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New York Pride is one of the biggest gay prides in the world. Every year, around 3-4 million people descend on the city to take part in this fantastic and glorious event, rivalling Sao Paulo as one of the largest and biggest.

New York is also where our Pride history began, back in 1969, following a spate of police riots on gay establishments. On the 28th June 1969, the police raided the Stonewall Inn. But this time, the LGBTQ community fought back, which led to a series of riots and protest movements, calling for the advancement of LGBTQ rights. These protest movements quickly spread all around the world, and voila, Pride was born!

The LGBTQ Movement has made huge leaps forward since Stonewall, but there is progress to be made, which is why Pride still matters today

2019 is the big year that NYC hosts WorldPride, coinciding with the 50-year anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. WorldPride NYC is the place to be and the gay event of the year!

We always love coming to NYC. It's super exciting and always has something going on in every street you roam. These are the streets that the Godfather was set, where Sarah Jessica Parker sashayed down dreaming of Mr Big and the place where FRIENDS was set. NYC during Pride is perhaps the most exciting of all, especially for LGBTQ travellers. We've put together this comprehensive guide for New York during WorldPride, including the best parties to check out, the main Pride events, the best places to stay, and things to do.

Disclosure: this was written as part of a paid collaboration with Moon Travel Guides.

Discover the history of gay New York

Make sure you spend some time exploring the most important gay locations and monuments while you're in New York. The area near the Stonewall Inn and Greenwich Village is filled with important sites relating to the history of Pride.

Find out more

Practical travel tip: get the Moon New York City guidebook

For our trip to New York Pride, we used the Moon New York City travel guide, which we highly recommend.

It is targeted towards independent travellers, written by locals who know the hidden gems of the city. We also love it as a resource because Moon Travel Guides does not accept payment for inclusion, and their authors are not allowed to accept free goods/services in exchange for positive coverage. Therefore, you know that everything recommended is genuine, tried and tested, and can therefore be relied on.

Moon New York City is perfect for LGBTQ travellers planning to visit during Pride (or at any time of the year), because it gives specific listings for the gay venues in each neighbourhood, along with detailed maps, including a handy pull-out. It also gives you the best things to do, places to see, where to go partying and a handy detailed directory of practical travel tips for visiting NYC.

We have also included some of our favourites in this post, but be sure to check out Moon guidebooks for even more practical tips and tricks for navigating the city.

A word about WorldPride 2019

Since 2019 marks the 50-year anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, this year will be a particularly momentous occasion for NYC Pride. New York City's WorldPride 2019 will be home to more than 50 events taking place throughout the city during the entire month of June, culminating in the massive Pride Parade.

This will be an incredible time to visit New York and celebrate half a century of LGBTQ pride with some of the best parties, talks, film screenings, theatre performances, art exhibitions and more.

Love is love
When is New York WorldPride?

The main Pride parade will take place on Sunday 30th June at noon.

Other Pride events will be taking place throughout June, which has been nicknamed, “Pride Month“. The climax of New York WorldPride will be on the weekend of 28th-30th June, which coincides with the date of the 1969 Stonewall riots.

Even doggies get to dress up for WorldPride!
Where will WorldPride take place?

The Parade kicks off at noon at Madison Square Park. It will pass by the Stonewall Inn and the AIDS memorial before looping through Manhattan, then ending in Chelsea. The total estimated time to walk the route is around 1.5 hours, so remember to bring plenty of water and suncream.

A huge variety of other events will be taking place at locations throughout New York City in June, from rallies to parties, to lectures and film screenings. Make sure you check out the official website for all the latest info.

Riding through New York's Pride Parade
Main events at New York WorldPride

There will be many events taking place during NYC WorldPride, like fairs, concerts, marches, film screenings and lectures. Here are some of the best to look out for:

  • WorldPride Opening Ceremony: the opening ceremony concert for WorldPride is going to be epic! It will be hosted by Whoopi Goldberg, with performances by Cyndi Lauper, Chaka Khan, Billy Porter, Ciara and more. It takes place on Wednesday 26th June at the Barclays Centre from 6pm till late.
  • Stonewall 50th Anniversary Rally (FREE): will be taking place on Friday 28th June to honour and celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. The rally is free to enter and will take place on the corner of Christopher Street and Waverley Place, just metres away from the notorious Stonewall Inn.
  • Pride Island concert: Pride Island is a multi-day live music event that takes place on Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th June on Pier 97 at Hudson River Park. Unfortunately, this year's event is already completely sold out (not surprising with Madonna performing!) unless you're happy to buy from a reseller like StubHub for a ridiculously high price…
  • The NYC Dyke March (FREE): the New York City Dyke March is more in keeping with the feeling of the original Pride marches, in that it is a protest march instead of a parade. This march begins on Saturday 29th June at Bryant Park from 5pm and finishes in Washington Square Park. The march is a space for anyone who identifies as a Dyke to protest the discrimination, harassment, and violence they face in schools, at work and within their communities.
  • PrideFest street fair (FREE): PrideFest is an annual LGBTQ street fair that combines exhibitors, entertainers and activities for a day of fun and celebration in the name of equality. Taking place on Sunday 30th from 11am-6pm, it's the perfect event to check out after watching the parade, and it's totally free! This year's performers will include Princess Nokia, Melanie C (Sporty Spice), The Veronicas, Lauren Jauregui and Sink the Pink. The fair will take up the entire street of 4th Avenue between Union Square and Astor Place.
  • WorldPride Closing Ceremony: there will be another incredible concert to finish up the month of Pride on Sunday 30th June at Times Square. Performers for the closing ceremony will include Melissa Etheridge, Jake Shears, MNEK and Deborah Cox. This will be a wonderful way to say goodbye to WorldPride 2019. The concert starts at 7pm and will go on till late.
  • Criminal Queerness Festival: from June 13th to July 6th, the National Queer Theater will be hosting four performances by queer playwrights from around the world, particularly from countries where the artists face censorship, and being gay is illegal. Check the website for tickets and support these fascinating international queer stories.
Be Proud
Best parties at New York WorldPride

Since 2019 is such a milestone for New York Pride, there are going to be a lot of Pride parties! Here are some of the best ones to look out for:

  • MasterBeat One World: Masterbeat will be putting on four different dance events in the legendary Hammerstein Ballroom and mega-club Terminal 5 over the weekend of the 28th-30th June. You'll be able to attend separate parties or buy tickets for the whole weekend. Check the website for the full line-up of international DJs and parties taking place.
  • Teaze: one of the largest Pride parties taking place over 5 different clubs joning up for this one-off hip-hop bash! It takes place on Saturday 29th June (the night before the main parade) from 5pm until midnight.
  • Solidarity Hustlaball WorldPride: Hustlaball is one of the best not-to-miss Pride parties, taking placae at the largest queer venue in Brooklyn: 3 Dollar Bill, on Thursday 27th June. It gets going from around 10pm until 6am the next day.
  • Romy And Michele's Saturday Afternoon Tea Dance: hosted at Club Cumming, this fun event will be taking place every Saturday in June from 3pm. There's sure to be lots of table dancing and maybe a few celebs in attendance. The club is named after gay actor, Alan Cumming, who owns it.
  • Folsom Street East Street Festival XXII: Folsom Street East will be hosting a street festival/party as the closing act of the NYC Fetish Weekend on Sunday 23rd June. Celebrating S.L.U.T.S (Sex, Love, Unity, Trust and Safety), this festival in Chelsea will feature a variety of stalls and performances for you to get a taste of the kinky side of New York. Head to the corner of West 27th Avenue and 10th Avenue from 11am til 6pm to take part.
  • DiscoVogue at Midsummer Night Swing: one of the best pre-parade parties on Thursday 27th June, taking place at Lincoln Centre. There will be a dance lesson at 6:30pm where you get to werq. Then after 10pm, there's a silent disco…ever been to a silent disco before? Definitely a unique experience you won't forget in a hurry!
  • Hot Rabbit's Priday: one of NYC's most diverse queer Dance Parties with live DJs, drag shows, burlesque, circus and other musical performances all night long. They also have an art floor where you can get free haircuts, glitter portraits and get a fortune telling. It starts at around 10pm and goes on till round 4am on Friday 28th June in the massive 4-level superclub venue called Stage 48.
  • Pride Pool Party: the biggest annual Pride pool party will be held in the Roommate Grace Hotel on Saturday 29th June from 12-4pm. This is another NYC not-to-miss Pride highlight. Just make sure you get your tickets asap as it quickly sells out.
  • Torture Garden New York Pride Fetish Ball: the world's largest international fetish club will have its own special party for Pride on Saturday 29th June from 9.30pm-3am at Capitale. Inside this multi-level bank-turned-ballroom, there will be a latex fashion show, BDSM play-space and international DJs.
  • NYC Gay Party Cruise with SeaTea: this is an incredible way to see stunning views of NYC while drinking, dancing, eating and making new gay friends. This unique gay cruise takes place on Saturday 29th or Sunday 30th June from 6-10pm. If you go on the Saturday night cruise, you'll be able to experience the Pride fireworks from the boat.
  • Femme Fatale: one of the best lesbian rooftop Pride parties. It takes place on Sunday 30th June from 4pm-midnight on the roof of The Park.
These Nomadic Angels are ready to party!
Where to stay in New York for Pride

When it comes to accommodation, New York has so many options to suit all budgets. You can expect most places here to be gay friendly. We've never had an issue here and most hotel folk won't bat an eyelid. The real problem with finding a place to stay in NYC is budget – it's not cheap! If you're heading here on a budget, we recommend checking out the listings on AirBnB or MisterBnB.

With that being said, these are some of the best gay / gay friendly hotels and guesthouses to check out in New York City:

01

The GEM Hotel Chelsea

Chelsea

Why we love it

  • Cute boutique hotel in a great location
  • Gorgeous rooftop terrace
  • Gym on-site and bike rental available
  • Complimentary breakfast

The GEM is a boutique hotel located in Chelsea and it really is a little gem of a find.

Prices are low for such a great location and while the rooms are small, they're perfect for those who are planning to be too busy to spend much time at a hotel anyway.

There's a gym available for working up a sweat and the hotel is also pet-friendly.

Other bonuses we love include the complimentary breakfast, coffee machine in your room, bike rental service and the bar's Happy Hour ‘buy-one-get-one-free' drinks. The rooftop terrace is the place to go for a romantic drink at sunset and spectacular views over the city.

The GEM is also two blocks away from the 23rd Street Metro station, so you'll easily be able to explore the rest of New York City from here. There are lots of great restaurants around the corner on 8th Avenue as well.

02

YOTEL New York Times Square

Hell's Kitchen

Why we love it

  • Very cool and futuristic hotel
  • Terrace suites come with soaking tubs
  • Great location
  • On-site restaurant and gym

YOTEL's New York location is a very cool, futuristic hotel, which includes a luggage-storing robot called YOBOT and automated check-in.

It's located just three blocks from Times Square, so you can easily visit during the day or night to get one of those famous photos.

We also LOVE the use of the colour purple throughout the hotel, so fabulous!

For a 4-star hotel in New York City, the prices are pretty reasonable. There are lots of amenities and services to make..

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Who doesn't love a bit of dress up?

We sure do! Whether it's for Halloween, or transforming into a geisha in Japan, or even into beautiful mermen in the Philippines…

Pride is one of our favourite events for dressing up. There are always so many different fabulous and sexy options to try out. Most importantly of all, dressing up for Pride gives us the chance to publicly celebrate our LGBTQ community's hard-earned right to live freely, to love who we want, whilst having a great deal of fun at the same time!

“Dressing up is a fundamental part of Pride because it allows us to show our colours to the world, that we exist, that we are diverse and that we all stand together .

What began as a protest march for basic human rights in 1978, has today morphed into a positive celebration of being queer, and not feeling ashamed of it. Sadly, there are still many parts of the world where being gay can get you arrested, or even murdered! Even for us, when walking the streets of say, London or Toronto, before we dare any public displays of affection, first we look around and carry out a full risk assessment.

For these reasons alone, Pride matters today more than ever, and we embrace each one with buckets of enthusiasm and love.

We especially love dressing up for Pride, simply because: we can!

You don't have to dress up for Pride if you don't want to of course. There is no strict dress code, and everyone is welcome. But this is the perfect time of year to really let loose and go wild with feather boas, glitter, angel wings and lots and lots of rainbow accessories. So for those of us who love a bit of dress up, here are our 10 best Pride outfits to feel sexy and fabulous.

Who would say no to a kiss from 2 innocent angels…
1. Sweet innocent angels

There will always be a bunch of cute topless twinks at every Pride donning a pair of wings and full-on angel paraphernalia. Whether or not you think it's cliché, we think its fun and super sexy. So, we tried it for ourselves at London Pride with a group of friends: clad in hot pants, halo and of course, beautiful white wings.

Dressing up as angels reminds us a lot of Eros (Cupid) – the cheeky and mischievous Greek mythological god of desire. He was also regarded as the protector of homosexual love. So it's no surprise that we gay boys love to commemorate this Ancient Greek god!

