Words by Seb Morgan
Hey there, Pride Hoppers! East Asia’s biggest LGBTQ parade is just around the corner and set to march into Taipei on Saturday 26 October 2019.
This year, there’s more reason than ever before to celebrate. Following Taiwan’s trailblazing victory for equal rights in May, parade numbers are expected to surpass 2018 by 70,000 people. It’ll also be a first for Taiwan’s transgender community, who will be holding the first-ever Taiwan Transgender Procession on Friday 25, 2019, starting at the Changsha Street (長沙街) and Hanzhong Street (漢中街) intersection at 7:00pm.
Assuming you don’t revel too excessively on Friday night, things will kick off Saturday at 12:00pm at Taipei City Hall Plaza—that’s City Hall MRT on the blue line or Taipei 101 on the red, if you need help finding your bearings. While you’re there, don’t forget to check out the Taipei Rainbow Market (open 12:00pm to 6:00pm) and suit yourself up in as much pride gear as you can before the march starts. Keep an open eye out for the MyTaiwanTour booth too, and grab yourself tickets for some terrific city tours and awesome after parties after the parade. (Join LGBT friendly tour: Taipei Hipster Tour / Lez’s Meeting After Party of Gay Pride Tour)
Get kitted out quickly, because at 12:30pm, the real fun begins with an opening ceremony for the parade—not one you want to miss considering what Taiwan is celebrating. Then at 1:30pm, the march itself begins. (Read more: A happy accident: a first experience of Taiwan Pride)
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Unlike previous years, there will only be one parade route, this time heading down Zhongxiao East Road (忠孝東路) as far as Linsen South Road (林森南路), and then turning south toward the Presidential Office Building. That’s good news for those of you getting held up by equally important things (like brunch) as the route follows blue line of the MRT. Latecomers can get off at Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall (國父紀念館) through to Shandao Temple (善導寺) to catch up with the action. The stations will also make for handy bathroom breaks (if they’re too congested, the convenience stores are your next best bet).
Ending with a real bang, the parade route will reach its end on Ketagalan Boulevard (凱達格蘭大道), right outside Ketagalan Boulevard. From 4pm, there’ll be a closing concert there featuring this year’s rainbow ambassador, Taiwanese indie singer HUSH. (Read more: Ultimate Taipei LGBT Map)