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Top 5 Gay Pride Parades in the World

Friday, June 6th, 2014

June is pride month in many cities around the world, and so we focus on the Top 5 gay pride parades in the world:

gay-pride parades(photo by: Kevin Goebel)

1) Sao Paulo
Easily the world’s biggest gay pride parade, with millions participating (4 million at last count!), Sao Paulo’s parade has to take pride of place. And it’s really not all about size since the energy levels are also off the charts, being stoked by the music and the rhythm of the dancers on the 20-25 themed floats or trio electricos. While the parade garners the most attention, the pride event spans the whole weekend and has interesting debates, concerts, and offshoot festivals associated with it. Starting at Avenida Paulista, the parade traverses 4.2 km down Rua da Consolação, finishing at Roosevelt Square. But that’s not the end of the party… Book one of the Sao Paulo hotels and you’ll see the rest.

2) New York
Not the biggest or the brashest, but certainly the oldest. And for many, the big granddaddy of them all. Birthplace of the modern LGBT movement, this is where the gay parades started, after all – on June 28, 1970, the first anniversary commemorating the riots following the police raid on Stonewall Inn, 53 Christopher Street. Apart from its historical significance, New York’s place at the very forefront of the great cities of the world must mean that its LGBT community, and the city’s parade, has to be right up there!

3) Sydney
While the Sydney Lesbian and Gay parade is essentially a Mardi Gras parade, its sheer fabulousness means that it has to be up there in the top 3 gay pride parades in the world. And the events go on for 3-4 weeks, grabbing it high marks for duration. It won’t be stretching it to suggest that the parade, coupled with Sydney’s gay-friendly and cosmopolitan vibe, has a lot to do with Sydney consistently being voted in the top 3 cities in the world to live in!

4) Berlin
The hippest city in Europe, has close to a month-long celebration of Christopher Street Day (CSD), as it is known in German-speaking countries. The 500,000 strong parade starts at Kurfürstendamm-Joachimstaler Strasse and ends at Brandenburg Gate. The LGBT festival in the renowned gay area of Nollendorfplatz the weekend before is when the party really starts hotting up for the thrilling climax a week later.

5) San Francisco or Toronto?
We really couldn’t choose between these two, so we’ll let you decide. The largest one in the states, that too in its gayest city vs. a relative newcomer hosted by possibly the most diverse and youthful city in the world. If you really can’t choose, let’s give it to the only pride parade where the floats really need to float – the Amsterdam one!

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