The truth is, planning a vacation to LGBT gay travel destinations might take a little more thought. We don’t necessarily want to go somewhere we will get uncomfortable stares or have to field ignorant questions. Thankfully these instances are less common than a decade ago, but they are still factors when deciding upon LGBT Family travel ideas.
When the girls were little, we began traveling the world with them. Their first trip abroad was to England and France when they were just five and seven years old. It was a grand adventure for us all, and we also observed more than a few side-eye glances. It’s wonderful that now we would never experience that in most places. But still, some destinations are just more comfortable for us than others.
We all know gay travel doesn’t mean we have to be exclusively with other gay people, but sometimes we just want to know we won’t be the only ones. This is why I started a gay family travel blog in the first place! We want to know we probably won’t get asked, “where’s mom this weekend?” or “is it dads’ turn to babysit tonight?”. Ugh! We want to go to destinations where our family stands out because of our colorful outfit choices and fabulous personalities. Not because of who we love. Being accepted is something everyone wants, and LGBT families are no different.
5 Best LGBT Family Travel Destinations for Winter 2021
LGBT family trips offer the same benefits as hetro family trips. We take these vacations to explore and learn, to have fun and relax and to make memories with our kids. We usually aren’t looking to make a political or social statement when booking a high floor or ordering a margarita.
If you are wondering where to go for some really good LGBT family travel destinations this winter, check out the cities below.
1. Ft. Lauderdale, FL
You want to head to the beach? Go about 50 miles north of Miami to find a more relaxing, family-friendly and progressive beachfront community. Ft. Lauderdale occupies a beautiful part of south Florida on the Atlantic Ocean. It’s easy to get to and there are tons of different accommodation options. Travel Channel says “the city also thrives with fun gay bars and restaurants, such as Hamburger Mary’s, a great place to start or end the night”. Also, as the rest of the country hunkers down in the cold, Ft. Lauderdale has a winter better suited for shorts and tank tops than hats and boots.
Where to stay: The Pelican Grand Beach Resort
This family-friendly resort sits on a 500-food private section of beach. Kids will love the zero entry pool and the only lazy river in Ft. Lauderdale. The resort is located on the northern, more quiet end of the beach. It’s a relaxing destination filled with sun, sand and salty air.
Click the link to get information and rates on the Pelican Grand Beach Resort.
2. Phoenix, AZ
Phoenix, Arizona is one of the fastest growing cities in the US. It’s now the sixth largest city in the country with a young, educated population and some of the most beautiful desert scenery anywhere. Despite Arizona as a whole turning more conservative, Phoenix remains open and hospitable to a variety of diverse families. Desert winter nights can be cool but the brilliant blue warm sun during the day makes up for the evening chilliness. The is such a great destination for LGBT family travel, or even a great LGBT vacation spot if you decide to leave the kiddos home.
Where to stay: Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort
This upscale family-friendly southwestern resort features a four-acre water park, mini golf course and tennis courts. They have a half-mile lazy river, 130-foot water slide, and several gigantic swimming pools. Families will enjoy the spacious suites or one- or two-bedroom casitas. Trivago named this resort as one of the best LGBT family vacation destinations.
Follow the link for rates and more info on the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort.
3. Saugatuck, Michigan
The coasts are not the only places to go for the best LGBT family travel. For example Saugatuck, Michigan, where locals have welcomed LGBT families with open arms for decades. Because of it’s creative, open roots, Saugatuck has become one of the most gay-friendly small towns in Michigan. You’ll find over 140 gay-owned and LGBTQ-friendly businesses and an inclusivity not often associated with small Midwestern towns. While most often thought of as a summer destination, families can come to Saugatuck in the winter too. Visitors can explore traditional Midwestern outdoor activities like snowshoeing, or cross country ski over the snow-covered dunes.
Where to stay: Goshorn Lake Family Resort
This Michigan resort is the closest thing you’ll get to reliving Dirty Dancing as you can get. Set on Goshorn Lake, this resort has the feel of a summer camp. The Goshorn Lake Family Resort is lively and fun, full of old school activities and families looking to make some awesome memories.
Coming without the kids? Stay at The Dunes Resort. Which is one of the country’s largest LGBTQ resorts. However, it is only for adults 21+.
4. San Francisco, CA
Well, duh. Travel and Leisure once named this vibrant city as America’s best city for gay travel and not hard to see why. It has long been a gay mecca and travel destination. The first rainbow flags flew here in 1978, and the current giant rainbow flag here is a great selfie destination. While here, check out the Castro, the city’s epicenter of gay culture or learn more about the movement at the GLBT History Museum. San Francisco is also home to many kid-friendly attractions LGBT families (and all families) will enjoy. A family visit here should include Golden Gate Park, Exploratorium: The Museum of Science, the Children’s Creativity Museum, the Aquarium of the Bay, and of course Alcatraz Island. Besides, it’s sort of a rite of passage to bring your family here!
Where to stay: Beck’s Motor Lodge
You can stay in any national-brand name hotel visiting other cities, but when coming to San Francisco for LGBT Family travel, why not stay in the heart of the Castro neighborhood where the idea of gay rights were born? This vintage motel is colorful and casual with upgraded decor and a cool vibe. The double queen room would work well for most families. Some of our favorite hotels including the Huntington Hotel and the Stanford Court Hotel have sadly closed temporarily during this Covid-19 pandemic. But do check out those hotels when they are back open, because they are both stunning.
Find out more about the quirky and fun Beck’s Motor Lodge here.
5. Paris, France
I mean…do I have to give you any reasons to take a LGBT family vacation to Paris? It’s been a stylish gay mecca for centuries (For example, look at the gay stories from the Court of King Louis XIV as a starter!) It is the first European capital to elect an openly gay mayor and has a very large gay community. Also, the International Lesbian & Feminist Film Festival is held in Paris each year. Plus, 30 km away is Disneyland Paris! Disney recently reiterated their stance to represent the LGBT audience, commit to diversity and has been adding openly gay characters in feature films.
Where to stay: Fraser Suites Le Claridge Champs-Elysées
In a city not known for its massive variety of LGBT family travel lodging, this hotel offers fully-equipped spacious 1 and 2-bedroom suites for short or long-term stays that sleep 4 to 6 people. Take your kids up the Eiffel Tower, eat some of the best croissants in the world, and explore the City of Lights from this central location. If you do take the kids, don’t miss the creepy catacombs tours if they’re into the whole scary story/vampire/gore kinda thing.
Here’s more on staying at Fraser Suites Le Claridge Champs-Elysées.
LGBT Family Travel: Plan Now!
LGBT family travel is what you make it. If you are itching to head out to a friendly spot in winter 2021, these destinations could be your next vacation site. The only question is which one will you go to first?