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New Zealand Gay Travel

Experience the splendour of this small but diverse island nation on either an active gay adventure or a leisurely cultural tour.

New Zealand’s southern island reaches for the heavens with its snow-capped mountains and rumbling volcanoes. In the north are endless stretches of gorgeous grasslands and lush redwood forests. Meanwhile, the glorious fjords, stunning sounds and glacier-fed lakes are so otherworldly you’d imagine they were inhabited by elven folk. If only there were a visionary director who could capture it all in one high-fantasy epic. Alas…




Quick Facts

  • Capital City: Wellington
  • Currency: New Zealand Dollar
  • Languages: English & Māori
  • Best Time of Year to Visit: March & April

LGBTQ+ Rights in New Zealand

Gay New Zealand Travel

Best Places to Visit in New Zealand

More Info

New Zealand is a progressive-leaning country with an even more progressive-leaning Prime Minister. At the time of being elected, Jacinda Ardern was the youngest serving female head of state in the world. So it should be no surprise that LGBT laws are heavily in our favour. But acceptance in New Zealand goes beyond laws and regulations. Opinion polls show widespread acceptance of LGBT rights and same-sex marriage. While pockets of prejudice still exist in some rural regions, you’ll feel more than welcome in this small nation.

Gay Activity: Legal
Lesbian Activity: Legal
Gay Marriage: Legal
Right to Change Gender: Legal, surgery not required
Same-Sex Adoption: Legal
LGBT Discrimination: Illegal

There are more people living in New York City than there are spread across all of New Zealand. So while the country as a whole is a very welcoming destination for LGBT jet setters, the actual gay and lesbian scene is quite small. Auckland is the only city with a discernable queer strip. In fact, most of the country’s biggest tourist destinations don’t even have a dedicated gay bar. And while there are a number of Pride events hosted in the country’s summer season, they are hobbit-size compared to what you might be used to. But again, New Zealand is more than welcoming and you can comfortably enjoy your 5 pm brewski in any bar.

Gay Villages in New Zealand

Auckland: Karangahape Road. AKA K’Road.

Pride Festivals in New Zealand

Auckland Pride Festival: Annually in February

Wellington International Pride Parade (WIPP): Annually in late-February/early-March

Best Gay Bars in New Zealand

Auckland: Caluzzi Bar and Cabaret (Famous drag bar)
Auckland: GAY (Bar and club. Mixed LGBT crowd)
Auckland: Family Bar (Nightclub)

Best Lesbian Bars in New Zealand

Auckland: Lick (Semi-regular lesbian party)

5. Otago

Uncork the beauty of one of New Zealand’s most famous wine regions. Beyond bottles of cold climate vintages such as Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, this region is well known for its craft beer and inspired culinary scene.

4. Wellington

Small but mighty Wellington is known for its urban-chic vibe, windy weather and vibrant art scene. There are more cafes and restaurants per person here than in New York!

3. Mount Cook National Park

It should come as no surprise Sir Edmund Hillary—one of the two first men to ever surmount Everest—was a proud Kiwi. His backyard was a playground of mountains to practice scaling, including the tallest and most beautiful in the country, Mt Cook.

2. Milford Sound

Rivendell… er… Milford Sound is nestled at the foot of the country and is its most scenic national park. Rent a kayak and paddle under cascading waterfalls, through fjords and along lush forests. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins, seals and the Fiordland crested penguin.

1. Queenstown

Queenstown lives up to its city moniker, “The Hometown of Adventure.” It’s the birthplace of bungee jumping and the perfect launching pad for hang gliding. Take the centrally located gondola up The Remarkables mountain range for captivating views and access to the riveting albeit hilarious luge track. Although it’s known as a gateway to the country’s more adventurous activities (mountaineering, hiking, skiing etc.), more relaxed excursions are also readily available such as a day tour of beautiful Glenorchy.

Best Time of Year to Visit: March & April are New Zealand’s shoulder seasons. These two months offer the best bang for your buck, promising good weather, traffic-free roads and reasonably priced lodgings. If you’re interested in southern hemisphere skiing, consider a trip in late June through early-August.

Electricity: In New Zealand, the power plugs and sockets are of type I. The standard voltage is 230 V, and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. For more information, visit https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/newzealand/.

Time Zone: New Zealand Standard Time (GMT+12)

Covid-19 Vaccination Requirements: We’re dedicated to ensuring our tours are safe for everyone, but it is our belief that each traveler has a responsibility to protect themselves and their fellow travellers from COVID-19. As of May 1, 2023, Out Adventures no longer requires guests to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination on most of our tours. If vaccination is a requirement for entry, or on select cruises, this will be communicated at the time a trip is confirmed to depart. Before booking, we recommend that you read our COVID-19 Information Page and our COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions to understand what we’re doing to minimize risk, and what will happen if you contract COVID-19 before or during an Out Adventures tour.

Other Vaccinations: Based on the entry requirements for New Zealand, there are no other vaccinations needed. To determine if you should take preventative measures to reduce the risk of illness, you should consult your doctor or a travel medical clinic, as Out Adventures cannot provide vaccination recommendations.

Visas: Most travellers from Australia, Canada, The United Kingdom and The United States do not require a visa. However, they require an NZeTA to enter New Zealand for up to 90 days. You must apply before entering New Zealand, and it may take up to 48 hours. Exceptions may apply, and all visas are the responsibility of the traveller. For more information, click here.

