Freedom is one of the keywords of the 750-year-old city of Amsterdam, capital of the Netherlands. For centuries, Amsterdam has been a safe haven for people who have been persecuted for their religion, ideology, or lifestyle. Its liberal values ensure a safe and comfortable place for all people, regardless of their gender, the color of their skin, or their sexual orientation.


In 2001 mayor of Amsterdam, Job Cohen, officially wed three gay and lesbian couples for the first time ever. Amsterdam has one of the oldest gay and lesbian bars in the world, ‘t Mandje (est. 1927) and the Gay Monument (1987). It also hosted the Gay Games in 1998, we were one of the founding cities of the European Pride Organizers Association, and hosted EuroPride in 1994 and 2016. Hosting WorldPride in 2026 will be another great milestone in the city’s history of tolerance for LGBTQIA+. This will be a landmark event which will enable Amsterdam to share its wonderful atmosphere of tolerance and acceptance with other LGBTQIA+ people and their friends from all around the globe. 

The year 2026 will be an ideal time for Amsterdam to host WorldPride. We will then celebrate 25 years of Marriage Equality, 30 years of Pride Amsterdam, and the 80th anniversary of COC Netherlands. Founded in Amsterdam in 1946, COC is the oldest operating LGBTQIA+ organization in the world and is one of the few LGBTI organizations that has a special consultative status with the United Nations. In 2026, we will also celebrate 15 years of the ‘Declaration of Amsterdam’ for an LGBTQIA+ Inclusive Workplace and the 10th anniversary of the Equal Rights Coalition (ERC), which was founded under the leadership of the Netherlands.

While Amsterdam has been the gay capital of the world for many decades, it is also a good thing that LGBTQIA+ people in many other cities and countries have obtained the same fundamental rights and privileges over time. Hosting WorldPride in Amsterdam will give the city a chance to create a platform for cities and countries to share their practices on LGBTQIA+ rights and social acceptance, while also giving Amsterdam the chance to learn from others. We have created this bid with great pleasure, so please enjoy reading and watching it. 

— Frans van der Avert (Chairmain)
— Lucien Spee de Castillo Ruiz (Executive Director)