LGBTQ+ Guide to Berlin
Bars & Clubs
Due to its unusual design, its open atmosphere and its friendly staff, Hafen has become a popular meeting place for gays, lesbians and their friends from all over the world. The bar is a nice place to dance on soul, disco and techno music, and can get very busy during the weekends. On the first Monday of the month, there is an English queer quiz night called quizz-o-rama. If you want to cruise, a bar called ‘Toms’ is open next door.
The Silver Future
The Silver Future (‘for kings, queens and criminal queers’) is beautifully decorated and has been open for people with all kinds of identities and desires for more than ten years. A place of togetherness and exchange, where people try to treat each other as non-discriminatory as possible, and thus create an atmosphere in which everyone feels comfortable. Racist, anti-semitic, sexist, homo and transphobic behavior is therefore not tolerated. The bar sells delicious cocktails and lemonade, and regularly hosts drag shows and charity events.
Roses bar is a welcoming bar with a quirky interior featuring walls lined with pink fur and all sorts of kitsch stuff. The bar plays a mix of 80s and 90s music and can get very busy, so come early, and don’t expect a seat at peak times. To keep other guests safe, it is not allowed to take pictures inside.
Zum schmutzigen Hobby
Friendly queer bar open to anyone, regardless of gender, sexuality or nationality. The bar is situated in a former furniture store, has many comfy sofas to sit on, and feels like a living room. A welcoming place where it is easy to meet people and make new friends. Most popular are the regular drag shows and live performances.
The Schwuz is a large dance club in Neukölln. It has three different dancefloors with different styles of music, and there is also space for concerts and exhibitions. The club is visited by a mixed crowd: men, women, non-binary folks, white or black queers, queers of color, transgender or intersexual people, lesbians and gays, Butches and Femmes, persons with and without disabilities, migrants, young, old and so much more. The last Friday of the month is lesbian night, and every two months there’s the Schlager Nackt Party.
kitKatClub is a famous nightclub known for extravagant parties where all genders and sexualities meet for action and fun. There are four dance floors, there is a pool and a fire-breathing dragon. Most popular is the weekly ‘CareBall Bizarre party’ on Saturday night. During this night, you will see all kinds of extravaganza. Leather, uniforms, goth, costumes, glitter, everything is allowed and desired except for the usual denim and T-shirt monotony. Original clothing is encouraged.
Woof is a typical ‘bear bar’ visited by gay male bears and their admirers. Here, you will find hairy, beardy, and strong guys. The bartenders are welcoming and do their best to make you feel good. The bar itself is fairly small, but there are a lot of bears of all different shapes and sizes and with pretty much zero attitudes.
Mutschmann’s is an open-minded cruising club in Schöneberg with a great crowd that is always looking for fun and action. Upstairs, there is a bar where you can socialize. Downstairs, there is a maze where you can explore other guys. The atmosphere is very accepting and fun. The door policy is less strict than Lab-Oratory, but check their website for the themes and dress codes of particular nights.
Lab-Oratory is a massive male cruising club in Berlin where you will find men of all ages and sizes. The club is located in an abandoned power plant, on the left (west) side of the infamous Berghain. The place is huge and there are several floors and rooms for each desire. There is a labyrinth, a play area, slings, wet area, etc. The club is open from Thursday till Sunday. Fridays are most popular, and on these nights you are supposed to undress. Other nights have their own themes, so it’s best to check their website before you visit the club. You get a plastic bag on entry, to put your coat and unwanted clothes in. Entry to the club is only allowed for two hours, but once you are in you can enjoy the night and stay as long as you like. It is advised to bring your own protection, as they run out shortly.
Der Boiler is an incredibly large, clean and well-maintained sauna with three floors. The sauna is popular among a mixed crowd, and facilities include a steam room, whirlpool, Finnish sauna, dark room, private cabins, massage and spa area. There is also a bar and cafe, with a terrace that serves drinks, salads and sandwiches. If you are not into action, this sauna is also a nice environment to relax and socialize in. A short video tour of the sauna can be found here.
Trans men: Welcome 🙂
Entrance: €21/€15 Concessions
Bookstore Prinz Eisenherz
The Prinz Eisenherz bookstore was founded 40 years ago, to make the topic of homosexuality visible and to expand the gay cultural landscape. Not infrequently, Prince Eisenherz was also a starting point for young gays in the starting shoes of their coming out. The informal, but at the same time tranquile, atmosphere of the bookshop made it possible for young people, at least on an intellectual level, to approach the topic. The assortment has been adapted to the digital environment, and in addition to books, the store now sells audiobooks, strips and movies for LGBTQ+ people. The store is supplemented by a gallery space in which selected photo exhibitions take place.
