This weekend Amsterdam hosted the annual Gay Pride, one of the most successful ones ever — that’s what the organizers say, I couldn’t compare since it was the first one I witnessed. The first Gay Pride was held in Amsterdam in 1996 and it has been an important event ever since, delighting visitors with street parties, concerts and the famous Canal Pride: the boat parade on the canals.
On Saturday 6 August at noon, the city centre transformed into a colourful party scene: the parade started at the beginning of the Prinsengracht at Westerdok harbour and made it’s way through the city to the end of Prinsengracht, continuing on the Amstel river to Oosterdok. An impressive collection of decorated boats, loud music of all kinds, dancers and sexy people passed through the canal’s waters, in the cheers of the crowds. Everything was highlighted by the colour pink (even the garbage sacks used on the streets were pink, celebrating the occasion) and people were in a party mood, dancing and drinking on their boats or on the streets. Not even the rain showers that came pouring in the middle of the event could dampen their spirits — everyone darted for cover then returned as soon as the skies cleared.
I think it was an extraordinary event, the kind that everyone should see at least once. I enjoyed it and I can’t wait for the next one!