Oktoberfest in Munich is the largest beer festival in the world, and I am proud to say that I very much contributed to that title. And by very much contributed, I mean I bought a ticket and attended. In fact, Oktoberfest in 2016 brought in a staggering 7.2 million visitors, and we all consumed 6.9 million liters of beer, according to Oktoberfest.net.
As you can see, Oktoberfest is a huge deal, not just in Germany, but around the world. Here is what it’s like.
Like a lot of our trips, we found the trip on a local travel agencies Facebook page. We had made plans of going to Oktoberfest the year before, but the lack of knowledge and short time frame to book the trip made us hold off until 2016.
So Oktoberfest takes place in September. So around June or July is when we went ahead and pulled the trigger on buying our tickets. Not only that, we also had to shell out the money to get our lederhosen. Now, lederhosen is traditionally made of deer leather, and we wanted a true lederhosen. So, finding this was pretty tough. We went to several stores around our area, and even ventured out about an hour in some cases.
Eventually we did find a great lederhosen for around $175. More than worth it, I promise. Those things are amazing.
A bus was used as the method of transportation for this trip. So, bright and early in the morning, we all met up and made the about six hour trek to Munich. It was a good trip, smooth bus ride, plenty of stops for food and drinks.
The great thing about this trip, was that it was an overnight trip. I can’t for the life of me remember where we stayed that night, which is a testament to how good that beer was. But I do know it was a two day trip.
We planned on going both days, but after a heavy first day, we decided to just explore Munich a bit on the second day instead of getting blitzed two days in a row.
So once we arrived, we walked a while from the parking lot to the actual festival grounds. I get very excited when I am around large amounts of people like that. It is almost overwhelming. We had no clue what we were doing. We had a map that the travel agency provided us, so we were able to find our way back at the end of the night, so that was nice. But aside from that, we pretty much went with the flow.
The beer tents are monumental, I mean, they have to house upwards of 7 million people! There’s also a lot of them, so finding seats was going to be very hard. Our first stop though, was the Fischer-Vroni tent.
It is recognizable by the blue and yellow ceiling, and also it is known for its fish sticks apparently. Or rather fish ON a stick. Unfortunately I didn’t get to try these, I don’t think we even got a beer here. There were so many people, and so little tables, that we just stood around and watched people have a good time.
Eventually we moved on, and ended up at the world famous Hofbräu House.
This place was massive, and can seat up to 1,000 people, so you’ll be very lucky to find a spot. Guess who got lucky? We did. Somehow, we managed to find an open table way in the back, but still offered great views of the rest of the tent.
We sat with some pretty cool people, also from the United States, so that was pretty neat. Once we got settled in, that’s when we started ordering.
We all started with just one beer, to see if we liked it. See the thing with Europe, they love warm beers. The big thing in America, of course, is the colder the better. Well, I can’t disagree more after having drank warm beer for two years.
It goes down so much smoother, and tastes so much better. And they also come in much larger glasses. Over the course of the next couple hours, we ended up finishing three large beers each. And we were feeling really good, so we decided to move onto the next place.
That feeling of feeling good lasted for about five minutes. By the time we paid, stood up, and walked outside, it really hit us. Out of nowhere, I don’t know how, and I don’t know why. Well, I kind of know why. But why now!
As we were trying to find our next place, it became worse and worse. I could feel my elf decaying more and more with each step I took. Eventually, we saw this giant hill just lined with people passed out. We crawled up the hill to an empty spot and took a super deep nap. Best nap, to this day, that I have ever taken. I was out like a light.
My friend who woke up before me thought I had died, considering my eyes were slightly open. So, he took a picture of it. Warning, the picture might shock you. I wasn’t one of the 600 that got alcohol poisoning, so that was pretty cool.
When I woke up after the two hour slumber, I did one of those deep gasps that people do in movies when they come back to life. So maybe I did die and come back to life, I have no idea. All I do know is, I felt like a million bucks after that trip.
Somehow, none of our stuff was stolen, probably because most of the people there were in the same boat as us and they were just genuinely good people.
By this time, it was getting dark out, and all the tents and carnival rides were starting to light up. It was truly a beautiful sight. We ended up going on one ride, I believe it was one of those that shoots you straight up, and then you slowly come back down.
That was pretty cool, when you are up that high you can see everything, and it was an insane sight to say the least.
We spent the next hour or so walking around taking in the sights before we decided to call it a night. I know we made it back to the bus, but I don’t remember going to a hotel or anything like that.
The second day was much less eventful. Since we had been to Munich before, there really wasn’t much desire to walk the city again. Plus, we wanted to see the BMW museum since we didn’t get to see it the last time we went.
The BMW Museum was really cool, they have all sorts of cars ranging from Rolls Royce, to traditional 3-series BMW’s. They even have old race cars, plane engines, and cars from the early 1900s.
The trip was one of the best I have ever taken. The memories created there were incredible, and I’d love to get a group together again to go.
Everyone there was incredibly friendly and inviting, and it was an all-around good time.
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