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Pride Travel

Discover the World's Top Destinations for Pride Festivals
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Pride Travel: Top Destinations

The 50 Best Pride Festivals to Visit in 2019 - HomeToGo base64Hash The 50 Best Pride Festivals to Visit in 2019 - HomeToGo

The 50 Best Pride Festivals to Visit in 2019


Where are the best Pride festivals in the world? This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots - which set the Pride movement into action. To celebrate Pride 2019, HomeToGo has produced a special guide to the 50 most exciting Pride festivals on the planet. From Calgary to Copenhagen, from the recognized to the rising stars, the list includes a diverse range of Pride destinations worth visiting this summer!

After researching hundreds of cities around the globe, HomeToGo selected a final shortlist of 50 locations that offer travellers the following: Excellent travel connections, a growing Pride festival, vibrant LGBTQ+ nightlife, LGBTQ+ friendly laws, and affordable accommodation. A full methodology can be found below. Get ready to celebrate Pride 2019 - and find out where the world's best celebrations are, below!

Some Fabulous Facts About Pride Month

three protestors standing together - red icon

Vancouver and Montreal were the first Canadian cities to host an official Pride march in 1979.

Art deco building icon in yellow

Europe's largest pride festival is in Madrid. The celebrations attract more than 1 million people each year.

Icon of Brazilian flag in Green

The world’s largest Pride festival is in São Paulo, Brazil. Every year the festival attracts more than 3 million visitors.

Empire state building icon in purple

New York City is home to this year’s World Pride, to commemorate fifty years since the Stonewall riots.

The Top 50 Pride Celebrations in the World

Rank
City
Country
Travel Score
Trending Score
Laws
Nightlife
Accomm.
Total
1
São Paulo
Brazil
2.53
9.71
8.80
7.98
9.77
38.79
2
Mexico City
Mexico
3.19
9.74
8.40
5.96
9.74
37.03
3
Madrid
Spain
6.92
7.47
8.80
6.40
7.19
36.78
4
New York
USA
6.12
6.64
8.00
10.00
5.64
36.40
5
Paris
France
10.00
4.31
8.40
6.85
5.62
35.18
6
Bogotá
Colombia
2.23
9.73
9.40
2.81
9.75
33.92
7
Buenos Aires
Argentina
1.17
9.66
10.00
3.15
9.78
33.76
8
Milan
Italy
6.19
9.66
7.20
2.81
7.34
33.20
9
Sitges
Spain
6.48
9.60
8.00
3.15
5.67
32.90
10
Barcelona
Spain
6.48
5.62
8.60
6.18
5.74
32.62
11
Berlin
Germany
3.77
6.20
7.80
7.08
7.76
32.61
12
Los Angeles
USA
6.37
7.79
7.40
5.96
4.63
32.15
13
Lisbon
Portugal
4.25
8.10
9.40
2.36
7.93
32.04
14
San Francisco
USA
4.18
8.64
7.60
6.63
4.83
31.88
15
Prague
Czechia
4.80
8.63
8.00
2.47
7.76
31.66
16
Toronto
Canada
6.37
8.37
8.20
1.91
6.75
31.60
17
Benidorm
Spain
3.74
7.71
9.80
2.25
7.88
31.38
18
Baltimore
USA
2.34
9.79
7.60
3.82
7.35
30.90
19
Cologne
Germany
3.88
7.56
9.20
2.13
7.73
30.50
20
Montreal
Canada
4.40
7.62
7.80
3.37
7.12
30.31
21
Birmingham
UK
3.48
9.91
7.80
1.24
7.76
30.19
22
Manchester
UK
6.74
8.34
7.80
0.67
6.63
30.18
23
Valencia
Spain
2.23
7.68
9.80
2.58
7.88
30.17
24
Glasgow
UK
2.53
9.44
7.80
3.03
7.17
29.97
25
Seattle
USA
3.48
9.26
8.60
4.16
4.33
29.83
26
Stockholm
Sweden
4.76
9.11
7.40
1.24
7.12
29.63
27
Oslo
Norway
4.47
9.33
8.00
0.34
7.33
29.47
28
Bristol
UK
3.08
9.98
7.80
1.24
7.17
29.27
29
Copenhagen
Denmark
6.04
8.22
8.80
1.01
5.17
29.24
30
Porto Alegre
Brazil
0.00
9.74
8.20
1.91
9.31
29.16
31
Helsinki
Finland
4.54
9.85
7.80
0.00
6.86
29.05
32
Dublin
Ireland
6.04
8.26
7.60
1.01
5.67
28.58
33
Seoul
South Korea
4.87
9.68
2.80
1.69
9.09
28.13
34
Philadelphia
USA
4.25
10.00
6.60
1.69
4.61
27.15
35
Calgary
Canada
0.77
9.86
8.20
0.00
8.20
27.03
36
Albuquerque
USA
0.11
9.81
6.60
1.69
8.70
26.91
37
Atlanta
USA
8.10
8.35
1.40
3.15
5.70
26.70
38
Rotterdam
Netherlands
0.59
9.60
9.80
0.11
6.48
26.58
39
Taipei
Taiwan
3.96
9.54
2.60
2.13
8.10
26.33
40
Ottawa
Canada
0.73
9.38
8.60
0.11
7.48
26.30
41
Manila
Philippines
2.38
9.74
0.80
3.15
10.00
26.07
42
Vancouver
Canada
2.97
9.64
7.80
0.45
5.04
25.90
43
Belfast
UK
1.43
9.71
6.40
0.00
6.97
24.51
44
London
UK
6.85
2.58
7.20
2.47
5.12
24.22
45
Amsterdam
Netherlands
8.64
0.00
8.00
2.58
4.57
23.79
46
Orlando
USA
4.73
8.16
1.80
1.24
6.65
22.58
47
Brighton
UK
6.85
2.85
7.80
2.36
2.44
22.30
48
Ibiza
Spain
2.42
7.06
9.80
2.02
0.00
21.30
49
San Antonio
USA
0.62
8.84
2.80
2.02
5.90
20.18
50
St. Petersburg, FL
USA
1.10
9.37
0.00
0.34
9.14
19.95
Bright Pride rainbow flag coloured on the pavement

