Greece is one of the most popular LGBTQIA+ holiday destinations in the world, with a long history of same-sex relationships dating back to the Greek poet Sappho. Though same-sex marriage is not legal, marriages performed in the EU have been recognised since 2018 and discrimination against sexual orientation or gender identity is banned by law.
There are several destinations in Greece that are renowned for their LGBTQIA+ scenes.
Athens’s queer scene is concentrated in Gazi, a neighbourhood in the inner west of the city near the Kerameikos metro station, as well as nearby Metaxougio. These formerly industrial areas are perhaps best described as Berlin-esque, with clubs, tavernas, galleries and an astonishing range of bars. Avdi Square and Agrias Irinis are popular spots to hang out before hitting the clubs.
LGBTQIA+ in the islands
The Greek Islands have been a popular getaway for the LGBTQIA+ community for years now and their reputation precedes them.
Mykonos is undoubtedly the jewel in the queer scene’s Greek crown. The legendary party island is one of the most gay-friendly destinations in the world and its winding streets are packed with gay bars and clubs that stay open until dawn.
The island of Lesvos, which is in the east of the Aegean Sea and right next to Turkey, has become a pilgrimage of sorts thanks to the passionate words of the Greek poet Sappho. She died in the 6th century but has become famous for her lyrical poems often focusing on the relationships between women. Greece’s third-largest island, Lesvos, hosts the International Eressos Women’s Festival every September in the village of Sappho’s birth, Skala Eresou.