The LGBTQ+ rights movement has made tremendous strides over the past few decades and much of the progress in visibility is thanks in part to gay pride parades and marches that have taken place in cities around the world.
The global landscape for LGBTQ+ rights, protections and acceptance varies tremendously by location, with some destinations attracting millions of visitors to their events like Madrid Gay Pride, Sao Paulo Gay Pride or San Francisco Gay Pride, while more than 70 other countries have laws that allow discrimination or persecution of LGBTQ+ people.
What is Gay Pride?
Gay pride events, including gay pride parades and festivals were started in major urban centers to improve the visibility, acceptance and legal protections for LGBTQ+ people living in those communities. While the aim of pride day started with a political nature, many cities around the world have such wide acceptance and legal protections that many events have become a celebration of pride for the local LGBTQ+ community. Depending on the country or city where the event is being held, the marches and parades often campaign for recognition and acceptance of same-sex marriage, legal protections for couples and families, anti-discrimination laws or trans rights. Although there are still obstacles in achieving full acceptance and protections for the LGBTQ+ community, the progress made just over the past few decades has been significant.
A Brief History of Gay Pride
In June of 1969, a group of LGBTQ+ people in New York City rioted following a police raid of the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar located on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village. This series of events was a turning point for the LGBTQ+ community and marks one of the most significant events leading to the modern gay rights movement. The following year in June, organized demonstrations took place in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco to mark the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. As the years went on, additional cities in North America and Europe began to hold their own public demonstrations or pride day, eventually leading to what we know today as a gay pride parade, march, celebration or festival.
When is Gay Pride?
In honor of the Stonewall riots and the demonstrations that took place the following year in major cities in the US, most cities around the world now hold their pride celebrations in the summer of the northern hemisphere and in particular in June. In many countries, June is officially recognized as month even through some cities may hold their pride events on alternate dates.
How to Use This List?
We have published this calendar to inform the LGBTQ+ community of important gay pride events and parades globally to offer a complete source for planning your travel. This event calendar includes more than 150 listings, but you can sort and filter the list by region and date to determine where you want to go or when to plan your trip. While events take place throughout the year, the majority take place during the months of June, July and August. Events displayed in light grey have already taken place for the year. Some of the cities and pride organizations listed here are also IGLTA members, which are designated by the ‘Member’ badge next to the event listing. IGLTA membership indicates a city’s willingness to actively welcome the LGBTQ+ community to that destination. Some IGLTA Members also have enhanced membership including Featured Destination or Global Partner. Global Partners are an elite group of global brands that have committed to improving travel for the LGBTQ+ community worldwide.
Why Visit a Destination During a Local Gay Pride Event?
Visiting a destination during a pride event is a great way to not only see the city, its landmarks and learn its history, but also to immerse yourself in the local LGBTQ+ community. Most gay pride parades and events also occur during a peak season of the year when the weather most ideal, yet another reason to book your trip during the event. Whether traveling alone, with friends or family, visiting during a gay pride event can be a fun way to experience a new destination and IGLTA can help you find LGBTQ-friendly business in almost any location to help make you trip memorable, safe and exciting.