There are many small towns in the United States that are known for their welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for LGBTQ+ individuals. Some of the best LGBTQ+ friendly small towns include:
For almost a century, the LGBTQ+ community has been flocking to Provincetown. Located on the tip of Cape Cod, Provincetown, also known as “P-Town”, has a vibrant spirit and history. You can find great shopping, amazing dining, and endless queer bars and hotels to choose from. The town also hosts some of the best LGBTQ+ events in the country.
There are many wonderful vacation towns in California, but Guerneville has been frequented by the LGBTQ+ community for decades. Situated about an hour outside of San Francisco and Silicon Valley, it’s the perfect place to go if you’re looking to get in touch with nature. And even though it’s a small town, they have the Rainbow Cattle Company, a gay bar that’s been open this 1979!
Wilton Manors, Florida
Wilton Manors has the second largest per capita LGBTQ+ population in the country, just after Provincetown, MA. There are plenty of queer-owned businesses, gay bars, and LGBTQ+ events throughout the year. In 1988, Wilton Manors even elected its first openly gay official, which was very progressive at the time.
Situated conveniently close to Boston and Portland, Ogunquit is a gorgeous coastal town and a popular LGBTQ+ destination. Even though its a small town, many of the businesses in town are queer-owned and operated! Also, the entire town is only four square miles, making it one of the most walkable cities in the US. You get great beaches, incredible shopping, friendly people, and a relaxing setting. It’s the perfect weekend getaway!
Aspen has been a popular LGBTQ+ vacation destination since the mid-1970s. Annually, Aspen hosts the Aspen Gay Ski Week, which has become the most popular week-long ski event in the nation. But Aspen’s offerings extend beyond winter sports. It’s an incredibly beautiful destination that can be enjoyed year-round!
Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Eureka Springs is known as the “Bible Belt’s LGBTQ+ oasis” and “and oasis of inclusiveness and diversity.” With a population of only about 2,000 people, the town, impressively, hosts three diversity events annually. Eureka Springs was also the first city from any Southern state that allowed for same-sex couples to be lawfully married! “Our secret’s out,” says the Eureka Springs Gay Business Guild, “not even our streets are straight!”
Asheville, North Carolina
Asheville is located by the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains and it’s one of North Carolina’s most progressive cities. This mid-sized city boasts a vibrant arts scene, great nightlife, endless outdoor activities, and welcoming people. Beyond that, there are lots of safe spaces for the LGBTQ+ community to gather, such as the many breweries and farm-to-table restaurants!
Overall, these small towns are known for their welcoming and inclusive atmosphere for LGBTQ+ individuals, and are great places to live, work, and visit.
by Anna Harissis