Is LA Gay Friendly? – Los Angeles LGBTQ+ Travel Guide (2023)

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We have travelled to Los Angeles multiple times over the past decade, both as a lesbian couple and as a same-sex family.

Los Angeles is one of the most queer-friendly cities in the United States and has been a backdrop for many important milestones in the struggle of the LGBTQ+ community. As a lesbian couple, we feel at ease here in LA.

The city and wider county of Los Angeles are home to a number of queer-friendly neighbourhoods with gay bars and clubs as well as LGBTQ+ owned independent businesses. While alongside this you have an incredible range of iconic landmarks and attractions that make Los Angeles a must-visit destination.

How Gay-Friendly Is Los Angeles?

Los Angeles is one of the most gay-friendly cities in the United States and despite being in the a-political state of California continues to push the boundaries when it comes to fighting for equality for the LGBTQ+ community and other minorities.

As a lesbian couple and a same-sex family, we have visited Los Angeles multiple times over the past decade, often spending in excess of two weeks at a time here. During every trip to Los Angeles that we have made we have never experienced any form of prejudice or discrimination.

Of course, that’s not to say that prejudice and discrimination towards the LGBTQ+ community do not exist in Los Angeles whatsoever. However, instead, thankfully it’s becoming increasingly rare.

Gay-Friendly Neighbourhoods In Los Angeles

While Los Angeles as a whole is queer-friendly there are of course a number of neighbourhoods with a higher population of LGBTQ+ residents and businesses.

WeHo – West Hollywood

If you’re queer and visiting Los Angeles, you absolutely need to visit or even stay in West Hollywood. Latest reports found that 40% of those living in West Hollywood identify as gay, which unsurprisingly makes this region of the city the largest LGBTQ+ population.

You’ll find an LGBTQ+ mural crosswalk here alongside the pride and LGBTQ+ flag flying high next to the flag of the United States. There’s also an extensive range of queer-friendly independently owned cafés, boutiques, restaurants, bars and nightclubs.

The atmosphere in this part of town is unlike anything else in Los Angeles. It’s got the vibe of DTLA with a touch of sparkle that only the LGBTQ+ community seems to hold.

Downtown LA (DTLA)

Downtown Los Angeles (often abbreviated to DTLA) is another popular neighbourhood in the city with an ever-increasing gay scene.

Here you’ll find a range of new, up-and-coming gay bars and LGBTQ+ friendly hotels alongside an extensive range of incredible independent businesses. There’s absolutely no shortage of things to do and see here in this part of town.

Silver Lake

Silver Lake is the original LA gay neighbourhood and continues to be a fantastic place to hang out with a range of gay bars and LGBTQ+ friendly businesses. Guests staying here will be able to explore the largest municipal park in the USA, Griffith Park.

If you’re looking to shop for unique souvenirs in Los Angeles then Silver Lake is the place to do it. The city benefits from a number of independent stores, boutique clothing outlets and excellent resturants.

Long Beach

Situated along Los Angeles County’s southern coast is Long Beach. This city is currently undergoing one of the largest redevelopment programmes in the United States and is a fantastic place to hang out during your trip to LA.

The LGBTQ+ community here in Long Beach mainly hangs out in the gay bars and clubs on Broadway which runs between Alamitos and Junipero Avenues. While Long Beach Gay Pride dates back to 1984 and attracts more than 80,000 people annually.

Gay-Friendly Hotels In & Around Los Angeles

As the world’s most gay-friendly city, it is little surprise to find a wealth of hotels that actively advertise as LGBTQ+ friendly, and the following are some that come highly recommended.

Sunset Tower Hotel

Situated just 2.5 miles from the Hollywood Walk of Fame in West Hollywood, the five-star luxury Sunset Tower Hotel offers an unmatched level of Hollywood glamour.

The spacious rooms here boast floor-to-ceiling windows with incredible views and have been superbly decorated.


  • Nightly turndown service
  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • On-site fitness centre
  • Joanna Vargas Spa
  • Award-winning Tower Bar

Andaz West Hollywood

Just a 5-minute stroll from The Sunset Strip is the four-star, Hyatt-owned Andaz West Hollywood.

This hotel not only benefits from an incredible location for guests looking to explore Los Angeles but also boasts an extensive range of room options the largest of which is suitable for up to 7 guests in total.


  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • Fitness centre
  • Market-to-table restaurant
  • RH Bar

The Hollywood Roosevelt

Just 350 yards from Dolby Theater on the Hollywood Walk of Fame you’ll find the iconic four-star Hollywood Roosevelt.

This hotel benefits from a wide range of room options depending on your budget and preferences. Our personal favourite of which is The Roosevelt Suite which boasts incredible views and benefits from a separate room with a dining room.


  • Outdoor swimming pool
  • Fitness centre
  • Spa and wellness centre
  • American Italian on-site restaurant

Loews Hollywood Hotel

During our most recent trip to Los Angeles, we had the pleasure of staying at the four-star Loews Hollywood Hotel.

