Last year I was lucky enough to tick off a huge bucket list item and headed over to Germany at the end of Fall for the annual Oktoberfest. I you haven’t heard of this event before, it is without doubt one of the biggest events in the German calendar and it is essentially a celebration of food and beer. I had the best time at Oktoberfest and it really lived up to my expectations, something which is not always guaranteed with these huge events.

If you want to know more about Oktoberfest, here is my guide to this crazy event.

Where and When?

Oktoberfest takes place just outside Munich each year, the festival actually occupies more of September than October but it will always finish during the first week of October. This year’s event is taking place between the 16th of September until the 3rd of October and each year the festival will change by a couple of days.

What Are The Origins?

After a little bit of research I have found out the beginnings of this awesome festival. The first event was held in 1810 in honor of the wedding between Prince Ludwig of Bavaria and Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. The idea was that for a full 5 days, the burghers of Munich would drink, eat and party with parades, displays and shows. The festival was a hit and has continued ever since, the only break in proceedings was during the 2 World Wars.

Some Numbers

  • The area where the vent is held is 420,000 square meters
  • There are 34 tents selling a wide range of food and beer
  • 115 fairground attractions
  • 106,000 seats
  • A huge 7,500,000 liters of beer are drunk during the festival
  • Average price of beer is 10 Euros
  • 503,500 chickens eaten
  • 122 Oxen eaten
  • 235,356 sausages consumed

The Opening

The opening of Oktoberfest is an awesome display of pomp and ceremony that features a parade of carriages and floats. People will dress up in traditional dress costumes for the opening event and it really sets the tone for what is about to come.

The Experience

So, basically you will stay in a tent and each day you will start drinking beer and eating from 1030 until whenever you can’t handle it anymore. The tents where you stay are close to the action and you will wander about meeting cool people and enjoying yourself. There are some louts there who just go for a drinking session but you can avoid this pretty easily. If you like, you can dress up and this is actually encouraged so dust off those lederhosen!

The Price

Most of the camping areas are privately ran and the prices will be different depending on how classy you want the tent, and how much space, expect to pay at least 20 Euros per night. If you want a hotel then you will need to shell out and the cheapest I saw were 250 Euros per night. The beer and the food is a little pricey but this is what it is all about so don’t be frightened to get involved and splash out on having a good time.

Oktoberfest was absolutely epic and completely worth the time, the weight that I put on and the money that I spent, if you haven’t been, you need to go.

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