Top 8 LGBTQ+ Welcoming Holiday Destinations

Top 8 LGBTQ+ Welcoming Holiday Destinations


Planning your next holiday can be super exciting, but knowing which destinations are welcoming to LGBTQ+ travellers can be worrying if you haven’t done your research. But, don’t fret, we’re here to help! 

Below is a list of eight of our favourite holiday destinations, all of which are fantastic places to visit when you’re in an LGBTQ+ relationship.

Gran Canaria

Gran Canaria has followed its Spanish influence and is a fantastic hub for LGBTQ+ holiday makers. The island is home to plenty of sun, sand and sweet cocktails, and holidays here can be as lively or relaxed as you want to make them. Spain is a very tolerant country of homosexuality and a study in 2013 found that it had the highest rate of homosexual acceptance (88%) of all countries polled. 

The epicentre of LGBTQ+ Gran Canaria nightlife is the Yumbo Center, Playa del Ingles. It is a massive shopping center complex with a large open-air courtyard in the middle, surrounded by dozens of gay bars and clubs – perfect for hopping from one to the other.

Thanks to Gran Canaria’s year-round sunny weather, the nightlife in Playa del Ingles stays active from month to month. However, it gets particularly busy during Pride in the summer, Winter Pride in November, fetish week in October, and Carnival in February/March.

If you’re looking for the perfect hotel to stay throughout your Gran Canaria getaway, we recommend…

AxelBeach Maspalomas

The adults-only Axelbeach Maspalomas is popular with the LGBTQ+ community, but welcomes everyone. Plus, it’s a 10-minute walk to the closest beach so it’s in the perfect location for sun-seekers and activity enthusiasts alike. 

Pool parties, weekly barbecues and a nightly DJ are on the agenda here, and Playa del Ingles is a short walk from your hotel, meaning wild nights out are within staggering distance!

Spain

Mainland Spain is just as inclusive as its islands and it makes for a fantastic LGBTQ+ welcoming holiday destination, whether you’re looking for an alcohol fueled party holiday or a relaxing beach-side getaway. There are plenty of bustling LGBTQ+ scenes in Spain, but Benidorm really packs a punch. 

The Old Town is where you’ll find a pretty impressive LGBTQ+ scene, there’s more than 30  bars and clubs grouped together in a very small area, making for some of the best LGBTQ+ pub-crawling on the Spanish coast. 

Aside from the generous selection of cruise bars, there are also two LGBTQ+ welcoming saunas in Benidorm. H2O is the larger one, with modern facilites and about 5 minutes from the main gay area. JJ Private Bar-Sauna is located a little further away from the city centre and is visited by mature guys, mostly locals.

For a suave Spanish holiday, why not try…

Hotel Flamingo Oasis

Hotel Flamingo Oasis is in a great spot in Benidorm, only a short walk to the main strip and Levante Beach. There’s an adults-only bar, where you can listen to a live pianist, as well as an adults-only pool up on the roof, which is exclusive for Club room guests. 

You can upgrade to an adults-only club junior suite with a balcony – these rooms come with VIP extras like access to the rooftop pool and Skyline bar. And you can upgrade the club suite further, to include your own private whirlpool bath – how dreamy is that?!

Malta

Malta is a great choice for LGBTQ+ travellers, and according to the ILGA-Europe Rainbow index, Malta is the most gay-friendly country on earth. Though it might not have the biggest LGBTQ+ scene in comparison to other destinations, it’s very safe in terms of legal protections, making it a very attractive holiday spot.

The largest LGBTQ+ night spot in Malta is Michelangelo Club Lounge. Spread out over two floors, this is the place to dance the night away plus, it’s the only major gay club in Malta. It’s located in Paceville at the heart of the island’s late-night scene and it’s a good final destination on your night out – you could well be dancing here till 4 am.

In fact, most of Malta’s gay nightlife in located in the Paceville district, which is known as Partyville. You’ll find lots of bars, restaurants, and strip clubs here, as well as late night drinkers spilling onto the streets.

