Australians like to have a good time. That's one reason it's such a popular travel destination for Americans. Attitudes toward gay men and lesbians vary in Australia, just as they do in the U.S., but Australia’s commitment to the LGBT community continue to make it a top destination on many LGBT vacationers’ list.
Australia is one of the few countries (the U.S. is another) where laws pertaining to sexual orientation and gay rights are generally made on a state level. Most states in Australia dropped their sodomy laws long ago. The scenic but highly conservative island-state of Tasmania was the last holdout, and dropped its sodomy laws only when a federal court forced it to do so.
Sydney is the most mainstream gay cultured city in Australia. For the LGBT community, head for Taylor Square, on Oxford Street at Bourke St., and you'll be in the heart of the gay district, with plenty of free newspapers and maps to guide you to the latest attractions and events. The beaches are also a part of Sydney's gay life. The clothing optional Lady Jane beach is a leisurely ferry ride from town.
Sydney also hosts the annual gay Mardi Gras festival, which brings in more international visitors and tourist dollars than any other event in the country. Gay culture is omnipresent during the month of February, leading up to Mardi Gras. Mardi Gras is a month-long celebration that includes arts performances, sports events, dances, poetry readings, cinema, and much more. The extravagant annual Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras celebration gets endorsements from many of the country's most prominent politicians.
Melbourne, the second largest city, is also well worth a visit. A staid and unexciting town just a generation ago, Melbourne today is a vibrant metropolis with European character. It offers visitors a busy gay community, quite different Sydney's. Located further south, and in a cooler climate, Melbourne offers more indoor activities than Sydney, and perhaps less emphasis on the perfect body.
Brisbane, Canberra, and Perth each have a small but visible and easy-to-find gay community. On the Great Barrier Reef, a gay hotel named Turtle Cove draws many gay visitors. It’s easy for travelers to find places to stay in Perth on Expedia. There are many affordable hotels listed and helpful travel guides to assist you in finding the best things to do while on holiday. To book a bed and breakfast or LGBT owned accomodation, our LGBT travel specialist will need to assist you.
To book a LGBT Australia vacation package, contact our gay and lesbian travel specialists today!