Atlantis Hong Kong to Japan gay cruise

All gay cruise by Atlantis on a Norwegian ship, from Hong Kong via Taipei, Shanghai to Tokyo, Japan

All gay cruise by Atlantis Events on the Norwegian  Jewel Celebrity 2300 guests! The ship will sailHong Kong via Taipei, Shanghai to Tokyo, Japan.

Gay Taipei guide 2021: gay bars, clubs, saunas, events and more

When we heard that Hung is a common Taiwanese surname, we knew that this was a country worth visiting!

The capital city of Taipei threw us for a fabulously gay loop. We had heard that it was, by Asian standards, a liberal and tolerant place, but we had no idea just how much the city loves its gay. Within minutes of descending onto the gay scene, we were doused in glitter and dancing under disco lights to the likes of Cher and Dolly Parton. The gay scene in Ximen is damn impressive! There’s an entire area around the Red House with tons of gay bars to check out. This is one of many reasons why we rate Taipei as one of the world’s top gay travel spots.

The city of Taipei is also full of rich culture, from the ancient temples that dot the city skyline, to the stunning architecture of tower blocks like the famous Taipei 101. In this gay guide to Taipei, we’ve put together our experience from this incredible city, including our favourite gay bars (there are loads!), clubs, gay hotels, events, things to do, and loads more!

Gay Taipei guide 2021: gay bars, clubs, saunas, events and more

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What is it like?

Atlantis cruises attract mostly gays, and usually a few lesbians. Average age range is about 27-50, some younger and some older guys. The concept is all about making everybody happy, day time entertainment at the pools, have nice dinners with (new) friends, see fun shows in the theatres, and 1 or more parties till the sun comes up. Some of the parties have themes (whiteparty, classic disco, tropical etc), and most of the guys really dress up for those. Watch the Youtube video to get an impression. Many also decorate their cabin doors.

What is it like?

Hong Kong hotels and information

The cruise will start in the Hong Kong. Make sure to add a few days here before the cruise, as this city has so much to offer. See our gay destination guide to Hong Kong for info on where to book your hotel. Nighttours Hong Kong

Tokyo hotels and information

The cruise will end in the great city of Tokyo. Make sure to add a few days here after the cruise, as this city has so much to offer. See our gay destination guide to Tokyo for info on where to book your hotel. Nighttours Tokyo

All gay cruise by Atlantis on a Norwegian ship, from Hong Kong via Taipei, Shanghai to Tokyo, Japan

All gay cruise by Atlantis Events on the Norwegian  Jewel Celebrity 2300 guests! The ship will sailHong Kong via Taipei, Shanghai to Tokyo, Japan.

What is it like?

Atlantis cruises attract mostly gays, and usually a few lesbians. Average age range is about 27-50, some younger and some older guys. The concept is all about making everybody happy, day time entertainment at the pools, have nice dinners with (new) friends, see fun shows in the theatres, and 1 or more parties till the sun comes up. Some of the parties have themes (whiteparty, classic disco, tropical etc), and most of the guys really dress up for those. Watch the Youtube video to get an impression. Many also decorate their cabin doors.

Hong Kong hotels and information

The cruise will start in the Hong Kong. Make sure to add a few days here before the cruise, as this city has so much to offer. See our gay destination guide to Hong Kong for info on where to book your hotel. Nighttours Hong Kong

Tokyo hotels and information

The cruise will end in the great city of Tokyo. Make sure to add a few days here after the cruise, as this city has so much to offer. See our gay destination guide to Tokyo for info on where to book your hotel. Nighttours Tokyo

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How gay friendly is Taipei?

Very gay friendly! We rate Taiwan as not only the most gay friendly place in Asia, but one of the most gay friendly places in the world. Unlike the rest of Asia, Taiwan is miles ahead of everyone with its LGBTQ rights: in 2019 it was the first (and to date, only!) country in Asia to legalise gay marriage. Taiwan is a beacon of hope for LGBTQ rights in Asia that we hope the rest of the continent will follow asap!

