Amsterdam Pride 2022. Bucket List Pride Part 2
Unlike Curacao Pride, but very similar to Rio Carnival, street parties are a big thing for Amsterdam Pride. And I attempted to drop in on as many as I could. From Drag Olympics to Beursplein (Crash), which is more of the Fetish Street Party. I made a goal to hit 5, which is around half of the bigger and more well-known street parties, and some were more crowded than others, which impacted the enjoyment. And some were definitely a 10 out of 10, and I would recommend. Some of the ones I attended that I would go again include Prik, Rembrandtplein, and one that I would not, Reguliersdwarsstraat. All three had amazing music; the only reason why I would not recommend the Reguliersdwarsstraat is the crowd was unbearable. To me, it had the best music; hosted by Café Reality as they are the Latin, Caribbean Hip-Hop Club of Amsterdam; it was just too crowded to dance and enjoy anything. Prik became my favorite since it had good music, as well as the space to move about and enjoy it! Beursplein was larger than Prik’s Street Party; but it had music that was interesting to say the least but wasn’t my cup of tea!
The Rembrandtplein Street Party was probably the closest to what people think about when they think about a pride event concert setup. Staging with folks enjoying the music and performances. It was a great time and was the last of the 5 Street parties I made it to during my 10 days in Amsterdam. With a bar, food, and the surrounding businesses, almost anything you wanted or needed was available. After the street parties, there are the day events which I did love as well. First is Drag Olympics; watching the Handbag Toss and Stiletto Sprint were so much fun! Just get there early for a good spot to view as much as of the sporting events!
Just think of a Drag Pentathlon and you will have a good idea of what to expect! The next is, of course, the most well-known thing with Amsterdam Pride, and that is the Canal Parade. Amsterdam is somewhat different than most major cities in the fact that besides streets, they have canals as well to get around the city. Which allows them to shift their Pride Parade from going 5th Avenue like in New York City or Halstead like in Chicago. By shifting the parade to the canal, it allows for those in the city to get a spot on a bridge to watch as the decorated boat floats by, or if you have a friend that has a spot on the canal, to enjoy the parade from their boat or apartment window! The floats are just as decorated if not more so since they can be larger than the standard floats in a parade; as it is much more common to have a 15-20 foot boat than it is for a motor vehicle to be available in the same size.
“Starting at Oosterdok before traveling around the boats makes the trip around the city before exiting out at Westerdok. A few tips for me: arrive early. Bring a blanket and post up at one of the turns! My experience is that you get a little more time to celebrate and enjoy each of the floats as they navigate the small bank to curve around the city or the hard turn from Amstel to Prinsengracht, since that is a full 90-degree turn.. With performances on some of the floats or a major party vibe, you get a few more seconds to feel a part of the celebration with the floats as they complete the navigation.
Overall, I will say that Amsterdam Pride was an amazing experience; it is one that I will have to repeat and, most importantly, for WorldPride Amsterdam in 2026.