The Original Hofbräuhaus
- The original Hofbräuhaus in Munich has been open since 1897, the beer hall is popular among tourists and locals. A few lucky regulars store their personalized mugs on the main floor in a padlocked storage cage.
- Lederhosen are knee length pants with suspenders, usually made of leather worn by men. Authentic lederhosen out of our budget, we settled for 100% Polyester Bavarian Costumes.
- Women wear dirndls, a ruffled dress consisting of a bodice, blouse, and skirt. When wearing an apron, the placement of the knot signifies her relationship status. A knot on the left side indicates a woman is single, while a knot on the right side indicates she is taken.
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- After a short train ride from Icking Station, we arrived at Oktoberfest, a celebration of Bavarian culture. The festival lasts 16 days, commencing on the 3rd weekend in September continuing until the first Sunday in October.
- The 2nd day of Oktoberfest, 5 miles of musicians, marching bands, dancers wearing traditional uniforms accompanied by floats, horses, oxen, and cows parade through Munich.
- The beer served at Oktoberfest is brewed at 6 different breweries in Munich: Paulaner Bräuhaus, Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu, Hacker-Pschorr, Augustiner Bräu, Hofbräu, and Löwenbräukeller.
- Hofbräu Oktoberfestbier brewed especially for Oktoberfest at 6.3% abv is served in pint glasses. Only wheat beer is served in a smaller, half liter mug. The bottom of the glass should be tapped when toasting with a wheat beer to prevent shattering. Prost!
- Oktoberfest consists of 14 large tents, 13 serving beer and 1 serving wine. Beer is only available for sale inside the tents, and it’s difficult to be served without a reserved seat. There are 20 smaller tents serving varieties of foods.
- We begin Oktoberfest in the Hofbräu Festzelt tent, the counterpart to the original Hofbräuhaus. Seating 9,920 guests, this tent has the most international visitors. 16 tons of hops are used to create the hanging rings from the ceiling.
- In the center of tent hangs Aloisius, the beer angel. The legend is, when Aloisius, a former mailman, passed away his angel was instructed to deliver an important message to Munich. But, instead of delivering the message, Aloisius went straight to the Hofbräuhaus for a beer.
- Oktoberfest begins in the largest Wiesn tent, Schottenhamel, at precisely 12:00pm with the mayor of Munich tapping the first keg. Once he confirms a successful tap, beer begins to flow throughout the 12 other tents.
- Originally only room for 50 guests, the tent now accommodates 6,000 guests indoor and an additional 4,000 outside.
- Drinking liters of beer beneath a light blue ceiling painted with clouds and stars, patrons feel as if they are in Bavarian heaven inside the Hacker-Festhalle tent. Visitors get a great view of the band as they perform on a revolving stage in the center of the tent.
- One of the most popular tents operating since 1881, the Ochsenbraterei, began as a steam powered barbecue tent roasting whole ox. Today the tent serves an average of 91 oxen each year. Hungry visitors can find an extensive menu specializing in spit roasted oxen.
- Specializing in roasted duck and chicken, the Ammer tent, offers specials to families and children. At 7:00pm the Ammer’s Wiesn band brings this tent to life.
Bodo’s Cafe Tent
- The celebration begins in Bodo’s Café Tent at 9:00am with an Oktoberfest breakfast and continues with sweet, freshly baked items served all day. At 6:00pm wine, champagne, and exotic cocktails transform this family breakfast tent into a party.
- Fans of the Munich soccer team meet at Löwenbräu to cheer on the Lions. This tent attracts a lot of attention with 18,200 seats,16,000 light bulbs illuminating the tent at night, and a roaring lion welcoming guests.
- The Ambrustschutzen tent is where the Oktoberfest crossbow competition is held. The competition has been taking place during Oktoberfest since 1935. The tent seating 7,430, resembles a hunting cabin with boar heads and deer antlers decorating the walls.
- Weinzelt is the only tent of the 13 to serve 25 varieties of wine, champagne, sparkling wines, and wheat beer. The tent is designed to resemble a hunting lodge with its wooden interior.
- During the day booths are filled with families, but as the sun begin to set things get a little…weird. The Weinzelt tent is known for their nightly live music.
- Brezels, giant pretzels, twice the size of my head are sold everywhere to help patrons offset their beer intake.
- Lebkuchen, gingerbread heart necklaces decorated with German phrases such as Ich liebe dich, I love you, are also easy to find. We recommend these gingerbread as souvenirs and not as a late night snack. Hungry on the next leg of our trip we bit into one and thought it tasted absolutely awful.
- After consuming liters of beer, nothing sounds more exhilarating than adrenaline pumping amusement park rides. With carousels, roller coasters, slides, a Ferris wheel, and games, Oktoberfest has attractions for all ages.
- The 5 loop Olympia Looping roller coaster is the wolrd’s largest portable roller coaster. Adults can experience this disorienting ride for 9€.
- A mine theme coaster complete with flashing lights, darkness, and rotating seats, Hollenblitz is the world’s largest portable indoor roller coaster.
- High Energy is a giant carousel that swings vertically while attached cars in a star shape rotate freely. For 7€ an adult can try to keep their eyes open long enough to get a bird’s eye view of the Bavarian fair grounds below.
- For 8€ and patience during the lengthy wait, riders can get a magnificent view from Oktoberfest to the Alps. Children are 4€. The most popular photograph at Oktoberfest is of the Ferris Wheel.
With the rainy weather deterring visitors, Oktoberfest had only half the usual crowd in 2015 of 500,000 attendees. Although significantly less attendance, 775,600 chickens and 7,700,000 liters of beer were consumed. The lost and found received 4,500 items including 21 children and 1 dog. All were returned to their owners.