Gay Cities of the World: 10 Best LGBTQ+ Places to Live and Travel

Most gay friendly cities in the world best lgbtq places

If you’re LGBTQ+, then you already know that not every city is created equal. There are many factors to consider when looking at gay-friendly cities. The most important thing is to find a place where you feel safe and accepted. We looked at the legal protections, political landscape, and societal acceptance of LGBTQ people when making our rankings. When it comes to gay cities, we are talking about gay cities that are gay-friendly, safe, progressive, and open in terms of politics, protections, and societal acceptance. If you’re looking for a new place to live or travel, then check out our list of the 10 most gay-friendly cities in the world!

What Are the Most LGBTQ-Friendly City in the World? Top 10 Gay Cities

This is a tough question to answer because there are many things to consider. We break down the most gay-friendly cities in the world by laws, rates of hate crimes, and the overall LGBTQ population. Honestly, choosing the best gay city depends on what you’re looking for. Are you looking for a gay-friendly city in terms of politics and protection? Or are you looking for a gay-friendly city in terms of societal acceptance and nightlife? We’ve compiled a list of the top gay-friendly cities in the world for every kind of person.

The Safest Cities For LGBTQ People

When it comes to gay-friendly cities, safety is always a top priority. No one wants to live in or travel to a place where they don’t feel safe. We looked at the number of hate crimes against LGBTQ people in each city as well as the overall crime rate. These are the safest gay-friendly cities in terms of low crime and overall safety.

Copenhagen is the Safest City for LGBTQ People

Copenhagen most gay friendly cities in europe

Copenhagen is the safest city for LGBTQ people with a hate crime rate of 0.07 per 100,000 people and an overall crime rate of 48.74 per 100,000 people. The Danish capital is also one of the most gay-friendly cities in Europe with same-sex marriage being legal since 2012 and gay couples having the same rights as heterosexual couples. Copenhagen was also ranked as the safest city in the world overall by The Economist 2021 World Safety Index. Amsterdam comes in as the second most gay-friendly city in Europe in terms of safety.

Toronto is the 2nd Safest City in World for LGBTQ People

Toronto is the second safest city in the world for LGBTQ people with a hate crime rate of 0.09 per 100,000 people and an overall crime rate of 47.49 per 100,000 people. Canada’s largest city is also one of the most gay-friendly cities in North America, with Canada first offering legal same-sex marriage in 2005, a full 10 years before the United States. Toronto is also a very diverse city with a large LGBTQ population.

Sydney is the 3rd Safest City in World for LGBTQ People

Sydney is the third safest city in the world for LGBTQ people with a hate crime rate of 0.12 per 100,000 people and an overall crime rate of 34.41 per 100,000 people. The Australian city is also one of the most gay-friendly cities in Oceania with same-sex marriage being legal since 2017. Wellington, New Zealand comes in second as the most gay-friendly city in Oceana in terms of safety, followed by Melbourne.

Places with the Best Political Protections for LGBTQ People

Legal protections are important, but they are not the only thing to consider when looking at gay-friendly cities. Just because a city or country has laws that protect LGBTQ people does not mean that the citizens of that place accept and support their gay community. We looked at the political landscape as well as the legal protections and societal acceptance of LGBTQ people to come up with a list of the most gay-friendly cities in terms of politics and protection.

Nuuk, Greenland Has the Strongest LGBTQ Protections in the World

Nuuk, Greenland has the strongest LGBTQ protections in the world. Same-sex marriage has been legal in Greenland since 2015 and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is illegal. Greenland also has robust anti-discrimination laws against employment and housing and offers equal opportunities for adoption, and military service, and scores an impressive 98/100 in the Equaldex LGBTQ protections ranking.

Barcelona is the Most Gay-Friendly City in Europe for Politics and Protections

Most gay friendly cities in europe barcelona

Barcelona is the most gay-friendly city in Europe for politics and protections with same-sex marriage being legal since 2005, an anti-discrimination law that protects LGBTQ people from discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations. The city is even famous for having an openly bisexual mayor. The Spanish city is also very gay-friendly in terms of societal acceptance with a large LGBTQ population and many gay-friendly bars and clubs. Lisbon, Portugal comes in second as the most gay-friendly city in Europe with similar protections, followed by Berlin.