One cool thing about dressing up as angels for Pride is that it's such a strong Biblical image, that it almost turns into an ironic way to give the finger to religion. We certainly feel this way, given the inevitability of seeing a religious-led “anti-Pride” protest rearing its ugly head at almost every Pride event we've attended. On that point, it brought tears to our eyes when we read about local volunteers dressing up as angels to literally block out anti-gay protesters from the hateful Westboro Baptist Church at the funerals of the Orlando gay nightclub victims. They also offered to do the same at Pride events, such as Atlanta, which the Westboro idiots also try to disrupt.

The great thing about this outfit is you don't need much. It's very easy to doll up as a sweet innocent angel: buy a pair of wings, a halo, some sexy pants and you're good to go!

That one time we dressed up as angels with friends at London Pride…
2. The not-so-innocent demon

Not pure enough to pull off a sweet innocent angel? Then go for the opposite! Or if you're two friends, or a couple, you can mix and match. One of you as an angel, and the other dressed up as the devil.

This is also another satisfying way to to piss off those anti-gay protesters waving the Bible at you arguing stupid things like homosexuality is a manifestation of Lucifer's Pride!

Grab a pair of devil horns and embellish with red face/body paint, devil fork and maybe even a tail to complete the look. And of course, don't forget the sexy tight red shorts…!

The face of an angel but the mind of a devil!
3. Rainbow rainbow and more rainbow

Nothing is more iconic of LGBTQ culture and Pride than the rainbow flag. It was created by the late Gilbert Baker in the 1970s, consisting of 6 colours: red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet. Today, the rainbow has become the essence of all Pride events around the world.

What better way to honour our community than to accessorise with all the colours of the rainbow. You can get an array of items like rainbow sunglasses, wrist bands, bow ties, the flag itself, shoelaces, face paint and even rainbow umbrellas.

When it comes to the rainbow, we strongly believe you can never have enough. This is one place where you can really go all out and accessorise with as much rainbow as you want…

This guy is our spirit animal…there is no such thing as too much at Pride!
4. Leather fetish outfits

Leather fetish outfits are a stalwart of Pride. They've always been there from the start, and for good reason. When Pride started as a protest movement in the 1970s and 1980s, there was just one division: the heteronormative, and everybody else. So all the underground communities, including the fetish community (ie anything not considered “normal”), naturally allied and united together.

The fetish community has since gone on to develop it's own unique sub-culture (think leather parties in Berlin, BDSM, rubber, the handkerchief code, the Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco), but continues to be a strong presence at Pride events.

A fetish representation at Pride is nothing about public acts of sex. It's about being able to express an aspect of your sexuality in common with others and not feel ashamed about it. It's also important because Pride is where a young queer kid can go and see the entire LGBTQ world around him and find his tribe: whether it's a political party, the local trans alliance group or the fetish leather bikers.

The most popular representation of fetish in our community is the leather harness, whether at Pride or at a big Circuit party. You can purchase an inexpensive faux-leather harness online, or really go for it and invest in the entire leather/rubber outfit, complete with handcuffs, jock harness, lace zip-up hoods, neck restraints, chastity belts, and oh so much more!

One of the most famous fetish representations recently, was when the adorable Olympic figure skater, Adam Rippon, wore a leather hardness with his suit at the 2018 Oscars ceremony. As he did so, he stated:

“fashion is all about self expression and I chose to wear what I wore on the red carpet because I felt cool AF”

…and we sure as hell salute him for this bold (and very sexy) move!

The sexy Adam Rippon rocking his leather harness at the 2018 Oscars
5. Pup play fetish

The Pride pups are one of the most iconic and ubiquitous fetish styles at Pride.

Pup play is when one person takes on the role of a pup, and the other its handler. The pups act like cute doggies, and their trainer handles them like he would any puppy. To be clear, this has nothing to do with bestiality; no animals are involved! Also, it's not always sexual, simply a way to shed your human personality and find release in the carefree existence of being a pup! There are many websites and communities devoted to pup play. Check out this documentary to find out more about it.

Pride simply wouldn't be the same without the group of pups and their handler(s). If you want to join in, your starting point is the leather dog mask, embellished with dog collar, leather harness, leashes, tails and puppy toys.

Connect with your tribe at Pride!
6. Sexy Roman and Ancient Greek outfits

Paying homage to ancient Greek mythology and to the Romans is always a lot of fun at Pride. We all know that sexuality was more fluid amongst the Ancient Greeks and Romans. Back then there simply wasn't a word for “heterosexuality” or “homosexuality”. Men were free to enjoy sex with other males without a perceived loss of masculinity, or social status.

In Greek mythology, most of the gods had homosexual relationships, especially Apollo, Dionysus, Hermes, Heracles, Poseidon and even Zeus himself with his cupbearer boy, Ganymede. The Romans were notorious for their male concubines and man-on-man relationships. There were even two Emperors (Nero and Elagabalus) who each had a same-sex marriage.

So why not pay homage to our ancient homo-loving ancestors at Pride? We sure did: at one Pride with a group of friends, we dressed up as a mix of Roman gladiators, Roman senators and Greek goddesses.

Roman and Ancient Greek Pride outfits for the win!
7. Superhero outfits

Dressing up as a superhero is another popular outfit at Pride, particularly now that Marvel announced its first queer superhero will soon be unveiled!

As Marvel geeks, we always love to dress up as superheroes. It's also perfect because anyone can dress up as a superhero, regardless of your body shape. For example, skinny guys can easily pull of a cute Robin or Spiderman, larger guys can channel Hulk, or you could even drag it up and go as Catwoman. As a gay couple, we've tried combinations of Batman+Robin and Batman+Superman (taking inspiration from the iconic Batman kissing Superman street art mural in Manchester).

Ultimately, you will need a cape as your starting point, which is easy to order online. Then depending on which character you choose, you need to accessorise. If you can't find what you're looking for, then just grab the body/face paint, and fill in the missing detail you need, even abs…!

Superman Stefan with Batman Seby
8. Sports gear fetish

Gays and sports generally don't mix very well, with both British and American football each having a history of inherent homophobia. Thankfully, this is constantly being tackled with more and more gay sport groups emerging.

Whilst some of us love the sport itself, others of us are more into the masculinity behind it, whether it's the shorts, the trainers, or even the hot players!

Dressing up for sport fetish depends on which sport takes your fancy. We went to one Pride as footballers, having purchased the kit of Portuguese Benfica FC (don't ask why, we just loved the golden colour), which included top, shorts, football socks and shoes. If you've got the balls to be more risqué, and want to show-off more skin, try out a wrestling bodysuit singlet.

The British Kings Cross Steelers are one of many gay sport clubs attending Pride events
9. Be a drag and be a Queen

Drag queens are the essence of Pride. The whole Pride movement itself began thanks to the efforts of infamous drag queen activists during the 1969 Stonewall Riots, like Marsha P. Johnson. Throughout our history, drag queens have always been the strongest activists and advocates for the LGBTQ movement. A Pride event would just not be the same without them!

Thanks to RuPaul's Drag Race, drag queens are more prominent in modern-day pop culture more than ever, and we love each and every single one of them! For many of us aspirant drag queens, Pride is usually the first time we feel comfortable to try out drag in public. Even Bob the Drag Queen's first time in drag was at a Pride event.

For our Seby, Pride was when the beautiful Mademoiselle Eva Butterfly made her first public appearance, with her fabulous companion, Brenda to hand (see photo below).

Remember, this is the one day in the year we can live openly and truly express ourselves, without fear of judgement or persecution. So if you've ever wanted to try out a bit of drag in public, this is the ideal time to go for it!

Just remember to bring a change of shoes because wearing heels during a loooong 4 hour parade is not pleasant!

Seby as Mademoiselle Eva Butterfly on the right with her fabulous companion, Brenda, on the left
10. The more dramatic, the better!

Pride is where you are going to spot some of the most dramatic outfits ever! As we said above, there is no such thing as..

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The famous Iguazu Falls are a bucket-list item for many travellers, both gay and straight. This amazing sight is the largest waterfall system in the world and absolutely breathtaking up close as you watch thousands of gallons of water plummeting into the foam.

When US First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt visited the falls, she exclaimed “Poor Niagara!”

The falls straddle the border between Argentina and Brazil, which means you can stay in either country if you want to visit the waterfalls. It can be confusing to figure out which side is best, or even how to understand the differences, but don't worry, 'cause we're here to help!

This is our gay travel guide to Iguazu Falls and the surrounding area. Here you can find out our personal top picks for gay friendly accommodation, gay bars, clubs and restaurants around Iguazu Falls.

Landing in Iguazu Falls soon?

Arriving in a new country can be overwhelming, especially when trying to navigate public transport from the airport to your accommodation. If you book a private transfer with an English speaking driver then you will be able to relax and get to your hotel without any stress.

The two sides of the Iguazu Falls

So, first things first, these spectacular waterfalls have a few names. In English, we call them “Iguazu Falls” and the surrounding area, the “Iguazu National Park”. Both Argentina and Brazil have cities very close by, each of which are the perfect base when visiting the falls. In Brazil, the city is “Foz do Iguaçu” whereas in Argentina it is “Puerto Iguazú”.

We preferred the Argentinian side because you get to experience the Falls close-up, which is a great way to feel how powerful it is. The Brazilian side is good for getting a more panoramic perspective of the Falls.

Travelling between the two towns over the border is easy. You can either go by taxi or public bus. The entire trip shouldn't take more than an hour. Remember to have your passport with you and to have already organised any visa requirements you may need for Brazil and Argentina.

If you're ticking off countries, you can also “pop” into Ciudad del Este – a popular shopping town for Brazilians in Paraguay, close to the border between Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil.

Seby marvelling the Iguazu Falls from the Argentina side
Gay travel to the Iguazu Falls at a glance

The towns around the Iguazu Falls are used to tourists and regarded as gay friendly. They have a large international community both visiting and working here, so you won't have any problems visiting with your other half.

Argentina overall is very gay friendly – it was, after all, the first country in Latin America to legalise gay marriages back in 2010! When visiting, we were warned to be weary of the “machismo” chauvinistic culture in the more rural areas. But in reality, we never experienced any of this and felt very welcome everywhere we visited in Argentina.

In Brazil however, whilst gay marriage and progressive LGBTQ laws are in place, the recent election of the extremely anti-gay President Bolsonaro has sadly validated homophobic attacks across the country, so take extra care here.

In terms of a gay scene, don't expect much of that here. Leave all the partying for Buenos Aires, São Paulo and Rio. There are however a handful of mixed gay hangouts, as well as some lovely gay friendly hotels to stay in Iguazu.

Out and Proud at the Iguazu Falls
Gay hotels in Puerto Iguazú (Argentina)

On the Argentinian side, the city of Puerto Iguazú is located only 11km away from the Falls. The majority of the city's income comes from tourism, so most of the infrastructure here has been built around this. Therefore, in a nutshell, hotel staff are accustomed to dealing with international visitors, and of course, LGBTQ travellers. We certainly found everyone we dealt with here to be open-minded and welcoming to us as a gay couple. These are some of our favourite gay friendly hotels to stay in Puerto Iguazú:

01

Amérian Portal Del Iguazú Hotel

Why we love it

  • Beautiful views
  • Extensive spa and wellness facilities
  • Indoor and outdoor pools
  • Two restaurants serving delicious meals

The Amérian Portal Del Iguazú Hotel is the ideal retreat if you want to experience some pampering during your time visiting the falls.

We loved our suite which offered us a romantic sunset every night, looking out across the point where two rivers and three country borders meet.

The hotel features two restaurants; La Misión for international cuisine and De los Ríos Grill for traditional Argentinian dishes. The food is simply delicious! Before dinner, we would have cocktails from the two bars either in the lush garden or on the terrace overlooking the river, a view not to miss.

Even the outdoor pool features stunning views, and there's an indoor pool too. The Yvy Mara`y Spa and wellness centre is located on top of the hotel where you can enjoy the Jacuzzi, ‘raintemple', massages and a variety of other relaxing treatments. There's also a gym and beauty salon up here, so you know you'll be able to keep looking your best for those photos in front of the falls!

STAY WITH A GAY LOCAL

Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

02

Loi Suites Iguazú

Why we love it

  • Luxurious hotel in the jungle
  • Heated outdoor swimming pool
  • Excellent spa treatments
  • Gourmet restaurant with jungle views

Loi Suites Iguazú is located just outside Puerto Iguazú town, right in the heart of the jungle so you're nearly always looking out at the lush green landscape.

For 2 nights, Loi Suites was our little oasis of luxury and relaxation. We loved their heated outdoor pool and the suspended bridges for walking among the trees.

For a completely luxurious experience, you can book your own private suite with butler service and hydro-tub on your private balcony. These balconies are the perfect place to watch the jungle wake up; you can spot butterflies, birds and even monkeys in the foliage!

