The following is a guest post by UK-based blogger Ryan C. Haynes.
Gay travel typically hinges on the gay pride event calendar that occurs between April – September with most of the big-scale events happening in late-June/ early-July to coincide with the celebration of the Stonewall riots. This first act to claim equality for LGBT people has now turned into huge party events and parades recognizing that we have a right to equality and freedom.
Gay pride events have sprouted up across the globe, some of them are mega parties that dominate the local calendar, others are still small community events that can still receive a lot of backlash from their local community. However I have listed some of the most exciting and interesting gay pride events to consider.
On the seafront of the south of England, Brighton Pride is very much a community event that is attended by the large local LGBT population, locals, and families, as well as out of towners who pack trains to enjoy a day by the seaside. The Pride parade makes its way from the pier, through the town to Preston Park where the afternoon event commences, the park is packed with music festival tents, fairground rides and all-afternoon entertainment, before pride-goers head to the Old Town for a street party.
Stockholm Pride, Sweden
The city is open, welcoming and has gay running through its blood. So much so, that it created gay pride to be recognized as a gay-friendly destination even though LGBT is incredibly accepted. However, this has to be one of the biggest and brightest pride parades I have seen in recent years. It seems like the entire city turns out to watch with everyone from children, to families of gay-loved ones taking part.
Rio Carnival – Ipanema, Brazil
If you’re going to visit Brazil at any time, it has to be during Rio Carnival, and this time head to Ipanema. Next to Copacabana and just a couple of miles from Rio city centre, this suburb has it all. Glorious beaches, a warm inviting sea, small bars and restaurants, and during Carnival there is a gay street party every night – starting at 11pm and not finishing until the late hours. Most start early – on the beach enjoying cocktails.
Arosa Gay Ski Week, Switzerland
One of the newer events in the gay calendar, and while not a traditional pride, it does take the plight for LGBT equality and celebration to the slopes of the Swiss mountains. Every January several hundred gay people head to Arosa for a week of skiing and parties. It is one of the best Ski pride events in Europe and is growing by the year.
Madrid Pride, Spain
It’s the biggest and best in Europe and certainly contends for the Pride crown worldwide. Madrid just opens up as a central LGBT haven with some of the best entertainers, and reports to have near two million people attend every year. Spain is one of the few countries that allow same-sex marriage, and just a stroll around the capital at anytime of the year will demonstrate how open and comfortable gay people are.
Ryan C Haynes travels, writes about travel, documents travel by video, follows travel and provides updates on travel. He writes travel reports, analyses the hotel industry, looks out for new technology, new booking offers, and challenges how hotels sell to travelers. His specialist interest is in gay travel and seeks to uncover the best gay nightlife and that off the beaten track. Visit his blog, ryanchaynes.blogspot.com and YouTube channel or connect with him on Facebook and Twitter.