Where Should You Travel for Pride This Year?

With so many unique Pride festivals around the world, where do you start? To learn more about the world's top 50 destinations for Pride, we spoke with leading LGBTQ+ travel experts about their favourite Pride festivals and the importance of celebrating Pride.

Doug Wallace smiling in a black shirt and glasses

My favourite Pride festival has to be my own town Toronto Pride, [...] it is a monumentally positive experience for locals and tourists alike. Recently, events have been attended by a past Premier of Ontario who is a lesbian, our terrific ally the mayor, and the Prime Minister of Canada, who marched in the parade in a pink shirt. To have all three levels of government cheering on the Pride festivities and showing their support was emotional beyond words.

[It's important] to educate everyone from the young to the old that there’s nothing wrong with being gay—be out, be seen, to be on the news that evening. Homosexuality is not a disease; I am not broken and don’t need to be fixed. Particularly now in the world where so many nations have terrible human rights records of oppression, we need to celebrate the LGBTQ+ communities everywhere, highlighting the struggles that have come before as well as those we are facing now.

Celina Koekenbie MagLes Magazine

We love Barcelona’s Pride, it can be because we are from the city and so is always a gathering of friends. Another Pride that we really like is the Amsterdam Canal Pride Parade. The parade takes place through the canals of the city which makes it very special. Sitges Pride is very good too, especially for the place but it would be good if they would focus a bit more on women and not just on men. 

Many people, even within the LGBT community, sees the pride as a simple party but that’s not what matters on these dates. It is visibility. It is very important to make LGBT communities visible to normalize homosexuality in society, because people fear the unknown or simply don’t like what they can’t see. The flag, the party and the activities that take place in the prides are to show that we exist and that we deserve equality in this heteronormative world. 