Part of the reason why Taiwan is so far ahead of its neighbours is due to the era of Marshal Law, which occurred between 1949-1987. Known as the White Terror, it saw the Taiwanese experience many restrictions in their freedom of expression with around 200,000 people imprisoned or killed. So, when this tragic period ended, the Taiwanese were eager to push for change and embrace democracy, which they’ve been doing so beautifully ever since!

Today, young kids growing up in and around the Taipei area rarely encounter homophobia. There are many gay actors and musicians in the public eye for kids to look up to and aspire to be. We totally felt this when we were in Taipei. We felt comfortable with public displays of affection, especially holding hands in public, which is rare for us. At the rainbow crossing by Ximen Station where we (inevitably!) stopped to take lots of, people just watched us with warm smiles and zero judgment.

For more, be sure to check out our interview with local boy and former Mr Gay Taiwan, Po-Hung, about what gay life in Taiwan is like.

We like to pre-book a private airport transfer when we’re arriving in Taipei to avoid taxi queues and the hassle of public transport, especially late at night. That way we don’t need to try to juggle our luggage on public transport and we know a professional English-speaking guide will be waiting for us no matter how late our flight may arrive.

The gay district of Taipei

The main gay area of Taipei is in and around the Ximen Red House in the Ximending district. Hanging around here you will see plenty of rainbow flags, bars, shops, gay couples holding hands, cruising, boozing, you name it! This is one fabulous gay neighbourhood you’ll instantly fall in love with.

There are plenty of gay bars within the Ximen Red House complex. Cafe Dalida is our favourite. Everything from the drag shows to the cuteness of the waiters won our hearts over. Elsewhere in the complex are lots of smaller bars such as The Secret Garden, Hero, Hunt and tons more. Our best advice is just to head there and see what takes your fancy!

There are also many other gay bars and clubs scattered around Taipei, beyond the Ximen Red House pink bubble, particularly in the East side of the city where you’ll find Abrazo Bistro, Fairy and our favourite gay club: G*Star. See below for more about our favourite gay bars and clubs of Taipei.

Gay hotels in Taipei

Hotels in Taipei are more than accustomed to LGBTQ travellers, especially those in the Ximending district. We never had a problem getting a double bed anywhere in Taiwan. We’ve set out below some of the best gay and gay friendly hotels in Taipei to suit all budgets, from a mix of our first-hand experience as well as tips from fellow LGBTQ travellers:

Gay bars in Taipei

The sun has set. You’ve completed your items on your checklist for the day. Now it’s time to party. For the gays of Taipei, that can only mean one thing: the Ximen Red House!

The Red House has tons of gay bars scattered over two floors. The best ones are mainly located downstairs (like Dalida and The Garden) with lots of smaller ones upstairs. We’ve only set out our favourites here otherwise this would be a pretty long guide! We’ve also included a few of our favourite gay bars located elsewhere in Taipei, beyond the Red House.

Gay clubs in Taipei

Taipei doesn’t have as much variety in terms of gay clubs as it does gay bars, but the few it does have are a lot of fun! Our favourite is G*star. It‘s always a guaranteed fun night out, especially on weekends. Also, look out for the gay monthly parties like Werk! Blush and C.U.M…no, get your mind out of the gutter, it actually stands for: Create Ur Mmmagic! These are the main gay clubs and parties in Taipei we recommend you check out:

Taipei Gay Pride and Events

Pride in Taipei is a BIG deal. This is the largest gay event in all of Asia, so expect to be swarmed with lots of flash and colour when visiting during the event. The Taiwanese pull out all the stops to make it as campy and flashy as possible. With Pride and other LGBTQ events in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the best gay events in Taipei to mark into your calendar.

