Gay-friendly destinations in Asia make this fabulous region of the world up and coming in the realm of travel. In spite of often-rocky homophobic histories, many Asian countries are opening up to the LGBT community- and thus the gay travel community! Check out our top picks in gay-friendly Asian travel destinations.
Shanghai, China’s most dynamic and cosmopolitan city, is exactly what you’d expect it to be, the country’s most open metropolis for LGBT nightlife and lifestyle. No matter where you go in China, every young gay person you meet will speak of wanting to move to the city where China celebrated its first gay pride in 2009. The nightlife is unmatched, with several exceptional gay venues and a generally mixed scene at non-gay bars and clubs. Opt for a cozy beer garden or jazz lounge where the ambience screams New York or London. Welcome to Shanghai - The Capital of Gaysia.
Considered one of Asia’s top destinations and the gateway to the entire Southeast Asia region, Bangkok has emerged as one of the world’s most famous holiday destinations. Both a jumping off point for the region’s beaches and a deserving destination all its own, Bangkok offers some of the best restaurants, entertainment, and nightlife in Asia and arguably, the world. Gay harassment is virtually unheard of, and Bangkok is often referred to as the gay capital of Asia. Whatever your scene, Bangkok has it!
Although there is no specific gay scene in Sri Lanka, it isn’t difficult to meet other gay and gay friendly locals and travelers. The beauty here extends far beyond just the scenery! Sri Lanka has the reputation of being very abundant with mingling men. There are also various gay friendly places to stay in Colombo especially so whether you are at the bars or beaches keep your eyes peeled for some hot stuff!
Koh Hood, Thailand
Koh Hood, like the rest of Thailand, does have a gay culture, but much of it has been created by Westerners. As a visitor, looking for nightlife, for gay sex, or for gay friends, this is largely the culture you'll most readily find no matter where you are in this beautiful city. In addition to the friendly locals, be sure to get your fill of the natural beauty and excellent go-go bar nightlife all year round!
Mumbai is one of India’s richest and most popular cities. It is a cosmopolitan metropolis that serves as India’s commercial capital. Because of its rich diversity, Mumbai has a thriving LGBT scene that is supported both socially and politically. Voodoo, The Birdcage, and Salvation Star are all sites of excellent gay parties and dance celebrations. The Kashish Mumbai International Queer Film Festival is a highlight event that features films from around the world. No matter what time of year, Mumbai is a great place to visit!
Hong Kong features the world’s most impressive skyline and you know you’ve officially arrived in the gateway to Asia, where east meets west in a brilliant show of designer brands, burger joints, hawkers and neon signs.As seemingly expected, the gay scene evolves around the western restaurant and bar districts of Soho (short for “south of Hollywood road”) and Lan Kwai Fong on Hong Kong Island. While there are very few exclusively gay bars and clubs, many have weekly gay happy hours and the scene remains open and mixed every night.
Nepal is definitely up and coming gay friendly destination with plenty to do and see regardless of the time of year! Despite its rocky past with homophobia, Nepal’s tourism board has promotions in the works geared toward the LGBT community. This beautiful country is planning its first Asian Symposium on Gay and Lesbian Tourism and should begin to thrive as an Asian gay friendly destination. The natural beauty and culture here is not to be missed so this progress could not come soon enough!
Taipei - the capital city of Taiwan - serves as both the nation’s financial and governmental center. The gay scene is Taipei has exploded over the past ten years, growing from only a smattering of gay bars and clubs to having its very own “gayborhood” in Ximen, located near the heritage Red House entertainment complex.From top-notch museums to magnificent temples and memorials, Taipei is a city where old meets new, ancient intersects with modern, and eastern is influenced by the west.
Delhi is one of the largest metropolitan cities by area and population in India, which makes for an incredibly rich visit. Delhi has an emerging LGBT community really offers locals and tourists a taste of colorful diversity. This is more prominent than ever as homosexuality emerges after years of domination by religion and imperialism. Delhi has a diverse population of residents and visitors, so it will definitely satisfy your cravings for culture!
Neon lights and massive skyscrapers meet the ancient, mystic charm of Asia in Tokyo. This city is in one of the most populated metropolitan areas in the world and is quickly becoming a top LGBT tourist destination. For great gay-friendly nightlife, check out the areas of Shinjuku and Ni-Chome. If you’ve never explored Asia or Japan, Tokyo is the perfect place to start. A beautiful, cosmopolitan jewel in the Pacific that’s the ideal setting for a memorable holiday.
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