Homosexuality has been legal in Slovakia since 1962. However, same-sex relationships enjoy very little legal recognition in this conservative, mostly Catholic, country. Trans people are able to have their gender legally recognised only with medical intervention.
Polls suggest that a majority of Slovak people are in favour of civil partnerships for people of all genders but proposals to grant more legal rights to same-sex couples have stalled. Marriage equality is a long way off.
The LGBT scene is small but lively in Bratislava, nascent in Košice, and under the radar elsewhere. Outside Bratislava, unless at an LGBT-friendly venue, it's advisable for travellers to keep same-sex displays of affection to a minimum in public spaces.
The Queer Slovakia (http://queerslovakia.sk) website lists events in Bratislava, Košice and Žilina. For action in the capital, check out bratislava.gayguide.net (load the racy website with caution), and find a map of LGBT destinations on www.travelgayeurope.com/gay-map-of-bratislava.
To see Bratislava at its rainbow-coloured best, consider timing a visit for Pride Bratislava (http://duhovypride.sk) in late June or early July.