Gay cruising in Taipei

Outdoor gay cruising in Taipei is not as popular as it used to be. Since the growth in popularity of the gay dating apps over the past decade, outdoor gay cruising has almost disappeared. There are, however, several spots that still retain a reputation for a bit of hanky panky, which our local Taiwanese friends advised us of:

Gay friendly restaurants in Taipei

A gal has got to eat! And what better way to do it than to go to a super authentic place and try some delicious Taiwanese cuisine? With the city bursting with so many different Asian flavours, you’ll be spoiled for choice! We’ve pulled together our favourite top gay restaurants in Taipei, which we recommend you try out:

Best things to do in Taipei

Taipei 101 is, of course, top of the list – the iconic feature of the city’s skyline. The city also has a gay temple (yes you read right!) and a handful of other gems. We’ve put together a selection of our favourite attractions and must-dos in Taipei that we think all LGBTQ travellers should check out:

Gay Singapore Nightlife

Singapore being a serious city means most of the best nightlife takes place on the weekends. The majority of gay bars are located on Neil Road, Chinatown. The area is great for jumping between the bars as they are all so close together. Check out Tantric and May Wong’s Café for some fun gay bars.

The largest gay club in Singapore is Taboo, again located on Neil Road in Chinatown. The venue is best on Fridays and Saturdays, where it draws the biggest crowds. Read the gay Singapore nightlife guide

Gay Singapore Saunas

Singapore has a surprisingly large number of gay saunas, mainly located in Chinatown. Most gay saunas have excellent facilities including fully equipped gyms, steam room well as the mazes, dark rooms and private cabins. Full guide for gay saunas in Singapore

Gay/Lesbian Websites

Most gay/lesbian related websites in Japan are in Japanese.

Here are the most worthwhile and frequently updated sites in English:

Utopia Japan – A wealth of useful information about the gay and lesbian scenes in Japan, especially on gay and lesbian bars throughout a review of the latest Utopia Guide to Japan, Korea & Taiwan

Gay Japan News – A primarily Japanese gay and lesbian news site, but with an English section.

Naked Tokyo – Naked Japanese male celebrities revealed, onsen photos and pics from Japanese naked festivals. This blog is intended for adults who appreciate Japanese male beauty. Daily tantalizing updates!

Queer Samurai Japan for Gay Youth – An amateur site with interesting historical information about homosexuality in Japan, albeit in imperfect English. Excellent list of links for further reading.

BJC’s Gay Life – An amateur, primarily Kansai orientated, site with interesting news and insights into gay Japan. Seemingly no longer updated.

Tokyowrestling – A Japanese English bilingual web magazine focusing on lesbian and queer culture from a Japanese perspective.Tokyowrestling includes interviews, gay event information, insight into J-queer culture and more.

Some foreigner-friendly bars and clubs

(Addresses being notoriously difficult to find, please check bar websites for map where possible.)

Tokyo never sleeps, and neither does its gay scene: alive and well on any day of the week. Centered on Shinjuku ward’s 2-chome (pronounced ’nee-cho-may‘) district, there are nevertheless places to find other men or women throughout the city. Read more on Tokyo’s gay bars

The city of Yokohama is virtually an extension of Tokyo and as such is seriously overshadowed. While most Yokohama boys and girls go to Shinjuku 2-chome – or elsewhere in Tokyo – for the weekend, there is a small local scene. Read more on Yokohama’s gay scene

Nagoya gay bars and clubs

The Metro Club – „The Metro Club“ is an International Gay and Lesbian Dance Party on the second Saturday of every month at LOVER:z, a great new space in Shin Sakae, across the street from the CBC Television Building, right next to the Toyoko Inn. „Well-known, long-running, (since 1993) fun and friendly party!“

Gay/Lesbian useful telephone numbers

Tokyo English Life Line 03-5774-0992 (9am-4pm, 7pm-11pm)

HIV & Human Rights English InfoTokyo 03-5259-0256 (Saturdays only, 11am-2pm)Osaka 0720-43-4105 (Saturday only 1pm-6pm)

Discover Taipei’s gay scene

Join this LGBT+ hipster tour of Taipei to gain an insight into the city’s spiritual and commercial roots while also discovering the local gay scene! You’ll have a gay friendly guide to show you around, with your evening culminating in a fabulous drag show and plenty of time to check out the Xiamen Red House gay bars.

