Mexico is an incredibly popular gay travel destination and it’s easy to see why.
Along the coast you can find the most spectacular turquoise waters and powdery soft white sand beaches. Inland you can explore Mexico’s diverse history from Mexico City through to iconic monuments like Chichen Itza before diving into one of Mexico’s many underground pools (cenotes) to cool down.
We first visited in 2015 and to date have travelled to Cancun, Playa Del Carmen, Tulum and Cozumel. We fully intend on seeing more because our experiences to date have been amazing!
Like all the destinations we travel to, we want to explore what gay Mexico has to offer and how safe it is for gay travellers. In short, we have not had any problems at all and if you are planning on visiting the tourist hot spots, you should feel welcome as a gay traveller.
To dig a little deeper, we have put together a short guide on gay Mexico to look into gay rights, where the top gay destinations are, what gay events Mexico has to offer as well as a short interview with Ricardo, a gay guy from Mexico.
Let’s get started.
Gay rights in Mexico are good compared to many places around the world:
- Same sex intercourse: Legal
- Gender identity: Sex changes are legal
- Discrimination protections: since 2003
- Marriage: Yes (varies state by state)
- Adoption: Yes
- Military: this is a grey area. No policies in place but there are reports of ‘out’ military personel being harassed.
Mexico has had a mixed history when it comes to LGBT rights with some opposition throughout the years, however they are in a very good position now overall.
Same sex marriage was first legalised in Mexico City in 2010. For the rest of the states in Mexico it is has been mixed with some suspension, some only offering civil unions and some refusing despite orders from the Supreme Court.
The journey of same-sex marriage in Mexico looks complicated, but the dominating factor if you look at the timeline is that year on year more and more states legalise same-sex marriage.
Public opinion as a whole has improved over the years and like many countries, the younger generations are the ones who are more accepting.
For more detail take a look here
Is Mexico Gay Friendly?
Mexico is a huge country and there are always going to be differences between states.
If you are looking to travel to Mexico and plan to head to the popular touristy destinations (listed below) then it is fairly safe to say that yes, these destinations in Mexico are gay friendly.
In fact, some of these destinations are very popular gay travel destinations. In 2019 the National Association of Commerce and Tourism LGBT of Mexico concluded that LGBT-related tourism in Mexico has been growing steadily, up to 8% each year.
Gay Life in Mexico
To learn a little more about gay life in Mexico, we had a chat with Ricardo who we met during Xlsior Festival Mykonos to hear about his personal views and experience. Read our interview below:
‘’Sion: Hey Ricardo, if you could introduce yourself to our readers first please…
Ricardo: Hi! My name is Ricardo, I’m 24 years old, and I am originally from Merida Mexico. Currently I am living in Toronto Canada. I love to travel and have been traveling over the last 10 years around America and Europe.
Sion: Perfect! So tell us, in your experience what is the stereotypical view of a Mexican local towards someone who is LGBT.
Ricardo: The view in Mexico depends on where you are from and your social class. It varies greatly across the country and as a rule, the view is better in more touristy places.
Many people aren’t educated about LGBT issues so some views can be quite ignorant.
Sion: Have you seen this view change over time?
Ricardo: Definitely. If you compare 10 years ago to now, things are changing for the better. People are more open minded, we have new laws including same-sex marriage and we have more rights. The younger generations are much more open and we have the advantage of being ourselves.
Sion: That sounds like things are heading in the right direction. Can you tell us more about the gay scene in Mexico? (Gay bars, clubs, saunas, support groups etc)
Ricardo: Mexico has some key destinations for gay travellers. You will find the biggest gay scenes in Puerto Vallarta which is paradise and Mexico City also has a great gay nightlife.
We also have gay festivals like Arena in Playa Del Carmen.
Sion: What advice would you give an LGBT traveller coming to Mexico? (what to do and what not to do)
Ricardo: Well, for Mexico as a gay destination stick to places like Puerto Vallarta and take caution in places like Tijuana. Merida is not too gay but it is a really pretty city and is close to Cancun and worth a visit.’’
You can follow Ricardo’s adventures on Instagram @richcastro123.
Top Gay Destinations in Mexico
The top gay friendly destinations in Mexico, in no particular order include:
- Mexico City
- Puerto Vallarta
- Playa Del Carmen
This list is based on our personal experience from where we have visited (see below) and wider research. The next two places we want to visit are Mexico City and Puerto Vallarta, as we have heard many good things about both these destinations.
Click on the images below to check out the guides we have written, we will continue to add more guides next time we return to Mexico.
Gay Events in Mexico
Mexico has gay events running throughout the year. The biggest events can be found in Mexico City, Puerto Vallarta and Playa Del Carmen. It may therefore come as no surprise that these are probably the top of the top gay destinations in Mexico.
Click the links below to find out more about each of these popular gay events in Mexico:
- Mexico City Pride (check out this gay guide to Mexico City from our friend Ryan at thegaytripper.com)
- Cancun Pride
- Arena Festival (Circuit party – Playa Del Carmen)
- Puerto Vallarta Pride
- Puerto Vallarta Carnival
- BeefDip Mexico Bear Festival (Puerto Vallarta)
- White Party Thanksgiving Circuit Event (Puerto Vallarta)
Mexico has a lot to offer gay travellers. Not only is it a beautiful country with lots to see and do, it can be very open minded and welcoming.
We will be sure to return to Mexico and continue to add more specific destination guides. Let us know about your experiences in the comments below.
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