Last updated on Sept 24, 2021. Disclaimer: The information provided was accurate at the time of publishing, but cannot be guaranteed..
LGBT Rights in New Zealand

New Zealand is a progressive-leaning country with an even more progressive-leaning Prime Minister. At the time of being elected, Jacinda Ardern was the youngest serving female head of state in the world. So it should be no surprise that LGBT laws are heavily in our favour. But acceptance in New Zealand goes beyond laws and regulations. Opinion polls show widespread acceptance of LGBT rights and same-sex marriage. While pockets of prejudice still exist in some rural regions, you’ll feel more than welcome in this small nation.

Gay Activity: Legal
Lesbian Activity: Legal
Gay Marriage: Legal
Right to Change Gender: Legal, surgery not required
Same-Sex Adoption: Legal
LGBT Discrimination: Illegal

Gay New Zealand Travel

There are more people living in New York City than there are spread across all of New Zealand. So while the country as a whole is a very welcoming destination for LGBT jet setters, the actual gay and lesbian scene is quite small. Auckland is the only city with a discernable queer strip. In fact, most of the country’s biggest tourist destinations don’t even have a dedicated gay bar. And while there are a number of Pride events hosted in the country’s summer season, they are hobbit-size compared to what you might be used to. But again, New Zealand is more than welcoming and you can comfortably enjoy your 5 pm brewski in any bar.

Gay Villages in New Zealand

Auckland: Karangahape Road. AKA K’Road.

Pride Festivals in New Zealand

Auckland Pride Festival: Annually in February

Wellington International Pride Parade (WIPP): Annually in late-February/early-March

Best Gay Bars in New Zealand

Auckland: Caluzzi Bar and Cabaret (Famous drag bar)
Auckland: GAY (Bar and club. Mixed LGBT crowd)
Auckland: Family Bar (Nightclub)

Best Lesbian Bars in New Zealand

Auckland: Lick (Semi-regular lesbian party)

Best Places to Visit in New Zealand

5. Otago

Uncork the beauty of one of New Zealand’s most famous wine regions. Beyond bottles of cold climate vintages such as Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, this region is well known for its craft beer and inspired culinary scene.

4. Wellington

Small but mighty Wellington is known for its urban-chic vibe, windy weather and vibrant art scene. There are more cafes and restaurants per person here than in New York!

3. Mount Cook National Park

It should come as no surprise Sir Edmund Hillary—one of the two first men to ever surmount Everest—was a proud Kiwi. His backyard was a playground of mountains to practice scaling, including the tallest and most beautiful in the country, Mt Cook.

2. Milford Sound

Rivendell… er… Milford Sound is nestled at the foot of the country and is its most scenic national park. Rent a kayak and paddle under cascading waterfalls, through fjords and along lush forests. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins, seals and the Fiordland crested penguin.

1. Queenstown

Queenstown lives up to its city moniker, “The Hometown of Adventure.” It’s the birthplace of bungee jumping and the perfect launching pad for hang gliding. Take the centrally located gondola up The Remarkables mountain range for captivating views and access to the riveting albeit hilarious luge track. Although it’s known as a gateway to the country’s more adventurous activities (mountaineering, hiking, skiing etc.), more relaxed excursions are also readily available such as a day tour of beautiful Glenorchy.

More Info

Best Time of Year to Visit: March & April are New Zealand’s shoulder seasons. These two months offer the best bang for your buck, promising good weather, traffic-free roads and reasonably priced lodgings. If you’re interested in southern hemisphere skiing, consider a trip in late June through early-August.

Electricity: In New Zealand, the power plugs and sockets are of type I. The standard voltage is 230 V, and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. For more information, visit https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/newzealand/.

Time Zone: New Zealand Standard Time (GMT+12)

Covid-19 Vaccination Requirements: We’re dedicated to ensuring our tours are safe for everyone, but it is our belief that each traveler has a responsibility to protect themselves and their fellow travellers from COVID-19. As of May 1, 2023, Out Adventures no longer requires guests to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination on most of our tours. If vaccination is a requirement for entry, or on select cruises, this will be communicated at the time a trip is confirmed to depart. Before booking, we recommend that you read our COVID-19 Information Page and our COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions to understand what we’re doing to minimize risk, and what will happen if you contract COVID-19 before or during an Out Adventures tour.

Other Vaccinations: Based on the entry requirements for New Zealand, there are no other vaccinations needed. To determine if you should take preventative measures to reduce the risk of illness, you should consult your doctor or a travel medical clinic, as Out Adventures cannot provide vaccination recommendations.

Visas: Most travellers from Australia, Canada, The United Kingdom and The United States do not require a visa. However, they require an NZeTA to enter New Zealand for up to 90 days. You must apply before entering New Zealand, and it may take up to 48 hours. Exceptions may apply, and all visas are the responsibility of the traveller. For more information, click here.

Last updated on Sept 24, 2021. Disclaimer: The information provided was accurate at the time of publishing, but cannot be guaranteed..
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Reviews

Some from our travellers

Kieran F & Mark H

Fun, inclusive, and safe

New Zealand: North Island Cultural Adventure
Rating:

This trip was exactly as advertised and had all the advantages of organized group travel. It was fun, inclusive, and safe, and we made good local connections. Also, great customer service from Out Adventures.

ACCOMMODATIONS:
TRANSPORTATION:
MEALS:
GUIDE:
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Paul H

Great itinerary and lots of opportunities for hikes!

New Zealand: Active South Island Expedition
Rating:

The New Zealand South Island is perfect for an OA trip. Great itinerary and lots of opportunities for hikes! Accent on being active and covering a lot of ground (which is much more difficult to do as a solo traveller)

ACCOMMODATIONS:
TRANSPORTATION:
MEALS:
GUIDE:
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See All Reviews