Cho Hotel

The first thing to welcome you as you walk in through the doors of Cho Hotel is the adorable Labrador who hangs around the reception. As dog lovers, we couldn’t get enough of him! He’s also become a sort of celebrity landmark of the hotel.

Of course, we also love the colourful rose mural at the hotel entrance and the many other Instagrammable spots throughout the hotel, from the elegant to the downright kitsch!

Cho Hotel is probably one of the most popular hotels for gay travellers in Taipei as it’s only a few minutes walk from the Ximen Red House gay scene. At least that was our reason for picking it – it strikes the perfect balance in terms of location and affordability. Ximen is not cheap. This is Taipei’s most central area. Prices are expensive and space is super tight, so be warned – the rooms feel a little claustrophobic, we’re not gonna lie!

In the hotel itself, you’ll notice a very rustic vibe. Use of dark greens and browns throughout the interior gives the place an off-the-beaten-track atmosphere. They offer rooms with the basic necessities with some high-comfort luxury, particularly the Japanese-style double rooms. Cho Hotel is also fairly budget-friendly, which is what makes it our top pick for LGBTQ travellers who want to be based minutes walking distance to the gay bars of Taipei.

STAY WITH A GAY LOCAL

Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

GS Gay Hotel

Oozing with Pride through and through, the Gs Gay Hotel is Taipei’s official gay hotel! Each of the rooms is decorated with gay erotica. Let’s just say it is definitely not the kind of place you’d travel to with your parents!

It has more of a hostel feel than a hotel though, with communal showers and places to hang out or play board games. Regardless of whether you’re travelling solo or with a group, you’ll definitely leave here with more friends than before!

Gay is everywhere here, including lots of rainbow colours throughout the lobby areas. Gs is also very lax about clothing, so you can feel free to walk around in the nip! There is also a sauna area, where you can kick back your feet and enjoy a nice detox. This is also only open to people who stay in the hotel, so it never feels too overcrowded. The rooms range from the basic and simple with the bare necessities, to more premium options.

We love that they provide some free amenities, including condoms! The only downside is that it’s quite far from the Ximen Red House gay scene compared to Hotel Cho: Gs Gay Hotel is located in the Songshan District, around 10 minutes walking distance from the nearest metro station. However, if you’re looking for a more intimate and exclusive gay experience, then we definitely recommend it.

Brother Hotel

Looking for something a little more wallet-friendly but still want to treat yourself? Not a problem! Let us introduce you to the Brother Hotel.

What is a real treat about this place is how easy it is to get to. If like us you want to cut down walking distance when dragging around large suitcases (especially after a long 13-hour flight!), the Brother Hotel is right next to the MRT station in the Nanjing Fuxing area. It’s also close to the Liaoning Street Night Market, which is a huge plus for foodies.

One of our gay friends who has been visiting Taipei for over 25 years swears by the Brother Hotel, always insisting on staying here as his base in the city. It’s a very gay friendly hotel with a team of staff who are more than accustomed to LGBTQ travellers, welcoming us with open arms. In terms of in house restaurants, we recommend checking out the Orchid Room, especially if you’re a fan of Oriental food. It’s bloody good!

There are actually seven different places to eat in this hotel, but luckily there’s also a gym so you can try to burn off some of those dumpling calories! Guest rooms are spacious and classy, with comfy beds for a good night’s sleep after exploring the city. They offer an airport shuttle for guests at a small cost, which is also a nice touch. In terms of the gay scene, it takes around 10 minutes by train to get to the Ximen Red House Complex from here.

Amba Taipei Ximending

Another excellent option for LGBTQ travellers who want to be based minutes walking distance to Ximen Red House. It’s also quite a mesmerising building: housed in a massive, pentagon-shaped building shimmering in black metal, you can’t help but feel like a double agent walking through these doors!