When we stayed there, we would spend our evenings eating delicious food in the restaurant or having a cheeky cocktail at their on-site Tiki bar. And after exhausting ourselves hiking to the falls, the relaxing water treatments and massages at the spa was the best way to comfort our sore muscles.

Take a helicopter ride over Iguazu Falls

An amazing way to see the falls is by flying over them in a helicopter! You will never forget the incredible experience of seeing the cascades from above on this short flight which leaves from the Brazil side.

Find out more

03

Iguazú Jungle Lodge

Why we love it

  • Environmentally conscious
  • Tropical buffet breakfast included in rates
  • Very spacious rooms with balcony
  • Restaurant with jungle views

The Iguazú Jungle Lodge is in a great location on the edge of Puerto Iguazú. You'll be able to enjoy the idyllic jungle location but still be in walking distance of the city's main amenities, and ideally located to visit the falls.

Rooms at the lodge are very spacious and all feature balconies overlooking the treetops. The pool and hot tub are ideal for relaxing after a day of exploring the surrounding area.

The jungle restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, serving up cocktails as well as delicious Argentinian barbecue. A yummy buffet breakfast is included in the rates, where you can enjoy lots of fresh tropical fruits on the poolside terrace.

This is a lovely mid-range option in a quiet location, ideal for visiting the falls as well as kicking back and enjoying the serenity of the jungle. We particularly love that the lodge is doing its part for the environment; with an extensive environmental policy and the option for guests to offset their carbon footprint a little by planting a native tree on the property.

Visit both sides of the Falls in one day

From Puerto Iguazú you can join a full day tour that will take you to the National Park in Argentina as well as across the border to see the stunning panoramic views of the falls in Brazil.

Find out more

04

Cabanas Luces de la Selva

Why we love it

  • Excellent budget option
  • Staying in a private jungle bungalow
  • Self-contained with kitchenette
  • Outdoor swimming pool

It's entirely possible to enjoy the jungle and falls on a budget, particularly if you stay at the Cabanas Luces de la Selva.

This property is very exclusive, with private bungalows nestled in the jungle. The bungalows have kitchenettes so that you can cut costs by cooking for yourself. You can also choose to have a continental breakfast brought to your cabana each morning.

The location is peaceful and a bit outside of town, although you can easily get into the city centre on a five-minute bus. This is a lovely spot to relax in the outdoor pool and watch the jungle life pass you by.

You can choose from cabins for up to five guests, so this is an excellent choice for families as well as budget travellers. The decor is rustic but everything is clean and comfy with all the amenities you would expect such as air-conditioning and WiFi.

Must do in Iguazu Falls: a romantic walk under the full moon

If you are in Puerto Iguazú in the five days surrounding the full moon you could do a night-time walking tour of the falls. This has got to be the most romantic way to visit the falls with your loved one!

Find out more

Gay hotels in Foz do Iguaçu (Brazil)

On the Brazilian side, “Foz do Iguaçu” is also very touristy, so hotel staff are accustomed to dealing with gay travellers. We were fine when we visited, but since the election of a very homophobic President in 2019, homophobic crime has increased throughout Brazil, so do take extra care here.

01

Belmond Hotel das Cataratas

Why we love it

  • Located right by the falls with incredible views
  • Tennis court, swimming pool and fitness centre
  • Divine spa
  • 2 restaurants and a fun bar

Far and away the most awe-inspiring place to stay near the falls; just look at that view!

Belmond Hotel das Cataratas is one of the closest (if not the closest) hotels to the falls – so you'll even be able to stare out the windows of your accommodation at the breathtaking sight of the pounding waters and myriad rainbows.

This incredibly luxurious five-star hotel has amenities like a tennis court, swimming pool, fitness centre, 2 restaurants, bar and spa. You can have a couples treatment in the Cataratas Spa or book yourself a spa retreat that includes accommodation, breakfast, a massage and another treatment of your choice.

The 1950s-style hotel has been restored to retain its charm as a colonial jungle getaway, complete with orchids surrounding the pool and the calls of Howler monkeys in the nearby jungle. If you stay at Belmond you'll also be able to easily organise a range of activities at the desk to see the majesty of the falls in unique ways, such as early in the morning or the middle of the night during the full moon.

Full day trip to the Argentine Falls from Brazil

If you're staying in Foz do Iguaçu you can still easily visit the falls from the Argentine side by joining a full day trip that will take you there to enjoy the boardwalks and views from another perspective.

Find out more

02

Vivaz Cataratas Hotel Resort

Why we love it

  • On-site water park
  • Lots of sporty facilities
  • Large apartments and suites
  • Spa with extensive treatments

The Vivaz Cataratas Hotel Resort is another luxurious option on the Brazilian side which includes lots of sporty facilities like a fitness room, tennis court, basketball court, football field, mini-golf course and an exciting water park.

Even if you never leave the resort you'll have plenty of options to amuse yourself and keep fit, but it's also ideally located for exploring the falls.

This is a popular choice for families, so be prepared to share public spaces with lots of noisy kids. If you want a bit of peace and quiet the spa offers a variety of beauty treatments, massages, facials and podology. You can even book a romantic couples day or a Princess afternoon which includes a manicure plus hair and makeup.

Breakfast is served in the lovely poolside Allegro Restaurant while La Terazza Restaurant & Lounge is a romantic spot for dinner or a cocktail at sunset. The hotel offers special ecological tours in the area and is only 7km from the entrance to the..

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We spent 2 years travelling around Asia and completely fell in love with the continent. It offers so much in terms of cultural experiences, food and landscapes, with some of the most humble people you'll ever meet.

But when it comes to LGBTQ rights, Asia has some serious work to do! In quite a lot of countries in Asia, being gay is either illegal or an arrestable offence, like in Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, the Maldives, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. If it's not illegal, then it's such a strong taboo that you have to stay in the closet to avoid jeopardising your job prospects and embarrassing your family like in China, Russia and Indonesia.

Despite this, there are a number of countries in Asia that are paving the way forward in relation to LGBTQ rights. We've selected the top 10 most gay friendly countries in Asia, which we've based on the following criteria:

  • Where are they at with same sex marriage legislation, along with other LGBTQ laws?
  • What is the gay scene like and do they have any notable annual LGBTQ festivals?

We have taken it as a given that homosexuality is legal in the countries we've selected, which is why we haven't included Singapore despite it having quite a vibrant gay scene and a famous LGBTQ PinkDot festival in June/July.

We have also included two “places” (Taiwan and Hong Kong) rather than “countries”, because although they're not officially recognised “countries”, they can still be regarded as a “country” given they have their own flag, currency, national anthem, set of laws etc

Check out our 10 favourite gay friendly countries in Asia
1. Taiwan

Taiwan is the runaway pink trailblazer of Asia. In May 2019 it broke all records by becoming the first (and to date, only) place on the entire continent to pass same-sex marriage laws. Whilst the other countries in this list are still grappling with civil union legislation (if at all!), Taiwan has powered ahead and is the clear leader on our list.

LGBTQ rights in Taiwan

A big part of what makes Taiwan so progressive is that after the 38 years of the restrictive Martial Law or “White Terror” era ended in 1987, there was a huge push for democracy and change. Anti-discrimination laws were passed in education (2004), employment (2007) and other areas of business (2017). In addition, gays were allowed to serve in the military from 2002, the right to change legal gender introduced in 2008 and conversion therapy outlawed in 2018.

The gay scene of Taiwan

The biggest LGBTQ community of Taiwan can be found in the capital, Taipei, which also has one of the best gay scenes in Asia. Most of the gay bars of Taipei are based in and around the Ximen Red House Complex, such as Cafe Dalida, Secret Garden and the Commander D fetish bar. Other gay bars nearby include Hero, Hunt, Goldfish and Fairy. In terms of gay clubs in Taipei, Gstar and Cercle are the most popular.

Other cities in Taiwan like Kaohsiung, Tainan and Taichung City also have a few gay hangouts.

Gay events in Taiwan

Taiwan is notorious for having the largest gay festival in Asia: Taipei Pride. It takes place on the last Saturday in October, attracting crowds of around 150,000. Some of the best gay parties in Taiwan happen around Taipei Pride, in particular the WOOW Pool Party and the Formusa Pride Party.

The Mr Gay Taiwan pageant also takes place in late October, usually coinciding with Taipei Pride. The other big gay event in Taipei to look out for is the monthly queer party called Blush. Find out more in our interview with local boy Po-Hung about gay life in Taiwan:

Interesting fact about gay Taiwan: they have a God for homosexual love!

Yup you read right! Taiwan has its own God for homosexual love called Tu'er Shan or the Rabbit God. Tu'er Shan has his own temple in New Taipei City, making it the only gay religious shrine in the world!

Gay Taiwan in a nutshell:
  • Homosexuality legalised: it was never illegal!
  • Gay marriage or civil unions: gay marriage laws passed in May 2019.
  • Gay scene: large gay scene in Taipei as well as in Kaohsiung and Taichung.
  • Gay events in Taiwan: Taipei Pride in October, which includes big parties like the WOOW Pool Party and the Formusa Pride Party. Also look out for the monthly Blush queer parties.
  • Spartacus gay travel listing: 41 which is Spartacus' joint highest (with Nepal) placing for an Asian country. But this was before Taiwan legalised gay marriage, so expect it to be a lot higher next year.
Taipei Pride is the largest gay event in Asia!
2. Thailand

Thailand is often cited as one of the most popular gay destinations in Asia and we totally agree. Thailand is our happy place in the world, especially the gay scene of Bangkok.

We love the Thais and found them to be very welcoming and friendly. What sums it up is a recent Nida Poll, which showed a whopping 88.72% of Thais to be accepting of gays (although in the same survey, a less impressive 59.20% in favour of gay marriage laws).

LGBTQ rights in Thailand

Thailand legalised homosexuality in 1956. Since 2015, it has had an array of anti-discrimination laws in place in education, employment and elsewhere, including hate speech. In relation to the military, gays have been allowed to serve since 2005 and homosexuality was declassified as an illness in 2002.

With regards to same sex marriage, unlike Taiwan, this is not on the cards sadly. However, Thailand is in the process of reviewing a Life Partnership Bill. When this becomes law, it would grant same-sex couples limited rights relating to property and inheritance, but not for public welfare, tax benefits, or adoption.

The gay scene of Thailand

The majority of the gay scene of Thailand is in the capital, Bangkok, particularly around Silom Soi 4 and 6. We love it because there is always an exciting atmosphere and we always have a great time. Some of the main gay bars to check out include Stranger, Telephone and Balcony. The best gay club in Bangkok is DJ Station.

Other places in Thailand with a gay scene include Phuket and Pattaya, and to a lesser extent, Chiang Mai.

A night out with our Thai friends in the gay bars of Bangkok
Gay events in Thailand

Whilst the country doesn't have a formal Pride taking place each year, Bangkok's Songkran Gay Circuit Party in April is one of the most exciting gay festivals in Asia. Around this time of year, there is also an equivalent gay party taking place in Phuket and Pattaya. Also in Pattaya is the annual Asia Circuit Festival in June.

Bangkok had its first gay film festival in 2015, which is now the BangkokThai International Film Festival (BANGIFF), open to all. Whilst it's lost its gay title, it still retains a significant LGBTQ segment. The BANGIFF takes place in October.

Interesting fact about gay Thailand: very trans friendly!

Thailand is one of the most trans friendly countries in Asia, mainly as a result of having an abundance of highly skilled and inexpensive doctors specialising in gender reassignment surgeries. Also of note is that in March 2019, transgender filmmaker Tanwarin Sukkhapisit, was elected to the Thai parliament, becoming the country's first ever transgender MP.

Find out more in our interview with trans person Regina who moved from the Philippines to live in Bangkok to have her surgeries.

Check out our interview with Regina from Bangkok about what life is life for the trans community in Thailand
Gay Thailand in a nutshell:
  • Homosexuality legalised: 1956
  • Gay marriage or civil unions: the Same Sex Life Partnership Registration Bill is pending. If it becomes law, it will offer limited rights to “life partners”.
  • Gay scene: large gay scene in Bangkok and Phuket. Smaller gay scene in Chiang Mai.
  • Gay events in Thailand: the Songkran Bangkok Gay Circuit Party in April, the Asia Circuit Festival in June and the BangkokThai International Film Festival (BANGIFF) in October.
  • Spartacus gay travel listing: 47
A gay night out in Bangkok
3. Cambodia

In the “race for second place”, Cambodia is often touted as the next most gay friendly place in Asia after Taiwan. When we arrived in Phnom Penh, we found an unexpectedly large gay scene, which we loved.

Throughout our travels in Cambodia as a gay couple, we found people to be very accepting towards us, particularly in the big cities like Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville.

LGBTQ rights in Cambodia

Cambodia has no record of ever having any anti-gay laws in its history! The equal age of consent has always been 15 for everyone regardless of sexual orientation. However, there are not yet any anti-discrimination laws in effect.

