The wait is over, everyone! Finally, after a 3-year absence, Lou Queernaval, the first gay carnival in France, is back.
As part of the now 150-year tradition of the Carnival in Nice, Lou Queernaval makes its comeback as part of the official program of Carnival 2023. For those that may not know, “Lou” translates to “the” in Nissart, the regional dialect of Nice and Queernaval is self-explanatory.
Nice Carnival is one of the most important events in the country and attracts visitors from all over France and worldwide. The city of Nice has one of the biggest gay scenes outside of Paris and is considered a central hub for almost everything encompassing the LGBTQ community in the region.
Since 2015, Lou Queernaval has been a part of the regular Nice Carnival with live bands, dancers, and traditional carnival floats, including the King and Queen of Carnival, so it’s wonderful to have the event back after the pandemic.
Local and national LGBTQI organizations join the party as the streets are covered in glitter and confetti across Place Masséna. The event is lively, colourful, and fun, and is a friendly way to get to know the city of Nice and its local gay community.
This year the main Lou Queernaval event will be held at 20h on Friday, February 17 at Place Massena, with the event being open to everyone, both young and old, no matter your sexuality. There will be a main stage and elaborate opening show with lots of music, followed by the parade with drag queens, hot shirtless men, various dancers, and elaborate costumes. Think of it as a gay pride parade, just with a carnival twist.
And every night of the whole carnival, the LGBTQ establishments are filled with locals mingling with international visitors with many of the establishments on the weekend of February 17th holding various themed events.
This unique event is free of charge and is proposed by the Nice LGBTQIA+ community in close collaboration with the City of Nice and the Nice Côte d’Azur Region. The event is committed to promoting the values of sharing, and inclusion while living in harmony together.
See you there!
All images courtesy Lou Queernaval