Once inside, amba is, in fact, a very hip hotel with its own music lounge, a creative space, 3 different choices for dining and groovy decor throughout.

With 160 rooms, the hotel likes to promote the concept of simple living. All of the room designs are functional and minimalist. They are built to be environmentally friendly, so you can rest easy knowing your carbon footprint is being kept relatively low. Our favourite thing about amba is that it’s a super affordable hotel, located minutes walking distance from the best gay bars of Taipei.

Inside the hotel, you feel super comfortable, as if you’re hiding in a little nook away from all the noise of the outside world. Artists will fall in love with how the hotel features loads of interesting and ingenious works of art on display. The most striking decoration we thought was in the Chiba restaurant, which was surrounded by bookshelves.

Cafe Dalida (Ximen Red House)

It’s glossy. It’s camp. It’s Cafe Dalida! This bar is a busy, booming and boisterous place to visit. We love it here, it was our main go-to gay bar during our time in Taipei. The cocktails are delicious and the waiters super cute, always with a cheeky wink or shy demure smile! It’s also one of the best drag bars in Taipei, with a hilarious show on weekends. Our only tip – if coming on a weekend evening try to book a table as it gets super busy! The crowd here is a mix of foreigners and locals and a great place to quickly make friends, which is what we loved about it the most. Cafe Dalida is located downstairs in the Ximen Red House and is open daily until around 3am.

The Garden (Ximen Red House)

The Garden is the other main gay bar of the gay Ximen Red House area. It’s massive, with a large garden-like outdoor terrace (hence the name). You almost always pass through The Garden when sashaying through the Ximen Red House area because the pathway cuts straight through. Because of this, The Garden always felt to us like the heart and soul of the Red House gay scene. Whilst we love Dalida a lot, The Garden was also a favourite of ours because we were more likely to get a table here during the busy weekend hours. The Garden is located downstairs at the Ximen Red House and is open daily until around 3am.

The Secret Garden (Ximen Red House)

A spin-off from The Garden, located directly above it in the Ximen Red House complex, The Secret Garden is a much smaller bar with standing-only space. It overlooks the Ximen hangout area so it’s a good spot to check out the talent below and get a few shots of Ximen by night. The crowd here was more local compared to the bars downstairs, which we love because Taiwanese gays love meeting and chatting with foreign guys. What sets The Secret Garden apart from all the other gay bars upstairs is that it has a live DJ on most evenings. The Secret Garden is located upstairs in the Ximen Red Hosue and is open daily until around 2am.

Sol Bistro Cafe (Ximen Red House)

Sol is a very popular gay restobar in a more remote corner just by the entrance to the Ximen Red House. We frequently came here for pizza snacks as a break from all the cocktails at Dalida, although they also do some pretty darn good drinks here too! Make sure you try the rainbow coloured “Around the World” cocktail! Sol has a buzzy outdoor terrace space with large wooden tables, attracting all flavours of the LGBTQ family from around the world. Sol Bistro Cafe is located by the entrance to Ximen Red House on Xining Road and is open daily until around 1/2am.

Fairy Bar

When you see a name like Fairy for sure you’re going to go inside right? Especially when their slogan is “It Takes BALLS to be a fairy”! This is a chic cocktail bar on the Eastern side of the city, which gets quite raucous and busy on weekends. We liked it – it’s super hip and quite quirky, with lots of plant decoration that gives it a sort of Mother Nature feel! The crowd is mainly local trendy gay guys in their 20s and 30s. When we came here on a Saturday evening before heading to G*, it was alive and super busy! Look out for their themed parties like “No Pants Day” and the “Fairy KIKI Ball”. Fairy Bar is located at 51 Lane 308, Guangfu South Road and is open daily until around 3am.

