Vietnam is a relatively hassle-free destination for LGBTQI-travellers. In recent years, the country has made positive strides recognising the role of the LGBTQI community. Same-sex relationships and same-sex sexual acts are legal, and a ban on same-sex marriages was lifted in in January 2015. Viet Pride marches take place in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and gay characters appear in mainstream television and films. That said, it is far from a gay utopia. Vietnam remains a socially conservative nation and many continue to hide their sexuality from their families. And while same-sex marriages are no longer illegal, they are not legally recognised either.

Travellers, however, are typically exempt from social stigma and usually find Vietnam to be an extremely hospitable and welcoming destination. While displays of affection will likely draw disapproving glares, the same holds true for straight couples. As long as LGBTQI-travellers display some discretion and respect local culture, they will have no problem visiting Vietnam. Just don’t expect to see many rainbow flags hanging from gay-only venues – the low-key gay scene found in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi is largely limited to gay-friendly and gay-owned establishments.

Crossing the road in Ho Chi Minh City

Queer culture in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)

The most populous city in Vietnam boasts a number of bars, restaurants, saunas and hotels that are gay-friendly. The largest gay club, Republic, features a drag show each Friday, live music on Saturdays and a large dance floor. Full Disclosure puts on raucous monthly themed-LGBT parties with live music, drag shows and DJs that go late into the night. Gay-friendly parties can also be found at La Fenetre Soleil (44 Ly Tu Trong). Check their Facebook page for details. Whiskey and Wares is another popular bar owned by American and Vietnamese partners that serves up whiskey, craft beer and some great cocktails in a small trendy space. Located on De Tham, it attracts a mix of gay and straight expats, locals and travellers.

A busy street in Hanoi.

Queer culture in Hanoi

The gay scene in the capital is more low-key than Ho Chi Minh City. GC Bar is the best-known and longest running gay bar in Hanoi. Located within walking distance from the Old Quarter, it gets packed on Friday and Saturday nights. Savage, an underground electronic music club, also hosts popular monthly gay nights.

The city boasts some well-located gay-friendly hotels, including Art Hotel, Trendy Hotel and Artisan Boutique Hotel. Viet Pride festivities are biggest in Hanoi, where LGBTQI film screenings, panel discussions and other various events accompany the annual bicycle pride parade.

Check Utopia Asia for a more complete and up-to-date list of LGBTQI-friendly establishments in Vietnam.

Click to return to Vietnam FAQs

Our Vietnam Tours

10 Days From $1,113

Travel from historic Hanoi to modern Ho Chi Minh City. Tour down the Mekong, visit...

18 Days From $2,470

Travel into the heart and soul of Indochina on this comprehensive tour of Vietnam and...

9 Days From $870

Travel through Cambodia from Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam to Bangkok in Thailand on an...

13 Days From $1,406

Experience the Asia of old on a family adventure that captures the spirit of Vietnam....

10 Days From $1,336

Travel to Vietnam and see the ultimate Ho Chi Minh tourist spots. Visit hidden Hanoi...

21 Days From $3,640

Two countries in one go! Enjoy a cocktail of experiences from the hustle and bustle in...

10 Days From $1,465

Hike, bike and kayak across Vietnam on this active tour based out of Hanoi. Visit the...

15 Days From $2,506

Jump in the saddle for a two-wheeled adventure tour of Vietnam. Take in cultural...

12 Days From $806

Travel from Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City on a journey of discovery. Uncover the...

13 Days From $1,965

Experience Vietnamese customs and charms on a 13-day family adventure from Hanoi to Ho...

15 Days From $911

Discover Vietnam and all its wonders on this exciting two-week tour. Uncover hidden...

11 Days From $864

Delve into Vietnamese culture on this 11-day journey from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City....

12 Days From $2,065

Travel the breadth of Vietnam, from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, experiencing tranquil...

15 Days From $2,412

Uncover the proud, spirited heart of Vietnam on this classic adventure. Tour to Halong...

15 Days From $1,417

Travel to Vietnam and experience the beauty of this incredible region of Indochina....

9 Days From $1,044

Follow the Angkor trails on a trip to Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. Explore the...

12 Days From $806

Travel to Cambodia on an Intrepid adventure from Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok. Explore...

8 Days From $1,570

From Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi, discover the delights of one of South-East Asia's...

23 Days From $5,890

From Vietnam to Cambodia, discover incredible diversity, delectable cuisines, dramatic...

18 Days From $2,223

Jump on this adventurous three-week journey to see the very best of Cambodia and...

13 Days From $2,511

See Southeast Asia from two wheels on this 13-day adventure from Ho Chi Minh to Bangkok...

20 Days From $2,601

From bustling Ho Chi Minh City to historical Hanoi, the Best of Vietnam tour is an...

17 Days From $3,830

Journey through the highlights of Cambodia and Vietnam, experiencing local life,...

26 Days From $1,891

Experience Indochina on a trip through Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. Journey through...

22 Days From $1,670

Explore Indochina on a trip through Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. Travel from Hanoi...

30 Days From $4,203

Travel into the heart and soul of Indochina on this comprehensive tour of Thailand,...

13 Days From $3,390

Uncover the dramatic histories of these two beautiful countries on a trip through the...

23 Days From $2,875

Explore vibrant Vietnam, charismatic Cambodia and beguiling Bangkok on this awesome...

11 Days From $1,282

Experience the boundlessly welcoming and friendly nature of the ethnic hill tribe...

19 Days From $3,290

Explore southern and central Vietnam’s lush highlands, hidden villages and charming...

9 Days From $1,480

Get the most out of your family getaway by cycling, kayaking, walking and cruising...

20 Days From $4,297

On this comfort trip get to know two noisy siblings forever linked in both culture and...

15 Days From $3,015

Combine the excitement of Vietnam with the friendly warmth of Cambodia for an exotic...

35 Days From $3,568

Embark on an epic journey to explore the best of Indochina. Venture out from Bangkok -...

22 Days From $3,258

Indochina Uncovered snakes its way through the delights of Thailand, Laos and Vietnam,...

16 Days From $2,980

Experience the sights, smells and tastes of Southeast Asia on a family tour through...

5 Days From $387

Trek through Vietnam's mountainous region in the north-west to experience hiltribe...

10 Days From $1,917

Travel from Hoi An to Hanoi, spending time in the old imperial city of Hue, the...

18 Days From $2,690

From Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, explore Cambodia's fascinating history and impressive...

12 Days From $2,128

Experience the eclectic allure of China on this adventure from Hanoi to Hong Kong....

27 Days From $5,095

Gear up for an energising and rewarding cycling tour that takes in the best of...

10 Days From $941

Trek through lush forests, discover colourful histories and break bread with ethnic...

4 Days From $495

See the contrasts of city and river life around Ho Chi Minh City on this exciting short...

10 Days From $1,495

Travel from historic Hanoi to modern Ho Chi Minh City with a group of solo travellerse....

2 Days From $292

Cast away on a traditional junk boat and set sail through hundreds of limestone karsts...

2 Days From $275

Venture into the lush environs of Mai Chau and enjoy two days of cycling through remote...

3 Days From $420

Treat your tastebuds to a whole new world of flavour in Hanoi on this bite-sized food...

21 Days From $4,490

Travel from Hanoi down and over to Siem Reap, seeing the landmark attractions,...

2 Days From $227

See local industry, beautiful islands and what life is like along the mighty Mekong...

9 Days From $1,460

Get the most out of your family getaway by cycling, kayaking, walking and cruising...