I have extended family in Juarez and I have been three times in the last few years. The last time I visited was in July 2017, and at that time it was quite noticeably safer, cleaner and more secure than on either of my previous visits, from 2010 to 2015. It was remarkable how many new businesses had opened, including big box retail stores and nicer restaurants. There was also an obvious large increase in the presence of "federales", the national police. Although this is comforting, keep in mind that in Mexico, and especially the border towns, even the police are quite often the bad guys, although federales do seem to be less corrupt than local police.
Let common sense prevail... Stay with your group, the larger the better. Don't display obvious signs of wealth or affluence. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Do not go out after dark if you can avoid it. Do not overindulge in alcohol. And most of all, have fun. There are truly some dreadful, dreary and scary parts of Juarez, but there are also areas that are a cultural gem.
Thank you for your very detailed and thorough response. I have heard from a lot of people that Juarez is much safer now than it was back in 2009 through about 2012. I am very encouraged by how the city and the federales have made such great strides in making the city safer.
From what I have researched, it seems that there are a lot of great places to see in Juarez and I also noticed how so many businesses have returned as you mentioned.
I am really looking forward to seeing Juarez for myself. I hope the city can continue to build on its current success.
Thanks again for your information.
This afternoon, I found out some more information regarding the tour to Juarez. We are going to ride the El Paso trolley to the bridge, walk across the bridge, and then ride a bus once in Juarez. We are going to visit 3 museums, the Cathedral, a shopping district, and the Kentucky Club. I am really excited about all of these places.
One of the museums that we are going to visit is the new Children's Museum. I think that the fact that a children's museum has opened in Juarez is a great testament to the progress that has been made in improving the city these last few years. I cannot wait to write some travel stories about my trip to Juarez.
Well, I have some bad news. Our trip to Ciudad Juarez has been canceled. Right now there are extremely long lines on both sides the border and wait times for crossing the border are very long.
I was looking forward to sharing some stories about Juarez but unfortunately Juarez will have to wait for another day. I am enjoying my time in El Paso.
Thought about your trip and kind of expected it to happen...sorry it did not work out, you will now have to find other places to write about...can't give more than 1 kudo per story :-(
That’s a bummer about Juarez but you don’t want to be in Juarez if the border gets closed. I have been in those extremely long lines 3 plus hours, at the border in Tijuana coming back into California. It gets pretty crazy sometimes.
Thanks everybody. I appreciate the support. The organizers were afraid that we would be spending all of our time standing in line in the hot sun waiting to cross the border both ways instead of actually seeing the sites in Juarez. Some of us are hoping that we might be able to do another organized tour in the future.
We have alternative plans so I will still be able to see some good stuff on the USA side.
Slight Update. We checked the wait times to get over the Border. Apparently we could have gone to the border bridge and walked over to Mexico within a few minutes. The problem would have been getting back.
I have been told that the wait times to get across the bridge to the United States from Mexico is running roughly 3 hours right now. Ciudad Juarez has been putting out porta potties along the line of people waiting to cross into United States.
Many of us were really looking forward to going to Juarez, but perhaps we will be able to go another day.
I will have lots of stories from the United States side of the Border thanks to our alternate plans. We did drive along the border fence for several miles and we saw the great big X that has become a landmark in Juarez.
The border patrol has been very active here and we have seen multiple border patrol Vehicles throughout the area.
Along the fence in Tijuana (Mexico side) right near the Tijuana Airport there are hundreds if not thousands of crosses and other items of remembrance for all the people that have died trying to cross into the US. It’s a sad sight.