Forget the Euro crisis, Europe is forever. Especially with destinations that are heavy on the charm and eager to please: Copenhagen, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Antwerp, Germany, and Zurich. Our passport's getting woozy just thinking about it.
Already renowned for their commitment to LGBT equality in politics and policy, these select six are also at the height of the gay tourism game, offering up a choice of urban delights and culture-rich events to entice the traveler well into fall. But don't just take our word for it. We've polled notable gay locals, from a lauded fashion designer to expat chefs, on the hidden picks that make their city so imminently fit for a visit.
So is it cocktails aside the Limmat as the sun sets over the Swiss Alps that's calling your name? Or white-hot gastronomic delights in Copenhagen's cradle of modernist cuisine? The world's gayest museum in East Berlin? A bell-ringing bike ride past windmills and canals in Amsterdam? Fine fashion and even finer Belgium chocolate (but not too much)? Or the midnight sun, and the nude sunbathers that worship it, in downtown Stockholm? We've got the guides to make sure you do it right. But with these six, there's really no way to go wrong.
- AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND With an exuberant wave of top chefs, designers, and futuristic architects, along with whole new neighborhoods, Amsterdam flexes the brawn that originally pulled it out of the sea.
- ANTWERP, FLANDERS With a fired-up fashion scene and striking new developments, primely positioned Antwerp beats out Bruges and Brussels as the gay heart of Flanders, Belgium's Dutch speaking northern half.
- COPENHAGEN, DENMARK Danes rank as some of the happiest folks on earth. And with a capital chock full of cutting-edge design, white-hot gastronomy, and an overtly charming populace, what's not to smile about?
- GERMANYStrategically placed at the heart of the continent, from Cologne to Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt and Hamburg, Germany is a gay traveler's Euro wunderland.
- STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN From divine denim to fanged heartthrobs, Swedish culture is a covetable import, but no hotter than its source: Stockholm, a trendsetting capital as accessible as ABBA.
- ZURICH, SWITZERLAND Connecting lovely landscape and urban action, "Downtown Switzerland" is the locale of choice for Swiss seeking style, substance, and a huge range of options for getting their gay on.