Dani smiling in front of a palm tree and blue ocean

I’ve been lucky enough to be part of some of the biggest Pride celebrations in the world: London, Berlin, Brighton and I was even on a float in New York City last year. But one that stood out was Buenos Aires. Pride was first celebrated there in 1991 – and only 17 people showed up! Now it's a massive street party with 100,000 attendees. The proud LGBTQ+ participants and allies, Argentine lust for life and South American rhythms made this a Pride I’ll always remember.

It's important to march for LGBTQ+ rights everywhere. [...] There are still too many countries in which homosexuality is seen – and treated – as a crime, and LGBTQ+ visibility is important to normalise it. In many parts of the world, LGBTQ+ rights are still not anywhere near where they should be.

Rafael Leik with his two feathered friends

São Paulo’s Pride parade is the best one out of those that I’ve had the opportunity to visit. However, there are some I’d like to visit as well, like Amsterdam, with all the colourful boats and people around the canals.

Celebrating Pride is not about celebrating privileges, but about celebrating the right to be who you are. Being a proud LGBTQ+ person is about getting out into the open, and not being ashamed to demonstrate who you are. Currently, Brazil is facing a very difficult moment for the community [...] The more people we have outside of the closet, not afraid and being proud to come out, the more visibility we gain, and the bigger the chances to end the inequality we have now."


Mapped: Pride Celebrations Across Canada

How We Created This Guide

We used information provided by The International LGBTQ+ Travel Association (IGLTA) to identify hundreds of Pride festivals around the world. We researched the following five categories for each of the locations: The accessibility of the Pride festival, the Pride festival’s year-on-year growth rate, the city’s LGBTQ+ nightlife, the LGBTQ+ friendliness of local laws, and the affordability of local accommodation. The final shortlist of 50, comprises the cities that perform strongly in all five categories. Additional cities were eligible for inclusion but were excluded from the final shortlist, as their Pride festivals took place before the release of this guide (May 25, 2019). 

After collecting the raw data, we assigned each data point a numerical value between 0 and 10, with 0 representing the lowest data point in the range and 10 representing the highest data point. This process was carried out for each of the 5 categories, making 50 the maximum possible score. We used the equation below in order to assign representative scores between 0 and 10 to the raw data: 

Score(i) = 10 ( ( (x(i) - x(min) ) / ( (x(max) - x(min) ) )

How Each Category Was Researched

Accessibility Score: We examined the number of scheduled direct non-stop destinations from the nearest international airport to each Pride festival, using flightsfrom.com as a data source. *Cities lacking a dedicated airport (Benidorm, Brighton, and Sitges) were given the same score as the nearest city with an airport (Alicante, London, and Barcelona). The city with the international airport offering the highest number of scheduled direct non-stop destinations was awarded a maximum score of 10, and the remaining cities were awarded scores based on the equation above.

Trending Score: We used HomeToGo’s own metasearch data to compare searches for accommodation for 2019's Pride festivals vs. searches for accommodation for 2018's Pride festivals. Using this data, we were able to understand the year-on-year growth rate of eachPride festival. The city with the largest year-on-year increase in searches was awarded the maximum trending score of 10, and the remaining cities were awarded scores based on the equation above.

LGBTQ+ Nightlife Score: We used online mapping tools to identify LGBTQ+ friendly bars and nightclubs in each of the cities. The city with the most LGBTQ+ friendly bars and clubs was awarded a maximum score of 10, and the remaining cities were awarded scores based on the equation above.

LGBTQ+ Friendliness Score: We used data provided by DestinationPride.org to evaluate the laws in each of the cities in our ranking. DestinationPride.org evaluates Marriage Equality, Sexual Activity Laws, Gender Identity Protections, Anti-Discrimination Laws, Civil Rights and Liberties, and Social Media Sentiment around the world. The city with the most progressive laws was awarded a maximum score of 10, and the remaining cities were awarded scores based on the equation above.

Accommodation Score: We used HomeToGo’s own metasearch data to find the cost of accommodation in each of the 50 cities on the night before and after the respective Pride parade. The city with the cheapest accommodation prices was awarded a maximum score of 10, and the remaining cities were awarded a representative score based on the equation above.

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