While Queen’s Day might be Amsterdam’s biggest city festival, Gay Pride is by far the most colorful. Hundreds of thousands flock to the city, ready to party and celebrate Amsterdam’s famous liberal-mindset. It’s a city where you can do what you want, love who you want, and live how you want. Pretty damn awesome if you ask me. The centerpiece of the Gap Pride festival is a colorful canal parade – a rainbow of dancers, cross-dressers, and party animals alike who all proudly float down the Prinsengracht in a bright plume of techno-color confetti.
After a productive morning at home, B and I headed towards the center, iced coffee in hand. All of the local shops and stalls proudly displayed their red-yellow-green-blue-and-purple striped flags, and the streets were flooded with a mix of friendly drunks and men in high heels. Just your typical day in Amsterdam.Thousands of people lined up along the Prinsengracht, waiting for the party to start.The first boat of the day was greeted with a roar from the crowd. Balloons were cut loose, bubbles drifted through the air, and loud speakers signaled the start of a techno dance party!
What followed was a parade of colorful awesome. There were mermen and sailors, belly dancers and soldiers. The juxtaposition of Amsterdam’s historic architecture alongside raving seamen is something I will remember for a long time to come!As the parade ended, we made our way through the crowd. Although we decided to heard towards home, parties raved on well into the night.I really love Amsterdam, and the city’s liberal mindset is just one of the many reasons why I’m proud to call this city home.