July 2, 2012, Updated July 8, 2015

Tens of thousands of people thronged the streets of Tel Aviv last month to watch the Gay Pride Parade that capped Gay Pride Week cultural, art and social events organized by the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality and the city’s GLBT community.

The crowd included both Israelis and thousands of tourists from abroad.

“It’s a celebration of the great city of Tel Aviv, and of the state of Israel, which is very advanced in gay rights,” said Shay Doitsh, tourism coordinator for Tel Aviv’s gay association. “This city is different from other gay capitals. Most of the places in the world have a gay area. In Tel Aviv we don’t have a gay area. We have a gay city.”

Earlier this year, Tel Aviv was crowned the world’s Best Gay City in an international contest run by American Airlines.

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