It is important that everyone lives in a city where they feel safe and supported by their peers. Equality is more prevalent in politics and society than ever before, and it is important that the LGBTQ+ community feel safe in the US.
Pheabs has put together a list of 15 top cities in the US where the community is not only embraced, but also supported through a variety of events, pride celebrations and support groups.
1. San Francisco, California
San Francisco, California, with a population of over 800,000, is home to one of the largest LGBTQ+ communities in the US and is consistently ranked as the best city for LGBTQ+ travel in the country.
San Francisco was the first city in the US to legalize gay marriage, as well as electing the first openly gay official in politics, Harvey Milk.
The city hosts a variety of pride events, alongside pride-dedicated stores, restaurants, bars, art galleries and nightclubs, especially in The Castro neighborhood as well as Ocean Beach and the North Beach.
Excitable times in the community include the annual San Francisco Pride parade every June, with further iconic sites including the city’s Rainbow Honor Walk.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots include Pentacle Coffee and the Third Culture Bakery.
2. New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans, based in Louisiana, boasts a population of nearly 400,000. The city is the home of music, with several gay bars populating it’s Lavender Line and Bourbon Street in the French Quarter, making it the perfect city for nights out.
Mardi Gras is one of the biggest annual events to take place in New Orleans, full of color, music and inclusivity making it a great event to travel over to the city for.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots in New Orleans include the Bourbon Pub Parade and Pythian Market.
3. New York City, New York
New York City is one of the most LGBTQ+ friendly cities in the state of New York, home to one of the largest LGBTQ+ populations in the world of over 750,000. The city enforces anti-discrimination laws including the protection of sexual orientation and gender identity.
The city is host to a Pride Month, where there is a series of exciting pride events including the New York City Pride Parade.
New York City is also home to some famous LGBTQ+ historical sites, including the Stonewall Inn and Christopher Park. The Stonewall Inn is situated where the 1969 Stonewall Riots occurred, which served as a catalyst for the gay liberation movement. Christopher Park is home to two historical statues commemorating those involved in the riots.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in New York City include Baz Bagels and the Cubby Hole.
4. Austin, Texas
Austin, Texas is praised for its up-and-coming art scene and abundance of cultural attractions. It is also home to a growing LGBTQ+ community.
It is home to some great gay bars, especially in the local neighborhoods of East Austin, Downtown Sustin and Clarksville.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Austin include Lick Ice Creams and Cheer Up Charlies.
5. Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon is home to an amazing array of events for the LGBTQ+ community. This includes the Portland Queer Film Festival, the Pride Parade and Festival and regular flea markets supporting LGBTQ+ local businesses.
Portland was additionally one of the first cities in the US to adopt an openly gay mayor, Sam Adams, in 2008.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Portland include the Vault Cocktail Lounge and Prism Fit Gym.
6. West Hollywood, California
West Hollywood was the first city to become a majority-gay municipality in the US in 1984, with over 40% of its residents now belonging to the LGBTQ+ community. It is important to note that every single of West Hollywood’ hotels are LGBTQ+ friendly, meaning that holiday makers should not experience any discrimination.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in West Hollywood include Hamburger Mary’s and Fiesta Cantina.
7. Miami, Florida
Miami, Florida is home to some of the livelist beaches in the US, making it a popular vacation destination spot for Americans as well as tourists across the world, including over a million LGBTQ+ tourists each year.
Miami’s South Beach hosts Miami Beach Pride every April, putting on a number of events both on the beach and in venues from bars to restaurants and stores. Interestingly too, Fort Lauderdale in Miami is home to one of the largest LGBTQ+ communities in the US.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Miami include Rosie’s Bar and Grill and Little Havana.
8. Washington DC, District of Columbia
Not only is Washington DC home to the White House, but it is also home to countless museums, parks and theaters.
There have also been growing proposals for the National LGBTQ+ Museum to be established in Washington.
The city has a deep rooted history in LGBTQ+ liberation, from the Stonewall Riots to the Chesapeake Bank.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Washington DC include JR’s and A League Of Her Own.
9. Providence, Rhode Island
Providence, Rhode Island is one of the oldest cities in the US. The city is home to New England’s only two gay bathhouses, Club Body Center and Mega-Plex.
Additionally, Providence was also home to the first openly gay major of a US capital. Friendly LGBTQ+ neighborhoods include Downtown Providence, Lower South Providence and West End.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Providence include Mirabar and Tini Restaurant.
10. Kansas City, Missouri
Kansas City in Missouri hosts several annual LGBTQ+ celebrations and cultural events.
The city is also home to the Kansas City Center for Inclusion. The center is open to the LGBTQ+ community seven days a week.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Kansas City include Howl at the Moon and Shark Bar.
11. Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston is one of the oldest cities in the state of South Carolina and is home to a population of 137,000.
The city hosts a number of lively festivals across the calendar, including the annual Charleston Pride Celebration.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Charleston include Dudley’s on Ann and BLU.
12. Minneapolis, Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota has a large LGBTQ+ community that is well-represented in politics. The city’s pride festival was recently ranked among the top ten pride festivals in the US, attracting over 350,000 people each year.
The city is additionally home to the only National Park Service that is dedicated to the LGBTQ+ history in the US, specifically referring to the Quatrefoil Library and Archives. The Library holds over 12,000 celebrating the lives of LGBTQ+ people.
Some LGBTQ+ community friendly spots to visit in Minneapolis include The Saloon and Joan’s In The Park.