Queer Friendly Ostrava
Many of Europe’s large cities have thriving queer scenes. Although Ostrava cannot be described as a major European LGBT destination, the city still offers plenty of entertainment and leisure opportunities for members of the gay community in the region and beyond. Ostrava is well-established as a meeting place for the queer community from all over Moravia, Silesia, and the Polish border areas. Every weekend the city’s gay clubs are full to bursting with clients who have come to enjoy the relaxed vibe of Ostrava’s queer parties. Most gay and gay friendly establishments are located in the city centre. A wide range of bars, clubs, restaurants cinemas, theatres, galleries, shops and hotels of all categories have become popular thanks to their friendly atmosphere, events and high-quality services for LGBT people eager to sample what Ostrava can offer.
The city itself is home to a large and active gay and lesbian community. There are several informal community groups and associations which organize a wide range of cultural events and happenings in Ostrava all year round. Exhibitions, trips, sports events, a film festival, dance events, and the traditional gay tram rides – all of these and more have become an integral part of the local queer community’s vibrant life. Although Ostrava cannot yet rival its partner city Dresden or nearby Vienna, it can offer a broad spectrum of gay friendly activities, and the city’s unpretentious, down-to-earth yet wonderfully tolerant atmosphere is sure to make for unforgettable experiences.
Ostrava? Gay friendly? Why not?!!!
The first Czech gay couple to tie the knot in a registered same-sex partnership did so five years ago in a ceremony at Ostrava’s New City Hall. The first ever gay ball in the Czech Republic was held at the chateau in the city’s Poruba district. The first Czech cinema to hold regular screenings of queer films was the Minikino, on Kostelní Street in the city centre. In 1994 and 1999 the Michálkovice Cultural Centre and the City of Ostrava Cultural Centre hosted the Czech Republic Gay Man competition. The Ostrava branch of the Lambda gay organization keeps up its long tradition of national meetings, and every November the Ostrava Centre for Culture and Education hosts a retrospective of films from the Mezipatra Queer Film Festival. In 2009 the City of Ostrava published a tourist guide that was the first ever guidebook in the country to include a chapter on gay friendly places and activities. A favourite event in the gay community is the climb to the top of Ostrava’s still-smoking Ema slag heap, climaxing in a romantic picnic with a view – and there are many other events throughout the year, both large and small. Ostrava is not one of Europe’s biggest gay scenes, but the local community is active in creating a rich mosaic of social events that attract visitors from far and wide.
Festivals and events
Mezipatra Queer Film Festival. The festival aims to present high-quality works of world cinema to a wide audience with mixed sexual orientation. Mezipatra highlights the inseparable links between the intimate and the social, the individual and society, and offers a balanced portrayal of people who are often depicted in clichéd and stereotypical ways by mainstream culture and media.
The gay tram ride happening – Ostrava’s very own ‘gay pride’ event – takes place several times a year. The tram is decked with rainbow flags and runs all the way from the main railway station to the end of the line in Vřesina.
GLBT bars and clubs
bar Ikarus – a famous Ostrava gay bar popular for its unique atmosphere. The perfect place for an all-nighter in great company. If you want to be sure of getting a seat on Friday and Saturday nights, make sure you book a table.
klub Fiesta – Ostrava’s first gay club has been operating on the ground floor of the former Palace Hotel for 33 years. Club with huge bar and mirrors, is a favourite venue for live concerts and popular drag acts. http://www.barfiesta.cz/
Rio City – Ostrava’s newest gay club is in the courtyard of a building on Poděbradova Street, just off the famous Stodolní Street. It is a popular venue for top DJs from gay clubs in Ostrava and Prague. The only gay club in Ostrava with an outdoor seating area. http://www.riocity-club.cz/
Beton – this club is situated in a former miners’ housing scheme in the Mariánské Hory district. No entry for women. http://www.beton-club.com/
Gay friendly cafés, bars, restaurants and shops
These establishments are not specifically queer, but they are queer friendly and are very popular with the community. If you would like your establishment to be listed here, just write to this e-mail address.
DUN bar a Café Daniel
World of Miniatures - Miniuni
Silesian-Ostrava Castle (Slezskoostravský hrad)
Exhibition Ground Černá louka (Výstaviště Černá louka)