Know Which Countries Guarantee Drinkable Tap Water With This Graphic

Know Which Countries Guarantee Drinkable Tap Water With This Graphic

You need drinking water no matter where you go, but not all parts of the world can always guarantee clean, safe tap water. This handy guide shows you where drinking from the tap is OK, and where you’re better off doing further research on the subject.

The guide from Danny Ashton at NeoMam Studios uses information gathered from the United States Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. You can see each continent with guaranteed safe countries in blue and potentially unsafe countries in brown, along with some tips for how you can avoid unsafe water. Keep in mind, potentially unsafe means that it could be harmful to drink if your system is not used to that environment, not necessarily that the water is polluted and dirty.

It’s important to be careful about things like this. Andrew Zimmern of Bizarre Foods will literally eat anything, but he has a rule that he won’t drink local tap water in most countries due to not having the immunity locals might have. Avoid the potential microbes and illness, and you’re bound to have a much better trip.

Know Which Countries Guarantee Drinkable Tap Water With This Graphic

A Traveller’s Guide to Tap Water [NeoMam via]


  • Hate to be that guy, but shouldn’t it be “Know WHICH Countries Guarantee Drinkable Tap Water With This Graphic”
    I’m not certain so this is partly nitpicking and partly a question.

    • I’m often that guy and you’re right, should be “which” — fixed now, thanks for the spot.

  • holy crap! i cant believe the amount of European countries without safe drinking water.

    Edit: wouldnt the falkans actualy have safe drinking water seeing as its a british colony with about 3000 people?

    • Well it depends on what you deem to be “safe” drinking water.

      As the author mentions

      “Keep in mind, potentially unsafe means that it could be harmful to drink if your system is not used to that environment, not necessarily that the water is polluted and dirty”

      So the water could be fine to drink for locals but not necessarily for the traveler which this map/guide is intended for

  • I can assure you that drinking water from the tap in Spain and Greece is NOT a good idea so i’m a little sceptical at the whole map of Europe – They have got Cyprus right however.

  • Depending on where and what you plan on doing at the locations that have specified to be potentially unsafe there are two options that I can think of around this.

    1. Potassium permanganate: This is a multipurpose chemical that can be used as a water treatment and disinfectant. Great for first aid kits or survival/outdoor kit

    2. A Lifestraw: As the name suggests this is large straw that you can carry with you to filter water. It’s under 60 grams and can filter 1000 liters of water filtering particles of approx 0.2 microns

    It can also be purchased within a drink bottle so you can take the water with you.

  • Well this is wrong.
    I know for a fact that all the EX-Yugo countries have drinkable water. With a few areas having pristine mountain water.

  • The “Continent of Oceania”? That’s news to me! 😉

    Also I think they are slightly over-paranoid – I’ve lived in Thailand for nearly 7 years and brush my teeth with tap-water every day and have no issues. Naturally, I don’t drink it, that would be unwise, but rinsing after brushing is harmless.

  • I used to live in Hong Kong,
    I left for two years and when I came back to visit friends and family there,
    I accidentally had the tap water and was throwing up for a week.
    Don’t drink hong kong water, unless they say they have a filtered water pipe.
    Some of the Hong Kongers get filtered water pipes installed to circumvent this.
    Also, when I lived there, once I went to have a shower ant the water was yellow

    • The tap water in Hong Kong is rated as safe to drink. However, the tap water in Hong Kong does not account for the 30+ year old badly maintain housing estates that exist all over Hong kong. If you’re in a relatively new apartment building the water is fine….of course, if you’re unsure, practically everyone in HK boils or filters water anyways

  • Even if the tap water is safe to drink, what about the tap and the pipes in the building? Older buildings may have crappy piping, which could contaminate your drinking water. So the safest option is to filter it.

    In Australia, filtering the water will remove the chlorine and metallic taste that are in the water as a result of the additives to make it safe to drink. Also, when I use filtered water for boiling, my kettle is much cleaner with no calcium deposits, and my coffee/tea tastes a lot better.

  • Veeery stupid map !
    Look on Europe , this political map has nothing to do with water quality…
    Former Czechoslovakia for example…
    Czech republic is in blue ,but Slovakia in brown despite fact that we have been one country in past and we still use and share same water sources and distribution networks.
    Same about Slovenia and Croatia…

  • Patrick Allan, do your research before posting BS. Is this some kind of political propaganda? First, as a matter of fact, tap water in Australia is not completely safe to drink, due to the added chloride, fluoride, and evolved bacteria variants over the past years that resist these chemicals (check ‘water bugs’ in Queensland in 2011). You should boil the water just to be safe. Also, almost no tap water in Poland is safe to drink. Maybe some small regions in the south could get their water from the mountains, but in the majority of Poland, everyone boils their water. Tap water around the alps are indeed safe, that is because the water is sourced directly from the water streams in the alps (mostly from melted snow) and filtered underground without chemicals. Never been to America or Asian countries other than China, can’t say much about those places. But here is an easy rule — If you smell or taste stuff that seems foreign in your tap water, or if the locals tell you not to do it, bloody boil it!

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