Whilst gay marriage is not yet legal in Cambodia, in 2018 the government introduced a civil contract that same-sex couples can enter into called a “Declaration of Family Relationship” (DoFR), offering limited rights. The DoFR is a symbolic civil contract between two people who are willing to be together and share responsibility of taking care of family, children and to distribute joint assets.

The gay scene of Cambodia

The capital, Phnom Penh, is where you'll find the best gay bars and clubs like Toolbox, Space and Blue Chilli. Siem Reap, the base to visit Angkor Wat, also has a fun gay scene with gay bars like Miss Wong, Barcode and Heaven & DreamBoys.

Discovering the gay bars of Phnom Penh
Gay events in Cambodia

In May, there is an annual Pride in Phnom Penh going strong since 2003. More recently since 2018, Siem Reap also has an annual Pride taking place in May.

Interesting fact about gay Cambodia: a gay King?

Rumour has it that King Norodom Sihamoni of Cambodia is gay! Nothing is official about this but this ballet-dancing-lifelong-bachelor remains a much-loved figure in Cambodia.

Whether King Sihamoni is gay or not, one thing he has publicly come out for is for progressive LGBTQ rights, including gay marriage. Even his father King Norodom Sihanouk (and predecessor) advocated for LGBTQ rights as far back as 2004. Read more about gay Cambodia in our interview with Aaron from Phnom Penh.

King Norodom Sihamoni of Cambodia is rumoured to be gay
Gay Cambodia in a nutshell:
  • Homosexuality legalised: it was never illegal!
  • Gay marriage or civil unions: the “Declaration of Family Relationship” (DoFR) is a symbolic Civil Contract and public ceremony for same sex couples, introduced in 2018.
  • Gay scene: large gay scene in Phnom Penh and a smaller one in Siem Reap.
  • Gay events in Cambodia: Phnom Penh Pride and also in Siem Reap, both in May.
  • Spartacus gay travel listing: 57

4. Japan

As visitors to Japan, we felt very welcome. When it comes to customer service the Japanese are ahead of everyone. They do everything with such precision and attention to detail, always with a smile. Whoever you are, you'll feel this in Japan. For locals, however, the situation is more complex because Japanese society is quite conservative. Despite this, it's changing and improving all the time; certainly by Asian standards.

We place Japan high on this list because from our perspective as foreigners, we not only felt it was one of the most gay friendly countries in Asia but also one of the safest and most advanced. And where else in the world are you going to find a city with over 300 gay bars?!

LGBTQ rights in Japan

Japan got rid of its anti-gay laws in 1880 and interestingly has one of the lowest ages of consent in the world – 13 (which is the same for everyone, straight or gay). Other progressive laws include the right to change your legal gender (introduced in 2003) and gays allowed to openly serve in the Japanese military.

With regards to anti-discrimination laws, there are none nationwide. However, Tokyo and Ibaraki each have their own anti-discrimination laws in place. In relation to gay marriage, it is not legal in Japan, although some parts of the country allows same-sex couples to register a “Partnership Certificate”, which gives limited rights to aid with hospital visits and renting apartments.

The gay scene of Japan

Tokyo has a whopping 300 or so small gay bars crammed together in the “Ni-Chōme” area of the Shinjuku district. Some of the main gay bars and clubs of Tokyo to check out include Arty Farty, Campy! and AiiRo. Check out our gay guide to Tokyo for more details.

Other cities in Japan that have a few notable queer hangouts include Nagasaki, Kyoto, Osaka and Hiroshima.

Gay events in Japan

The main gay festival in Japan is Tokyo Rainbow Pride in April/May, based mainly around Yoyogi Park. In July the Rainbow Reel Tokyo takes place, which is the main annual Japanese LGBTQ film festival.

Interesting fact about gay Japan: the male geisha

The original geisha of Japan were men not women! The taikomochi were male advisors, artists and gifted storytelling entertainers to their feudal lords dating back to the 1200s. The first female geisha didn't actually appear in Japan until the 1700s, but quickly grew so popular that “geisha” became associated with women rather than men.

Today there are only a handful of male geisha left in Japan…increased by 2 when we visited: watch Stefan's video time-lapse of his geisha transformation above!

Gay Japan in a nutshell:
  • Homosexuality legalised: 1880
  • Gay marriage or civil unions: none yet, but in 2015 some cities began issuing “Partnership Certificates” – an unofficial document to help with hospital visits and renting apartments.
  • Gay scene: large gay scene in Tokyo and a few queer hangouts in Nagasaki, Osaka, Hiroshima and Kyoto.
  • Gay events in Japan: Tokyo Rainbow Pride in April/May and the Rainbow Reel Tokyo LGBTQ film festival in July.
  • Spartacus gay travel listing: 68
Japan is one of our favourite gay friendly countries in Asia
5. The Philippines

As far as we're concerned, the Filipinos are one of the friendliest people on the planet. The Filipino Hospitality is a thing and it is very important to them. Every time we hang out with Filipino friends anywhere in the world, whether in London, Toronto or Manila, we always leave feeling loved and happy. They have..

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Gay Pride events are as important now as they have ever been. Whilst we are fortunate to come from a part of Europe (UK/France) where being gay means we have almost the same rights as our straight counterparts, sadly there still exist many places where simply being gay can get you killed.

There are over 70 countries in the world where being gay is an illegal crime. What's worse is that in 7 of these, the governments actively impose the death penalty for consensual same-sex acts, specifically: Brunei, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan.

Today Pride events are not only an important way to celebrate who we are, but they act as a crucial symbol to LGBTQ communities around the world to show we are not alone and we are fighting together for full equality and recognition everywhere.

In this article we celebrate the 10 best gay Pride events from around the world, which we think are the most unique and important. Whichever Pride event your travels take you to, always make sure you have adequate travel insurance.

Which are the best gay Pride events in the world? Read on to find out…
1. New York (USA): where Pride was born

New York is where the Pride movement was born. Following the police raid of the gay Stonewall Inn on 28 June 1969, the LGBTQ community said “ENOUGH!” and started a serious of demonstrations led by drag queen Marsha Johnson. This became the catalyst for LGBTQ movements across the US in 1970, and then around the world.

Today the New York Pride on the last weekend of June is one of the largest in the world, attracting crowds of around 2 million. The 2019 New York World Pride, which also commemorates 50 years since the Stonewall riots, is set to be the largest Pride event ever with around 4 million people estimated to attend!

Other notable Pride events in the US

There are Pride events taking place in almost every city across the US, with a handful also attracting millions of people.

San Francisco Pride is the other notable giant taking place alongside New York's Pride on the last weekend of June. Others include the Prides of Chicago (end of June), Columbus (mid-June), Houston (mid-June), Los Angeles (early June), Minneapolis (mid-June), Denver (mid-June), San Diego (mid-June), St Petersburg (mid-June) and Miami Beach Pride (early April).

The Stonewall Inn in New York: where the concept of Pride began back in 1969
2. Madrid (Spain): best Pride in Europe

Every European gay guy knows that Madrid Pride is the best place to celebrate Pride each year (at least it is according to these 2 European gay guys!)

The “Fiesta del Orgulla Gay” of Madrid takes place on the last Saturday of June each year and it is the biggest in Europe, attracting around 2 million people each year. The largest was WorldPride Madrid 2017, which had an estimated 3.5 million people attend.

The first Madrid Pride took place in 1979 following the death of Fascist dictator Francisco Franco, which led to a huge renaissance of democracy and liberal values in Spain. As a result, Spain has today transformed into one of the most gay friendly countries in the world, with very progressive LGBTQ laws, including gay marriage.

We particularly love Madrid Pride because whilst it's so big, it doesn't feel like it. The entire city gets involved and it feels like one enormous street party. Every road has parties going on, with people celebrating and just having a fun time. It's truly unique and why it is often considered to be one of the best Pride events in Europe, and not only by us!

Other notable Pride events in Spain

As one of the most gay friendly countries in the world, it's no surprise that almost every city (and island) in Spain has its own Pride. Barcelona Pride is the largest one after Madrid, attracting crowds of around 300,000. Other cities and islands famous for their Prides include Maspolomas (May), Ibiza (mid-June), Sitges (early June), Torremolinos (late May) and Benidorm (September).

3. Sao Paulo (Brazil): largest Pride in the world

The “Parada Gay Sao Paulo” is notorious for being the largest Pride in the world, attracting a staggering 3-5 million people each year.

Sao Paulo's Pride began in 1997 and takes place on the first weekend of June along the city's main street called “Paulista Avenue”. It was famously featured in the Netflix show “Sense8” where the sexy Mexican star Lito used his platform at Sao Paulo Pride to publicly come out.

Today more than ever, the LGBTQ network of Brazil is in need of support since the country voted the far right and completely anti-gay Jair Bolsonaro in as President from 1st January 2019. Bolsonaro has been a vocal opponent to our LGBTQ community, stating things like: “Brazil can’t be a country of the gay world, of gay tourism. We have families”! This has led to an increase in violent crimes against LGBTQ people in Brazil.

Although this hasn't stopped the Brazilian LGBTQ community from flourishing, it does show the importance and need for Pride events, now more than ever, to stand strong in defiance of such people.

Other notable Pride events in Brazil

Rio's pride is also huge, attracting around 2 million people and is in our opinion one of the best Prides of Latin America. It features a festival that takes place along the beach with many unofficial Prides also taking place across Rio's neighbourhoods. The date changes every year due to administrative issues, so check the Rio Facebook page for the latest official information about the next one.

Other cities in Brazil hosting notable Pride events are Florianópolis and Salvador, who coincide their Pride with the February/March Carnival season.

4. Sydney (Australia): most colourful Pride in the world

The Sydney Pride takes place during the Australian summer in late February / early March. It coincides with the Carnival season, which is why it is called “Sydney Mardi Gras“.

Sydney Mardi Gras is one of the most famous gay festivals in the world as well as one of the oldest. It started in 1978 on Oxford Street as a morning protest with just 500 people, calling for an end to police harassment against homosexuals and the repeal of the anti-gay laws. The second Mardi Gras in 1979 was more successful with over 3,000 people attending and no arrests.

Today the Sydney Mardi Gras takes over the entire city with around 500k people attending. If that's not enough, it has become so popular that stars like Cher, Kylie Minogue, Cyndi Lauper and George Michael have performed there.

Other notable Pride events in Australia

Melbourne has a Pride that is part of the annual “Midsumma” queer festival in Jan/Feb with around 25,000 people attending.

Other cities in Australia that have notable Pride events include: Adelaide (November), Brisbane (September) and the Perth Western Australia Pridefest (November).

The colourful Mardi Gras of Sydney
5. Taipei (Taiwan): largest Pride in Asia

Whilst Taipei Pride in late October may not be the biggest in the world, it's such an important event because it is the largest one in Asia – a continent that doesn't have the best track record with regards to LGBTQ rights.

Whilst most countries in Asia are grappling to overturn anti-gay laws or introduce legislation that deals with anti-discrimination against our LGBTQ community, Taiwan on the other hand is powering ahead, becoming the only place on the entire continent to introduce same sex marriage!

The 2018 Taipei Pride drew record crowds of 150,000, which makes it by far the most popular and largest gay festival in Asia. It all began in 2003 as a small parade with 1,000 people attending, which has since grown into something so important for not just the gay community of Taiwan, but for the entire LGBTQ community across Asia.

Other notable Pride events in Taiwan

The other prominent Pride event in Taiwan is in Kaohsiung City, which is held in November.

Taipei Pride: the largest gay pride event in all of Asia!
6. Amsterdam (Netherlands): most unique Pride in the world

The Amsterdam Pride Canal Parade is not only huge, attracting crowds of around 500,000+, it is the most unique Pride event in the world. This is the only Pride event in the world that takes place entirely on water!

On the first Saturday of August each year, a large colourful parade of around 80 boats takes over the entire city as they make their way through the famous UNESCO listed canals. Alongside the parade, lots of street parties take place, along with some of the best circuit parties like “Rapido“.

Other notable Pride events in the Netherlands

The Utrecht Canal Pride in early June is the second largest Pride event in the Netherlands. Rotterdam has a Pride event in the last weekend of September.

Amsterdam is one of our favourite places in the world to celebrate Pride
7. Tel Aviv (Israel): best Pride beach party

Tel Aviv is one of the most popular Pride beach parties. It takes place in mid-June, attracting crowds of around 200,000.

As it's beach orientated, Tel Aviv pride has become synonymous with body-beautiful, Adonis-like guys…everywhere you look! The climax of the event is the large beach party on Charles Clore beach, which goes on into the early hours of the next day.

The other important point to note about Tel Aviv Pride is that it is the only successful annual Pride to take place in the Middle East – a region (with the exception of Israel of course) with a terrible record for LGBTQ rights. Read more about this in our article about the most gay friendly Arab countries.

Other notable Pride events in Israel

Jerusalem has a more sober Pride event in early August, which attracts around 20,000 people but has very heavy security following a stabbing incident at the 2015 event.

