Looking for Oktoberfest Tips? The singing, the dancing, the bratwurst, pretzels, and most importantly, the beer. I mean, how can you forget about the beer?
It is the World’s largest beer festival bringing in over 6 million tourists a year over its 3-week span.
Every year at Oktoberfest millions of liters of beer are consumed. Tourists come from all over the world to help the Germans celebrate by singing, dancing and of course drinking beer.
So much beer is consumed that in 2017 Munich broke their record and consumed over 7.5 million liters of beer. Now that’s a lot of beer!
Let’s jump into a little bit of Oktoberfest history before we dive into Oktoberfest tips.
Starting back in 1810, Oktoberfest began as a celebration of the royal wedding between Crown Prince Ludwig and Princess Therese.
Locals came out to celebrate the newlywed couple by drinking specially brewed beer and watching horse races.
The next year the celebration continued with horse races, but the locals were starting to enjoy the specially brewed beer more than the horse racing.
In the beginning, Oktoberfest was nothing more than a small beer stand outside. The locals would stand around the beer stand and enjoy the horse races.
It grew in popularity and the locals started calling the festival Wiesn, the colloquial term for fairgrounds. It is still called this today, but it is better known around the world as Oktoberfest.
By the late 1800s the beer had become the main attraction, so they decided to put up their first beer tent.
The rest of the fairgrounds were taken up by a fun fair, providing amusement and activities for the kids, and beer drinking for the adults.
The horse racing slowly died out and beer drinking became the main event.
Current Day Oktoberfest
Not only is Oktoberfest the largest beer drinking festival, but it is also the largest festival in the World. For anyone that has ever been will know why. They brew up a special magical beer, that is only for Oktoberfest.
It’s refreshing, tasty and somehow you are able to drink liters and liters of it, without getting a hangover!
It is almost as if the more you drink the better you feel the next day.
Which makes it almost too easy to stay in the tents all day, dancing on the benches, singing, drinking and meeting new friends.
As you watch in amazement as the beer maids somehow miraculously carry 10 liters of beer at a time, weaving through the crowded tents for delivery to the thirsty fairgoers.
Things To Know Before You Go
When To Come?
If you are planning to visit Oktoberfest for 2020, know that it actually starts September 19th – October 4th.
Most people think that Oktoberfest is in October, which it is. But it really starts in September and only runs for 16 days, ending at the beginning of October.
|Weekends & Holidays||9:00am||10:30pm|
Where To Stay?
The most important Oktoberfest tip is to be sure to book your accommodation early. Hotels and Hostels are in high demand for Oktoberfest, with some people booking as early as a year in advance.
If you are looking to save a little money, it might be worth staying a little further from the fairgrounds. Metros in Munich are super effective and run to and from the fairgrounds pretty regularly.
If you are not staying within walking distance of the fairgrounds, it shouldn’t matter too much.
The subway lines U4 and U5 will take you directly to the festival to stop Theresienwiese. If you book a place that is close to these lines, you won’t be far away.
Recommended Walking Distance Places To Stay
|$$$$||Just a 15-minute walk to the fairground, it will be easy to get there before the tents get full and a short walk home after having a few liters of beer.|
|$$$||This hotel offers a decent room at an affordable price, if you are lucky enough to book a room here, you are a quick 8-minute walk from the festival.|
|$$||This is a great room if you are just looking for a place to crash with your buddies, and aren’t too concerned with comfort. It’s convenient and has a close walking distance to the fairgrounds.|
|$||Wombat’s City Hostel Munich||For solo travelers that don’t mind staying in a dorm. This is the best hostel in Munich for Oktoberfest, and you are sure to meet other festival goers if you stay here.|
Getting To Oktoberfest
Once you are in Munich, it is pretty easy to get around by subway. The subway has a stop right at the Oktoberfest fairgrounds so it is really easy and inexpensive to get to.
The subway lines U4 and U5 will take you directly to the festival at the stop ‘Theresienwiese’.
Oktoberfest Tip: If you think you are lost, just follow the crowd dressed in lederhosen and dirndls, they will lead you there.
When you walk into the festival grounds, there is so much to take in – lots of carnival rides, delicious food vendors, and most importantly, the beer tents.
There is no entrance fee to get in and all the beer tents are free as well. You’ll just pay for food, drinks, and rides.
How Much To Pay For Oktoberfest Beer?
Most tents only sell by the liter which typically cost around 12 Euros, or about $14.
