Free love: Celebrating gay pride in Israel

The air was thick with love and celebration as the 20th Annual PRIDE Parade took over the city of Tel Aviv. The parade, the largest in Asia, brought in a bevy of international tourism, as people of all races, creeds, colors, and sexual orientation flooded the streets to celebrate equality and the freedom to love whomever they choose; including me.

As the parade, 250,000+ strong made its way through the city and down along Herbert Shmuel Blvd., the record crowd partied to dance music while rainbow, Israeli, and many other nations’ flags waved in the hot afternoon air.

The crowd following the parade was made up of people from all walks of life. Young and old, families and singles, Jews and Christians, Israelis, Americans, Australians, and everything in between. Parties spilled out onto balconies as the floats came by, a quarter million rainbow flags waving in the air.

The procession concluded at Charles Clore Park where a massive festival-style party and concert began, with those in attendance celebrating LGBTQ rights underneath the blazing Tel Aviv sun!

Alissa Brown (USA) showing her pride as the sun sets over the Mediterranean

Revelers en route to the largest Pride celebration in the Middle East – ever!

The costumes and colors were out on display!

Revelers from Australia brought their colors out for the party too!

Neve Tsedek, the quiet part of town during the mid-day parade

Taking it all in under the Tel Aviv sunshine.

The entire crowd celebrating at Charles Clore Park in Yafo

Time to cool down