Category Archives: news

São Paulo LGBT Pride Parade 2018


The largest gay pride parade in the world will celebrate its 22nd anniversary when the São Paulo LGBT Pride Parade takes over the city on Sunday, June 3, 2018.   Event organizers are still debating the theme of the parade, but visitors can expect a fabulous mix of pride, politics, creativity, and fun.

Here’s a photo gallery of the highlights from past parades.  (Scroll down for travel information if you plan to visit the 2018 São Paulo LGBT Pride Parade.)

(Click to launch our Google Map of the parade route including landmarks of gay Sao Paulo.)

In the days leading up to the parade, São Paulo (already one of the most gay-friendly cities in Latin America) explodes with gay activities.  By day, “gayborhoods” like Frei Caneca and Largo do Arouche fill with couples.  And by night, nightclubs like The Week are packed.  We will update this page with a full schedule for the 2018 pride parade when it becomes available.

The theme of the parade will be Elections: Power for the LGBTI+ Our Vote, Our Voice and the objective is to utilize the movement to influence the upcoming Brazilian elections.  In 2017, over 3 million people took to the streets of Sao Paulo, according to parade estimates.

Getting There

For those searching for air/hotel packages, Expedia offers some of the lowest rates for package deals to São Paulo.  Europeans, Americans, and visitors who are  already in South America have a number of inexpensive options.

View airfare deals »

Hotels & Gay-Friendly Places to Stay

South America’s largest city offers hundreds of great places to stay. Here’s our short list of hotels you can enjoy your stay for pride weekend.

View Gay-Friendly Hotels »

Where to Party / Pride Agenda 2018

Film festivals, art exhibits, nightclub events, and even walks in the park.  The week before the actual parade on SundayJune 3rd will have something for everyone.  Sign-up for our mailing list and be the first to know the full agenda!

Saunas & Sex

Every sex club, cinema, and sauna will be very active for Pride Week. We’ve listed them all on one page. Dive in!

View Sao Paulo saunas and sex clubs »

*Note for American visitors in 2018:  Travel to Brazil requires a visa.   Get visa info you will need in time for June’s pride parade from the U.S. State Department website.

Gay Couple Ejected By Homophobic Driver in Rio

A 36 year-old businessman will file a claim with the organization “Rio Without Homophobia” against a driver hailed using the 99taxis app (a popular alternative to Uber in Latin America.)

The plaintiff and his boyfriend were ejected from the car in the dead of the night on Avenida Almirante Barroso in downtown Rio.  The reason for expelling the couple?  One boyfriend fell asleep during the ride resting his head on the other’s shoulder.

They claim the driver informed them “I think you better leave.  I don’t want perversion in my car.”  as reported by Brazilian newspaper O Globo.

The couple had just left the popular Carnival bloco “Bunytos de Corpo” at 2AM.

The story of the homophobic 99taxis driver sparked a firestorm on Brazilian social media.  Shortly thereafter, 99taxis issued a statement in a follow up story by O Globo announcing that the driver in question had been dismissed.

View Our Gay Guide to Rio de Janeiro »

São Paulo LGBT Pride Parade Announces 2016 Event Will Focus on Transgender Rights

Guide to LGBT Pride Parade 2016 »

The world’s largest LGBT pride parade in São Paulo Brazil will commemorate its 20th anniversary with a focus on transgender rights.  The Parada do Orgulho LGBT de São Paulo is scheduled for Sunday, May 29, and will fill the streets of South America’s largest city.  (In 2013, parade organizers estimated over 5 million revelers from across the globe converged on the city’s parade.)

The decision to spotlight transgender rights in 2016, according to the Association of the LGBT Pride Parade [in Portuguese] is to both recognize the role of transgender individuals in the fight for LGBT rights, and to gain momentum in the push for Brazil’s Gender Identity Law.  This new legislation (named for João W Nery, Brazil’s first declared male transsexual) is currently under review.

google map sao paulo lgbt pride parade vamosgay

Guide to LGBT Pride Parade 2016 »
Click for our 2016 gay guide to Rio »

“Boa Noite, Cinderela”

There is something darkly sinister about the Portuguese phrase “Boa Noite, Cinderela.” It sounds like something an evil witch in disguise would say to an innocent Disney princess before feeding her a poisonous treat.  In Brazil, it describes the phenomenon of drugging victims in bars to later assault or rob them.

Outside of Latin America, mostly women are targeted with this type of crime, and sexual assault is usually part of the equation.  South of the Equator, gay men are often the prey.  The predators may also be gay, or they may be heterosexual.  Assailants only need to act gay long enough to befriend and flirt with a single gay man before slipping a drug into his drink.

The substance itself could be an existing party drug which creates the desired effect (Special K, GHB, or Rohypnol.)  Or, it could be scopolomine, a particularly scary drug with the abilities to subdue victims, make them compliant in their own robbery, and leave them with memory loss.

The goal is almost always robbery, and the story almost always ends with the victim awakening hours, sometime even days, later with no memory of what happened after they met their attacker.

Recently, the crime has entered the digital age with an assailant using Grindr to pick up, drug, and rob gay men in Sao Paulo.

The tips to staying safe are obvious, but worth sharing:

  • don’t accept drinks from strangers
  • keep your eye on your drinks (bottles and cans with smaller openings are more difficult to slip a drug into)
  • take your drink with you (to the dance floor, or the men’s room)
  • if you do take your eye off your drink, just dispose of it and order a fresh one
  • use the buddy system (or, set up a check-in with someone if you go out alone)
  • don’t party too hard if you do go out alone; it’s hard to tell the sensation of a knockout drug kicking in if you’ve already had ten caipirinhas
  • take only what you need for that night in your wallet
  • if traveling, make sure your room key is unidentifiable (trash the little envelope labeled “Copacabana Palace, Room #318”)

One final tip is to share your story if you have been victimized.  When attacks have happened in the gay bars of Sao Paulo, victims and their friends have taken to Facebook to post warnings and even distribute surveillance camera images of their attackers.