8. Johannesburg (South Africa): largest Pride in Africa

Joburg Pride is nicknamed the “Pride of Africa“, which is an apt nickname given it is the largest (and one of the fewest) Pride events to take place in Africa. Whilst it may not be one of the largest, it is significant because of its location on what is often referred to as the worst continent in the world to be gay.

Johannesburg held the first Pride of Africa in October 1993, which was towards the end of the apartheid era. Subsequently in 1996, under Nelson Mandela's Presidency, the country passed one of the most progressive constitutions in which unfair discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation is prohibited.

Joburg's Pride continues to take place every year on the last Saturday of October.

Other notable Pride events in South Africa

Other Pride events that take place in South Africa include Cape Town Pride (Feb/March), Durban Pride (June) and the Nelson Mandela Bay Pride in Port Elizabeth (November).

Wise words by Nelson Mandela that we strongly believe in!
9. Cologne (Germany): biggest Pride in Europe

Cologne often rivals Madrid for the title of “biggest” and “best” Pride in Europe. It takes place on the first Saturday of July, attracting crowds of around 1-2 million. That's pretty impressive given that the city's population is only around 1 million people!

Pride marches in Germany are referred to as “Christopher Street Day” (or CSD), in memory of the 1970 Christopher Street Liberation Day in New York.

Other notable Pride events in Germany

Berlin Pride (late July) is another popular Pride event not just in Germany, but across Europe. It is one of the oldest, dating back to 1979.

Hamburg Pride is the other main Pride event of Germany to look out for, which takes place in early August.

The boys of Cologne take to the streets during Pride!
10. Toronto (Canada): because Canada!

No “best of gay…” list is ever complete without mention of what we think is the most gay friendly country in the world.

Toronto Pride is not only one of the largest Prides in the world, but outside the US, it is one of the oldest, dating back to 1972.

Today Toronto Pride (in mid-June) attracts crowds of around 1-2 million. What we love most about Toronto Pride and Pride events generally in Canada is that the government not only enthusiastically backs them financially, but their leader often gets involved and is seen leading the entire procession!

Other notable Pride events in Canada

Montreal's Gay Pride (mid-August) is also big, often attracting around 1 million people. The 2017 Montreal Pride was also the first “Canada Fierte Pride“, which you can find out more about in our Vlog below.

Vancouver's Pride takes place every year on the first Monday of August. Just like Montreal, it's very popular, attracting crowds of around 1 million. Another popular Pride event in Canada to look out for is the “Capital Pride” of Ottawa in late August.

Bonus mention: London Pride

Growing up in London, it was always a joy to experience marching through the iconic streets of London (in early July) with 1 million+ people watching! Although Pride in London has been criticised for becoming too commercial, it still remains one of the largest Pride events in the world. It is also one of the oldest – like Toronto Pride, it was the first one to take place outside the US in 1972.

The UK also has a range of other smaller but just as popular Pride events, in particular Brighton (early August), Manchester (late August) and Edinburgh (mid-June).

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Taiwan has become one of the most gay friendly places in Asia. On a continent famous for not having the most progressive LGBTQ rights, Taiwan is proudly paving the way forward. It has long been a gay trailblazer, famous for having progressive LGBTQ laws, the largest pride in Asia and even a God devoted to homosexual love with his own temple in New Taipei City.

In May 2019, Taiwan made history by becoming the first nation in Asia to implement gay marriages. This is immense!

Nowhere else in Asia comes close to this achievement. For example, whilst other gay friendly places in Asia like Thailand, Cambodia, Japan, Hong Kong, Nepal and the Philippines may have started discussing the implementation of gay civil union laws (if at all!), no one else has even touched the realm of recognising same sex marriages. Except Taiwan!

Of course the same sex marriage laws of Taiwan are not without difficulties, having had quite a bumpy road to get to where they are. Despite this, it is an incredible achievement not only for Taiwan's gay community, but also for the entire LGBTQ community across Asia.

So what is it about Taiwan that makes it so gay friendly? We met with local boy Po-Hung from Kaohsiung who was also Mr Gay Taiwan 2018. Po-Hung gave us the full lowdown about the gay life of Taiwan, what it's like growing up gay here and other invaluable local tips.

Welcome to our blog Po-Hung! Please introduce yourself:

Hi boys! I am Po-Hung, 32 years old from Kaohsiung City in Taiwan. Kaohsiung is the second biggest city of Taiwan after the big capital, Taipei. Kaohsiung is in the southwest of Taiwan and Taipei is on the other end of the island, right at the northern tip.

I studied psychology and went on to become a professional counsellor, specialising in relationships. In 2013, I moved to Taipei because I was working as cabin crew for almost 4 years. In 2018 I co-founded an online dating service for the LGBTQ community called “Heder”. Heder is a match-making service and also a dating coach providing counselling for gay couples.

In 2018, I was also crowned “Mr Gay Taiwan”.

Po-Hung tells us about gay life in Taiwan
Are you openly gay?

I was Mr Gay Taiwan…so I am now very much out of the closet!

All my friends and family know about my fabulous life and fully support me. But in actual fact, before I became Mr Gay Taiwan in 2018, I wasn't fully out. This competition turned into an important and incredible coming out journey.

For gay guys in Asia it's very difficult growing up, even in Taiwan which is more gay friendly than most places on the continent. This is mainly because Asian society generally is socially conservative and we have very close relationships within our families. The older generations in particular are more conservative, with one sole objective in life: to become grandparents with lots of grandchildren!

Po-Hung in full Taiwanese National Dress
What was it like growing up gay in Taiwan?

I grew up in the 1990s and 2000s, which was a time of great change in Taiwan (see next question). Growing up, I never experienced any homophobia in Taiwan. There's always been a place I could go to to hang out with other gays and make friends. Whilst society always has its bad eggs, I've found Taiwanese society to be very accepting.

I think part of this is because over the past 20-30 years, we see more gay characters represented in the media and on Taiwanese TV/cinema. This has definitely helped to “normalise” us and show that we are not freaks of nature! For example, in the late 1980s, author Pai Hsien-yung published a famous gay novel called “Crystal Boys”, which was recently made into a gay TV series. Other popular gay movies in Taiwan include “Formula 17” (2004) and the lesbian film, “Spider Lilies” (2007) by Zero Chou. Spider Lilies won the Teddy Award for best gay feature film at the 2007 Berlin International Film Festival, which was an amazing achievement for our LGBTQ community!

And don't forget Taiwanese director Ang Lee! Although he's not gay, the very fact that he directed a huge Oscar winning gay movie in 2005 (Brokeback Mountain) was a big deal for us! He also made a gay Taiwanese (Oscar nominated) movie in 1993 called “The Wedding Banquet” about a gay Chinese man who stages a sham marriage to please his parents.

Taiwanese screenwriter and director Ang Lee directing Jake Gyllenhaal in Brokeback Mountain
Why is Taiwan so gay friendly?

A big part of this is because in the period after the Martial Law rule was lifted in 1987, Taiwan massively transformed.

The 38 years of the Martial Law (1949-1987), or the “White Terror”, was a very dark period for Taiwan. There were severe restrictions on our freedom of expression, which led to the death and imprisonment of around 200,000 people. So from 1987 onwards, there was this huge push for democracy and change.

As a result, over the past 30 years, Taiwanese society has become increasingly liberal-minded, certainly compared to most other parts of Asia. During this period, Taiwan passed many anti-discrimination laws particularly in education (2004), in employment (2007) and in all other areas of business (2017). We also made it legal for gays to serve in the army in 2002, introduced the right to change your legal gender in 2008 and outlawed conversion therapy in 2018. More recently, we became the first (and only) country in Asia to pass gay marriage laws!

This has allowed us to develop a rich queer culture, particularly in Taipei, which has one of the best gay scenes in Asia. And of course we have Taipei Pride every October, which is famous for not only being the largest Pride across the whole of Asia, but also one of the largest LGBTQ events in the world.

Whilst there is of course more work to do, I am so proud of what my country has achieved with regards to LGBTQ rights over the past few decades.

Po-Hung standing proud for Taiwan!
How did you meet other guys growing up?

I used to head up to the gay bars of Taipei from my city to meet and connect with other guys. I also got really involved with gay sports groups from which I've made some of my closest friends.

Today I am a member of a gay boat racing group called “Rainbow Punch“. Every weekend we meet and race our “Dragon Boat” – this is a traditional wooden human-powered Chinese boat, decorated with a dragon head and tail at each end.

We have 120 members in our group. Together we take part in lots of different competitions all around Taiwan, always with the rainbow flag flying proud.

Po-Hung rowing hard with his fellow Rainbow Punch racers
What was it like being crowned Mr Gay Taiwan?

This was a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me. I never thought I would come out as a gay public figure before.

At first I received quite nasty online criticism like:

“How can HE represent the gay community of Taiwan? He’s too fem!”

Comments like these just made me fight and work harder. You will never please everyone and you shouldn't strive to! This experience taught me to be humble, confident, and most importantly of all, be yourself no matter what, no matter what anyone else says. Embrace every part of you and face the imperfect head on. That's what makes you beautiful and perfect.

The moment Po-Hung was crowned Mr Gay Taiwan!
Are there any other out gay Taiwanese celebrities?

Whilst there are many gay Taiwanese celebrities, sadly there are many that stay in the closet because they are scared that being out would lose them their sponsorship deals and compromise their careers. These are some of the famous gay Taiwanese celebrities who are out and proud:

Jin Tai was the first pop singer to come out. In 2014 she came out as a lesbian in an interview with the China Times. She used to be part of the tomboy band called “MissTER”. Another out lesbian pop singer is Enno Cheng of the band “Chocolate Tiger” who famously came out in 2016 after divorcing her ex-husband. More recently, Aaron Yan of the former boy band “Fahrenheit” formally came out in December 2018 after his ex-boyfriend “exposed” him in the media.

In the movie industry, Elaine Jin is a Hong Kong/Taiwanese actress who has been in a same sex relationship with Suzie Wong since 2005. Peter Chang (with his boyfriend Mitch Cullin) is a well-known filmmaker and Zero Chou is a very famous lesbian director and screenwriter.

Audrey Tang is the world's first transgender minister. She is a Taiwanese free software programmer who was described as one of the 10 greatest Taiwanese computing personalities. In August 2016, she became Taiwan's Digital Minister, making her the first transgender person official in the top executive cabinet. Another prominent out gay politician is Chung-Ming Wang who is a member of the Green Party Taiwan and also a gay rights activist.

Kevin Tsai is a talk show host who was the first male celebrity to come out in Taiwan during a television interview in 2001. Other famous gay Taiwanese writers and media figures include Lin Hwai-min, Pai Hsien-yung, Qiu Miaojiin, Peter Chang, Li Jing and Alicia Liu.

Finally, Jason Wu is an openly gay Taiwanese fashion designer now based in New York. He is best known for designing Michelle Obama's dresses during Barack Obama's first and second inaugurations.

Jason Wu posing with Michelle Obama and one of the dresses he famously designed for her
What's the gay scene of Taipei like?

I love the gay scene of Taipei. It's one of the best in Asia, with many gay hangouts spread across the city.

The majority of the gay village of Taipei is based around the Ximen Red House Complex, which is made up of many different small gay bars, like “Cafe Dalida and “Secret Garden, as well as lots of gay cafes and terraces. This is the best place to head to first. Other gay bars near the Red House Complex include “Hero“, “Hunt“, “Goldfish” and the “Commander D” fetish bar.

In the East of Taipei, there are a few more gay places worth checking out, like the gay restaurant “Abrazo Bistro” and the gay bar, “Fairy” which has cool events like “No Pants Day”!

In terms of gay clubs, “Gstar” and “Cercle are the best. I also recommend the monthly queer party called “BLUSH“.

What are the best gay events in Taiwan?

The main gay event in Taiwan is Taipei Pride, which takes place on the last Saturday in October. As I said earlier, it's famous for being the largest pride event in the whole of Asia. Each year it grows bigger and bigger. The 2018 Pride had a record turnout of almost 150,000 people!

Some of the best gay parties of Taiwan happen during Taipei Pride. The two main ones are the “WOOW Pool Party” and the “Formusa Pride Party“. The Mr Gay Taiwan final also takes place during Pride at the Ximen Red House Complex.

New Years Eve is another time when you will find big gay parties taking place around the gay scene of Taipei. The Ximen Red House has an official countdown, which then turns into a really fun gay street party.

Taipei Pride: the largest gay pride event in all of Asia!
Where would you take a date for a romantic weekend in Taiwan?

I would take him to the Taroko Gorge National Park on the East coast of Taiwan. It's absolutely stunning! I love coming on weekends for hiking around Mount Nanhu (3,742m / 12,277ft high) and the Eternal Spring Shine Monastery. Also, around 80% of Taiwan's animal species can be found here, including the Formosan black bear and Formosan rock macaque.

