As the cultural capital of Quebec province, gay Montreal has a long history of providing indulgent European entertainment unavailable anywhere else in North America. During Prohibition in the United States, Montreal offered bars and burlesque shows to tempt the parched (and thirsty) neighbors of the south.
In keeping with its permissive air, the province of Quebec implemented same-sex unions in 2002 and marriage in 2004. To this day, Montreal remains one of the most embracing of diversity in North America.
The Heart of Gay Montreal
Deemed "the Paris of the North," Montreal revels in its thriving cultural scene. The Le Village Gai (the Gay Village) populates a collection of streets from Rue Sainte-Catherine Est to Avenue Papineau and Rue Saint-Hubert. The nearby Beaudry Metro station celebrates a playful gay character with rainbow pillars marking its station entrance, setting the tone for a district of the city that features a strip of saunas, bars, restaurants, and clubs.
Gay bars in Montreal
With one of the most enthusiastic gay scenes in the world, Le Village Gai offers plenty of watering holes for you to practice your French with locals. The alternative to the village is the developing areas of Mile-End and Mile-Ex, adjacent neighborhoods which cater to a hip queer crowd and have unique, conceptual bars.
Gay saunas and strip clubs
Unlike most North American cities, Montreal maintains a solid sauna scene that resembles a more European experience. Strip clubs are also popular late night venues and show the full monty.
Gay Pride Montreal and other events
A clever pun in French, Divers/Cité is gay Montreal's favorite celebration, a queer carnival usually held the last week of July. Montreal gay Pride takes place in mid-August. Called Fierté Montreal, it’s the largest queer gathering in the Francophone world.
Bal en Blanc is a huge Montreal rave party hosted during Easter. It features headline DJs from all over the world and attracts around 15,000 partygoers each year. Meanwhile, in October, Black & Blue is a popular circuit party sporting loud music and a never-ending stream of bare-chested beaus.