*Note: This article was originally published on Pride Pocket prior to merging with MyUmbrella*
Italy boasts some of the best travel destinations in the world, from food, the coast, its culture, and history, there is something that every traveler falls in love with.
This LGBTQ+ inclusive, ‘safety first’ travel guide will give you the 411 so that you can get down to the business of vacationing in Italia.
What is the prevailing national sentiment regarding LGBTQ+ issues?
While homosexuality is legal (over the age of 16) and even widely accepted, Italy is notably conservative in its attitudes, largely keeping in line with the historical views of the Vatican. Overt displays of affection by LGBT couples can attract a negative response, especially in smaller towns.
Do not despair! There are thriving LGBTQ+ venues in Rome, Milan and Bologna, and a handful in places such as Florence and Naples. Some coastal towns and resorts (such as the Tuscan town of Viareggio or Taormina in Sicily) are popular gay holiday spots in the summer and can be easily accessed with the help of travel agents and all-inclusive packages.
Should I take any regionally specific safety precautions?
It is in your best interest to be aware of your surroundings whenever traveling. If you’re in a widely populated metro area, especially in any of the cities mentioned above, you’re in good shape to behave as you normally might. If you’re in a small town, touring religious sites, or in a ‘local hotspot’ be careful of conspicuous displays of affection.
What are the best ways to get there?
Of the airlines that are known to be inclusive for queer travelers, Scandinavian Air, Delta, American Airlines, and JetBlue are often pointed out as fan favorites, but it is worth noting that Delta has added additional summer flights to Italy in its schedule this year.
Where can we stay when we arrive?
Research is going to be your best friend on this one. There is a LOT of Italy to see. More than enough for several trips. Check out these resources for some verified LGBTQ inclusive accommodations to jump-start your search:
What activities are inclusive/safe?
With so many wonderful options in Italy, you may find yourself seeking professional help with the itinerary making. We’ve included resources for the DIY traveler, as well as those of us who are ready to say, “take it off my hands”.
Yeah, we thought you might.
ADDITIONAL RESOURCES (Some sites will require translation)
What Not To Do In Rome!
Arcigay (www.arcigay.it) Bologna-based national organization for the LGBT community.
Circolo Mario Mieli (www.mariomieli.org) Rome-based cultural center that organizes debates, cultural events and social functions, including Gay Pride.
Coordinamento Lesbiche Italiano (CLR; www.clrbp.it) The national organization for lesbians, holding regular conferences, literary evenings, and other cultural special events.
Gay.it (www.gay.it) Website featuring LGBT news, feature articles, and gossip.
Pride (www.prideonline.it) Culture, politics, travel, and health with an LGBT focus.
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