10 of the Coolest, Most Inspiring LGBTQ+ Landmarks Around the World
Whether it's a monument, memorial, museum, or archive, the preservation of LGBTQ+ history matters. And there is so much to learn about this historic fight toward LGBTQ+ rights and equality. From the Holocaust's lasting effects in Europe to the gay liberation movement in the United States, it is not only our right to commemorate the thousands of lives lost around the world during this battle, it is our duty as global citizens.
Together, we continue to push forward and make LGBTQ+ history, but along the way, we must remember to honor the brave souls who came before us. The more we recognize these beloved heroes and activists, the deeper their stories will resonate with others and the more change will take place around the globe.
Ahead, we've highlighted 10 of the most inspiring LGBTQ+ landmarks to visit around the world — so instead of only celebrating Pride in the month of June, we can commemorate this vital history every day of the year.
Stonewall Inn National Monument in New York City
After the Stonewall riots took place in 1969, the Stonewall Inn emerged as an inspiring historical landmark in the LGBTQ+ community, recognized for being the catalyst that launched the gay liberation movement in the United States.
In 2016, admiration for this beloved bar in Greenwich Village was taken one step further when former President Barack Obama recognized it as the first national monument dedicated to LGBTQ+ rights in the country.
Gay Liberation Monument in New York City
Not too far from the Stonewall Inn, you'll find another meaningful spot: the Gay Liberation Monument. The sculpture, "Gay Liberation," is located at the northern end of Christopher Park and was created by the American artist George Segal to honor the gay rights movement and pay tribute to the Stonewall riots.
Walt Whitman's Tomb in Camden, NJ
Although the famous literary figure passed away in 1892, Walt Whitman is still recognized as being one of the most influential poets in America. Not only was Whitman a brilliant writer, but he was also a humanist. He rests in peace at Harleigh Cemetery in New Jersey, where fans are welcome to visit his granite tomb built into a wooded hill.
Castro Camera in San Francisco
While it now serves as the Human Rights Campaign store, this building used to be the late Harvey Milk's camera shop, Castro Camera. Located in the iconic Castro District of San Francisco, it served as the heart of the neighborhood's gay community and as headquarters for various LGBTQ+ political campaigns.
Another memorial to visit in the Castro District is the Pink Triangle Park, at the intersection of 17th Street and Market Street. This is the first freestanding, permanent memorial in the United States dedicated to the thousands of homosexuals who lost their lives during the Holocaust of World War II.
Alan Turing Memorial in Manchester, England
While Alan Turing is best known for being the father of computer science, he is also recognized around the world as a gay icon (you may have watched his story unfold in the 2014 film The Imitation Game). His memorial — a peaceful statue of Turing seated on a park bench — is situated in Sackville Park near Canal Street, Manchester's cherished gay neighborhood.
Kiss Wall in Brighton, England
The Kiss Wall is an iconic seafront sculpture, built in 1992 by Brighton-based artist Bruce Williams. This wall displays six couples of different ages and genders frozen in a kiss and is meant to celebrate equality and illustrate the city's diverse population.
Oscar Wilde Memorial Sculpture in Dublin, Ireland
The Oscar Wilde Memorial Sculpture celebrates the life of the legendary Irish poet and playwright Oscar Wilde, who is often considered the man who paved the way for gay rights in the arts. The memorial includes a collection of three statues, all of which were designed and created by artist Danny Osborne, and is located in the northwest corner of Merrion Square.
Memorial to Homosexuals Persecuted Under Nazism in Berlin, Germany
This unique monument situated next to Berlin's main Holocaust memorial in Tiergarten Park opened in 2008. While at first the sculpture might appear as a simple gray concrete cube, visitors are encouraged to step closer and peek inside the small window, where a video of two men kissing plays on a perpetual loop.
This symbolic memorial pays tribute to the lives lost under Nazism during World War II. Visitors will also find a signboard near the memorial where they can read more about the persecutions the LGBTQ+ community suffered during this era.
Homomonument in Amsterdam, Netherlands
In the city center of Amsterdam lies one of the most iconic gay Holocaust monuments: the Homomonument. Built in 1987, this memorial is a large granite triangle made up of three smaller triangles, commemorating the gay men and lesbians who have been subjected to persecution and suffering because of their homosexuality.
On the ground, visitors will find the words from a poem by Jacob Israël de Haan, a famous gay Jewish poet, stating, "Such an endless desire for friendship."
Gay and Lesbian Holocaust Memorial in Sydney, Australia
The Gay and Lesbian Holocaust Memorial is nestled in the heart of Green Park in the Darlinghurst neighborhood of Sydney. This memorial project was founded by a group of community activists and was created to pay tribute to the thousands of gay men and lesbians who lost their lives in the Holocaust.
This fascinating memorial is in the form of a pink triangle with black poles, in which the pink prism represents gay men and the black triangle composed of steel poles symbolizes lesbian women. The point where the two triangles come together ultimately forms a fractured Star of David.
While individuals are encouraged to visit the memorial at any time of day, it is an especially touching experience once the sun sets; it's at this time that the triangle glows, lighting up the area.