Miami To-Do List for LGBTQ Travelers
South Florida is home to a large LGBTQ+ community, with lots of events to experience. Check out our to-do list of festivals, beaches and bars you won't want to miss.
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Each February, 4Ward Miami brings the Gay8 Festival to Little Havana, the largest LGBTQ Hispanic Festival in the nation. The festival features live performances, dancing, street food, film showcases, award shows and the 4Ward Americas Symposium, an international human rights conference with activists from all over the world. Entering its eighth year in October, Celebrate Orgullo is South Florida’s first Hispanic LGBTQ Pride Festival, presenting an international artists showcase, bus tours, music, human rights campaigns, costume exhibits and more. Whether you're a traveler or a resident of South Florida, these festivals are definitely something to check out to experience the breadth of Hispanic LGBTQ culture.
Winter Party Festival
What started as a small, single event in 1994, is now a week-long festival from February to March that includes dozens of events, drawing in thousands from all over the globe. The Winter Party Festival is run by the National LGBTQ Task Force, and features dancing, entertainment and live music by international DJs from top venues throughout Miami Beach. Not only is the festival a way to celebrate the LGBT community, but the funds they raise from the festival play a role in promoting justice and equality for people all over the nation, and their fundraising efforts give back to advocacy groups in South Florida.
Outshine Film Festival
The Outshine Film Festival is a bi-annual festival in April and October that features international and culturally diverse films, videos and other media formats that provide varied perspectives on the LGBTQ experience.
Gay Pride Festival
Miami Beach Gay Pride is a two-day event in April that celebrates with a beach party and a parade that runs through Ocean Drive along the Art Deco District. It’s the largest two-day event of the year in Miami, bringing in about 80,000 people from all over the nation. It features more than 125 gay-friendly vendors, live celebrity performances, food and family-friendly events. One of the biggest LGBTQ events in Miami, the festival welcomes people of all ages and communities to join the celebration of the LGBTQ community.
Out in the Tropics Festival
In its ninth year, Out in the Tropics celebrates poetry, painters, Brazilian theater performances, micro-theater plays and a folklorist musician for the whole month of June. This program of multi-disciplinary performance art gives a stage to international performers to pay tribute to LGBTQ contributions in the performing arts. It also focuses on Miami’s diverse community, highlighting Hispanic arts and cultural performances.
Aqua Girl Festival
The largest lesbian women’s charity event in the country, Aqua Girl attracts thousands of women from all over the world in September to celebrate women and their lives with dancing, swimming, performances and more. This all-women festival also includes wellness events such as yoga and meditation classes, as well as pool parties and their signature dance event, Girltopia - The Future is Female.
The White Party invites the South Florida community to enjoy a night in white in November at Vizcaya Museum and Gardens. Guests will enjoy live performances, a community awards ceremony, an open bar and more. Since 1985, the White Party has raised millions for Care Resource, a not-for-profit community-based healthcare organization that has served all of South Florida for over 30 years. General admission and VIP tickets are available for sale, and the funds raised from the party support programs and services at Care Resource.
The Villain Theater is an improv theater that aims to foster local actors and performers. A training center for improvisational acting and standup comedy, the theater produces shows three times a week with a variety of performances, including fully improvised musicals and comedy shows. With one of the most affordable training centers in Florida, the company consists of more than 50 local actors, and it features Yas! an all LGBTQ+ improv group.
Great Stays: Hotel Gaythering and Dream South Beach
Located just steps away from local restaurants and shops on Lincoln Road, Hotel Gaythering caters specifically to gay travelers and guests. Offering a unique, locavore experience, the hotel features spacious rooms, a men’s sauna, a game room, and the Gaythering Bar, which hosts karaoke and trivia nights. Dream South Beach is a gay-friendly hotel, occupying what used to be major Art Deco icons, the Tudor Hotel and Palmer House. The hotel offers luxury suites and rooms, and their superb dining and entertainment scene, featuring Celebrity Chef Ralph Pagano’s Naked Taco restaurant and the High Bar.
12th Street Gay Beach
If you’re in the mood to soak up that South Florida sun, head over to 12th Street Gay Beach, where you’ll find a big contingent of the LGBTQ community and soft, sandy beaches. Just follow the rainbow flags by the lifeguard stations and you’ll find your way. Twist Gay Bar’s motto, "Never a Cover - Always a Groove," displays their exceptional service to its customers. Twist offers two levels of entertainment, both indoors and outdoors, three dance floors and great music. Founded in 1993, both locals and tourists always make Twist a prime gay bar destination. Don't miss out on a night at Azucar Nightclub, a Latin LGBTQ club featuring drag war shows, dancers, cabaret nights and great music.