This hotel is within a 5-minute walk of the Hollywood Walk of Fame and just a 15-minute walk from Runyon Canyon which can take you all the way up to the Hollywood Sign. Meanwhile, rooms here are both spacious and well-decorated.


  • Fitness Centre
  • Outdoor Swimming Pool
  • On-site Restaurant
  • Coffee Shop

Gay-Friendly Activities In & Around Los Angeles

Los Angeles has no shortage of entertainment options for you to enjoy during your trip. There really is something for everyone here. That being said, some of our favourite options include;

Hollywood Walk of Fame & TLC Chinese Theatre

The Hollywood Walk of Fame is home to over 2,600 stars dedicated to celebrities from various fields such as music, film, television, theatre, and more.

This attraction is completely free to visit, and while in our opinion incredibly underwhelming it’s still somewhere we feel that everyone has to visit at least once during a trip to LA. Thankfully, it’s in a central location with lots of nearby attractions and takes a little more than an hour to explore.

Hollywood Sign

The Hollywood Sign is a Los Angeles icon and can be seen from various locations across the city. There are plenty of hotels with incredible views of the Hollywood Sign, however, if you want to take a selfie with this landmark then you’ll need to hike to it.

In the Los Angeles heat and humidity, this can be an experience (to say the least) but is very much doable, even for people with relatively low to moderate fitness levels. Plus, since the Hollywood Sign is situated on a hill, hiking here also provides incredible panoramic views of Los Angeles.

Beverly Hills & Rodeo Drive

Beverly Hills is a fabulous location, renowned for its glamour, upscale shopping, and world-class dining. Nestled within the bustling metropolis of Los Angeles, California, this iconic city boasts an extensive range of luxury hotels, stores, restaurants and bars perfect for high-end travellers.

Even if you can’t afford to stay in this neighbourhood during your trip to Los Angeles we still recommend visiting this location and grabbing a coffee (the iconic Alfred’s is both affordable and incredible).

Venice Beach

Venice Beach is one of the region’s most popular tourist attractions. Stretching across two miles, the boardwalk here hosts hundreds of street vendors and performers along with numerous privately owned restaurants and food venues.

Even if you’re not a beach person (hey friends!) we still recommend coming down to Venice Beach and walking along the boardwalk to experience an atmosphere like no other. Plus, if you’ve got the time we’d recommend walking a little further up to Santa Monica.

Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios Hollywood is one of the oldest working TV and movie studios in the United States which has had a small portion of land turned into a theme park.

Here you can experience incredible thrill rides alongside a unique one-hour behind-the-scenes tour of the film studio. While this is one of the more expensive things to do in Los Angeles we always find ourselves here on every trip we make to the city.

Disneyland Resort

If you’re an adult fan of Disney or are travelling to Los Angeles with little ones then be sure to add a day (or three) at Disneyland onto your vacation. Disneyland was the first Disney park that was ever created and was the concept of Walt Disney himself.

In the park’s 60+ years, it’s expanded significantly and is now a resort complete with two theme parks (Disneyland and Disney California Adventure), an on-site entertainment district (Downtown Disney) and three on-site hotels.

Annual Gay & LGBTQ+ Events In & Around Los Angeles

There is an extensive number of annual gay and LGTBQ+ events held both in and around Los Angeles for locals and tourists alike to enjoy. Some of our favourites include;

LA Pride

LA Pride is one of the largest Pride events in the world and takes place over a number of days. However, it’s the Pride Parade that’s the highlight of the week-long party, with more than 100,000 people walking together in colour along the iconic Hollywood Boulevard.

Pride Is Universal

This after-hours ticketed event at Universal Studios Hollywood is hosted in partnership with LA Pride and allows the LGBTQ+ to celebrate together at the theme park between the hours of 9pm and 1am.

Simply diVine

Simply diVine takes place annually each April and is the premier food and drink festival aimed at the LGBQT+ crowd. Held at Hollywood Forever, it’s a chance to explore what local businesses in the food and drink field offer and a friendly and enjoyable event.


Finally, there’s DragCon hosted and made famous by the icon RuPaul. Celebrating everything to do with drag, this spectacular event is visited annually by straight and gay people and highlights the influence of the LGBTQ+ community on LA as a whole.

Gay Bars, Gay Clubs & Gay Saunas in LA

There is an extensive range of gay bars, clubs and saunas in and around Los Angeles. Some of the most popular of these include;

  1. The Abbey Food & Bar: 692 N Robertson Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
  2. Precinct DTLA: 357 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013
  3. Akbar: 4356 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90029
  4. Club Tempo: 5520 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90038
  5. Trunks Bar: 8809 Santa Monica Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
  6. The Bullet Bar: 10522 Burbank Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91601
  7. Eagle LA: 4219 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90029
  8. Flex Spa (Gay Sauna): 4424 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90029


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