Another place I love in Taiwan which is special for me is the Yilan province. The area around Yilan city is famous for its hot springs, waterfalls, beaches and natural scenery. I also love Yilan because in the evening, it has the best night market called “Luodong”. The atmosphere here is always electric – full of people and so exciting! It's also the best place to try tasty Taiwanese street food like tapioca desserts, braised meats and Dragon Phoenix rolls.

The stunning gorge of the Taroko National Park
And finally, what's this about Taiwan having a gay rabbit god?!

You're thinking of “Tu'er Shan” (兔兒神), also known as the Rabbit God (兔神). He is the Taoist matchmaker God for homosexual relations and the god of homosexual love!

In 2006, Lu Wei-ming founded a temple to honour our gay Rabbit God. The Wei-ming Temple is located in the Yonghe District of New Taipei City. Every year, around 9,000 gay pilgrims visit to honour Tu'er Shan, pray for happiness and to find a suitable partner! It's also a popular place for gay weddings. As far as I'm aware, the Wei-ming Temple is the only gay religious shrine in the world.

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Puerto Vallarta in Mexico is one of the hottest gay destinations. Over the past few decades it has become a popular draw for gay men, particularly expats from the US and Canada. It has tons of bars, clubs, boutique shops, beach parties and events happening throughout the year.

We came for the exciting Puerto Vallarta Pride which takes place every May. It was absolutely awesome and the reason why we regard it as one of the best Pride events in Latin America.

Whether you visit Puerto Vallarta for Pride or at another time of the year, the city always seems to ooze a feeling of acceptance, tolerance and outright fabulousness!

This is our comprehensive gay guide to Puerto Vallarta featuring all the best gay places to hangout, hotels to stay, events, things to do and loads more.

Discover Puerto Vallarta's gay bars

First time visiting Puerto Vallarta? Join a gay bar-hopping tour to visit some of the city's liveliest bars and clubs with an exclusive group of gay men. You'll have a local guide to show you all the best spots to party with your new friends!

Find out more

Gay rights in Puerto Vallarta

Mexico has some pretty progressive LGBTQ laws. Homosexuality was decriminalised as early as 1871 during its brief French occupation, and a wide range of anti-discrimination laws were introduced in 2003. It's also slowly heading towards full gay marriage equality.

In relation to the Jalisco Province, where Puerto Vallarta is based, gay marriage was legalised in March 2016 following an unanimous decision by the Supreme Court of Mexico that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional. As a result, the offending law was quickly revoked and as of 20 April 2016, gay weddings were allowed to take place.

Since this date, Puerto Vallarta has quickly become one of the most popular gay marriage destinations.

Asserting our rights in Puerto Vallarta!
Gay travel in Puerto Vallarta

We found Puerto Vallarta to be very relaxed and very gay friendly, particularly in the “Zona Romantica” Old Town, which is the heart of the city's gay scene. We felt super comfortable walking the streets holding hands here.

We never had any problems booking double beds in (non-gay!) hotels here. Locals are incredibly welcoming and clearly accustomed to seeing gay guys.

Gay travellers may want to schedule their trip to coincide with Puerto Vallarta Pride, which takes place in May. Though anytime of the year is always going to be a lot of fun in Puerto Vallarta.

And that's before we've even mentioned all the pretty local guys…

Landing in Puerto Vallarta soon?

Arriving at a new place can be stressful, and the last thing you want is to be worrying about getting from the airport to your accommodation without getting lost or ripped off. Book a private transfer from Puerto Vallarta airport so you'll be totally ready to have fun partying in the gay clubs after your relaxing ride with an English-speaking driver.

Cheers to you too mate!
The gay neighbourhood of Puerto Vallarta

Zona Romantica is the main gay area of Puerto Vallarta, the old town area that is most popular with expats and travellers. Since the 1980s many gay expats from Canada and the USA starting retiring here, buying up land and creating gay friendly businesses.

The “Playa de los Muertos” is the main gay beach of Puerto Vallarta. It has a handful of gay beach clubs and pool parties happening during the day and events in the evening.

Zona Romantica during Puerto Vallarta Pride!
Gay hotels in Puerto Vallarta

Over the last few decades, LGBTQ tourism to Puerto Vallarta has increased so much that today you are spoilt for choice with regards to gay hotels to choose from. These are some of our favourite gay hotels in Puerto Vallarta, where you are guaranteed to have a fabulous time:

01

Casa Cupula Luxury LGBT Boutique Hotel

Why we love it

  • Adults-only gay hotel close to the beach
  • Two swimming pools, one clothing optional
  • Weekly gay pool parties!
  • Luxurious spa and gym

Casa Cupula is an incredibly luxurious gay boutique hotel that only caters to adult guests.

The rooms are really spacious. Bonus tip: splurge and get a suite, which has a private hot tub with a stunning ocean view. We can't imagine anything more romantic than this.

The views from the hotel look out over the jungle and ocean, but you're only a short walk away from the “Playa de los Muertos” gay beach. If you don't feel like leaving the hotel there are two swimming pools on site, one of which is clothing optional. They also host weekly gay pool parties featuring GoGo dancers and DJs from CC Slaughters Nightclub.

The Taste restaurant is famous for its brunch. It includes a mix of American and traditional Mexican food. Casa Cupula also has a bar to enjoy a few cocktail as you watch the sunset over the Pacific Ocean. We love the wide assortment of relaxing and rejuvenating treatments available in the hotel's spa. The gym is huge with really modern equipment (and also get quite cruisy in the evening!)

STAY WITH A GAY LOCAL

Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

02

Almar Resort Luxury LGBT Beach Front Experience

Why we love it

  • Adults-only LGBT resort on the beach
  • Beach club with infinity pools and Balinese beds
  • Rooftop Sky Bar with hot tubs
  • Lots of fun activities and events

Located right on the Playa de los Muertos gay beach is this extensive LGBT resort with so much to offer.

Almar Resort is an adults-only resort for LGBTQ travellers (it's also straight friendly) which includes the famous Mantamar gay beach club.

The rooms and suites are incredibly spacious, often with a private balcony overlooking the sea. But the real draw-card here is the incredible Mantamar Beach Club with its infinity pools, pool bar, cabanas, Balinese-style beds, restaurant and regular gay parties!

This is the perfect place to stay if you want an action-packed gay holiday. As well as all the fun you can have at the beach club, Almar Resort also offers yoga, diving, volleyball and can arrange tours of the area. The rooftop sky bar is also a cool place to chill or grab a bite to eat.

Must do: the secluded Caletas Beach Paradise

For a truly romantic and secluded experience, join a private tour to the Las Caletas Beach. Only accessible by sea you'll be able to swim, snorkel, relax in hammocks, visit an orchid garden and even be pampered at the spa.

Find out more

03

Hotel Mercurio

Why we love it

  • In the heart of the gay neighbourhood
  • Swimming pool and pool bar with regular events
  • Buffet breakfast included
  • Adults-only gay hotel

For a fabulous time without the hefty price tag, gay-owned Mercurio Hotel is the place to go.

Located in the heart of the gay neighbourhood of Zona Romantica and a five-minute walk from the beach is this comfortable hotel with super friendly staff.

We love the little details here, like the fact that the buffet breakfast (which is included in your rates) can be upgraded to breakfast in bed. Even though this is a mid-range option the staff are very attentive and you'll even receive a welcome gift of drink vouchers, fresh fruit and chocolate.

The swimming pool is open 24 hours a day and the pool bar is open late. On Sundays, the pool is also the location of the popular Beers, Boys and Burgers pool party. Both guests and locals alike come here to enjoy unlimited beers and burgers at a fixed price.

Discover the historic town of San Sebastián

Join a day tour from Puerto Vallarta to the historic town of San Sebastián and explore the pretty streets. You'll also get to visit a traditional coffee hacienda, taste homemade tequila and have lunch in a family-owned restaurant.

Find out more

04

Piñata PV Gay Hotel

Why we love it

  • Male-only gay hotel
  • Clothing optional pool and hot tub
  • Lovely gay owners
  • Regular male-only pool parties

Piñata PV Hotel is a very unique choice if you're looking for a nice hotel with private rooms but also the option to attend some incredibly fun gay pool parties.

This is an exclusively male-only, adults-only gay hotel with really cool decor and a fun vibe throughout.

We love the quirky, colourful signs to be found all over the exposed brick of Piñata. The hotel is located in the heart of Puerto Vallarta's gay neighbourhood and minutes walking distance from the gay beach. Rooms are big and clean, with private bathrooms.

Piñata's swimming pool and hot tub is the location of the awesome weekly gay pool parties. There's also a good gym on site, as well as a popular steam room, which gets quite cruisy later in the evening! Piñata is the perfect option for solo travellers looking for an affordable place to stay and where you will definitely make lots of new friends.

Gay hostels and guesthouses in Puerto Vallarta

If you are travelling on a budget to Puerto Vallarta there are a variety of gay hostels and guesthouses to choose from. These are our favourite gay hostel and guesthouse choices in Puerto Vallarta:

01

Jet's Gay Hostel

Why we love it

  • Stylish and comfortable hostel
  • Exclusively for young gay travellers
  • Walking distance to the gay neighbourhood
  • Excellent budget choice

Jet's is famous for being Puerto Vallarta's first gay hostel. It is inspired by the gay hostels of Berlin and the capsule hotels popular in Tokyo.

Even though this is a budget choice Jet's Hostel is very clean, stylish and comfortable. We love those quirky mannequin lights!

The bunk beds come with very comfy memory foam mattresses and privacy curtains. The shared bathrooms feature rain showerheads. Shared areas include a nice lounge with board games so you can relax and meet other travellers. The kitchen is pretty basic but there's a nice coffee shop next door.

Jet's has a strict 18-35 age policy so that they can provide affordable accommodation for gay youth and students travelling in the area. The owner of Jet's also owns a tour company, so guests of the hostel can take advantage of discounts for exploring the area.

Taste the delicious food of Mexico

Escape the overpriced tourist traps in favour of local, authentic Mexican cuisine on this three-hour tour. Your local guide will take you into the cobbled old-town streets to sample delicious cuisine and learn about the area's history.

Find out more

02

Garlands Del Rio

Why we love it

  • Beautifully restored Vallartan property
  • Gorgeous unique rooms
  • Lovely swimming pool
  • Jacuzzi on the river deck

Garlands del Rio is a..

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Are you wondering where the best place in Argentina is to find young, gay Argentinian boys? Well, the answer is Córdoba! The city is famous for having Argentina's oldest university and as a result, there is a large student population which means a vibrant nightlife including a small but exciting gay scene.

Córdoba has it all: a busy nightlife, a rich history, a beautiful architecture and very attractive Argentinian men!

As well as the nightlife, Córdoba offers plenty of beautiful architecture, particularly the many religious buildings such as the popular Cathedral of Córdoba. Another popular sight is the Jesuit Block, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which contains the old headquarters of the university, the National School of Monserrat and the Domestic Chapel.

Cordoba has a decent offering of gay friendly accommodations. Having spent a few months travelling across the country, we had ample time sampling the best places to stay in Cordoba. Here's our roundup of our 5 favourite gay friendly hotels to stay in Córdoba, for all budgets.

Stay connected during your trip…

Free fast WiFi is available at most hotels, cafes and restaurants in Córdoba, although you might need to ask for a password. If you know you will be needing to use a lot of bandwidth during your trip, pre-order a local SIM card.

Where to stay in Córdoba

Córdoba is the second most populous city in Argentina after Buenos Aires and is located on the banks of the Suquía River. There's no metro system as of yet, but you will be able to get around the city easily using buses or trolleybuses. Here's a quick summary to the best gay friendly neighbourhoods to stay in.

  • Güemes: Güemes is our favourite gay friendly neighbourhood, it's bohemian and lively with a more alternative nightlife scene than the city centre. This is where you will find the majority of Córdoba's gay bars, discos and clubs as well as a craft fair (The Paseo de las Artes) during the daytime. If you want to be right in the heart of the gay area in Córdoba, stay at the lovely Windsor Hotel & Tower.
  • Nueva Córdoba: Nueva Córdoba is the most modern and fashionable part of the city, filled with antique stores, design and art shops. It's right next to the historical centre, so you will be able to visit the many museums such as the Ferreyra Palace or “Museum of Evita”. Yrigoyen 111 is our favourite gay friendly hotel to stay in Nueva Córdoba.
  • City centre: The historic city centre of Córdoba is where you will find the majority of the city's tourist attractions. This is a great area to stay in if you want to be close to all the beautiful colonial architecture and feel the history of Córdoba. It's also easy to get to other parts of the city from here with public transport. Azur Real is a sexy gay friendly boutique hotel to stay in the centre.
  • Alberdi: For something a little different you may like to stay in the more traditional neighbourhood of Alberdi. There are some interesting sights here and it's also a great option if you want to be away from the noisy centre but still be able to easily enjoy the cultural heritage. You can easily get from Alberdi to other parts of Córdoba by bus or a quick Uber ride. For a relaxing stay with great views, we love the gay friendly Sheraton Córdoba.
Discover Córdoba's rich history

See the colonial architecture and historic Roman Catholic Church sites in Córdoba on a half-day tour of the city. You'll learn about the culture, history and traditions of the city with your English speaking guide.