Cities With the Highest Percentange of Queer Residents

When looking at gay-friendly cities, it is important to consider the size of the LGBTQ population. A city may have strong legal protections and be very accepting of LGBTQ people, but if there are not many queer residents, it may not be the best place to live for someone who is gay or lesbian. We looked at data from Gallup World Poll to find the cities with the highest percentage of queer residents.

San Francisco is the Most Gay-Friendly City in Terms of Population

San Francisco is the most gay-friendly city in the world in terms of population percent, with an estimated 15.0% of the city’s residents identifying as LGBTQ. The city has strong legal protections for queer people with same-sex marriage being legal since 2004 and an anti-discrimination law that protects LGBTQ people in employment, housing, and public accommodations. The city also has a large gay community with many gay-friendly bars and clubs. Gallup found that 5.6% of U.S. adults identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender, with the majority of them saying they are bisexual.

New York City Has the Second Highest Self-Reported LGBTQ Population Percent in the World

New York City comes in second as the most gay-friendly city on the continent with an estimated 12.0% of the population identifying as gay or lesbian. The city has strong legal protections for LGBTQ people with same-sex marriage being legal since 2011 and an anti-discrimination law that protects LGBTQ people in employment, housing, and public accommodations. The city also has a large gay community with many gay-friendly bars, clubs, and a bustling social scene.

Best Gay Cities in the World for Partying and Nightlife

Not all gay-friendly cities are created equal when it comes to nightlife and partying. We looked at the number of gay bars and clubs as well as the general party scene to come up with a list of the best gay cities in the world for nightlife.

Berlin is the Best Gay City in the World for Nightlife

Berlin is the best gay city in the world for nightlife with over 100 gay bars and clubs. The city has a large gay community and a thriving party scene with a rich history. Berlin is also home to the annual Berlin Pride Parade, which is one of the largest Pride parades in the world, attracting over half a million people each year.

New York City is a Close Second for Best Gay Nightlife

New York City is a close second for best gay nightlife with over 80 gay bars and clubs. The city has a large gay community and a thriving party scene. New York City is also home to the annual NYC Pride Parade, which is one of the largest Pride parades in the world, attracting over two million people each year. RIghtly nick-named “The City that Never Sleeps”, New york city is world-renowned as a party capital and true LGBTQ Meca.

The Most Gay-Friendly Cities in the World by Continent

It is difficult to pin down just one city, especially when considering all factors. We break down the most gay-friendly cities in the world by continent.

North American Gay Friendly Cities

  1. San Francisco, USA
  2. New York City, USA
  3. Toronto, Canada
  4. Montreal, Canada

San Franciso is the overall winner of the best gay city in North America. The city’s long history of LGBTQ activism and culture makes it a top destination to live and travel.

South American Gay Freindly Cities

  1. Buenos Aires, Argentina
  2. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  3. Santiago, Chile

Argentina was one of the first places in South America to legalize same-sex marriage and remains one of the most open and progressive countries in the region.

European Gay Friendly Cities

  1. Berlin, Germany
  2. Barcelona, Spain
  3. Paris, France
  4. London, England

Berlin is the most gay-friendly city in Europe with the perfect mix of history, culture, and LGBTQ protections. When looking at all metrics combined, Berlin easily comes out on top.

Asian LGBTQ Friendly Cities

  1. Taipei, Taiwan
  2. Bangkok, Thailand
  3. Tokyo, Japan

Taipei, Taiwan is easily the most gay-friendly city in Asia. Taiwan remains the first and only country in Asia to have marriage equality for same-sex couples, with one of the lowest crime rates in the world. Overall, Taipei is a fun, safe, and accepting city for LGBTQ people.

African Gay Freindly Cities

  1. Cape Town, South Africa
  2. Johannesburg, South Africa

South Africa was the first and only country in Africa to legalize Same-sex marriage back in 2006. It remains one of the few bastions of LGBTQ acceptance on the continent.

Oceania Gayest Cities

  1. Sydney, Australia
  2. Melbourne, Australia
  3. Auckland, New Zealand

Sydney, Australia is the most gay-friendly city in Oceania. The city has a large gay community and many gay-friendly bars, clubs, and restaurants. Sydney is also home to the annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade, which is one of the largest Pride parades in the world making it a comfortable first.

Do you have a favorite gay-friendly city? Let us know in the comments below! And for more LGBTQ+ travel content, be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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