Legal Places to Smoke Marijuana
It is commonly believed that humans have been smoking marijuana since as far back as 3000 BC, and the drug remains popular to this day. However, modern society has created a network of laws that strictly prohibits the use and sale of marijuana, and most nations adhere to these principles. Still, there are a few countries out there that have looser litigation and a more relaxed stance when it comes to smoking marijuana. Smokers across the globe can now travel to certain destinations where consumption of small quantities is completely legal. With legal havens for smoking on the rise, "marijuana tourism" is steadily increasing.
Amsterdam is the first location to visit if you are looking for legal places to smoke marijuana. The attitude towards drugs and smoking throughout Holland is generally quite relaxed, and the capital city of Amsterdam is the global hub for smokers of all nationalities. Smoking in the streets is slightly frowned upon, but marijuana is sold legally for consumption in many coffee shops across town. You can literally order marijuana from a waitress or at the bar in many Amsterdam coffee shops. The quality of the marijuana in Amsterdam is exceptionally high, and it is completely legal if purchased and consumed in one of the myriad shops throughout the city. After visiting the coffee shops, smokers can check out interesting Amsterdam attractions like the Van Gogh Museum and Vondelpark.
Colombia is known as one of the primary drug-producing countries in the world. It should be no surprise that most drugs are legal here, at least in small quantities. Marijuana growers produce an abundance of pot in Colombia, and locals as well as travelers are allowed to have up to 20 grams on them for personal use. Distribution and purchasing is where visitors can get into trouble. Selling marijuana is illegal, and buying it can be very dangerous in Colombia. "Marijuana tourists" should be wary when purchasing the drug. Bad neighborhoods and shady dealers can lead to visitors being robbed or worse, so it is important to have a trusted source if you intend to smoke in Colombia.
The South American country of Peru borders Colombia to the south. This is the second largest drug-producing nation in the continent. Distribution of marijuana is illegal, and can land you in jail. However, possession of a small amount of marijuana for personal use is legal. Smoking here is not given much attention by the police. The only time they hassle smokers is if children are around or it appears that someone is selling. Other than that, smokers are allowed to do as they please. Tourists often get especially lenient treatment from the police. If you are carrying marijuana and happen to be arrested, you may still get off without a charge as the judge will determine what constitutes a "personal amount."
If you are on a smoking holiday in Peru, head to Cuzco in the Andean highlands. This city is often referred to as the "Amsterdam of South America." Hordes of tourists come to this ancient Inca city on their way to the ruins of Machu Picchu, but the nightlife in Cuzco is a major attraction in itself. Peddlers sell marijuana in most bars and discos around the city center. Be careful who you buy from and where you do it if you plan on smoking weed here. Avoid sketchy situations, and never pay a dealer upfront for a product that he claims to need to bring from somewhere else. This is a classic scam to run off with foreigners' money.
Belgium recently made possession and consumption of small amounts of marijuana legal. It is legal to smoke here as long you are over 18, have less than 5 grams of pot and do not smoke in public or in front of minors. You can even grow your own marijuana in Belgium, but the law limits each person to just one female plant if they choose to grow. Buying and selling marijuana is still illegal, but consumption in Belgium has been legal since 2003. Travelers should be careful to purchase from a trusted source in Belgium, or there is the option of making a trip across the border to Amsterdam and back, bringing a small quantity of marijuana with you for personal use.
David Thyberg began his writing career in 2007. He is a professional writer, editor and translator. Thyberg has been published in various newspapers, websites and magazines. He enjoys writing about social issues, travel, music and sports. Thyberg holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pittsburgh Honors College with a certificate in Spanish and Latin American studies.