There’s always something – or someone – going down in Berlin. The queer capital of Europe is well-known for its iconic nightlife scene – with legendary queer friendly venues like Berghain and KitKatClub in its roster – and for its numerous cultural spaces, which celebrate everything LGBTQ+.

Throughout the year Berlin also hosts an exciting range of queer events, from kinky street parties to LGBTQ+ film festivals. Planning a trip to Berlin? Why not time your visit around one of these exciting festivals. 

XPOSED Queer Film Festival Berlin

May 30 – June 2024

In its 18th year, this international film festival shows both the latest cutting-edge queer films and classic queer cinema from all around the world. XPOSED Queer Film Festival Berlin was first created in 2006 by Bartholomew Sammut, with the aim of providing a festival where international queer filmmakers can showcase their works, no matter how raw, odd, experimental, or left of center.

Today it stays true to those roots with showings in several movie theaters throughout Berlin of everything from documentaries exploring queer lives to fiction which delves deep into questions of sexuality and gender.

Image credit: LesbischSchwules Stadtfest Berlin

Lesbian and Gay City Festival

July 20 and 21, 2024

Traditionally held on the weekend before Berlin's Christopher Street Day, this two-day event attracts a large international crowd to officially kick off the gay scene's party season. This year it reaches the respectful age of 30. The festivities take place in the gayborhood of Nollendorfplatz in Schöneberg. With over 350,00 international visitors it is the biggest event of its kind.

This year there will be six stages of music and shows from LGBTQ+ performers with DJs catering to all tastes in music. They’ll also be stalls, information booths as well as food and drinks, the event is not only a celebration, but also a protest against exclusion of any kind. Also known as Motzstraßenfest, the events remain true to the motto “Equal rights for unequal people – worldwide”.

Jessica Zumpfe, visitBerlin, Photo: Jessica Zumpfe

Berlin Canal Pride

July 25, 2024

Leading up to the main CSD parade, this PRIDE event is celebrated on the water, when some twenty boats – representing different groups within Berlin’s LGBTQ+ community – sail down Berlin’s Spree river in a colorful parade of queer joy.  And don’t miss the CSD on the Spree afterparty at the Osthafen event location, with a large outdoor area along the water.

CSD Berlin | Berlin Pride – Christopher Street Day

July 27, 2024

Berlin’s main Pride event brings together Berlin’s queer community to march united for a day that is equal parts protest and party. Expect a palpably fun atmosphere with over one million people marching at the CSD in Berlin for equal rights and the right to self-determination. In 2024, the CSD will continue to advocate effectively and visibly for LGBTIQ+ rights with all welcome to join the cause. The march begins at midday, marching through the capital before arriving at the world-famous Brandenburg Gate, where the closing event will take place with political speeches and live music way into the night. 

Image credit: Folsom Europe Berlin

Folsom Europe Berlin

Sept 11-15, 2024

Berlin is the kink capital of Europe, so why let San Francisco have all the fun? Folsom Europe was established in Berlin back in 2003 in order to bring the world’s largest annual gay leather and fetish event from North America to all the European kinksters. Since then it has risen to become Europe’s largest fetish festival and the event of the year for lovers of all things leather and BDSM.

Folsom Europe Berlin kicks-off with welcome parties and culminates in the infamous Folsom Street Fair on Fuggerstrasse/Weserstrasse. Now in its 21st year, event organizers are expecting 25,000+ visitors from Europe and North America. Folsom Europe Berlin is not for the prudish, but no matter what you’re into, you’ll find your kinky tribe at Folsom. 

Teddy Awards – The Queer Film Prize of the Berlin International Film Festival

Feb 2025

The Teddy Award is the Queer Film Award of the Berlin International Film Festival. Talks and events surround the event related to queer cinema. The prestigious award honors socially engaged, political films and people who communicate queer themes on a broad social platform and thereby contribute to tolerance, acceptance, solidarity and equality in society. Categories include best feature, best documentary/essay film, best short film and Jury Award as well as the Special Teddy Award which is awarded to outstanding personalities. 

Easter Berlin, Outdoor-Fetish-Festival

March 2025

In Berlin the fetish community walks proudly in the sun, beyond its dungeons and cruising bars. Easter Berlin bears it all in the light of day with fetish markets and kink events, like Event Cage, taking part over three days in Berlin’s fetish “rainbow” neighborhood. The festival welcomes thousands of visitors to one of Europe’s largest fetish gatherings and has become an integral part of the international event calendar. Attendees are guaranteed a fun-packed week filled with kinky new acquaintances and old friends alike. The events culminate in the Mister Leather Berlin contest on Easter Sunday, April 1, to crown the ultimate leather daddy. 

MonGay Queer Cinema at Kino International

Every Monday

Every Monday night at 10 pm at the Babylon Kreuzberg, the iconic Kino International features MonGay, a diverse program of films of particular interest to LGBTIQ+ lovers. Running since 1997, movies range from blockbusters to old classics, shown in an intimate family atmosphere that evokes the feeling of ending the day with a group of friends. Or rather, ending the day in the company of your chosen queer family!

Where to stay?

Pink Pillow Berlin Collection

Since 2013, Berlin’s successful Pink Pillow Collection of hotels is worldwide the only initiative of its kind. It promises exceptionally welcoming, professional service to their LGBTQ+ guests. Going above and beyond “gay friendly”, participating hotels pledged to five principles which include contribution of social projects, knowledge of the LGBTIQ+ scene and – above all – assure that all guests and staff members feel welcomed and respected. The 57 participating hotels range from small boutique hotels to five-start luxury accommodations. You can also check out our gay travel guide to Berlin which is updated twice per year to ensure our recommendations stay as accurate as possible.