With a population of more than 1.2 million and a rich arts, cultural, and restaurant scene, Dublin is Ireland's political capital as well as the country's center of gay culture. Each year in mid- to late June, the city celebrates GLBT rights and heritage with the Dublin Gay Pride Festival (known officially as Dublin Pride LGBTQ Festival. The dates this year are June 21 through June 30, 2013, with the Dublin Gay Pride Parade set for the final Saturday, June 29.
Dublin Gay Pride comprises about 10 days of events. Festivities include a Pride Launch Party, Walking Tour of Historic Gay Dublin, Dublin Pride Sports Day, Dyke Night, Dublin Pride After Party, Pride Closing, and several other gatherings and parties. The most prominent day of the festivities is Saturday, June 30, which is Dublin Pride Parade Day. The parade sets off from iconic Parnell Square, at the Garden of Remembrance, at 1:30 pm. The parade ends at Merrion Square Park, which from 3 pm onward becomes the site of the Pride in the Park Party. Performers include headliner Brian Kennedy along with several other talents, among them Paul Ryder, Leanne Harte, and Victoria Secret.
Held the same weekend, Dublin Bear Pride, with parties at several bars around the city.
Additionally, gay-popular bars, restaurants, hotels, and shops in the area have more going on than usual during Pride week. Check online resources about the Dublin gay scene, such as the NightTours Dublin Gay Guide and Ireland's Gay Community News newspaper. Also take a look at the excellent gay travel site produced by the city's official tourism organization, the Tourist Office of Dublin.