If you are anything like us and love to travel all year round no matter the weather, then these gay winter travel destinations might be for you!
Whether you are simply chasing the sun (see Gran Canaria) or wanting to experience the epitome of a snowy winter wonderland (see New York) then we think this list will have something to suit you.
We have chosen these destinations based on our experience to date and will continue to expand the list in the future! Please drop us an email with any suggestions of where we can go next.
Our Top 8 Gay Winter Travel Destinations
In no particular order, here are our favorite gay winter destinations:
8. Reykjavik, Iceland
First up on our list of the best gay winter destinations is Reykjavik in Iceland.
Reykjavik is super welcoming for LGBTQ+ travellers and when we travelled to Reykjavik for Pride, we we thrilled to see how involved the local community was in the celebrations.
Beyond this being a great destination from an LGBTQ perspective, Iceland as a whole is a magical place with many incredible experiences on offer. Head to the famous Blue Lagoon, or Sky Lagoon if you are feeling fancy, go whale watching out to see or chase the Northern Lights. If you are looking for a unique gay winter experience, this is it!
7. Curacao, Caribbean
So we have started cold with Iceland, lets heat things up with Curacao.
Curacao is one of the most LGBTQ friendly islands in the Caribbean and the perfect place to escape during winter if you want to top up your tan.
We fell in love with Curacao, it is full of colour, character and has some beautiful places to explore. We particularly loved exploring Otrobanda which is full of the most vibrant grafiti art, relaxing at some of the local beach clubs and then scuba diving the beautiful coral reef.
Read more in our Gay Travel Guide to Curacao.
6. New York, USA
New York holds a special place in our hearts, it’s where we got engaged during the depths of winter on the icy rooftop terrace of our hotel and since that first visit, we have been back time and time again.
New York is well known for being an incredibly welcoming gay travel destination, with plenty of gay nightlife, a huge pride each year and a large gay district (Hells Kitchen).
It is also iconic destination for a winter break and is exactly as we imagined from watching Home Alone 2!
From ice skating under the huge Christmas tree at the Rockefeller Centre, to exploring a snow covered Central Park, New York looks spectacular during winter.
5. Aruba, Caribbean
Rivalling Curacao for the most LGBTQ friendly island in the Caribbean, Aruba boasts long stretches of white sand beaches and some beautfiul hotels to simply sit back and relax. We first visited Aruba for the day during the Atlantis Gay Cruise but will be heading back to see more in the winter.
Liek Curacao, Aruba is ideal to escape to in the colder winter months. Head to the famous Eagle Beach to relax or go and meet the local flamingos!
4. Madrid, Spain
We had never thought about spending winter in mainland Spain until we spent 7 months living in, and falling in love with, the beautiful city of Madrid.
During winter in Madrid, we had friends come out and visit us twice and had the best time exploring the Christmas markets in Plaza Major, going shopping (especially the many gay shops), going to all the best tapas places and of course heading to all the gay bars and clubs in Chueca.
Madrid is probably the most inclusive and welcoming gay travel destination we know, whether you visit in summer or winter you are guaranteed to have an amazing time.
For more on Madrid:
3. Stockholm, Sweden
Another destination worthy of the title of ‘Winter Wonderland’ has to be Stockholm.
We visited Stockholm during October when it was very cold indeed!
However, once we wrapped up and headed out to explore we quickly learnt why so many people love Stockholm.
The city is very unique sitting on over 14 islands which practically guarantees that you get to experience beautiful views wherever you look.
Combined with the fact there were so many things to do to keep busy (see our 48 hour winter itinerary), an incredible selection of restaurants and an easy going, well integrated gay scene (see gay bars in Stockholm and gay friendly hotels in Stockholm) we can’t wait to return and see more.
For more on Stockholm see:
2. Gran Canaria, Canary Islands
If you have kept up to date with our travels you will see that Gran Canaria keeps us coming back for more and more each year. We have a full gay travel guide to Gran Canaria to help you plan your trip!
Whilst the destinations we have listed so far get cold in the winter, Gran Canaria stays hot pretty much all year round!
As a result we normally head to Gran Canaria every November for Gran Canaria Winter Pride! It is one of the many pride events that Gran Canaria hosts every year making it one of the top gay destinations in Europe.
For more on Gran Canaria Winter Pride:
1. Wales, UK
Last but by no means least, something a little closer to home (for Sion) is his hometown in North Wales.
Wales is becoming the go to adventure destination in the UK and when we visited during November we found ourselves hiking mountains, flying through caves on ziplines and taking on huge indoor assault courses!
In terms of the gay scene in Wales it may be lacking compared to the rest, but we have no doubt you would have a great experience – check out this interview with Jack, a Welsh gay guy to learn more about gay Wales.
For more on Wales:
We hope that this has given you some gay travel winter inspiration! We will continue to add to our list as we visit more places around the world!
Make sure to pin this for later 🙂