Since 1999, the Gay Pride Parade and festival in Phuket has been the highlight of the year for local Thais and tourists with alternative sexual preferences – gay, lesbian, tom and lady-boy (transsexual).
The Phuket Loves You Club has, for the past nine years, taken on the massive task of planning, coordinating and producing the Gay Pride Parade in Phuket every April. In 2017, the event took place from April 27 – 30 in Patong Beach and was a roaring success, as usual. The theme of the celebration that year was “Be strong. Be healthy. Be happy!”
Though the festival was considered a great success, apparently the Phuket Loves You Club had even bigger aspirations, and they took twenty-four months to produce the next event. There was no Gay Pride Parade in 2018 because the organization was planning for 2019 (27. – 30. April 2019 – a bigger, better planned event than they ever had. Unfortunately, there will be no festival held in 2020 (canceled). However, the plan is to bring it back even stronger and better sometime in April 2021. We will make sure to publish the exact dates as soon as available.
The Gay Pride festivities, during this huge event, are very popular with gay and straight people, and local businesses both support and benefit from the celebration of gay pride. Phuket’s government has supported the festival as a positive yearly tourism and cultural event.
What goes on at the Gay Pride Festival?
– Music for one: there is a constant stream of music coming from presenters at open-air concerts and impromptu get together of singers and bands at bars and restaurants across Patong Beach.
– There is a lot of dancing going on, and the entire atmosphere of Patong turns into of a huge party on the streets.
– Besides drinking, dancing and having inebriated fun, there are also sports games which includes competitions for prizes.
– There are art shows and auctions for the benefit of local charities.
– There are even nightly firework shows that can be seen from the beach.
The big draw of the entire event is the Gay Pride Parade. Phuket locals and visitors really gear up for this spectacular march down the main streets of Phuket: it’s fantastic to see and highly recommended if you’re in the area! Everyone in the parade, it seems, is wearing some sort of outrageous and colorful costume and make-up. There is nothing low-key about this event. There is music, dancing, kissing and even flashing of skin. It’s all in good taste, or at least not done with bad-intentions. Everyone is in a great mood and smiles are everywhere you look. There are decorated ornate and magical floats in the parade and each group tries to out-do the others. After the massive flamboyant parade there are shows after gaudy shows on the stages around Soi Paradise as well as gay-friendly businesses and hotels in Patong. This huge event becomes the biggest drunken party Phuket has each year, and it lasts until the next morning when the clean-up begins!
Note: the Gay Pride Festival is not a drunken orgy and standards of behavior are maintained for the most part. There may be the odd flash, or something stronger, but it isn’t the norm. Most parade-goers keep their clothes on. If you attend this festival or parade, please have an open mind, and you’ll have a much better time of it!
Location? The parties take place all over Phuket, but the center of the festival is generally considered to be the Paradise Complex on Rat-U-Thit Road just north of Soi Sansabai in Patong Beach.
Gay Pride Parade Phuket Information
- Distance From Bismarcks Paradise:32.6 km (56) minutes
- Distance From Central Phuket:14 km (35) minutes
- Address:4233 Ban Patong, Phuket, Thailand
- Telephone:086 604 1333
- Website:Website from Gay Pride Parade Phuket
- Facebook:Facebook from Gay Pride Parade Phuket
- Contact Email:firstname.lastname@example.org