Bacio

Bacio is the Italian word for “kiss”, and the ethos of this cute place is to spread the love…and they sure do a great job of spreading the love with their sexy team of GoGo dancers that surface later in the evening! Bacio is more of an after-work drinks hangout, particularly popular with local gay guys. The music is a mix of pop chart music with some Kpop thrown in, which we LIVE for! On weekends they have fun disco nights like our favourite, “It’s Britney B*tch!”. Like Fairy Bar, Baccio is also located in the Eastern side of Taipei, making it a handy place to go for pre-drinks before heading to G* to party. Bacio is found at No. 11, Lane 160, Section 1, Dunhua South Road and is open daily until around 3am.

G*star Club

G*star is why we love the Taipei gay scene. Every time we came here it was always a fun evening, especially on Saturdays. We always make a whole bunch of new friends, both locals and fellow gay travellers. As it’s the main gay club of Taipei, everyone out ‘on the scene‘ will eventually make their way here. The music is everything we love about gay clubs – loads of cheesy pop classics with some K pop hits thrown into the mix. They usually have a few shows around midnight which include drag queens, cabaret and GoGo dancers. When the shows are finished, the entire stage downstairs becomes one large dancing space. Upstairs is a more chilled seating area which overlooks the stage below also a handy spot to cruise the talent below! G*star is located at No. 23, Long Jiang Rd and is open daily until around 5am.

Werk! at Triangle

Once a month, you can really let it loose at Werk! It happens on the 3rd Saturday of each month as well as at special times of the year like Pride in October. Remember Taipei Pride is a big deal here – it’s the largest gay event in all of Asia, and Werk! puts on one hell of a show for it! As it’s only a monthly event, they go all out, featuring the best DJs, drag shows and plenty of hunky GoGo dancers. The crowd is usually a mix of locals and foreigners aged in their 20s and 30s. The Werk! party happens at Triangle which is located at No. 1 Yumen Street. Check their Facebook page for precise details of their next event.

Gay Parties at B1

B1 is a straight club that is famous for its gay parties called Blush and C.U.M. This is more of an electro music-type club in an underground location. Blush is an event inspired by a Burlesque theme from Berlin or Paris featuring drag shows and famous live DJs. The party has such a famous nickname (ahem!) that its reputation surpasses it because of this! Despite the nickname, it’s a very innocent and super fun pop-inspired night out welcoming all genders. B1 is located at 198 Section 3, Civic Boulevard and is only open on Fridays and Saturdays until around 5am.

Taipei Mega Dragon Boat Circuit Festival (June)

Set sail aboard Asia’s best gay party! This festival takes place across 3 days on the second weekend of June during the Taipei Boat Festival. It is a mix of pool parties, circuit parties with tons of half-naked men and some of the hottest names in the Asian show-business. The highlight is the Sunday Afternoon Pool Party, which sees everyone strip down to their underwear, partying in the waters and enjoying performances from live DJs.

Taipei Gay Pride (October)

The biggest gay event in Taiwan is undoubtedly Taipei Gay Pride with 200,000 people participating, making it Asia’s biggest gay event. It culminates with a wonderful parade on the last Saturday in October. It’s a guaranteed blast and worth scheduling your visit to coincide with it. Some of the best gay parties of Taiwan take place during Taipei Pride, in particular, and the .

New Year’s Eve (December)

Whilst there are no official gay events taking place during New Year’s Eve in Taipei, you can bet your bottom dollar the Ximen Red House will be alive and buzzing more than ever! NYE in Taipei is famous for being one of the best gay party destinations in all of Asia alongside Bangkok. The Ximen Red House has an official countdown, after which the entire area transforms into one amazing giant gay street party.

Rainbow Six crossing / the gender crossing

When it comes to LGBTQ rights, Taiwan is leading the pack in Asia. To celebrate its victorious legislation of same-sex marriage in 2019 (the first country in Asia to do so), Taipei painted a massive rainbow crossing in the heart of the city. With the assistance of various organisations, the brightly coloured spot came to be affectionately named the “the Rainbow Six” crossing. You can find it just outside the exit of the Ximen MRT Station, close to the entrance to the Ximen Red House gay area. We (obviously!) loved coming here to get lots of rainbow crossing pics for our Instagram…think of this as our gay version of the Beatles‘ Abbey Road album cover!

