LGBTQ+ friendly destinations in Europe you should consider visiting

Looking to broaden your travel horizons? Here are our 15 top tips for queer-friendly holiday hotspots.

A plaid suitcase with a magnifying glass, map and passport on it.

Exploring the world, seeing new places or just getting away from it all is always on everyone’s to-do list – including the LGBTQ+ community. As an LGBTQ+ person, it wouldn’t come as a surprise that one must be cautious in regards to where they’re travelling to. As a result, we at GCN put together a list of some destinations in Europe that are known to be LGBTQ+ friendly.

So, if you’re planning a romantic getaway, a solo exploring trip or you’re trying to get some plans to take a break from the group chat, have a look at some of the suggested destinations below.

Berlin, Germany


Germany’s capital city has some of its very own LGBTQ+ neighbourhoods. In Schöneberg, Mitte and Kreuzberg, you can find lots of queer businesses, bars and safe spaces to mingle within the community.

Every June, during Pride month, Berlin has its very own Pride parade so it’s for sure that you can openly express yourself in this city. If it’s LGBTQ+ nightlife you seek, visit late-night cafe-bar Melitta Sundström or Berlin’s oldest queer club, SchwuZ.

Looking for a bit of LGBTQ+ German history? Visit the memorials dedicated to LGBTQ+ people persecuted during the war like the cuboid monument on Ebertstraße or the plaque at Nollendorfplatz U-Bahn Station.

London, UK


One of the LGBTQ+ capitals of the world, London will always make a listicle like this as it was once one of the few places LGBTQ+ people gravitated towards in order to live more openly as queer people. London’s very vibrant and diverse scene has something for everyone.

The two main LGBTQ+ districts would be the very central Soho and just south of the Thames, Vauxhall. In these districts and also in and around them, you’ll find plenty of LGBTQ+ bars, clubs, events and queer-friendly hotels. London has its own annual Pride parade,every July and on top of its already huge turnout, it is continuously growing each year.

For some UK LGBTQ+ history, why not head to Highbury Fields and see the location of the first gay rights protest in London? Visit the bookshop Gays the Word to see the meeting point for one of the earliest and most influential UK LGBTQ+ rights groups.

Head to Admiral Duncan, one of the UK’s first gay bars for a drink or to watch one of their cabaret shows. As there are plenty of LGBTQ+ things to do in London, it’s a no-brainer that the city is a must for a safe LGBTQ+ trip.

Amsterdam, The Netherlands


The Netherlands is notable for being the first country to legalise same-sex marriage in 2001. So, with that, it’s fair to say the country is quite supportive towards queer people. Amsterdam is home to many queer owned businesses and has a variety of LGBTQ+ bars, clubs and nights to go to. The city holds its annual Pride week with the ‘Canal Parade’ on its last day, every June.

For some queer Deutch history, visit ‘Homomonument’, a memorial in the capital commemorating the gays and lesbians that were persecuted because of their sexual orientation during World War 2.

Rotterdam, The Netherlands


Rotterdam, a lesser known city destination than Amsterdam, boasts a very vibrant LGBTQ+ scene. If you plan on heading to Rotterdam, check out some of the city’s LGBTQ+ bars and clubs including, Tech Noir, Now & Wow and Worm.

Black and Hispanic ballroom culture is celebrated with drag queens and kings performing in regular events across the city. Rotterdam also has its annual Pride celebrations in June.

Brighton, UK


Brighton, known for its beautiful beaches, is also known for its numerous queer-owned businesses centred around St James’ Street. The area leads up to the “gaybourhood” of Kemptown, an area of Brighton with a relaxed, village vibe.

Popular bars in Brighton include Centre Stage, Charles Street Tap, Broadway, Affinity and The Queen’s Arms, where you can see multiple drag shows or simply have a drink with your community. Fancy going to Brighton Pride? The festival takes place annually in August and attracts around 160,000 people to the parade and party in Preston Park.

Manchester, UK


Home to one of the UK’s biggest pride events, Manchester Pride, you will find plenty of things to do, see and visit in Manchester’s famous Gay Village. The Village is Manchester’s thriving LGBTQ+ scene, full of restaurants, bars, clubs and green spaces – all located alongside the Rochdale Canal.

Manchester’s Gay Village is a queer haven full of life, partying and social history – which makes it living proof of Manchester being one of the leading LGBTQ+ friendly destinations to head to. Heading to big events like Pride in August, Sparkle (the national transgender celebration weekend) in July, or the Great British Bear Bash in May? Expect the city to be busy as the events attract a lot of LGBTQ+ people domestically and from abroad.

Glasgow, UK


If the destination you’re looking to visit is Scotland, Glasgow has an LGBTQ+ district dubbed as one of the most stylish areas of the city – filled with plenty of cafés, shops and artsy spaces. The district in question is Merchant City, and you’ll find most of Glasgow’s LGBTQ+ bars and clubs here too.

Go clubbing at Polo Lounge and AXM or grab drinks at Katie’s Bar and the Riding Rooms. If you’re into film, visit during the Scottish Queer International Film Festival (SQIFF), held annually, in September – where SQIFF aids in building community through queer film.

Glasgow has its very own Pride, every July, called, ‘Mardi Gla’. For some Glasgow book culture, visit the pioneering LGBTQ+ bookstore, Category Is Books, on the southside.

Madrid, Spain


Madrid is a fun, friendly and diverse city when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community, making it one of the destinations you should consider visiting. Madrid’s most popular nightlife scene with the LGBTQ+ community is Chueca and is so diverse with bars, clubs and scenes catered for everyone and anyone looking to have fun and party.

