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Sunday, 2 September 2012
|The 'Hacker' tent, one of the most popular tents |
due its great music and lively nature.
The Oktoberfest, known by tourists as the 'Beerfest' and by locals as the 'Wiesn' takes place for two weeks each september in the traditional and wealthy German city of Munich. The festival consists of 34 beer tents, each hosted by it's very own Munich brewery and represented by a specific beer brand. But don't be put off by the name! There is much more to the whole experience, and as a beer-hating female, I would go as far as to say the beer has very little to do with my enjoyment of it. The traditional clothing 'tracht' plays a big part, think german milkmaid with plaits and you're pretty much on the right track. The girls wear a dress called a 'Dirndl' and the men wear 'lederhosen' which are leather trousers, often with shoulder straps. It's a lot of fun picking out the dress and matching apron or the leather trousers and matching hat! And despite being a slightly costly investment (a Dirndl will cost at least 100 Euros and lederhosen will cost about 120 Euros) it will be well worth the money, and you will soon realise the psychological effect wearing tracht will have on you, as you blend into the big happy crowd as a local! (Tip! don't go too short with the dresses, it is viewed as slightly 'uncool' and not inkeeping with the traditional spirit)
All these clothes can be found in the city center (take taxi, the overground or underground train to Marienplatz) on a road called the 'