So yeah, everyone's heard of Bonkadorm and it certainly is a stereotype. Nights out you just want to forget, hangovers from hell and even the possibility that you'll be re-introducing yourself to the person you wake up next to in the morning. We had always heard it was just like a Spanish Blackpool - but who doesn't love a little bit of seediness from time to time?
What people forget to mention when talking about Benidorm is the absolute beauty it is. Strolling down the promenade at Levante beach, you couldn't feel further away from the tackiness. If you want to discover a different side to Benners that you hadn't even known existed, you don't need to go far at all. There's incredible views to be found in the national parks, tasty tapas to drool over in Tapas alley, wineries to visit and even quaint day trips out to breath-taking castles.
Something we have to recommend, especially if love is in the air and you want a romantic spot, or a dazzling sunset photo for the gram... You MUST head on over to Balcon Del Mediterraneo for Golden Hour (not shower) for one of the most picturesque views in the whole of Spain.
If you're up for a bit of glitz and glamour then you have to pop in to the Old Town to see Miss Tina Gloss at Klee Kaffe. Opened in 1994 - Klee Kaffe is Benidorm's longest established drag cabaret bar and boy do they know how to rock it in there. Grab yourself a pink gin and lemo, sit down and watch Tina do her thing!
There's around 30 LGBTQ+ bars across Benidorm, from cabaret bars, those bars that are a bit 'darker' in nature (you know what we mean) or LGBTQ+ run where you can sit with a lovely G&T and watch the world go by. Most bars are quite small and usually hold around 30-50 customers at any one time.
For something a bit bigger - head in to the new town (Levante). Café Benidorm is one of the biggest bars in Benidorm and whilst it's not specifically an LGBTQ+ venue - is very welcoming and plays everything from Celine to Billy Ocean. You won't find a modern tune in here - so get your dancing shoes on!
lgbtq+ liberation in benidorm
In the late 70s, Spain’s LGBTQ+ community rejoiced as homosexual activity was legalised across the country. All this meant was that they could no longer be sent down for going down after a night out – something they’d been doing since the beginning of time anyway!
Today, Spain is one of the most liberal countries in the world in terms of LGBTQ+ freedoms. In fact, according to a 2013 study by Pew Research Centre, a whopping 88% of Spanish citizens accept homosexuality as a part of the country's culture. Join us in raising a glass to Spain which came out on top (or so to speak) against the 38 other countries who were polled.