As the European summer continues to sizzle, the local gay communities are putting the finishing touches on their floats - to ensure this year's pride parades are full of colour, spectacle and most importantly sequins. Perhaps you might like to consider planning your European holiday to coincide with the city's pride festivities – each weekend a different pride parade.
Here are our top five European Pride Parades.
Berlin – June 23
The first Christopher Street Day Parade was held in Berlin in 1979, when activists joined the worldwide movement to mark the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots with a local demonstration. Today more than 500,000 revellers watch the parade that begins early afternoon and winds down Kurfürstendamm, past Potsdamer Platz and the Brandenburg Gate and finishes at the iconic Victory Column. After the parade, party it up with the Germans who are kept bopping courtesy of a massive al fresco party.
Paris - June 30
Paris' Marche des Fiertés LGBT or, in English, the LGBT Pride March begins at 2pm at Place du 18 Juin 1940 and travels along Boulevard du Montparnasse and Boulevard St-Michel before crossing the River Seine at Pont de Sully and finishing at Place de la Bastille. The event generally attracts around 500,000 party-goers, who descend on the bars and clubs of the Marais following the parade.
Barcelona – July 1
Barcelona's Pride Parade kicks off at 6pm on the Sunday night - after a weekend of festivities including an epic outdoor Saturday night party. Over 150,000 enthusiasts admire the floats that travel along Carrer Sepulveda to Plaza Espanya. Following the parade, hang around for the street party, where DJ's pump out tunes well into the early hours of the next morning. The Spanish sure know how to party.
London – July 7
London organises around 100 events throughout the two weeks that make up Pride London – the culmination is of course the parade which progresses along Regent and Oxford Streets. It's estimated that one million people attend the various events – a far cry from the 2000 protesters who attended London's first gay protest in 1972. After the march, head to Trafalgar Square where international performers entertain the eager audience and turn central London into a huge gay party.
Amsterdam – August 4
For a city famous for canals, it's fitting that Amsterdam's pride parade features a flotilla of 75 boats that travel along the Prinsengracht and Amstel Rivers - to the delight of the 500,000 enthusiasts who cheer on the participants. From the parade, head to one of the popular clubs to continue the celebrations - Dutch style.