Chueca owes its thriving nightlife the LGBTQ+ community as they brought life to the streets and squares that were once forgotten about, ultimately making it a big LGBTQ+ hotspot in present day Madrid. The Spanish capital’s week-long Pride festival takes place at the end of June and start of July, annually.

For some Spanish queer culture, take a stroll down Paseo Del Arte. This one-kilometre stretch is home to Prado, the Thyssen-Bornemisza and the Reina Sofía – three of the best museums in the world and contain works rooted in the queer imagination.

Barcelona, Spain


Barcelona has become a top destination for the LGBTQ+ community. The city is an open-minded and cosmopolitan metropolis offering visitors a large variety of diverse attractions. The centre of the LGBTQ+ district is in Eixample and is locally referred to as Gaixample. While it doesn’t cater solely to the LGBTQ+ community, there is a good variety of queer friendly bars, shops and restaurants.

Take a walk through this district, and you’ll see rainbow flags hanging high from balconies and in shop and bar windows. In addition to the summer sun and sea, you’ll have Barcelona Pride in July to enjoy in the Mediterranean’s LGBTQ+ capital. The city also holds two queer film festivals between July and October each year.

Copenhagen, Denmark


As Denmark is a very tolerant and open-minded country, Copenhagen is notable for being a very LGBTQ+ friendly spot and one of the best destinations in Europe for queer travellers.

Copenhagen is home to Centralhjørnet, one of Europe’s oldest LGBTQ+ bars. Opening in 1917, it became a gay bar in the 1950s. Copenhagen Pride takes place each year in August. For some queer Copenhagener culture, visit Warehouse9, a queer art gallery and performance space in the Brown section of the Meatpacking District.

Alternatively, you can visit Bøssehuset, a cultural meeting place for queer people used for cultural projects, theatre and music performances, exhibitions, speaker events and parties.

Paris, France


In the city of love, you’ll find LGBTQ+ bars and clubs in Le Marais, the main LGBTQ+ district in France’s capital. You’ll find a good mix of community spaces or clubs in Le Marais. Montmartre and Les Halles are nearby neighbourhoods that also have queer bars and clubs.

Paris is very LGBTQ+ friendly and Le Marais, naturally, is the epicentre of Paris’ Pride celebrations in June. LGBTQ+ focused tours are offered by a group called The Gay Locals – who can take you on day or night tours to historical and modern queer hotspots, and tell you stories about the community.

Soak up some LGBTQ+ history by making a visit to the famous Père Lachaise Cemetery, the resting place of several renowned LGBTQ+ figures like Oscar Wilde, Marcel Proust and Gertrude Stein.

Porto, Portugal


Porto is a quaint and picturesque town but is considered to be very LGBTQ+ friendly, as is Portugal overall. The town has several LGBTQ+ clubs, bars and cafés for your leisure. Pride Bar Nightclub is one of Porto’s most popular queer nightclubs, Fabrik is one of the town’s popular queer bars and Pride Café is the most popular queer place to get a coffee.

Porto Pride takes place at the beginning of July each year. Discover some queer history in Porto by taking a walking tour through the town with LGBTour Porto.



Along with beautiful beaches and a rich history. Malta is one of the world’s very forward-thinking countries when it comes to LGBTQ+ rights. The Mediterranean country is one of five countries to make queer rights equal at a constitutional level. Pride has become so popular in the very scenic capital Valletta that the city hosted Euro Pride in September 2023.

Full of LGBTQ+ parties and club nights, there are plenty of things on the list for queer tourists to do when in Malta. Michelangelo is Malta’s main LGBTQ+ bar and is located in St Julian’s, outside Valletta and Sliema. While there aren’t many bars and clubs that are specifically LGBTQ+ everywhere is very inclusive and ironically, you’ll find a lot of queer-friendly bars on Strait Street.

Mykonos, Greece


If you’re looking for a sunny queer getaway, the Greek island of Mykonos is nothing short of a queer paradise. The international LGBTQ+ community started pouring into the island in the late 1970s to get away from the world’s negative views on homosexuality. Since then, the island began to adapt itself, with most hotels now being known to be LGBTQ+ friendly.

Despite Greece being a traditionally conservative country, decades of LGBTQ+ tourism has resulted in Mykonos islanders becoming more open-minded with one of their biggest tourist group’s lifestyle. Elia Beach, Super Paradise Beach and Paraga Beach are all very popular beaches that attract a lot of LGBTQ+ crowds.

Mykonos Town is where you can find many of the island’s queer bars and clubs to party the night away in – specifically in the area called Chora. Founded in 2009, Xlsior is an LGBTQ+ dance festival held every August where over 30,000 LGBTQ+ people arrive on the island destination to enjoy international DJs and some major artists on the queer circuit scene.

Dublin, Ireland


Our very own Dublin boasts a vibrant LGBTQ+ community with several queer spaces for the whole community to frequent. With its longest running bar, The George at the centre of a very mainstream scene and the Spar beside it being dubbed as ‘Gay Spar’, it’s safe to say that Dublin is a city where being openly LGBTQ+ is possible.

Other queer spaces like Pantibar, Street 66, All My Friends and Mother offer a variety of nightlife in the scene. Dublin is home to Ireland’s biggest Pride celebrations, held annually, in June. With a huge parade by Dublin Pride and many events including the Mother Block Party – Dublin has a lot to offer for anyone LGBTQ+. 

So, there you have it! A little insight into 15 destinations in Europe that are very LGBTQ+ friendly for when you’re planning your next trip away.

While these destinations may be LGBTQ+ friendly, always stay vigilant when travelling abroad as homophobia and transphobia both still exist regardless.

If you’re looking for more information on LGBTQ+ friendly destinations, simply type the name of the city followed by LGBTQ+ into your search engine for more information from travel guide websites specific to their regions.

Safe travels!

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