One of our favourite hotels in Malta is…

db Seabank Resort and Spa

The db Seabank Resort and Spa can be found in northern Malta, in Mellieha Bay, which is home to one of the island’s longest and most popular beaches. The evening shows at the Seabank are second to none. There’s everything from professional tribute acts to comedy cabaret and musicals, making for the perfect start to your night out in Malta.

It has four pools – two indoors, two out – and you’re spoilt for choice on the food and drink front, too, with seven restaurants and three bars, what a treat! 

Portugal

Portugal is a generally LGBTQ+ friendly country, gay marriage was legalized in 2010, and it is one of the few countries in the world to have discrimination on the basis of sexual identity formally banned within its constitution.

Though a few rural areas of the country may still be very traditionally Catholic and hold less tolerant views, Lisbon is a progressive and liberal capital city. Lisbon’s main LGBTQ+ clubs are in Principe Real, with Trumps being the largest and most popular. 

As well as the exciting nightlife, visitors are able to take in some of Europe’s prettiest and most historical sights. Add in friendly locals, regular LGBT parties and festivals, and a nearby male-only nude beach, and it’s not hard to see why Lisbon is becoming an increasingly attractive destination for LGBTQ+ travellers.

For an idyllic hotel to top off your fantastic holiday to Portugal, why not check out…

Hotel Avenida Park

Hotel Avenida Park is planted in the city centre, across the street from one of Lisbon’s biggest public parks, Eduardo VII Park, meaning it’s in a fantastic location. The lobby lounge is fitted with comfy sofas, there’s a peaceful courtyard, and you can admire the view from the rooftop terrace.

To fuel up before a long day of exploring or partying, the hotel offers a fantastic continental breakfast buffet, which you can enjoy indoors or al fresco style on the courtyard. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet during your jam-packed city break, there’s a peaceful courtyard, and you can admire the view from the rooftop terrace.

Mexico 

Same sex marriage has been legal in Mexico since 2009 and discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community have been illegal since 2003. That’s why Mexico, Puerto Vallarta in particular, makes for a fantastic holiday destination if you’re in an LGBTQ+ relationship.

Puerto Vallarta is home to Mexico’s biggest LGBTQ+ scene, called Zona Romantica, which is brimming with gay clubs and bars. Puerto Vallarta is compact, it has great beaches, many hotels, buzzing nightlife and a delicious food scene. The local cuisine is considered to be second only to Mexico City. Although Puerto Vallarta attracts a lot of tourists, it still has an authentically Mexican feel.

Garbo’s Piano Bar is a great place to start the night with a cocktail. As the night goes on, and becomes more lively, head to Reinas for a drink. It’s a gay bar in Mexico that doubles as a shrine to the British monarchy! Paco’s Ranch is considered by many to be the most popular gay bar in Puerto Vallarta and it’s pretty wild to say the least! There are also regular drag performances, often of a very high standard. 

Our best Mexican hotel recommendation is…

Hacienda At Hilton Puerto Vallarta

The Hilton Puerto Vallarta has a section called the Hacienda, which comes with its own pool and sky bar, plus a couple of extra restaurants, perfect for a touch of luxury on your Mexican getaway. You’ll have access to all of the Hilton’s facilities, including a collection of restaurants and the Eternity Spa.

The Hacienda is adults-only, which is deal for a couples break and suites even come with swish features like private patios and swim-up rooms for that extra touch of privacy.

Ibiza

Ibiza has been a much-loved party destination for many years, and it’s just as inclusive as it is wild! Whether you want to party all night in an LGBTQ+ bar or dance ‘til your feet hurt at one of the super clubs, you’ll feel safe and one of the crowd in Ibiza.

Most of the gay bars are grouped around Calle de la Virgen in Ibiza town, and you’ll find the LGBTQ+ nudist beach at El Cavallet beach along with its iconic gay bar Chiringay, a 20-minute taxi from Ibiza beach. 

