These days, there are more gay travel opportunities than ever before, from adrenaline-fueled LBGT holiday destinations to relaxing gay cruises. As inclusivity continues to flourish around the world, sometimes the hardest part of planning the ultimate gay vacation is choosing from a wide array of breathtaking options.
We’ve compiled a collection of some of our personal favorites to help you narrow down which adventure to indulge in next. Nourish your mind, body, and spirit as you follow your bliss to some of the world’s most extraordinary destinations.
Embark on a Colorful Gay Tour to India’s Holi Festival
The streets come alive in a rainbow of fairytale mist as celebrants douse each other with water and brightly colored powder. Laughter and ancient music fill the air as caste, religion, and political considerations melt into a sea of unbridled unity.
There’s no better place than India to experience Holi, which many consider among the most visually stunning annual festivals in the world.
Some claim that the Holi Festival dates back to the playful antics of a love-sick god. Others say it stems from age-old triumphs over demons, ogres, or vengeful kings. All will insist with a smile that you join them in celebrating the arrival of spring during India’s spectacular “festival of colors.”
Look no further for an excellent home base than Narain Niwas Palace, one of the best luxury heritage hotels in Northern India. Not only will you enjoy a front row seat to the local Holi festivities, but also a central location in Jaipur, the famed Pink City of India.
Customize your own personal luxury gay tour as you branch out to experience the many other treasures that India has to offer. Journey to Agra to witness the timeless romance of the Taj Mahal or head to India’s spiritual capital of Varanasi to soak up the sights and sounds of the oldest known city in the world.
Watch the colors sparkle along the Ganges from a private boat or experience the splendor of the White Palaces of Udaipur. From spice-perfumed bazaars to ancient streets, India is the perfect setting for your next LGBT vacation.
Experience Turkish LGBT Travel by Hot Air Balloon
Over three million years ago, a series of volcanic eruptions roared throughout what ancient Persians would one day call “the land of beautiful horses.” The earth shook in fury as a typhoon of molten lava spiraled across the surrounding landscape.
As the wind and time stepped in to sing the angry mountains back to silence, they began to sculpt the carnage into one of the most stunning natural landscapes the world has ever known. Over the course of countless lifetimes, Cappadocia, Turkey was transformed into a surrealist wonderland of “cotton castles” and “fairy chimneys.”
Let your spirit soar on an LGBT holiday to the clouds as you drift among a colorful flock of hot air balloons that dot the horizon. Explore a Byzantine cave cathedral at the Goreme Open-Air Museum or enjoy the sunset amid the panoramic views of Uchisar Castle.
Evenings of luxury await at Cappadocia’s Argos Hotel. There you’ll find an array of fascinating accommodations, each chiseled from the surrounding landscape with all the care of a Renaissance sculptor. Relax in your private in-suite pool or sip fine Cappadocian wine as you take in the enchanting view from your jacuzzi terrace.
Whether you enjoy one of the many local tours offered by the best gay travel companies or set out on your own, Cappadocia is among the most romantic gay vacation destinations on the planet.
Sail the Greek Islands On the Ultimate Gay Yacht Cruise
A glimmer of light teases the approach of a whitewashed shore. Hints of distant music fill the Aegean air as your destination slowly starts to materialize along the horizon. A sense of excitement washes over you and your fellow travelers, as you wonder what adventures the next phase of your journey will bring.
Journey into a land of myth and legend as you set sail on one of the many gay cruises that sweep the waters of the Greek Islands. Put Odysseus to shame with a trip to an onboard spa, underwater cocktail lounge, or first-class restaurant aboard one of the elegant vessels of Ponat.
Watch the sunset over the blue-domed churches of Santorini’s elegant whitewashed skyline or explore the prehistoric city of Akrotiri, which hides beyond the island’s shore. Visit the filming locations of Mamma Mia! on the island of Skópelos or roam the sacred island of Delos which is draped in legends from the golden age of the gods.
Endless adventures await on a gay cruise through the ancient waters where sirens were once said to sing.
Spend the Night Overlooking Machu Picchu
There’s something in the air that doesn’t quite fit into words. It flashes in the eyes of an old Andean Shaman, as his wrinkled hands fish a flute from the folds of his bright, fringed cloak. The air becomes electric as the instrument transforms his breath into a song, at once mysterious and holy.
Experience the magic of a lost civilization on a gay vacation to Machu Picchu, an ancient Incan kingdom hidden deep within the jungles of Peru. Retreat to the comforts of the Sanctuary Lodge Hotel as the evening sun gives way to the glowing eyes of the jungle. As the only hotel located at the entrance of the famed lost city, a short 10-minute walk awaits to serve as an early morning portal to another place and time entirely.
After you’ve explored the breath-taking architecture of the citadel itself, consider a scenic hike up Waynu Picchu, to the Temple of the Moon.
Continue your journey through the sacred valleys of Peru as you board the Hiram Bingham, a luxury train car decked in 1920s-style splendor. Relish a gourmet Peruvian meal among rich redwood paneling, crowned with plush parlor cushions and sparkling bronze.
A few hours of dazzling scenery later, you’ll arrive at the ancient Incan capital of Cusco, where the Temple of the Sun stands amid a beautiful array of Spanish colonial art and architecture. Whether you embark on a gay group tour or alongside your favorite adventurer, Machu Picchu offers all the elements of gay travel at its finest.