This hostel for young gay men is situated in Berlin’s vibrant gay district. It is just a 5-minute walk from Nollendorfplatz square and its underground station. The hostel offers a modern atmosphere and is equipped with a kitchen, communal living room, and both shared and private showers. The gay scene of the Schöneberg district lies at your doorstep. It is very easy to make friends here, and many guests explore the city and gay nightlife together.
The Tiergarten is the oldest gay cruising park in central Berlin, and offers many opportunities to meet and socialize with other LGTBTQ+ people. First, there is a nudist sunbathing area called the ‘gay meadow’. On this large open grass field, visitors undress while they relax and enjoy the sun. The field is visited by a diverse crowd and the atmosphere is very friendly, open minded and safe. Next to the Gay Meadow, there is a cruising area along the Bremer Weg and around the Lion’s Bridge. This cruising spot is very popular during the summer, especially in the afternoon and after dark.
Location: 52.513462, 13.345017
If you are looking for a more discrete and private place than the Tiergarten, the Volkspark Hasenheide might be what you are looking for. Here you will find an FKK area, accompanied by a large cruising area in the forest on the slope of the hill next to it. Because the forest is overgrown, it is relatively easy to find a private spot. Therefore, cruising takes place during the day as well as during the night.
Location: 52.526356, 13.432124
Volkspark Friedrichshain has a similar planning as the Hasenheide. In the FKK section, you can undress and get some sun. In the accompanied cruising area on the slope of the hill, you can find some action during the day as well as the night. However, the bushes in the back are quite open, which gives you less privacy than the Hasenheide. Nevertheless, this is a nice place to enjoy a warm and sunny day!
Location: 52.484366, 13.411557
Grunewald is a large forested area in the western part of Berlin. It is a relaxing place for walks, sunbathing and cruising activities. A large cruising area can be found along the highway (115) near the parking lot close to the Wald Museum (Forest Museum). If you come by public transport, you can stop at the metrostation ‘S Grunewald’ close by.
Location: 52.487378, 13.254395
Berlin Pride Celebration
The Berlin Pride Celebration, also known as CSD Berlin, is a festival and street parade held in the second half of July. It celebrates the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people as well as their allies. Since 1979, the event has been held each year. Berlin Pride is the largest gay and lesbian organised events in Germany and one of the biggest in Europe. Berlin Pride means politics and party. In order to promote diversity and ensure visibility, the march features two blocks: one for walking groups and rather “silent” vehicles, and a “loud” one for the big bassy trucks. However, participants without a set of wheels can spontaneously join the demo wherever they like.
Every year, thousands of Leather-, Rubber-, Sportswear-, Skin- and Uniform lovers from all over the World come together and unite to join the events in Berlin. The center of this event is at Nollendorfplatz, the classical Gay Area in the Western part of Berlin. Whatever your age, desire or nationality is, you can have a fun-filled week.
XPOSED is about queer film in all it’s forms, glory, shame, distaste, trash and beauty. XPOSED was out of a passion for films, for Berlin and the ever-expanding possibilities of storytelling within the queer world. This festival is made by people who enjoy queer films and queer Berlin, and this is reflected in the programming of the festival.
You can watch an LGBTQ+ film every Monday night at the famous Kino International in Berlin. For over 20 years, the famous Kino International has been playing movies with gay and lesbian content. As part of the MonGay programme, films of particular interest to gay and lesbian film lovers are shown late at 10pm. Often it’s the latest blockbuster film, but also occasionally an old classic.
This film festival Berlin is an alternative, independent festival that focuses on sexuality, politics, feminism and gender issues. It is the only festival of its kind in Germany. Since 2006, the festival has screened an average of over 100 films from around the world, featuring feminist and queer perspectives on questions around sexual morality, identity, and body norms, emphasizing artistic, alternative approaches to the genre of film.
TrIQ is a social center and politically involved association working for trans, intersex and queer people living people in Berlin and beyond. It offers psychosocial and legal advice, group meetings, education and training, Transgender Radio, a café, an archive, and cultural events.
The only queer youth center in Berlin for young lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender and intersex persons between 14 and 27 years, as well as for interested young people. The center hosts a youth café, regular counseling sessions, workshops, podcasts, and several film projects. This interactive platform should invite you to browse, exchange and participate.
The aim of the Lesbian and Gay Association Berlin-Brandenburg is to enable lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people to develop their own personal life plans, free from legal and other disadvantages, free from hostility and discrimination. With political lobbying and intensive press and public relations, the LSVD advocates for the interests of LGBTQ+ people. Their goal is full legal and social equality.
MANEO helps gay and bisexual youth, and men who have been affected by homophobic violence and discrimination, regardless of whether they are the victim, witness, or life partners of the persons concerned. Those who are affected often feel helpless and as if they are serving the interests of others, for example, the police, the justice system, insurance companies or the media. MANEO takes the fears and concerns of victims of violence and witnesses seriously and provides them assistance in difficult situations.