Looking back at the great strides made since the Stonewall riots started the gay revolution in 1969, it’s easy to think that progress is slow, even if it is sure. Still, it’s necessary to take stock of where exactly the world is as it pertains to the rights of the LGBTQI+ community, in order to assess what kind of work still needs to be done.

Released each year, the Spartacus Gay Travel Index 2019 gives LGBT tourists a good idea of who the top gay-friendly countries are. Spartacus’ ranking is based on a points system that awards points for things like antidiscrimination legislation, legal marriage or civil partnerships and transgender rights, while penalising countries where antigay laws, HIV travel restrictions, prosecution and murders put LGBTQ people at risk.

It is heartening to see how many countries scored the same high ranking, based on the perimeters set out by Spartacus, just as it is concerning to see the number of countries where the rights of the LGBTQI+ community are being infringed on at a disconcerting scale.

As it stands in 2019, here are the countries leading the way for gay rights.











South Africa, often hailed an excellent destination for LGBTQI+ travellers, managed to rank at number 28 on the Spartacus Gay Travel Index, with a total score of 6 out of a possible 10.