Pompeii: The Original Gay Travel Destination
The scene before you played out over 2,000 years ago yet, through a twist of fate, remains forever locked in time. In 79 A.D., the eruption of Mount Vesuvius transformed one of the most opulent cities in ancient Rome into a time capsule that would lie buried for nearly two millennia.
When archeologists rediscovered the ruins of Pompeii in the 18th century, they were amazed to find that the tragedy had left much of the city immaculately preserved. Even the final moments of the volcano’s victims were captured in startling detail by the lava that became their collective burial shroud.
As you wander among the city’s temples, bathhouses, and homes, it won’t take long to discover why Pompeii is a favorite destination for gay group travel. As it turns out, the city’s inhabitants were far from shy when it came to erotic art. Today, their incredible paintings, sculptures, and frescos bear evidence of a civilization where LBGT sexuality clearly flourished.
While in Rome, be sure to check out the famed limoncello liqueur of Sorrento, a charming seaside town nestled along the Bay of Naples. Or journey into the heart of Rome itself, home to everything from the Colosseum to the Sistine Chapel.
Sail the otherworldly waters of the Blue Grotto or take in the sights of the ancient port at Agropoli. Home to picturesque villages such as Amalfi, Capri, Ponza, and more, a gay vacation to Southern Italy is like a trip to paradise – but with far better wine.
Go Gorilla Trekking on an Eco-Conscious Gay Group Tour of Rwanda
Leave the world behind as you ascend into a cloud-streaked realm of gentle giants. Revived from a night of rest at the luxurious, eco-sensitive, Bisate Lodge, you join your fellow adventurers for a once-in-a-lifetime gay tour into Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park.
A friendly team of expert guides leads you through the unspoiled mountains, the sounds of the rainforest playing out from the surrounding trees. Suddenly, a hush falls over your group as you find yourself face to face with a pair of deep brown eyes.
The foliage creaks beneath the massive weight of one of the last remaining mountain gorillas on earth. The rustle of leaves reveals more curious faces until the entire family has arrived to greet your crew. From the antics of young gorillas playing in the mountain sun to the awe-inspiring power of a rippling silverback, Gorilla Trekking through Rwanda is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Gay travel tours through Africa offer an extraordinary gateway to some of the most mesmerizing wildlife, landscapes, and cultures on the planet. Discover Nairobi from the 5-star accommodations of Hemingway House. Visit the Karen Blixen Museum where you’ll enter the world of the celebrated author of Out of Africa. Round out your day by getting to know the world’s tallest species at the renowned Giraffe Centre sanctuary.
Suspended somewhere between the clouds and the unspeakable beauty of the Masai Mara triangle, you’ll find the enchanting Angama Mara Safari Lodge. Experience the timeless chants of Maasai warriors at sunset, take a custom safari drive, or drift over a land of natural wonder in a hot air balloon. No matter what your passion, LGBT travel through the heart of Africa offers an experience you’ll carry in your heart for a lifetime.
Sleep in a Luxury Tent Beneath the Sahara Desert Stars
Your camel effortlessly sashays among the rolling dunes, each step carrying you closer to the luxurious tents that await on the horizon. The smells of mint tea and Moroccan spices fill the air as you’re ushered into the ultimate LGBT holiday destination.
Watch the sunset give way to the stars of the Sahara sky as you enjoy a traditional Berber feast by candlelight at Morocco’s Merzouga Luxury Camp. Unwind with an evening of traditional entertainment before heading to your private tent, where you’ll enjoy amenities that put most 5-star hotels to shame.
From the majesty of Casablanca’s Mosque of Hassan II to the Arabian splendor of the Fez El Bali, Morocco is a land cloaked in wonder. Experience the magic with a gay Morocco tour or customize your own adventure with an endless array of museums and landmarks.
Walk the palace halls of former Moroccan Sultans at Tangier’s Dar el Makhzen or explore the azure streets of Chefchaouen, the blue pearl of Morocco. Ancient Roman ruins await at Volubilis, while the imperial city of Meknes is a rare gem of lavish architecture.
Whether you spend your days relishing the best cuisine Morocco has to offer, exploring glittering palaces, or taking in the local culture of a bustling bazaar, gay travel through Morocco is a truly breathtaking adventure.
Sail into Amsterdam Pride on an Epic Gay Cruise
While the joy is in the journey, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have a spectacular destination at the end of the line. Consider taking a journey to Amsterdam Pride by way of a lavish LGBT cruise down the Rhine River with Avalon Waterways. The company offers a selection of luxurious gay cruises on ships featuring open-air balconies, gourmet restaurants, and heavenly spas.
Book a panorama suite to enjoy full-wall views of fairytale scenery, complete with plenty of adventure waiting at every stop. Immerse yourself in culture with a visit to Switzerland’s Kunstmuseum, the first public art museum in the world.
Meander through the Medieval cobblestone streets and castles of Breisach, Germany as you sip local schnapps in the land of the Black Forest. Marvel at the Gothic splendor of France’s Strasbourg Cathedral with its Medieval stained-glass windows, intricate carvings, and astronomical clock.
The true beauty of gay cruises lies in the boundless freedom to customize your own journey. Whether you prefer to spend the day wine tasting at a local vineyard or biking through the castle-dotted countryside, each day will be your own.
Upon arrival in Amsterdam, you’ll enjoy one of the most spectacular gay events in the world. From Amsterdam Pride’s famous canal parade to a constant stream of parties and festivals, a gay cruise to Amsterdam pride is the king of all LGBT travel journies.
No matter which journey you choose, we wish you all the best as you set out to explore the transformative experience of gay travel.