Sydney has been voted the second best place in the world to be out and proud, by UK newspaper, The Independent.

Coming in just behind San Francisco, it was our failure to recognise same-sex marriage which lost us the top spot. It was recent changes to California’s law permits allowin same-sex couples to wed that gave San Francisco the edge.

It is an accomplishment nonetheless, considering our ability to climb the ranks based on attitude alone. It was the overall sense of community spirit and visibility of the gay community in Sydney which made it such a desirable spot for GLBT people to live and visit.

“Oxford St began developing as a queer district in the 1960s and today is the most visibly gay area of the city. But same-sex marriages are still not enshrined in federal law,” the article read, before going on to trumpet the successes of Mardi Gras over the years – from protest to celebration.

Considering our size and population, it is pleasing to note that Sydney still managed to outdo New York, which came in at number three, Paris (rated 5th) and Barcelona, which was only voted 6th in spite of Spain being one of the earliest countries to legalize same-sex marriage.

The special report also detailed the countries that had made the most improvement in regards gay tolerance, on which Delhi topped the list.

The darker side of life in the world as a gay person was also highlighted on the list of the five worst countries. Saudi Arabia came in the top slot for its ongoing policy of listing homosexuality as a crime, punishable by death. After other countries like Iran and Jamaica – where homosexuality is equally considered a crime – the fifth position was taken out by Nigeria, a country where it is considered illegal to even mention or talk to a gay person.

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