Solo travel can be both challenging and thrilling, but it can also be a great opportunity to explore new destinations and connect with diverse communities. For solo LGBTQ+ travelers, finding welcoming and inclusive places may be essential. Fortunately, the United States has many cities that cater to the LGBTQ+ community, offering vibrant neighborhoods, numerous cultural attractions, bars, clubs, and restaurants. Here are some of the top US cities for solo LGBTQ+ travelers.
New York, New York
New York City is one of the top destinations for solo LGBTQ+ travelers. It offers a vast range of neighborhoods that cater specifically to the community, from the vibrant West Village to the trendy Hell’s Kitchen. The city hosts numerous LGBTQ+ events throughout the year, such as the Pride March and OutCinema. Additionally, the museum and cultural center scene includes several LGBTQ+ institutions that are essential destinations, such as the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art, which presents LGBTQ+ art exhibitions, and the LGBTQ Center. Exploring the Big Apple as a solo traveler offers an incredibly diverse and immersive experience for any LGBTQ+ traveler.
San Francisco, California
San Francisco is an iconic LGBTQ+ hub and an inclusive city that celebrates the community. Home to one of the most well-known gay neighborhoods in the world, the Castro, San Francisco offers visitors an incredibly vibrant scene. This city is rich in history and is the birthplace of numerous LGBTQ+ activists and movements. It hosts several annual LGBTQ+ events, including the Folsom Street Fair and the GLAAD Media Awards. Visitors also have plenty of options for exploring the museums, galleries, theaters, and cultural attractions in the Bay Area. A must-visit city for any solo LGBTQ+ traveler.
Provincetown is a charming and welcoming community located at the tip of Cape Cod. The town has been a famous LGBTQ+ destination for decades and is renowned for its artistic community. It is home to galleries, theaters, and numerous LGBTQ+ beaches, offering a unique beach getaway. Visitors can also immerse themselves in Provincetown’s culture by attending several annual events, such as the Provincetown International Film Festival and Women’s Week. Its relaxed environment and gorgeous sceneries make it a perfect destination for any solo LGBTQ+ traveler looking for a peaceful and accepting retreat.
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans may not be the first place that comes to mind when thinking about LGBTQ+ destinations, but visitors may be surprised by its vibrant and inclusive community. This city is rich in history and culture and one of the most accepting environments in the southern US. The French Quarter hosts numerous LGBTQ+ bars, clubs, and restaurants, and it is home to several annual events, such as the Southern Decadence festival and the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival. Exploring NOLA’s architecture, cuisine, and music scene while enjoying its welcoming atmosphere is an experience any solo LGBTQ+ traveler should try.
Portland is a beautiful and progressive city that has long been a hub for LGBTQ+ inclusivity. The city offers diverse neighborhoods such as North Mississippi and Hawthorne, suitable for anyone looking for a welcoming environment. Visitors can attend several annual events, such as the Portland Queer Film Festival and Pride Northwest. For food lovers, Portland’s food and drink scene is one of the most renowned in the US, making it a fantastic destination for solo travelers who enjoy culinary experiences.
Chicago has a robust and thriving LGBTQ+ community spread throughout the city. Boystown is one of the most iconic gay neighborhoods in the country, providing visitors with an incredibly diverse and inclusive destination. The city hosts several annual LGBTQ+ events such as the Market Days festival and the Reeling Film Festival. Besides its nightlife and events, Chicago has plenty to offer in terms of cultural attractions, such as the Art Institute of Chicago and the Museum of Contemporary Art, making it a destination suitable for any solo LGBTQ+ traveler’s interests.
Seattle is a beautiful and inclusive city that welcomes all visitors. The city offers several LGBTQ+ neighborhoods, such as Capitol Hill and the Central District, providing a vast array of venues, bars, and restaurants for visitors. Seattle hosts several annual events, such as the Seattle Queer Film Festival and the Seattle Pride Parade, highlighting its commitment to inclusivity. Coffee culture is an essential part of Seattle’s lifestyle, making it an excellent destination for solo LGBTQ+ travelers to enjoy coffee shops, galleries, and bookstores that cater to the community.
Austin is a vibrant and growing LGBTQ+ destination that offers an alluring blend of Southern hospitality and progressive values. The city has several LGBTQ+ neighborhoods such as East Austin and South Congress, and it hosts several annual events such as the Austin Pride Festival and the Gay Bi Gay Gay Festival. Austin’s music scene is one of the most exciting in the country, and it is a perfect destination for solo LGBTQ+ travelers interested in experiencing live music performances.
Los Angeles, California
Los Angeles is a large and diverse city that caters to solo LGBTQ+ travelers. The iconic West Hollywood is one of the most well-known gay neighborhoods in the world, providing visitors with a broad range of venues and events. Los Angeles hosts several annual LGBTQ+ events, including Outfest and the LA Pride Festival, making it an incredibly inclusive and welcoming destination. Los Angeles also has numerous cultural attractions, such as the Getty Museum and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art for visitors to explore.
Philadelphia is a historic and inclusive city located on the East Coast, offering solo LGBTQ+ travelers numerous destinations to explore. It is home to several LGBTQ+ neighborhoods, including the Gayborhood and South Street, and features several annual events such as the Philadelphia Gay Pride Parade and Festival and the qFLIX Philadelphia Film Festival. Philadelphia is rich in history and culture, offering visitors the chance to explore several cultural attractions such as Independence Hall and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.