The growth of gay Berlin is evident throughout the city, from museums and memorials to several districts and party scenes to the lengthy tenure of openly gay mayor Klaus Wowereit from 2001 to 2014. Berlin is a hub of gay life and culture in the heart of Europe.
Since the 1920s, the Schoneberg quarter in the south of the city has been the center of gay Berlin. You can find leather shops, such as RoB Berlin or GEAR Berlin here at one of the top leather locations in Europe. There's also the beautiful Axel Hotel located on Lietzenburger Straße and a five-minute walk from Wittenbergplatz underground station. This hotel has a rooftop bar, several saunas and the first European Hamburger Mary's. There's so much to do here that this vibrant historical district should be on every gay explorer's bucket list.
Another of gay Berlin's thriving districts, Prenzlauer Berg is just a short underground ride Schoneberg and features quieter clubs and bars. Bars like Stalhrohr 2.0 on Paul-Robeson-Straße or Greifbar on Wichertstraße appeal to those looking for a dark or seedy adventure.
Berlin is home to Berghain, quite possibly one of the best nightclubs in the world with a strong gay tradition. This club is also known as the heart of techno with a culture that is entirely unique. Once a year, the club closes its doors completely to the straight crowd and puts on the Snax event, a gay Berlin party like no other where anything goes.
Another great night experience is the Propaganda party at the Imperial Club, which usually takes place on the first Saturday of each month. More than 1,000 boys and men show up for the heavy beats and a great time.
Every June, the gay world converges on Berlin for Christopher Street Day (CSD) Berlin, named for Christopher Street in New York where the Stonewall riots occurred in 1969. While officially a time to speak up for equal rights and against discrimination, CSD Berlin is also a time of celebration and combines with Gay Pride as a two-week-long celebration.
Berlin has one of the greatest gay cultures in Europe and must be experienced at least once in a lifetime.