Valencia confirmed as host city for the Gay Games 2026
| 15.11.2021 | 08:37
After months of preparations and a final presentation before the Federation of Gay Games (FGG) in the seaside city of Brighton East Sussex, the delegation convinced the judges that Valenica is the perfect city to host the 2026 edition of the Gay Games.
The capital of Túria competed in the final phase, alongside Munich, Germany and Guadalajara, Mexico, taking the top spot due to the city’s open, egalitarian, diverse and inclusive nature. Following the presentation, officials from Valencia Bid City, Visit Valencia, the Municipal Sports Foundation (FDM), Lambda, ADI and the LGTBI + Samarucs and Dracs sports clubs, expressed their "joy and satisfaction" with the verdict of the FGG adding that Valencia "is a city that is at the height of an international event such as the Gay Games".
The international federation also took into account the city’s capacity to host such a large-scale event considering existing sports facilities, infrastructures and sports equipment are of sufficient quality.
Other considerations included Valencia's clement climate (with more than 300 days of sunshine a year), its gastronomy and cultural agenda. Accessibility and communications with the city, commitment to sustainability and green spaces and personal development have also been assessed, ensuring that the city offers all locals and visitors, regardless of their sex, ethnic origin, disability or sexual orientation, a great range of diversity in attractions and expereinces.
The event will be held between May - June 2026 and host competitions of more than 30 different types of sports. In addition to water sports such as sailing, rowing and kayaking polo and team sports such as basketball, beach volleyball, hockey, football softball and rugby, the games will also see traditional Valencian sports such as pilota or colpbo, the name for a variety of court sports played with a ball using one's hand, a racket, a wooden bat or a basket, against a wall. Individual sports including martial arts, fencing, tennis, golf and cycling will also take place alongside new novelty entries such as e-sports and Quidditch.
The event, which will also include various cultural activities, is expected to attract approximately 15,000 athletes, 100,000 visitors and contribute to the city’s economy with more than 120 million euros. As a result, the Gay Games will become the most important sporting event in the Valencian Community after the America’s Cup.
About Gay Games
Since 1982, the Gay Games has offered a safe environment for the LGBTQ+ community to practice sports. Principles, including participation, inclusion and diversity are key to these sports and cultural events and the next edition will be held in Hong Kong in 2022.