Rabbit Gay Temple

Taiwan is so gay, they even have a gay deity with a temple in its honour! The Rabbit Gay Temple was built to commemorate Tu’er Shen (The Rabbit God), who is a Chinese deity that is said to manage the love and relationships between same-sex partners. So of course, we simply had to visit! It was founded in 2006 by Lu Wei-ming and gets visited by 9,000 gay pilgrims each year. It is particularly popular for those folk who are single and ready to mingle – as the spirit of the Rabbit God helps those looking for love. As the world’s only shrine for an LGBTQ god, we think this is must-see for all gay travellers to Taipei.

Beitou Hot Springs

If you’re not into one of the gay hot springs we recommend above, we suggest checking out the public baths at the Beitou Hot Springs. It’s full of locals coming for their daily bathe in various pools each with different temperatures. See how long you last in the hot hot hot pool before your skin turns red and you feel you’re cooking…Seby lasted a whole 5 minutes before running out to cool down in the ice-cold bath! We recommend bringing speedos (NOT swimming shorts – they’re very strict about this!), a towel and flip flops. As you’re here, we also recommend checking out the Beitou Thermal Valley next door (where the photo was taken), where you can see the rising steam from the hot sulphuric water rising with the pretty valley behind. One way to get the most out of a day trip to Beitou is to join this tour to the springs and nearby volcano.

228 Peace Park

The Peace Park is not only gorgeous but it has a notorious gay history. This park used to be one of the most popular cruising grounds of Taipei before the gay dating apps all but killed off the outdoor cruising scene. It is also the inspiration and setting for Pai Hsien-yung’s classic novel, “Crystal Boys”. We liked coming to the Peace Park as a place to chill on a sunny day with a group of friends, a picnic and a few beers. The LGBTQ history of the Peace Parks continues to this day, with its grey gates temporarily painted the colours of the rainbow to honour its strong historical affinity to the LGBTQ community. Also, be sure to check out the Peace Park monument, which was built to not only commemorate the victims of the White Terror, but has also become a memorial site for Taiwan’s LGBTQ community.

The GinGin Store

Want to do more to support the local gay population? Want to see what is happening at the ground level? Then coming to the GinGin Store should be on your list. Not only is it a bookstore (which is always a win!) but it has a great ethos that has helped support gay men in Taiwan for decades. Even if you look at their branding, it is all about inclusivity. The Chinese characters that spell the name GinGin Store are made up of 6 suns, which translate to “Glorious” and “Shining”. Couple this with the abundant rainbow colours found all over the front porch and you’re sure to realise that this is a very gay friendly place to visit!

Stefan Arestis

Stefan is the co-founder, editor, and author of the gay travel blog As a travel nerd, he has explored more than 80 countries across 5 continents. What he loves the most about traveling is discovering the local gay scene, making new friends, and learning new cultures. His advice about LGBTQ travel has been featured in Gaycation Magazine, Gaycities, Gay Times, Pink News, and Attitude Magazine. He has also written about gay travel for other non-gay-specific publications including Lonely Planet, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The Huffington Post. Stefan is also a qualified lawyer, having practiced as a commercial property litigator in London for over 10 years. He left his lawyer days behind to work full time on Nomadic Boys with his husband Sebastien. Find out more .

Amazing change! When I was there in 2006, gay scene was totally underground… literally!

Amazing what can happen in the space of 10 years eh? Here’s to hoping we see a similar transition to other places around Asia over the next 10 years!

Yes, I had also heard about Taiwan and they are really supportive of Gay rights. Taiwanese have the most forward-thinking. Ximending district is also the best place for the LGBTQ you so much for sharing detailed list of gay-friendly hotels.

Hello, Bonjour and Welcome to our travel blog. We are Stefan and Sebastien a French/Greek gay couple from London. Together, we have been travelling the world for over 10 years. Nomadic Boys is our gay travel blog showcasing all our travel adventures as a gay couple.