Find out more

01

Azur Real Hotel

City Centre

Ultimate romance and luxury at Azur Real!

Why we love it

  • Wine and cheese every night
  • The deluxe suites come with a hot-tub
  • Beautiful rooftop terrace with Jacuzzi
  • Gorgeous modern decor

We simply loved our stay at Azur Real and never wanted to leave! In our opinion it's one of the best gay friendly boutique hotels we've experienced in Argentina.

Located within walking-distance of the historic centre, Azur Real is almost hidden on a busy street but once you go inside you find yourself in a little haven of contemporary design.

There are so many little details and extras to love here, like the free tastings of wine and cheese every night, the hotel's signature scent in all the toiletries and the complimentary spa (you just have to book)! The rooftop terrace is delightful for relaxing in the sun or having a romantic evening cocktail.

We particularly loved the decor and open-plan areas of the hotel, with lots of wood, exposed brick and leafy plants. The buffet breakfast is delicious and the staff are so helpful.

STAY WITH A GAY LOCAL

Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

02

Windsor Hotel & Tower

Güemes

The Windsor Hotel is right in the heart of Córdoba's most beautiful historic area.

Why we love it

  • Heated rooftop swimming pool and terrace
  • Close to the gay scene and historic landmarks
  • Wellness centre and gym
  • Excellent restaurant

The Windsor Hotel and Tower is in a great location right on the edge of the border between Güemes and the city centre. This means you are close to both the gay scene AND the main historical attractions!

Not only is the location very convenient but the Windsor is also a luxurious place to stay with marbled interiors and city views from every room.

On the seventh-floor terrace, you'll find a gorgeous outdoor pool and lots of seating with views across Córdoba. The well-equipped gym looks out over the pool and there's also a sauna and spa with many options for pampering.

On-site restaurant, Sibaris (often called the best restaurant in Córdoba) serves delicious steaks, homemade pasta, mouthwatering desserts and, of course, the best Argentinian wines. We love that you can even choose your pillow from five different varieties when staying here!

Gay travel guide to Córdoba

Discover the best gay hangouts in the city, where to eat, activities to do, travel tips in our gay guide to Cordoba to help you plan a fun and safe trip.

03

Sheraton Córdoba

Alberdi

Rooftop pool? Yes, please!

Why we love it

  • Awesome rooftop pool
  • Stunning views of the city
  • Many business amenities if needed
  • Cocktail bar with live piano

If you want to stay in a quieter part of the city then the Sheraton Córdoba is an excellent gay friendly option in the traditional neighbourhood of Alberdi.

The hotel tower boasts impressive views over the city which you can enjoy from the rooftop pool as well as the on-site restaurant, cocktail bar and rooms.

The Sheraton is an excellent choice if you have any work to do while travelling since it provides a business centre with fax, scanning and photocopying services. But don't worry, you'll still have plenty of opportunities to relax as well!

There's a fitness centre and pool, of course, as well as a solarium, sauna and massage services. Almost directly next door is a big mall for shopping and you will easily be able to get into the city centre by taxi, Uber or bus.

Protect your online privacy during your trip

When you're travelling, your personal information is at risk from hackers, especially when using public WiFi. A VPN will secure your internet connection wherever you are, and keep your online activities private.

Find out more

04

Yrigoyen 111 Hotel

Nueva Cordoba

Enjoy a dip in the pool with a stunning view of sunset over Córdoba.

Why we love it

  • Great location
  • Luxurious spa
  • Rooftop pool and gym
  • Yummy breakfast

The Yrigoyen 111 Hotel is in a great location in downtown Córdoba, close to shopping, restaurants and the major sights.

In a fully renovated and updated traditional mansion of Nueva Córdoba, you will step into luxury and class. The building was restored in order to preserve its cultural heritage but is still very classy and modern.

There are a range of room and suite options, some very affordable going all the way up to the gorgeous presidential suite. We love the design and decor of this gay frienldy hotel, with lots of warm woodsy tones and splashes of colour.

The rooftop pool is small but features beautiful views. The gym and spa are also located up here, so you can work out with a view or just treat yourself to a relaxing massage. The 1906 Lounge Bar is particularly chic and cosy, while the daily breakfast is delicious.

05

531 Hostel

City Centre

The cute balcony windows make the rooms at 531 Hostel so romantic!

Why we love it

  • Good budget option
  • Close to main attractions
  • Free delicious breakfast
  • Cute balcony windows in some rooms

If you're travelling on a budget but still want to be close to everything Córdoba has to offer then we think 531 Hostel is a great gay friendly hostel.

The location of 531 is perfect for walking around the city and while you will be able to socialise and make friends it's not a crazy party hostel. Even the dormitory rooms are cosy, with only six beds per room.

Couples are sure to enjoy the cute private rooms with double bed and those romantic balcony windows! We also love the cool colours and decor throughout the shared spaces; like the kitchen, patios, lounge, bar and games room.

A basic free breakfast is included and the staff are helpful, friendly and willing to organise local tours. The rooftop terrace is a particularly nice spot to relax or socialise.

OUR FAVOURITE TRAVEL TIPS

⭐️ TRAVEL INSURANCE — We recommend you always take out travel insurance before your next vacation. What happens if you suffer from illness, injury, theft or a cancellation? With travel insurance, you can have peace of mind and not worry. We love World Nomads travel insurance and have been using it for years. Their comprehensive coverage is second to none and their online claims process is very user friendly.

⭐️ SAFETY & SECURITY — All travelers (gay or not) can sometimes encounter danger when traveling. CloseCircle is your “virtual body guard” mobile app which provides security alerts and support wherever you are in the world. They have a 24/7 emergency response team monitoring their users who will contact you immediately if the SOS swipe button is activated. Support can include anything from practical advice, to free evacuation from areas with extreme weather or security risks. You can read more about CloseCircle in our article about how to stay safe whilst traveling.

⭐️ ONLINE ANONYMITY — A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a must in many countries: it allows you to surf anonymously and maintain your privacy whilst traveling. You'll particularly need it in countries where gay dating apps are blocked by the government. We recommend ExpressVPN, a reliable and cost effective service which we used and loved during our travels.

⭐️ HOTELS or APARTMENTS — When we plan a trip, we always look for the best hotel deals. We love Booking.com because not only do they have a comprehensive listing of accommodation options, they also offer the best prices. Added bonus: they provide 24/7 support and free cancellation for most listings.

⭐️ SIGHTSEEING and ADVENTURES — When we travel somewhere, we like to seek out the best experiences, whether it is cooking with locals in Bangkok, hiking on a glacier in Patagonia, or going on a wildlife safari in Sri Lanka. Our favorite place to look is GetYourGuide because they have over 30,000 highly rated activities, a user-friendly booking process with free cancellation and a 24 hour customer support.

This article contains affiliate links. If you click on them, we may receive compensation which keeps our website alive and helps us bring you to more destinations.

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Mendoza is the wine capital of Argentina. All those different Malbecs you tried at your favourite parilla in Buenos Aires (ours was Nicasia) were produced right here.

The region around Mendoza is the largest wine-producing area in Latin America and recognised as one of the wine capitals of the world. Most visitors head here for a wine pilgrimage, visiting the many bodegas and do lots of wine tasting. The city also has a small gay scene worth checking out but for us the real highlight was cycling around the beautiful countryside of Mendoza going from one bodega to another.

“For us, the real highlight was cycling around the beautiful countryside of Mendoza going from one bodega to another and sampling the delicous wines…”


If you're heading to Mendoza in February/March, be sure to check out the “Vendimia” grape harvesting festival. The city also has a gay festival alongside the Vendimia, which is one of the largest LGBTQ events in Argentina after Buenos Aires Pride. Check out Mendoza Tourism's Facebook page for the latest information about it.

There are a variety of different accommodation options in and around Mendoza, with most places being friendly and relaxed towards gay travellers. Atfer spending 2 weeks in the wine region of Argentina, we've put together in this post our favourite gay hotels in Mendoza, which we found to be welcoming towards us as a gay couple and were clearly used to hosting LGBTQ travellers.

Flying to Mendoza soon?

The most convenient way to get from the airport to the city center is via private transfer. You can also use the public taxis available outside the terminal but make sure you ask the driver to use the meter. Book your private transfer now to avoid queues at the airport.

Out and proud in Downtown Mendoza!
Best area to stay in Mendoza

Mendoza isn't huge, which makes it pretty easy to choose the area you'd most like to stay. For us it came down to deciding whether we'd base ourselves in downtown or in the surrounding countryside:

  • Downtown Mendoza: if you want to be in the heart of the action, close to restaurants and the nightlife then you'll want to stay in the downtown area of Mendoza city. It's easy to get around the city by foot and you can take a tour to the wineries in the surrounding countryside.
  • Countryside of Mendoza: if you're looking for a more romantic stay and really want to experience the wine country of Mendoza, then you should choose one of the gorgeous wine hotels located outside the city, in Lujan de Cuyo or further in the Uco Valley. Here you'll really be able to relax and enjoy plenty of wine tasting.
Must do in Mendoza: Wine tasting tour

Visit the finest wineries in the Luján de Cuyo area and learn about the winemaking process, taste the wines and enjoy a delicious lunch.

Find out more

01

Entre Cielos Luxury Wine Hotel & Spa

in Lujan de Cuyo

Views over the pool and private vineyard of Entre Cielos

Why we love it

  • Quirky vineyard loft on stilts
  • Luxurious hammam
  • Jacuzzi and pool with Andes views
  • Modern Argentinean cuisine

Entre Cielos is our favourite place to stay in Mendoza. It is a luxury boutique hotel that effortlessly mixes solitude and sophistication.

Set within 20 acres of Malbec vineyards, you can stay in one of their luxurious suites like we did or even in the unique and exclusive loft-on-stilts private cabin which sits right in the middle of the hotel's vineyards!

The outdoor pool features comfy lounges and a romantic bed for two, perfect for relaxing poolside and enjoying views of the snowcapped Andes mountains.

Entre Cielos is also home to Argentina's first authentic Turkish hammam. We especially loved their grape-based treatments and the decadent Cleopatra and Sultan experiences which include hammam pool time, oil massages and delicious treats.

The on-site bistro serves traditional Argentinean food with a modern twist, and of course you will need to try their exclusive wine, the Gran Marantal, either during your meal or on one of their tasting tours.

Hotel staff can organise horse-riding through the vineyards as well as other excursions nearby. This is definitely a romantic place to relax with your loved one and indulge!

Gay travel guide to Mendoza

Discover the best gay hangouts in the city, where to eat, activities to do, travel tips in our gay guide to Mendoza

Find out more

02

Villa Mansa Wine Hotel

in Lujan de Cuyo

Soaking up the sun at Villa Mansa wine hotel

Why we love it

  • Cuvée suites look like giant wine barrels!
  • Bike rental available
  • Lovely pool and garden area
  • Easy to organise local winery tours

For something a little less expensive but just as charming, we highly recommend our stay at the Villa Mansa Wine Hotel.

With only around twelve rooms/suites, this place feels very intimate and homey, and is a lovely place to relax.

Rooms are bright and airy, with colourful decor and many featuring balconies over the leafy garden. There are even Cavée suites which look like giant wine barrels and come with a private Jacuzzi.

There's a small spa, so you can still enjoy some pampering including massages, sauna and a Scottish shower. The hotel staff are happy to help you book tours of nearby vineyards, and there are two cute dogs on the property who like to get pats from guests.

STAY WITH A GAY LOCAL

Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

03

The Vines Resort and Spa

in the Uco Valley

Relax by the pool and enjoy stunning views of the Andes at the Vines

Why we love it

  • Pool-side restaurant terrace
  • ‘Floating' gym with amazing views
  • Romantic luxury villas
  • Blend your own wine!

The Vines Resort and Spa is a truly gorgeous place to relax, but there's also so much to do here!

The decor is rustic-chic; think stone walls and earthy tones with touches of luxury and, of course, breathtaking views of the Andes mountains.

We love the romantic luxury villas, some with fireplaces and terraces. You will be able to swim in the temperature-regulated outdoor pool, relax in a poolside cabana or eat on the restaurant's terrace next to the pool.

The state-of-the-art gym is in a building on stilts and seems to float above the vines. You can work out on the deck and enjoy the breathtaking views, and there's even the option for outdoor classes – sunrise yoga anyone?

Adventurous types might like to go galloping on horseback through the vineyard with authentic Argentine gauchos, fly-fishing nearby or learn the art of wine-making by blending your own wine in the winery!

04

Park Hyatt

Downtown Mendoza

The beautiful terrace at the Park Hyatt

Why we love it

  • Excellent location in the city
  • Gorgeous colonial building
  • On-site casino and spa
  • Secluded pool and Japanese garden

If you're after luxury in the heart of Mendoza city then the Park Hyatt is the place to go.

