The biggest event of its kind in the world. The major tourist event of the city. The second biggest popular agglomeration in city's history. These were just some of the titles given to Parade of Pride of Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transsexuals of São Paulo.
The first edition happened in 1997. It is quite a recent event in comparison to New York and San Francisco, where it occurs since the 70th decade. But it just took 8 editions to overcome those citie's parades in number of people. In 2006, as an example, it gathered about 2,4 million people. According to State Tourism Bureau, the Gay Parade brings to the city about 16 times the public of Formula 1.
The Parade happens yearly, in June, with the aims of bringing visibility to social-sexual categories and fomenting the creation of public policies for homosexuals, bisexuals, transvestites and transsexuals. Since its 7th edition, the Parade is associated to an intense cultural programming, that lasts at least a month.
This year, more than 2 milion people are expected to fill Avenida Paulista on June 10th, Sunday.
The Pride Parade Office advises the public that the Pride Parade is known as a peaceful event, with no record of serious violent accidents. Despite of that, they remember that it´s an open event so you should take care of your goods and pay attention to what is happening around you.
It is better to use the subway (Metrô) to go to Avenida Paulista. On the Parade day, extra trains operate and special localization systems are in place. Buy your subway tickets in advance, to avoid long lines on the day of the Parade. Along Avenida Paulista there are three subway stations: Brigadeiro, Trianon-Masp and Consolação, you can use any one of them.
It is not recommended to drive in the Avenida Paulista and downtown areas during the Parade. The Av. Paulista will be closed to traffic on that day.
Most international hotel companies in São Paulo will have specific hotels for the Gay Parade guests due to the huge number of people in the city looking for a room.
Besides the Gay Parade itself (which is just the high point of many activities of gay culture), there are several parties and events that happen in th São Paulo, especially during the Parade week. Here are the most important of them:
Wednesday, June 6
Baylon Especial - website (pt)
Thursday, June 7
Aqualand at Wet´n´Wild - website (pt)
Friday, June 8
Fun! Pré-Parada: Bubu - website (pt)
Saturday, June 9
Close at Clash Club - website (pt)
Sunday, June 10
Most São Paulo´s Gay Clubs must open on the Gay Parade day with after-hours, but not all of them will have special attractions or have already released their plans. But you can be sure all of them will be full because of the huge amount of tourists the city will receive.
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