 GPI score, Japan is the only country in Asia to make the list. The cuisine alone is enough to book a flight to the Land of the Rising Sun, but its majestic landscapes featuring towering volcanos and spectacular cliffs will make you want to extend your vacation.

10: Ireland (tie)

After a 12th-place rating last year, Ireland slid into the top 10 thanks to a 1.408 GPI score. Most know the Emerald Isle as the home of Guinness, but it also features some of the most amazing natural wonders on the planet.

9: Switzerland

It should come as no surprise that a country known for its neutral stance on war and founding of the International Committee of the Red Cross would rank in the top 10 for most peaceful countries with a GPI score of 1.373. Relax with peace of mind at one of the country’s fabulous ski villages, or head into town for some delicious Swiss chocolate.

8: Canada

The only North American country to crack the top 10 (sorry, U.S.) with a GPI score of 1.371, Canada offers something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a rural adventure or big-city excitement, our neighbors to the north can accommodate.

7: Slovenia

You may not immediately think of Slovenia when planning a European adventure but considering its 1.364 GPI score and access to both the Mediterranean Sea and the Alps, you may want to rethink your options. Still need convincing? Look no further than Lake Bled, the country’s most popular attraction, for unbelievable views.

6: Czech Republic

This land-locked country is on the rise. In 2016, the number of guests to the Czech Republic increased by 6.9 percent and with a 1.36 GPI score, it’s one of the safest European countries you can visit. We recommend the cobblestoned streets of Prague, but be sure to venture outside the city to experience a countryside unlike any other.

5: Denmark

Scandinavia is one of the safest regions you can visit with Norway and Sweden ranking in the top 20, but it's Denmark that stands alone with a GPI score of 1.337. Known as the happiest country, the southernmost Nordic country features world-class museums, unique amusement parks and historic architecture.

4: Austria

Surrounded by three other countries in the top 10, Austria is nestled in a safe pocket in the center of Europe with a GPI score of 1.265. Check out Vienna for Old World charm and a dose of culture unlike any in the region.

3: Portugal

Overlook Portugal no longer. The coastal country is home to some of Europe’s best castles, incredible cuisine and Instagram-worthy sunsets. Its GPI score of 1.258 only adds to its luster. Book a trip to the capital city of Lisbon to experience a stunning mix of ancient sites and modern wonders.

2: New Zealand

Home to breathtaking views and amazing wildlife, New Zealand is a Middle-earth mecca for adventure junkies while boasting a GPI score of 1.241. In fact, Queenstown, located on the South Island, is known as the "Adventure Capital of the World," thanks to a plethora of extreme activities available to visitors.

1: Iceland

Since 2008, this tiny island nation in the North Atlantic Ocean has been named the most peaceful country in the world. Location and population (approximately 330,000 in 2015) certainly contributed to its impressive 1.111 overall GPI, but Iceland’s reign at the top can’t be denied. The country is one of the hottest destinations for tourists and with stunning landscapes and a world class capital city, Iceland is as beautiful as it is safe.