Budapest gay guide: gay clubs, events and resources
05/2/2015, 6:06 PM●6-minute article
If you are gay living in or travelling to Budapest, and don’t want to rely on gossip to find the best clubs and party series our gay guide is here to help. Budapest is a relatively gay-friendly city, where straight people, and gay people live together in peace, side by side. While there are still some older generations who might frown upon same sex couples kissing in public and so on, if you stick to the inner-city party hot spots, or any of the gay-friendly places listed here you will find a great local LGBTQ scene to party with.
There are plenty of news and dating sites to choose from in Budapest. Our recommendations are Hungarian Gay Bears (if you like your man with a bit more fat and a beard), GayPoint (the first Hungarian site to specialise in gay cruisin’), HotBull (where the name speaks for itself) and Humen(the first Hungarian – online and printed – magazine for gays). We strongly advise you to check it out, not only because it has English pages, but also because it includes all of the upcoming not-to-be-missed events. BudapestGayCity is also a good source of information. In fact BudapestGayCity has a comprehensive events guide for what’s on each day.
There are many Facebook groups for the LGBTQ community. You could try this group, this group, this group or this group, whether for dating, sharing information or just meeting new people to share experiences with.
One of the longest running party series for fashion junkies, posers, models, art-heads and other freaks is Garçons: nowadays, Kasino is their residency. Underground as well as glamorous, all of their parties are a good opportunity to get a taste of what it’s like to party in the capital. Another well-known brand is Tape, which is a straight-friendly queer party held every Thursday. It’s hosted by the!Szkafander DJs who spin the best nu-disco, deep house and indie-pop hits all night long. Still haven’t found what you’re looking for? Don’t worry, there’s more: Brutkó Diszkó is about “bullshit free queer clubbing”, as they say. Sometimes they invite bands to play at their parties too.
WOW – Women On Women is mostly for lipstick lesbians and their friends, but they also welcome queers, fashion freaks and other open-minded party goers, who want to shake their hips to the beats. Hello is a funny and trashy monthly party series that is always centred on a given theme. It could be Hungarian hits of the 90s, Britney Spears or Beyoncé. Their residency is at the Toldi Klub, be sure to drop by sometime(s). XOXO is one of the new wave, popular, queer parties for music lovers and party fans – it’s the newcomer of the roundup, but what we’ve heard so far sounds promising. Last but not least two other party series that you should keep an eye on: Confetti and Queer Budapest. Ps. Ösztrosokk is a legendary lesbian party, and sometimes it’s open to guys as well.
Mystery Baris one of the oldest and most well-known gay clubs in Budapest, with a wide variety of drinks and just a shot away from the Arany János metro station. Sticking to the legendary venues, Funny Carrot is also a long-running “crazy gay bar” where Lola and the nicest guys await you. Both this place and Habrolónext to it are unmissable places if you are up for a gay cruisin’ night or for some sexy and hot fun. Madrid Café is also a good choice for a number of reasons: it has a dark room downstairs for things that should not be seen by others, it’s close to Astoria metro and tram stop, the drinks are cheap, the vibes are good and often there is a karaoke night, which is always super fun. Why Not Café is close to the Gellért Bath, so if you are planning a holiday, you can relax in hot thermal waters during the day and then drop by Why Not and have the time of your life by night. Look out for their drinks discounts!
If you are looking for some action, you should immerse yourself in the gay cruisin’ scene of Budapest for example at Action Bar, where quite a lot of things happen in the dark rooms, lockable cabins, glory holes and panorama pissoirs. There are also strip shows on Saturdays and real live sex shows on Fridays. All of your dreams can come true here and there is no reason why you should hold yourself back. CoXx(the name speaks for itself) is also popular, especially amongst youngsters. Once a month, they have naked parties and the military – or other themed parties – are also a must.
Szociális Helyiség (ex-Eklektika) is a popular meeting place for lesbians, but they also welcome others on the scene.
One club that has historically been a popular meeting spot for gay guys in Budapest is Alterego Club. There are several bars and spaces located in it, and while the plushy interior design evokes scenes from an old-school pinky violence film, it has it’s own charm. Drag shows are held quite often. Don’t expect special dance events, it’s usually a mix of mainstream hits and standard disco tracks.
Capella is one of the longest running gay(-friendly) dance clubs in Budapest. It usually has one or even two drag shows per night and the music is definitely light. The place has three floors, but not all of them are open all day. It is popular among straight people too, but that shouldn’t disturb you: the two group usually party together in peace.
One of the hottest things on right now for gay people are the secret gay parties. People you meet on the scene should be able to tell you more.
Budapest Pride is a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) organisation advocating for feminist and anti-racist advances. They fight against discrimination in its numerous forms, with particular emphasis on homophobia, transphobia, sexism, and racism. They strive to build a bridge between the LGBTQ community and mainstream society, and their primary goal is to build and ensure the visibility of the LGBTQ community in Hungary. They organise the Budapest Pride Festival every year, along with its Budapest Pride March, as well as the autumn Budapest Pride LGBTQ Film Festival. If you want to find out more, join their Facebook group.
Of course the yearly LGBT History Month (in February in 2015) is organised in Budapest too. Although most of the related programs are not organised fro non-Hungarians, there are still some film screenings (Paris Is Burning, The Imitation Game, The Bubble and so on), a karaoke night and a concert which you can attend without missing anything – even if you don’t speak Hungarian.
If you are looking for the hottest sauna in town, go to Magnum SaunaorSauna 69 and have fun! Although the Rudas Bath has men-only days on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, these aren’t gay-days per se, as guards are watching the guests to avoid any kind of gay cruising.