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Surviving Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest
Munich
Germany

Surviving Oktoberfest

story by: Mike Williams

Oktoberfest: massive steins filled with beer, Bavarian hats, women wearing dirndls, men wearing lederhosen and customary German food such as Würstl (sausages), Schweinshaxe (grilled ham hock) and Sauerkraut. Of course, in reality Oktoberfest is much more than that. With over 6 million visitors every year it’s actually the world's largest fair and had been taking place for over 200 years.

The 16-day festival is held annually at Theresienwiese in Munich, Bavaria and is housed across 14 large tents and 20 small tents.

There is no escapaing the fact that Oktoberfest is synonymous with beer. The festival is tasked with celebrating the amber liquid. Every year the attendees take this challenge seriously, combining to consume over 7 million litres of it.

So you don’t turn into "Bierleichen", German for "beer corpses", our House of Travel Specialists have offered up their tips for getting the most out of Oktoberfest.

HOT Oktoberfest Tips:
  • You need to arrive first thing in the morning to get in to a tent! Once full, they will not allow you in!
  • However, if you can’t get in to a tent. There is a local brewery near the main entrance to the grounds which is nice and warm, dry, has entertainment, great food and beer.
  • Dress up! Everyone dresses up. You can easily purchase a drindl or lederhosen once you arrive in Munich.
  • It’s good to take a day off and spend one day taking the festival grounds in, trying the food, rides and smaller tents. Rather than spending all day in one boozey tent.
  • Take a pack of cards for while you are waiting for the beer serving time to begin.
  • Tipping: round up when buying a stein. If it’s under 10EUR, give your server €10 and they’ll serve you all day!
  • Don’t forget to take some warm clothes as it can get cold at this time of the year
  • Food in the beer halls can be expensive.  Make friends with the bouncer/security guard so you can leave and come back in.  Don’t forget to ask if they want something too.
  • Eating radishes (you can buy them in punnets) apparently helps you tolerate more alcohol.
  • Try the massive ginger bread cookies, they are really good.
  • Sometimes going later on is better, as sometimes the first weekend can be crazy and there’s a better atmosphere later on.
Cheers, or as you would say at Oktoberfest, PROST!

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