Bars | | Articles | Guide

Over the past 10 years, Singapore has up its game. Chinatown hosts a great range of LGBT bars, clubs, and saunas. From fancy cocktails in Dorothy’s to dark mazes in ShoGun.

Getting tested in Singapore

HIV infection rate among gay men living in Singapore is estimated to be 5%. Condom and lube are stocked in most convenience stores and supermarkets across Singapore.

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How to get there: Taiwan is an island, so you’ll most likely be getting to Taipei by flying into the Taoyuan International Airport. From there it’s very easy to get into the city centre via train, bus or taxi, although we personally prefer to pre-book a private airport transfer when we’re arriving in a new city. That way we don’t have to try to juggle luggage on public transport and we know a professional English-speaking guide will be waiting for us no matter how late our flight may arrive.

Visa requirements: Travellers to Taiwan from quite a few countries, like the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia and all members of the EU can visit the country visa-free for up to 90 days. As always, make sure you check your personal visa requirements before making any arrangements to visit Taipei.

Getting around: Taipei has an excellent public transport system to get around the city. We found the MRT trains the easiest way to get around, they’re fast, clean, cheap and efficient. You can also rent bikes from one of 400 YouBike stations if you want to explore while getting some exercise. Here’s a more detailed guide to transport in Taipei for you to check out.

Power Plugs: In Taiwan, the power plugs/sockets used are of types A and B, which are found in many areas throughout Asia, along with Canada and the United States. If you are travelling to Taipei from another country then you will need to bring a travel adaptor with you.

Travel insurance: All travellers to Taipei should make sure they have adequate travel insurance, because you just never know when you might miss a flight, get sick or have something else not go according to plan. as we’ve been using them for years and they offer affordable, comprehensive cover. It’s also very easy to make a claim online if something does go wrong.

Vaccinations: All travellers to Taiwan should be up to date on routine vaccinations like measles, mumps and rubella. Most travellers should also get vaccinated against hepatitis A, while some may need to be vaccinated against hepatitis B, rabies and Japanese Encephalitis, depending on what you will be doing. Make sure you check the CDC website and speak with your doctor before making any bookings for your trip to Taipei.

Currency: The currency used in Taipei (and the rest of Taiwan) is the New Taiwan dollar. The code for the New Taiwan dollar is TWD and the symbol used is NT$. Currently, US$1 converts to about NT$30, €1 is worth about NT$32.38 and £1 will give you about NT$35.

Tipping culture: Taiwan is not a country with a strong tipping culture, so you don’t need to feel obliged to tip anywhere in Taipei. Even taxi drivers will probably be surprised if you offer for them to keep the change! A service charge is usually included in a restaurant bill as well, so there’s no need for tipping at all.

Internet access: There are many free WiFi spots throughout Taiwan, although you will need a local phone number in order to register and use these. We personally find it a lot easier to rent a pocket WiFi device when we’re travelling as you can connect multiple devices at the same time. We’ve even written a whole to help you figure it all out before you get to Taipei.

Online privacy: While Taiwan is quite progressive by Asian standards, you might still want to keep your online history private, especially if you plan to use gay dating apps like Grindr or Scruff while you’re in Taipei. We like to use ExpressVPN when we travel as it’s a reliable and affordable way to keep our online activities completely private.

Accommodation: Whenever we travel to Taipei, we use to find accommodation with the best prices. Their online booking system is very easy to use and they offer free cancellation on many properties. You can also access their excellent online customer support team 24/7.

Sightseeing and adventure: Another one of our favourite companies we use while travelling is . They offer many fun activities to choose from in locations around the world, especially in Taipei! The online booking process is very simple and they also have fantastic 24/7 customer support.

When to visit: Unless you are timing your visit for one of the gay events in Taipei, we think the best time to visit is between March and May. During this time (the country’s spring) the temperature is not too hot or cold, and the trees will still be covered in beautiful blossoms. Taipei gets monsoons and typhoons between June – October, so we’d recommend avoiding travel during this hot, humid summer season.

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