– Written by Victoria Philpott
27 July – 4 August 2013
Visit Amsterdam this weekend and you’ll be welcomed by street parties, special club nights, the famous Canal Parade and one of the craziest weekends in Amsterdam’s calendar. Since 1996 the capital of the Netherlands has celebrated its LGBT community with a festival and parade. It’s the biggest one ever this year with over 300 activities. The theme is ‘Reflect’, so interpret that how you please!
The Canal Parade starts at 2pm on Saturday, 3 August at the Prinsengracht at the Westerdok Harbour (near the Central Station). After walking down here it turns left on the Amstel River, passing the famous white Skinny Bridge (Magere Brug) and passes the Stadshuis/Muziektheater to go right towards the Oosterdok. Check out the 80 decorated boats sailing along the Prinsengracht too. After the parade you’ll find parties going on all over the capital – fetish, burlesque, disco, Latin American – open to all and going on late into the morning.
On Friday it’s the Drag Queen Olympics – including the Handbag Throw, the 100m stiletto Sprint and the Tug-of-War.
You’ll also find lots of cultural activities going on through the week with museums and art galleries organising special exhibitions on a gay and lesbian theme. Zookeepers at the Artis Zoo will introduce you to all the gay animals on a special tour. And there are always several sports events to keep you away from all the boozing and partying!
At The Bulldog hostel you’ll not only enjoy safe surroundings and a comfy bed, but also a warming bath and a great location near Dam Square. There’s a relaxed lounge, a fun atmosphere and friendly staff. Dorms start at €30 pppn.
European Gay Pride Parades…
- Dublin 29 June
- Oslo 29 June
- Paris 29 June
- London 29 June
- Budapest 6 July
- Frankfurt 21 July
- Stuttgart 27 July
- Stockholm 3 August
- Reykjavik 11 August
- Gay Pride: NYC, LA, San Francisco & Washington
- The Gay Scene Guide to Madrid
- Gay Travel Guide: San Francisco
If you have any tips on how to make the most of the festival let us know in the comments box below…