Thousands flock to celebrate Pride Amsterdam

Thousands came to watch the boats. Photo: Remko de Waal ANP
Thousands came to watch the boats. Photo: Remko de Waal ANP

The 25th edition of the Pride Amsterdam boat parade took place in the Dutch capital on Saturday afternoon, with hundreds of thousands of people flocking to watch the procession.

In total, 80 boats took part in the official parade, which started in the eastern docklands area at midday and followed a route around the city centre, ending in the Westerdok in the late afternoon.

So many people turned up to view the spectacular that at one point the police urged people to stay away from parts of the city. The Magere Brug near the town hall was also closed off for a time because of the pressure of visitors.

The parade was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 because of the coronavirus restrictions.

This year the theme is My Gender, My Pride to focus attention on a wider part of the LBTQI+ community.

The lead boat in the parade was filled with refugees, some of whom have had their application for a residency permit rejected.

Other boats carried police officers in uniform, representing the ‘Roze in Blaauw‘ group. Armed forces chief Onno Eichelsheim was a guest on the defence ministry boat, the first time the highest Dutch military commander has taken part in the parade.

‘We want to show the world how unique Amsterdam is, that everyone can join in, and that we are all supporting each other for a safe future,’ Pride Amsterdam director Lucien Spee de Castillo Ruiz said.

Not everyone in the LGBTQ+ community is happy about the direction Pride has taken since its inception in 1996, with some arguing it has become too commercial and taken over by corporate interests.

Thank you for donating to

We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.

Make a donation