The hotel is in a beautifully restored 19th-century Spanish colonial building, which has been updated with all the mod-cons.

Rooms and suites are contemporary, elegant and spacious; with lovely wood features and rich colours throughout.

You can choose from a variety of wellness options in the Kauna Club and Spa, including spa packages specifically for men. We love that their skincare range is derived from Mendoza's wines!

Visitors always rave about the friendly and helpful staff, who are happy to help you book wine tours and activities in the area. There's a two-level casino with a cool bar, and if you travel with a doggy friend you'll be happy to know the hotel is pet-friendly.

Don't miss out on relaxing by the pool and enjoying the secluded Japanese-style garden, as well as dining in the three hotel restaurants.

05

Chill Inn Hostel

Downtown Mendoza

Chill Inn is clean, cosy and in the heart of the action!

Why we love it

  • Great budget option
  • Convenient location
  • Friendly and helpful staff
  • Breakfast included

For a more budget-conscious option we love the Chill Inn Hostel, located right in the heart of Mendoza city near the best bars and restaurants.

You'll be in walking distance of the major sights as well as amenities like supermarkets and cafes.

The Chill Inn is perfect if you want to make new friends as there's a shared kitchen as well as a fun games room and a pool with barbecue area.

The staff are friendly and ‘chill'; and on-hand to help you book winery tours or just give recommendations for the area.

You can choose from mixed or single-gender dorms as well as private rooms with shared or private bathroom. If you're looking to party and socialise in Mendoza without breaking the bank, then The Chill Inn is the place for you!

OUR FAVOURITE TRAVEL TIPS

⭐️ TRAVEL INSURANCE — We recommend you always take out travel insurance before your next vacation. What happens if you suffer from illness, injury, theft or a cancellation? With travel insurance, you can have peace of mind and not worry. We love World Nomads travel insurance and have been using it for years. Their comprehensive coverage is second to none and their online claims process is very user friendly.

⭐️ SAFETY & SECURITY — All travelers (gay or not) can sometimes encounter danger when traveling. CloseCircle is your “virtual body guard” mobile app which provides security alerts and support wherever you are in the world. They have a 24/7 emergency response team monitoring their users who will contact you immediately if the SOS swipe button is activated. Support can include anything from practical advice, to free evacuation from areas with extreme weather or security risks. You can read more about CloseCircle in our article about how to stay safe whilst traveling.

⭐️ ONLINE ANONYMITY — A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a must in many countries: it allows you to surf anonymously and maintain your privacy whilst traveling. You'll particularly need it in countries where gay dating apps are blocked by the government. We recommend ExpressVPN, a reliable and cost effective service which we used and loved during our travels.

⭐️ HOTELS or APARTMENTS — When we plan a trip, we always look for the best hotel deals. We love Booking.com because not only do they have a comprehensive listing of accommodation options, they also offer the best prices. Added bonus: they provide 24/7 support and free cancellation for most listings.

⭐️ SIGHTSEEING and ADVENTURES — When we travel somewhere, we like to seek out the best experiences, whether it is cooking with locals in Bangkok, hiking on a glacier in Patagonia, or going on a wildlife safari in Sri Lanka. Our favorite place to look is GetYourGuide because they have over 30,000 highly rated activities, a user-friendly booking process with free cancellation and a 24 hour customer support.

This article contains affiliate links. If you click on them, we may receive compensation which keeps our website alive and helps us bring you to more destinations.

The post 5 gay hotels in Mendoza, Argentina appeared first on Nomadic Boys.

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Buenos Aires is home to one of the best gay scenes of South America. It's massive, spread mainly across Palermo and other neighbourhoods like San Telmo and Recoleta. There are gay hangouts to suit everyone, whether you're into bears, twinks, tango, want to watch a drag show or just a place to chill and jiggy to a bit of Kylie and Madonna.

What constitutes a “gay bar” is a bit blurred in Buenos Aires because here they don't go out till late and most bars/cafes double up as dancing venues. Remember, this is a culture where dinner time is from 9pm, so don't even think about heading to a bar until after 11pm and to a club until around 2am!

For this list, we've also included clubs, gay milongas (tango halls), restobars and cafes – basically our favourite gay hangouts that we loved going to each time we visited Buenos Aires.

Where is the gay scene of Buenos Aires?

The main gay area of Buenos Aires is in Palermo, where the majority of the main LGBTQ hangouts can be found like Pepo Pepona, Sitges, Work, Jungle and Peuteo.

You can also find pockets of fabulousness in the affluent Recoleta neighbourhood where the Contramano bear club is, as well as the more pop/twink Glam disco.

Our personal favourite neighbourhood of Buenos Aires is San Telmo, where you can find the famous Sunday market and the excellent Pride gay cafe. San Telmo is also the traditional tango heart of the city, with some of the best milongas, including a few queer ones, which we've included in this list.

Sitges Bar in Palermo

If you're in Buenos Aires on a Wednesday don't miss out on WednesGAY at Sitges for the best drag show in the city! Not only will you get to see a hilarious drag performance but there's also karaoke, free pizza and entry is free if you arrive between 11pm and 1am.

Sitges is also a great place to come on a Saturday evening when it gets really busy. Crowd here is a mix of locals and foreigners of all ages.

Sitges is closed on Monday and Tuesday. On Wednesday it's open from 8pm to 3am. From Thursday to Sunday it's open from midnight until around 4-6am. Sitges is located at Avenida Cordoba 4119 in Palermo.

Peuteo Bar in Palermo

Peuteo is a ‘heterofriendly‘ video gay bar located in the heart of Palermo and the place to come for Ru Paul's Drag Race viewing parties.

The crowd is a mix of locals/foreigners, in their 20s, 30s and older. Most come here for a few cocktails before heading to one of the clubs. Also check out the staff: super friendly and easy on the eyes!

Peuteo is closed on Mondays and Tuesday. On all other days it's open from 9pm till around 3/4am on weekdays and until 5am on weekends. It is located at Gurruchaga 1867 in Palermo.

Work Bar in Palermo

Work is the place to come if you're into electro music. Although it's a small unassuming, industrial-looking narrow bar in the heart of Palermo, it has quickly become one of the most popular gay bars in Buenos Aires, particularly with locals.

Work is closed on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. On other days it's open from 9pm till around 5am. But be warned, although it's open from 9pm, it's doesn't get busy until after midnight. Work is located at Gurruchaga 1832 in Palermo.

One of our favourite drag shows at the Sitges gay bar
Contramano club in Recoleta

Contramano is the main bear bar of Buenos Aires and the place to come to find sexy beefy chongos – Porteño gay slang for butch manly men. We found Contramano to be super friendly and also loved the mix of music they play, which includes the best pop hits as well as Latino anthems.

The crowd tends to be more on the older side here – mainly men in their 30s/40s and older. Contramano is only open on weekends: Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights from midnight until 6am. It is located on Rodriguez Peña 1082 in Recoleta.

Glam in Recoleta

Glam is a younger crowd than Contramano – a mix of twinks, students, guys in their 20s/30s, lovers of pop music and us! From all the gay clubs of Buenos Aires, this was our favourite.

Glam is divided into two main sections, one for pop/Latino music, the other more for electro. Look out for the live Go-Go dancer shows that take place throughout the night.

Glam Disco is only open on Thursday to Sunday nights from midnight until 6.30am. It is located at Cabrera 3046 in Recoleta.

Pepo Pepona restaurant in Palermo

Pepo Pepona is the most unique restaurant we've ever been to! It's a gay owned restaurant which caters to a primarily gay crowd. Our friends brought us here when we first arrived in Buenos Aires, not telling us anything. We ordered our steak, then just as we were tucking in, the waiters transformed into strippers, quickly losing all their clothes…!

The cocktails and the food is pretty good, but let's just say that's not what you're going to remember the most from this fabulous gem…only in Buenos Aires eh?!

Pepo Pepona is closed Mondays and Tuesdays and on other days it is open for dinner and drinks from 7.30pm until 4am. We highly advise calling to reserve a table beforehand as it gets very busy. Pepo Pepona is located at José Antonio Cabrera 4014 in Palermo.

One of the “waiters” at the Pepo Pepino gay restaurant
Tango Queer at Buenos Aires Club in San Telmo

At its inception in the late 1800s, the tango was a dance between two men. Whilst its queer origins may have been lost over time, there has been a renaissance of same-sex tango over the last few decades, culminating with a queer tango festival in November.

Tango Queer is one of the best gay milongas (gay tango halls) in Buenos Aires. We came here on a Tuesday evening to try out their lessons, which then turned into free-style dancing, followed by a show. You cannot come to Buenos Aires and not do a gay tango class. It's romantic as well as an excellent way to meet friends.

Gay tango classes at Tango Queer take place every Tuesday at 8pm and are for all levels, including outright beginners, which we were when we first went! Tango Queer takes places at the Maldita Milonga at Perú 571 in San Telmo.

La Marshall Milonga in Villa Crespo

La Marshall is another excellent gay milonga in Buenos Aires worth checking out. If you miss the Tuesday class of Tango Queer, you can come to this one on a Wednesday evening.

Like Tango Queer, La Marshall follows the same format: classes from 8:30pm followed by free-style dancing from around 10pm, and then a show later on in the evening.

La Marshall Milonga is located at Yatay 961 in Villa Crespo.

Pride Cafe in San Telmo

We love hanging out at Pride Cafe. It's not only in our favourite part of Buenos Aires (in San Telmo), the food and cocktails are always a treat – especially their delicious dulce de leche chocolate brownies!

One of the highlights of Buenos Aires is the Sunday San Telmo market, which we highly recommend. Pride is right by the market, which makes it the ideal place to come for a coffee after shopping, or for Sunday brunch.

Pride is open everyday from morning until 8pm and is located at Balcarce 869 in San Telmo.

The dulce de leche brownie at Pride Cafe is legendary! 
Jungle Bar in Palermo

Jungle Bar is an exceptionally cool space that flies a little under the radar. It's decorated to look like a jungle, with plants and green lights everywhere. It also features a trendy cocktail bar on one level and a darkroom on another. The crowd is mixed with all ages.

Jungle Bar is closed on Mondays/Tuesdays. On other days it is open from 4pm until 4am (on Sundays until midnight). It is located at Avenida Honduras 4184 between Gáscon and Av. Acuña de Figueroa.

Km Zero in Recoleta

Located right by the subway station in Recoleta, KM Zero is another gay bar in Buenos Aires to come for drag shows. As a bonus, they also have Go-Go dancers and the occasional strippers.

The music ranges from electro-dance to Latin-house. It's also quite unique in that it was one of the only gay bars of Buenos Aires we found that is open every day of the week!

KM Zero is open daily from midnight until around 6am and is located at Avenida Santa Fe 2516 in Recoleta.

Amerika Club in Almagro

Amerika is the largest gay club of Buenos Aires and one of the largest in South America. After Theatron in Bogota, it was definitely the largest gay club we've been to on the continent!

Amerika is spread out over 3 floors, each with dancing areas. They have themed nights like foam parties, bear nights and more. When we went it was generally a younger crowd: guys in their 20s, but this will vary depending on the night.

Amerika takes place on weekends – Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings, from midnight until around 6/7am. It is located at Gascon 1040 in Almagro.

Stefan making new friends at Amerika gay club
Flux Bar in Retiro

If you don't quite fancy heading to a gay bar at midnight and want to go somewhere for drinks early on in the evening, we recommend Flux Bar. This is a small retro cellar bar in Retiro with a range of Happy Hour and 2 For 1 offers between 7-10pm.

Flux generally has a mixed crowd, but when we visited we found more foreigners than locals – probably because the local boys like to head out much later in the evening.

Flux is open daily from 7/8pm until around 2/3am and is located at Marcelo T. de Alvear 980 in Retiro.

Casa Brandon Culture Club in Villa Crespo

How to explain Casa Brandon? Self-dubbed as a queer cultural club, many locals in Buenos Aires come here for art exhibitions and performances from LGBTQ artists.

There's a monthly party known as BRANDONgayday where diversity is celebrated and partygoers dance to live DJs. If you're looking for something a bit different, a bit cultural, with yummy food and drinks, then you might like to try out Brandon.

You'll need to check out the website schedule or Facebook page to see what's on and when. Casa Brandon is located at Luis Maria Drago 236 in Villa Crespo.

Fiesta Puerco and Fiesta Plop!

These are some of the best weekend gay parties in Buenos Aires, especially for students, twinks and their fans. Fiesta Plop takes place on Friday evenings and Fiesta Puerco on Saturdays.

Both parties have live DJs, GoGo dancers and lots of sexy young Porteño boys. The parties take place at the Teatro Vorterix (Vorterix Theatre), which is located on the corner of Frederico Lacroze and Alvarez Thomas in Palermo.

A gay night out in Buenos Aires!
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