LGBTQIA+ travellers encompass a wide range of identities, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, and asexual individuals. These terms reflect diverse sexuality and gender expressions that may present unique situations and issues when visiting different countries, including Vietnam.
A Positive Outlook
Vietnam is becoming an increasingly welcoming and hassle-free destination for LGBTQIA+ travellers. The country has made significant strides in recognizing and supporting the LGBTQIA+ community. Same-sex relationships and sexual acts are legal, and the ban on same-sex marriages was lifted in January 2015. Moreover, Viet Pride marches take place in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and gay characters are portrayed in mainstream television and films.
However, it is important to note that Vietnam is still a socially conservative nation, and many individuals continue to hide their sexuality from their families. While same-sex marriages are no longer illegal, they are not legally recognized either.
Hospitable and Welcoming
Despite these limitations, LGBTQIA+ travellers usually find Vietnam to be an extremely hospitable and welcoming destination. Social stigma is generally exempt for travellers, and they can expect a warm reception. It’s worth noting that displays of affection, both for LGBTQIA+ and heterosexual couples, might draw disapproving glances. As long as LGBTQIA+ travellers show discretion and respect the local culture, they should have no issues visiting Vietnam.
It is important to mention that the LGBTQIA+ scene in Vietnam, particularly in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, is rather low-key. Rainbow flags are not commonly seen hanging from gay-only venues. Instead, the gay scene in these cities is largely limited to gay-friendly and gay-owned establishments.
Queer Culture in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)
Ho Chi Minh City, the most populous city in Vietnam, boasts numerous gay-friendly bars, restaurants, saunas, and hotels. Republic, the largest gay club, offers a vibrant drag show every Friday, live music on Saturdays, and a spacious dance floor. Full Disclosure hosts lively monthly themed-LGBT parties with live music, drag shows, and DJs that go late into the night. For gay-friendly parties, head to La Fenetre Soleil on Ly Tu Trong. Whiskey and Wares, owned by American and Vietnamese partners, is another popular bar serving whiskey, craft beer, and delicious cocktails in a trendy space on De Tham.
Queer Culture in Hanoi
Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, has a more low-key gay scene compared to Ho Chi Minh City. GC Bar, the best-known and longest-running gay bar in Hanoi, gets packed on Friday and Saturday nights. Savage, an underground electronic music club, also hosts popular monthly gay nights.
The city offers well-located gay-friendly hotels such as Art Hotel, Trendy Hotel, and Artisan Boutique Hotel. Additionally, Viet Pride festivities are more prominent in Hanoi, featuring LGBTQIA+ film screenings, panel discussions, and the annual bicycle pride parade.
For a comprehensive and up-to-date list of LGBTQIA+-friendly establishments in Vietnam, refer to Utopia Asia.
Solo Travel and Room Sharing
If you are embarking on a solo Intrepid group tour in Vietnam, you will share accommodation with a passenger of the same gender as indicated by your passport information. If your gender identity does not align with the gender assigned on your passport, please inform us at the time of booking, and we will arrange the rooming configuration accordingly. Alternatively, a single supplement is available for travellers who prefer not to share a room.
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Our Tours in Vietnam
For an unforgettable experience in Vietnam, consider our exceptional tours, carefully curated to showcase the beauty, history, and cultural richness of this incredible country. Immerse yourself in the vibrant cities, explore breathtaking landscapes, and savor delicious Vietnamese cuisine. Let us guide you on an adventure you will treasure for a lifetime.
Remember, Vietnam is ready to embrace LGBTQIA+ travellers with open arms. Come and create memories that will last a lifetime.