The Gay Pride Day is celebrated on different days in each place, but nobody should forget that it all started on the 28th of June 1969 when a group of gay, lesbian and transgender in New York City faced the atmosphere of intolerance since people were persecuted and criminalized for their sexuality. Forty years later there are still over 80 countries where you can go to jail or even be executed for it, but there are many others, mostly in Europe except from some places in America, Africa, Asia or Oceania, where it has been achieved a regime of tolerance, which is unthinkable in those days. In 2012 there are so many gay-friendly destinations, zones or neighborhoods that it is quite difficult to choose the best places in Europe.
Schoneberg, Berlin, Germany
This district of Berlin has the largest number of gay-friendly, particularly in Motzstrabe and Maabenstrabe that meet in the underground of Nollendorfplatz. During the month of June, a festival takes place before the Gay Pride Parade which is performed all over the world. The ability for the convocation of this area attracts over half a million people.
Mitte, Berlin, Germany
The center of the capital of Germany is home to many monuments, a bustling commercial center, cultural area and one of the key points regarding the gay-friendly life. In fact, the terrace of one of the skyscrapers of Alexanderplatz hosts a gay Sunday session with impressive views over the town.
Kreuzberg, Berlin, Germany
Alongside the previous two places that were mentioned above, Kreuzberg forms the triad of the gay neighborhoods of Berlin. It is known for hosting a large Turkish immigrant community, but also in Mehringdamm Avenue you can find some gay-friendly locals.
This is the city with the highest number of the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) population in Germany. In the city it is obvious the cultural expressionism and the leisure, which is approximately 100,000 homosexual citizens living in the city. The cultural source is extensive and receives public support.
L’Eixample (or gayxample), Barcelona, Spain
This district exists since 1860, it was created after the demolition of the medieval ramparts. Since the late twentieth century this district became a place full of commercial and entertainment places that are quite focused on the homosexual group. A disadvantage is the distances between these locations which is very long, however, the public transport services works very well even at night.
Sitges, Barcelona, Spain
This maritime town is located in the midway between Tarragona and Barcelona, the cities which share its visitors in the place of Sitges. It is known to be the center of the gay tourist for a while and it has a small number of pubs and a medium size of nightclubs.
Maspalomas – Playa del Ingles, Gran Canaria, Spain
It is located halfway between both beaches and twenty minutes walking along the shore from the lighthouse of Maspalomas, or crossing the dunes from the end of the Tirajana Avenue, a kiosk is topped by a rainbow flag which can be seen from far away. Gran Canaria is the largest gay resort in the world, so that it gathers dozens of LGBT tourists during all seasons of the year. In the evening many of them come close to the Nature Reserve attracted by the “cruising” area.
CC Yumbo, Gran Canaria, Spain
In the “United States Avenue”, near the intersection with the Tirajana Avenue, it is placed this shopping center which is dedicated to the LGBT public. It has dozens of cafes, restaurants, shops, pubs and nightclubs. The number of the customers is increasingly Spanish since in the past they were mostly German, British and Italian; in this center they have a wide range of possibilities to choose from but there is a lack of local for lesbians as usual.
Torremolinos, Malaga, Spain
In this seaside town was founded a place called Toni’s bar, the first gay bar in Spain. Nowadays, the place of Nogalera is still gathering many LGBT public, especially from the nearby capital of Malaga. The atmosphere is lively but the town and the facilities are a little outdated.
Chueca, Madrid, Spain
Its architecture and lively nightlife have made this neighborhood an example of cohabitation in an unparalleled world. In fact, the LGBT Gay Pride of Chueca is the most important festival in Europe and it has won the prize of the best gay global event awarded by Trip Out Travel the last two years.
Le Marais, Paris, France
Just beside the Hotel de Ville is located this district which has an obvious gay presence since the 80s’. It is very oriented to the commercial activity, therefore it has many cafes and shops and some bars and discos for this gay community.
Saint-Pierre, Bordeaux, France
It has several gay-friendly hotels as well as various meeting points. Some of its best-known clubs are Le Fiacre, Le 4 Sans, The Events and The Suite.
Canal Street in Manchester, UK
It has gained fame for being the setting where was filmed the TV series ‘Queer As Folk’. Some of the most famous pubs in the area are : Manto, Velvet, Vanilla, Spirit and New Union.
Soho, London, UK
Soho is at the same time the “Chinatown” of the city and one of the gay neighborhoods. In Old Compton Street there are many businesses which are geared towards to this public and you can pick up free magazines which list the gay-friendly parties that take place every day.
Vauxhall, London, UK
The other gay district of London is on the opposite bank of the Thames, but it is connected with the previous one by night buses. You can find here many great gay-friendly discos, pubs and festivals dedicated to the unusual satisfaction of the sexual pleasure.
Sodermalm, Stockholm, Sweden
It is an island that forms the southern part of the center of the capital of Sweden. It is divided into two municipalities: Katarina-Sofia and Maria-Gamla Stan. It has become one of the most popular gay cities, due to their areas of culture, fashion, design, music, entertainment, quality cuisine and relaxing atmosphere.
Niederdorf, Zurich, Switzerland
As far as hotels are concerned it has a wide choice of gay friendly places, as well as many bars, clubs and meeting places.
Mykonos island in Greece
This island is focused on activities for the gay community. It has magnificent landscapes and fine sandy beaches. Some of its most famous beaches are the Ornos, Platis Gialos and Psarou. At night, no one sleeps because of their great variety of bars and clubs meant for this audience.
By Paula P.M.G.B
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