Like many countries around the world, Ibiza sure puts on a show for Pride in June. During the week-long celebrations, there’s lots going on – drag shows, DJs, musical performances, film screenings, theatre and fun in the streets. Events take place in and around Ibiza Town’s port area, on the harbour promenade, the beach of San Antonio, and of course, Calle de la Virgen.

To top off your perfect Ibiza holiday, rest your head at…

Grupotel Ibiza Beach Resort

The Grupotel Ibiza Beach Resort is set on the island’s quiet north coast, and looks over a pine-backed sandy beach. Though in a quieter area compared to San Antonio, you can still enjoy Ibiza’s nightlife in Portinatx. 

The hotel is a sleek, contemporary feel and has direct access to the beach. The local bars and restaurants are just a short walk away, and the waterside eateries are excellent, with many serving fresh seafood and Spanish treats, though there are some British-style pubs as well.

Mykonos

Greece is a relatively progressive country when it comes to LGBTQ+ rights. Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is illegal, however, as a traditionally religious and conservative country, it does lag behind the rest of Europe in terms of social acceptance of homosexuality.

In most places in Greece, it would be advisable for you to be careful and discreet to avoid any hassle. However, Mykonos is internationally known for its gay culture and hedonistic party scene, so it is the exception. Gay people on the island will not raise any eyebrows, and you can generally feel comfortable and safe here.

Like much of Greece, Mykonos comes alive in the summer. During the scorching hot months of July and August, it fills up with holiday makers looking for some fun in the sun. However, in August, the island hosts XLSIOR festival, an LGBTQ+ celebration and is the perfect time to visit if you want to enjoy the festivities. 

Though it’s hard to choose our favourite, this Mykonos hotel is a showstopper…

Hotel Mykonos View

If you want a stylish hotel just a short walk from Mykonos’ centre, then Hotel Mykonos View is the perfect spot. The rooms are set on a hill, so the harbour and Aegean Sea are all part of the view – the pool and bar get the best shots. 

The Oniro Bar is decked out stylishly from the interior through to the al fresco area. Guests come here for two reasons, the fantastic view and the cocktails, which have been described as masterpieces!

New York

New York City is a place of cultural diversity, and has been a hub for LGBTQ+ visitors for many years. Luckily, New York has a huge LGBTQ+ scene! These days, most of the gay bars and clubs are centered around Hell’s Kitchen. You’ll also find gay scenes in Chelsea, Greenwich Village and Brooklyn.

Located in Greenwich Village, Judson Memorial Church is as close a New York gets to having a gay church. This church has been advocating gay rights since the 1950s. It played a big role in the 1980s helping to provide resources to people living with HIV. It even hosts an annual Gay Pride Sunday Service.

As extravagant as the city, New York Pride celebrations last for the entire month of June. There’s more than 50 events to enjoy, and the month expects to bring in around three million visitors. Visitors can enjoy rallies, parties, lectures and more, with some events requiring tickets and the rest of them being free.

For the ultimate New York break, enjoy lounging in the stunning…

The Paul Hotel NYC Chelsea Ascend Hotel Collection

If you’re craving stunning rooftop views of NYC, then The Paul Hotel NYC Chelsea Ascend Hotel Collection has it covered! There’s a bar up on the roof, with an al fresco terrace that files some of the city’s biggest towers into frame. The location is ideal too, Madison Avenue – a huge store-lined street – and the Empire State Building are both less than a 10-minute walk away.

The rooftop bar’s the shining star here. It’s got an outdoor terrace, where you can take in the views of New York’s skyline while you unwind with a few drinks. There’s a restaurant, too, which offers breakfast buffets and à la carte dinners.

Happy Holidaying!

If these hotels have wet your appetite and you can’t wait for a break, why not check out our fantastic range of holidays? If you want a beach break, city stay or even a trip to the ski slopes, we’ve got you covered.

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