Oktoberfest, Munich's beer festival!

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On 16 September, the Mayor of Munich will officially declare the Oktoberfest festivities open. Like every year, he will shout "O'Zapft is!" Which means "the party begins" when the first barrel of beer has been tapped. Thus begins a surprising festival where more than 6 million liters of beers are consumed ... amounting to an ocean of suds!!

Why is the Oktoberfest celebrated in September and not October?

The event takes its name from the very first Oktoberfest, organized from 12 to 17 October in 1810. It celebrated the marriage of King Louis I of Bavaria and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen. Originally, it was simply a horse race on a large square in Munich, renamed Theresienwiese in honor of the princess. This square still hosts the famous Oktoberfest tents.

Over time, this festival grew and lasted for two weeks. Thus, at the beginning, the Oktoberfest extended until the end of the month of October, when winter is approaching. To enjoy milder temperatures, the festivities were later moved to begin in September. This year the Oktoberfest fest dates for 2017 will be from the 16th of September till the 3rd of October.

Bavarian culture at the heart of the festival

First known for its countless stands on a 42-hectare site, the Oktoberfest brings together 37 marquees in which one-liter pitchers of beer can be ordered throughout the day and until 11pm on weekends. This celebration is also the scene of Bavarian traditions and rich culture. Visitors come to discover the local specialties and the typical dishes of German gastronomy like the shoulder of pork and every kind of German sausage.

Observe the most picturesque scenes! The waiters and waitresses carry up to 12 jugs of full beers in their hands that they continually bring to their guests while a traditional music group takes care of the atmosphere of the festival. To attend this show, you can head under huge festival tents that are free to access, but be sure to arrive early. Moreover, some tents are obliged to close their doors before noon as there are too many people, especially during the weekends.

The Oktoberfest is also famous for the events and parades it hosts during the two weeks of celebration. The best known parade is filled with the typical costumes and fusiliers. It runs 7km from the Maximilianeum Palace to the Theresienwiese, where the festival is held. This year the procession takes place on the first Sunday of the festivities - September 17 - at 10:00 am. If you prefer a quieter atmosphere, visit the "Oide Wies'n", a delimited space that recreates the traditional Oktoberfest, ideal for a cultural visit with the family. The entrance fee is only €3 per person.

Outside the tents, you can have fun on a roller coaster, in haunted houses, on swing rides; To delight all the adventurers and lovers of thrills! In the surrounding streets, souvenir shops, confectionery and other food stands await you.

Do not leave without attending the open-air concert with more than 400 musicians from Bavaria. The Kapelles, small orchestras present all along the beer festival, unite to play and sing famous songs. The concert is held on the second Sunday of the Oktoberfest on 24 September.

Some Top Tips for Enjoying the Oktoberfest

1 - Establish a landmark during the event: millions of people visit the festival, getting lost is almost a certainty. Set a meeting place to find friends and family easily and avoid getting lost.

2 - Wear closed shoes. You will thank us at the end of the day!;)

3 - Be vigilant with your valuables and avoid taking them if you can. Pickpockets often hide in the crowd looking for wallets, phones or cameras ...

4 - If you prefer to visit the Oktoberfest without huge crowds, Sunday mornings are perfect. Also note that Tuesdays are devoted to families with discounts on attractions and rides.

5 - Book your accommodation well in advance. During this time of year many people explore Munich and for this reason the hotels are full very quickly. One of the best ways to visit Munich and take full advantage of the Oktoberfest is to rent a motorhome in Germany.

Looking for campsites for your motorhome during Oktoberfest?

The festival square does not have parking spaces designated for campervans, and with the noise, crowds, and music... this comes as no surprise. But don’t worry! Munich's public transport network is very well equipped and offers easy access to the Theresienwiese square.

Close to the former Munich Reim amusement parks - east of Munich - you will find the Oktoberfest campsite. Reserved for recreational vehicles, this car park has 1,500 spaces and it well connected to the festival with just a few stops on the subway. Ask about prices, reservations and other information here.

Unfamiliar with Oktoberfest? Don’t miss out on this exciting event by renting a motorhome in Germany. Prepare your suitcase, Yescapa takes care of the rest!

Felicia H

Felicia H

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