The beer is specially brewed for the festival and can only be served there.
Where To Buy Your Oktoberfest Outfits?
Another Oktoberfest tip, if you are wanting the official look of Oktoberfest, wait to buy your dirndl or lederhosen until you get to Munich. Don’t try to buy one online, because they will look fake and cheap.
There are plenty of stores in the old town that is filled with lots of options.
Girls should plan on spending around $100- $150, where guys will be spending around $200 – $250. They are not cheap, but they are made to last.
If that is out of your budget, you can also pick up some second-hand ones while you’re here, but be aware everyone dresses up so you will stand out if you are not in traditional trachten (German outfits). Plus it is half the fun!
How To Make A Table Reservation At Oktoberfest?
If you are wanting a table reservation, DO IT NOW! Tables book up fast.
Tables are free to book, but it is mandatory that you purchase meal vouchers and purchase food from the tent you make the reservation.
It is not necessary to book a table, but if you want a table without making a reservation be sure to get to the tent early, as tables fill up fast.
If you want to book a table, you have to do it through the tent itself. Here is my Oktoberfest Tip Guide for the Oktoberfest Tents and how to make reservations.
Ultimate Oktoberfest Tips Tent Guide
|Winzerer Fahndl- This is the largest tent at Oktoberfest holding up to 11,000 people. It has a giant beer stein on top, so it is hard to miss. Reserve|
Hofbräu Festhalle- This tent is the wildest tent at Oktoberfest and fills up fast usually by 9am, so get there early. They also stay open later until 12am Reserve
Schottenhamel- This was the first tent of Oktoberfest and holds up to 10,000 people. It is the most popular amongst Germans. Reserve
Löwenbräu-Festhalle- This tent tends to drag in the older tamer crowd. Reserve
Fischer Vroni – Also known as the fish tent for its deliciously smoked fish dishes and their giant ship in the middle of the tent where the band plays. Reserve
Schützen-Festzelt- If all the tents are full this one tends to fill up last because it is off the beaten path. Reserve
Augustiner-Festhalle- This is known as the most kid-friendly tent so it’s perfect for those traveling with little ones. Reserve
Weinzelt- If you are sick of drinking beer all day, head over here for some wine. This is the only tent that serves it. Reserve
Pschorr- Bräurusl- This tent has been made popular with their yodeling competitions and also hosts “Gay Sunday” the first Sunday of Oktoberfest. Reserve
Harbräu Festzelt- Is the most popular among tourists (especially Americans). If you are looking for a more local vibe, maybe avoid this tent. Reserve
Hacker-Festhalle- Known for is pretty blue sky ceiling and also tends to be one of the more popular tents. Reserve
Ochsenbraterei (Spatenbrau-Festhalle)- This tent is also one of the originals and is famous for their big brass band. Reserve
Armbrustschützen-Festhalle- This is one of the most popular and oldest tents in the festival. They even have a crossbow competition. Reserve
Käfer’s Wiesn-Schänke- This is the place where the party ends, it is one of two tents allowed to stay open late. Reserve
Marstall- This is the newest tent to Oktoberfest, so it has a bit more of a modern feel to it and holds up to 3,000. Reserve
Late Night Tents: Käfers and Weinzelt open until 1:00 am when all the other tents close at 10 pm
Map of the Oktoberfest Tents
Oktoberfest Tips In Munich
Hydration- Oktoberfest is a marathon, not a sprint. It is normally an all-day event.
Arrive Early- If you want a good spot in a tent you have to get their early (before 11 am). The tents fill up fast and once they are full, they don’t let more people in.
Enjoy the Rides Early- If you are wanting to enjoy the rides, I always suggest doing it before you have had one too many liters. Otherwise, you end up looking like these guys.
Pick a Meeting Spot- It is easy to get lost or lose your friends in Oktoberfest, and sometimes even lose your phone. It is best to pick a meeting spot and times in case this happens with your group.
Bring Cash- It is best to pay for your drinks with cash. The barmaids are very busy don’t like dealing with the extra step of having to charge your credit card.
Remember to Eat- It is easy to get caught up with all the drinking and singing. Don’t forget to eat.
Bring comfortable shoes you don’t mind getting dirty- I think the reasons are obvious here.
Don’t Dance on the Tables – Unless you are ready to down your drink. Standing on the tables in Oktoberfest is a sign that you are going to pound your whole drink.
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Are You Ready For Oktoberfest In Munich?
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