There’s nothing better than traveling. But when it comes to homophobia abroad, it can be a little scary to know where to go. That’s why there are rankings like the latest Spartacus Gay Travel Index, updated annually to let LGBTQ travelers know where to go. Their newest rankings have just come out and the top gay travel destinations are Sweden and Canada.
Canada and Sweden tied with 10 points on their ranking for positive indices like anti-discrimination legislation, marriage equality, adoption, transgender rights and equal age of consent for hetero- and homosexual relationships.
The index also considers negative factors like religious influence, hostile locals and whether or not Pride events have been banned. Finally, they consider the really dangerous stuff: prosecution, murder and death sentences for being gay.
Each factor gets a positive or negative point score, and when they’re all added up, that’s a country’s final score.
In perhaps the least surprising news ever, Chechnya came in dead last in this year’s ranking at #197. They got straight zeros for all positive factors but only one non-negative score for all the bad factors (“HIV Travel Restrictions” got a zero, meaning they have none. So, good … job?)
For Americans, it might be time to get a bit depressed. (And then fight for our rights!) The United States is near the bottom of the positive list at #39. The U.S. only got four points total — including getting a zero for transgender rights, and negative scores for religious influence, hostile locals and murders. Ouch — talk about a wake-up call. (However, last year we were #34, so it’s not like we were doing amazing before.)
Many of the highest countries were in the E.U. including Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France and Germany. Thirteen countries “broke even” with a score of zero; while no country had zeros across the board, Vietnam (ranked #67) came closest. That country got a point for equal age of consent, but lost it for hostile locals.
See the full Spartacus Gay Travel Index here — and let us know about your favorite gay travel destinations in the comments!
Featured image by fottograff via iStockCanada Chechnya Sweden