Many in the LGBT community travel internationally to very inclusive countries. Yet, some of the most popular LGBT-friendly resorts and beaches exist here in the United States. The following are a few renowned favorites.
1) Fire Island Pines – Long Island, NY
One of the best gay friendly summer retreats in the United States is less than 90-minutes outside of New York City. Known for its markets, restaurants and boutiques, in addition to beaches — this destination offers more than just sand and surf. For more than 50-years, Fire Island Pines has been a friendly destination for both gays and lesbians alike. However, all lifestyles are still welcomed on the island.
The Pines, which has the most expensive real estate on Fire Island, has approximately 600-houses and a 100-unit condominium complex comprising primarily of gay men ranging between 20-50 years old. It is affectionately referred to as “Chelsea with sand,” with a host of famous residents including Michael Kors and Calvin Klein. Spanning more than 9.6 miles, Fire Island Pines is home to more than two-thousand rentals.
2) 12th Street Beach – South Beach, Florida
This article wouldn’t be complete with out including South Beach, Miami. Located between two rainbow flags, 12th Street Beach is a gay-friendly section near Ocean Drive. It is ideally located within walking distance to restaurants, bars and the shopping districts. Whether it’s beach volleyball, picnics, or just soaking up the rays, 12th Street Beach is the place to be! Travelers will find miles of diverse people, ranging from straight men and women, to people dressed in drag. Among the most notable residents is the late Gianni Versace whose mansion is located on 12th Street. It sold nearly two years ago for a staggering $41.5 million dollars.
Photo courtesy | James Willamor
3) Cherry Grove – Long Island, NY
Cherry Grove, near Fire Island Pines, is another popular LGBT resort in the United States. The New York Times quoted one resident saying, “This is a wonderful environment, where you can be gay and be open about your relationship and feel accepted.”
Cherry Grove is the nation’s first LGBT community, predominantly but not exclusively populated and visited by LGBT persons. Aside from the beach, there are approximately six restaurants that are owned by locals and celebrity chefs. The island boasts entertainment venues, art shows and various community events from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
4) Asbury Park, New Jersey
Asbury Park is conveniently located 90-minutes away from New York City in Monmouth County, New Jersey. The Jersey Shore has become one of the hottest new destination for gays and lesbians looking for a summer weekend getaway. There are dozens of bars and hotels that cater to the LGBT. Asbury Park is the largest gay-friendly beach in the county. It was ranked the sixth-best beach in New Jersey in the 2008 Top-10 Beaches Contest sponsored by the New Jersey Marine Sciences Consortium. Asbury is also home to the gay-friendly Stone Pony concert venue, which has served as a starting point for many world-renowned musicians including Bruce Springsteen. Asbury Park has the state’s largest LGBT parade and festival.
Photo courtesy | Andy
5) Provincetown, Massachusetts
Provincetown, Massachusetts is a New England town located at the tip of Cape Cod. Its population reaches as high as 60,000 in the summer months. Residents include Tennessee Williams, Jackson Pollock, filmmaker John Waters and Eugene O’Neill. A popular destination is Race Point Beach, ranked the number one tourist destination in Provincetown.
While visiting, be sure to check out the Race Point lighthouse, known for its historical significance. This town has an extremely accepting atmosphere and during the summer months visitors descend to enjoy the community, sand and sun. Lined with a number of bars and clubs, the destination is sure to pack a fun-filled punch. A 90-minute “fast ferry” from Boston is all the separates visitors from this wonderful setting.