Photo Source: Flickr - Michalis Famelis
LGBT singles, couples, and families have more reasons to celebrate now more than ever before in history. Laws are being changed every day and in many places human rights are being extended to all people. Yes, there's always room for improvement and the fight continues, but don't let that stop you from attending one of the numerous celebratory events that are taking place all around the world.
From July 8th to 12th Ibiza will hold its first gay pride festival with some 50,000 attendees expected to converge on this hugely LGBT-friendly European island. This year, travelers can expect club events, music, sports, film, and photo exhibits. The island just happens to be named one of Europe's Big 4 gay summer resorts as well as the nightclub capital for both Spain and Europe. If you've always thought about visiting Ibiza, this might be reason enough to go.
In 2011, Lady Gaga graced EuroPride in Rome with her talent and over-the-top outfits. It's anyone's guess though who will be in attendance this year from June 15th - 21st in Riga, the capital of Latvia. EuroPride initially kicked off in London in 1992, but has since been spread all over Europe with a different host city each year. Past events have been hosted in Oslo, Rome, Warsaw, Zurich, Stockholm, and Madrid, where they had a record breaking 2.5 million people in attendance. This year's Latvian locale is the first EuroPride event to be hosted in a former Soviet republic.
June 7th to 13th of 2009 marked a historic time in China. Some 3,000 people attended (very carefully and under great scrutiny) the first organized gay pride event in China. Though whether this was really an official gay pride event is a contested fact in China, it still remains a milestone for the LGBT cause. The government does not allow an official pride march, so organizers registered the event as a sporting event where attendees ran the streets in support of LGBT rights. June 12th - 21st will be the next event in China's most gay-friendly city and its expected to erupt in a far more flamboyant style than ever before.
Even though Greece remains fairly uptight regarding LGBT issues, for one day each June, Athens opens its doors more or less welcoming the LGBT community. In November 2013, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Greece was in violation of the Civil Partnership law, giving LGBT Athenians something to celebrate. And celebrate they will for the 11th year in Klaftmonos Square on June 13th. LGBT families from far and wide, numbering somewhere near 20,000 people, will attend this event. Even the mayor of Athens attended in 2014 for the first time ever.
The Ella Lesbian Festival is one of the late summer events held from September 1st - 9th in the Balearic Islands. Though not a traditional gay pride, it's a young and revolutionary event targeted specifically towards the lesbian community, but all are welcome to join. Although it's only in its third year, this festival offers the opportunity to enjoy drinks, cuisine, sports, culture, art, parties, and beaches in tropical ecstasy. One of the few festivals around the world specifically targeting lesbians, it's a must attend event for any woman (or friendly ally) to visit.
Where have you attended a pride event before?
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Auston grew up in Phoenix before escaping to Chicago in 2008. After 4 years working as an engineer, he sold his belongings and embarked on a round-the-world trip. After traveling non-stop for a year, he finally settled in Spain with his husband where he now calls home. When he's not traveling or writing guides about events, festivals or the best LGBT destinations, he enjoys the long sunny days and nightlife of Madrid. Read Auston's blog at Two Bad Tourists, or follow him on Google Plus, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram.
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