We arrived in Amsterdam with not a clue what to expect and boy did we get a shock when we arrived. The city was absolutely packed and every hostel we tried was either full or required a 2 night booking with each night costing between 45 and 70€. 70€ for one person in a dorm! Oh my god! We soon discovered the reason why the city was so packed and the accommodation was so expensive – Amsterdam Gay Pride.
Amsterdam Gay Pride is an annual festival for Lesbian, Gay, Bi, Transgender people to celebrate their differences, but also as a statement that it is OK to be LGBT. The festival spans 3 days and its highlight is the parade along the stunning Amsterdam canals with many boats carrying the revelers – some dressed up, some dancing and some just happy to be there.
We had the opportunity to witness this amazing event and took a bunch of photos and videos.
The best bit about the festival is how happy everyone was. Not just the participants, but also the crowds who clapped and cheered as each new boat floated past. In The Netherlands, it’s OK to be gay.
That night, thousands of party-goers flooded the streets of central Amsterdam to drink, smoke and do whatever people do when they party in Amsterdam — it’s as much as free-for-all as you can get in a European country.
For us, all this partying meant we had to stay out near the airport and pay a lot more for a hotel than we had planned. Even then, we had to move hotel for the second night as the hotel on the first night was booked for the second night. This basically meant that for us, our time was largely spent trying to figure out where to stay and not enjoying Amsterdam as much as we would have liked.
Still, we had a great time in Amsterdam witnessing Gay Pride Amsterdam. Before long, we were on our way from Amsterdam to the German city of Cologne where Gay Pride was but a distance memory.