Day 1,851 of Traveling the World | Sydney, Australia | WorldPride/Mardi Gras Parade | February 26, 2023

Wow. Just….Wow. 12,500 marchers. 208 floats. 500,000 spectators. 900 police officers (on duty; others were in the parade!). The parade last night was a wild time! People around us were from various places in Australia and from around the world. Sydney was celebrating its 45th annual Pride celebration, and advertising was promoting the events as LGBTQIA+.

Since we returned to Sydney a few days ago, we noticed rainbow striping on crosswalks and in many shop windows, thinking only that it was because February is Gay Pride Month. (We have since discovered that so are June and October!) Then we started to hear about a big Mardi Gras/Pride parade on Saturday night. When we researched it, we only then found out that Sydney was hosting WorldPride, which initially occurred in Rome in 2000. (Pope John Paul II was NOT pleased, however!)

Yes, we know – purists are saying, “Mardi Gras was last Tuesday!” Get over it. Combining two highly decorated, costumed, and glittery events made it all the more fun. No Mardi Gras beads were thrown, though – just confetti. And there were fireworks at the end of the parade. Walking around several hours prior to the parade start, we met and saw all sorts of people in costume. All were friendly, smiling, and happy. The mood of the parade was very happy! It was a fun time. The photos (and one video) below prove it!

“All creatures welcome.” We liked that.
“Love wins.” We liked that, too.
Are those great wings, or what? For some reason, LOTS of people were wearing wings.
Decked out in gold! The tiara is great.
Another angel, and the white headdress on the left is fun. This is just a random selection of people crossing the street, on the way to the parade.
…a Glam Event…
The man in red. He was going for that adorable look.
This is Rose, yet another angel. Even with all of the great costumes, people were lining up to take photos with Rose.
The City of Sydney added rainbows to their street signs for WorldPride.
This is just one of the rainbow walkways we encountered.
There was a long line of people waiting to have their picture taken…as an angel with rainbow wings, of course!
…just walking down the street…
The parade started with 20 minutes of Dykes on Bikes! (There were also Boys on Bikes.)
More rainbow colors!
These are the First Nations paraders. You can see the head of what was a 50-foot-long uh, caterpillar? Just a guess.
The 78ers…who were at the first march
45 years ago.
“Out of the bars and onto the streets.” They have come a long way.
This was a bus for the older people who couldn’t walk the entire route. The bus was festooned with various banners – we agree with this one.
These rainbow nuns are the “Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.”
These two posed for the crowd. Fabulous wardrobe!
“Black Trans Lives Matter.” Everyone – and we mean EVERYONE – was included in this parade.
More wings!
This group walked with ice cream cones. Their float said, “Oxford Street, You’re So Sweet,” and shone different colored lights on the dancers. (The parade took place on Oxford Street.)
These skimpily-dressed men were a BIG hit with the crowd!
In two years, the festivities will take place in the US capital.
…followed by Amsterdam in 2026.
These are ACON health care workers, the largest health care agency for LGBTQ people in Australia.
Another bus for folks who couldn’t walk the route – each door had someone in costume waving and smiling.
They said it – we didn’t!
The Brazilian Fruits all danced with these luminous wings.
Everyone expressed themselves very well.
This group is LOVE MAKES A FAMILY – moms, dads, and kids all wearing inflated unicorns.
The Sydney Dance Company float.
The Southeast Asia float.
This group added lights around their signs.
This is the Queensland Team Rainbow, Club Lime float.
A very, very bright and vibrant truck.
She has legs that don’t seem to end!
Rainbow Babies & Kids.
A short video of the Dykes on Bikes.

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