If you have any tips, information, and directories, please send them over!
Preference is for sites with English, or are relatively easy to navigate even if not. Some great non-English resources are included to get people started.
- 10 Best Things about Being Gay and Lesbian in East Asia
- LGBTQ Decision Making Approaches for Asia
- Gay and Lesbian Tokyo: A Brief Guide (Updated 2018)
- LGBTQ Living in Japan: A Guide for Work, Queer Families and Trans Individuals
- LGBTQ Hong Kong: A Brief Guide (Updated 2018)
- LGBTQ Hong Kong: Community Groups (Updated 2018)
- Observations on Gay and Lesbian Hong Kong
LGBTQ / Pride Events
Some places wait once a year for that awesome crowd at Pride in June or August, but it’s about time to come join the parties here in Asia. Pride is relatively new to Asia compared to the Stonewall Days, but they’re not too shabby for size.
Best of all, the Asian parties are spread throughout the year. Groups (mostly the guys) will also travel to annual events that aren’t explicitly LGBTQ just to have a good time too!
All the Gaycation options:
- Tokyo Rainbow Pride in early May
- Shanghai Pride in June
- Taiwan Pride end of October
- Pink Season in Hong Kong in November
- Songkran in Thailand in April
- Full moon parties in Bali
- Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) in Vegas
Places to Go / Groups:
Asian governments may seem pretty cold to same-sex issues, but in general, they also have a hands-off policy. This means that many places have a decent or even outright vibrant underground scene. Below are some tips:
- Rural China: mah jong clubs
- Japan: gay bars in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Nichome, gay saunas, Otoko-machi Map (男街マップ) literally boy’s map, Twitter’s LGBT Events, check out my Gay and Lesbian Tokyo Guide
- Taiwan: Dating List On Hotline (http://hotline.org.tw/book/15)
- Hong Kong: Check out my LGBTQ Hong Kong Guide, kareoke bars
- Word-of-mouth events
- Meetup.com to find groups like Fruits n Suits (in Tokyo & Hong Kong)
For a seemingly conservative place, East Asia has a lot of queer content. Much of it is in mainstream media such as movies with sex-changing kungfu heroes, tabloids reporting on billionaire’s gay daughters, and Mainland Chinese media creating bromances for straight actors.
Check the media content from:
- Learn more about Japanese gay culture at a blog by Taku and Rei (A Japanese and Latino American and couple)
- Hong Kong Gay and Lesbian Film Festival
- Tokyo Rainbow Reel and Tokyo’s Gay and Lesbian Film Festival
- Taiwan’s International Queer Film Festival
- LGBTQ Chinese movies section of this Wikipedia
- Pink Alliance Hong Kong Movie List
- my post on LGBTQ Hong Kong
LGBTQ Media & Event Sites:
- Out in Japan (Photo & Video Series)
- Letitbee Life (Japanese Media)
- Rebit (Japanese Site)
- 2CHOPO (Japanese Event & Media Site)
Join Weixin 微信 public channels and groups
- SixthTone (English publication)
- 武漢RAINBOW LGBT
- Gay Groups:
- Lesbian Groups:
- GDot TV (Media Channel based in Hong Kong) – has English and international content
- my post on LGBTQ Hong Kong for a full list
The Lingo and Labels:
Taku and Rei have an excellent Glossary of Japanese Gay terms.
|同性戀||tóng xìng liàn||same sex love|
|同性愛||Dōseiai||same-sex love (Japanese)|
|同性||tóng xìng||same sex|
|誇性別||kuā xìng bié||Transgender|
|1 号||yī hào||top|
|0.5 号||líng diǎn wu hào||versatile|
|0 号||líng hào||bottom|
|P||Wife / princess (femme) lesbian|
|member||member* (Hong Kong)|
|G吧||g BAR||gay bar|
|同性浴室||tóng xìng yù shì||same-sex bathhouse|
|出柜||chū guì||out of the closet|
|卖的||mài de||male escort|
|狒狒||fèi fèi||people who like bears|
|猴子||hóu zi||Twink (monkey)|
|同妻||tóng qi||Gay husband|
Adapted from Wikipedia Article “Homosexuality in China“.
Gay and Lesbian Dating Apps:
- Lesbian Dating:
- Butterfly Android / iPhone
- Lesdo (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.lesdo.sns.playstore&hl=en) << Was shut down in China in 2017.
- Gay Men Dating:
- Meetup.com for events
If you have any tips to share, please send them over!
If you are visiting Hong Kong, check out my post on LGBTQ Hong Kong.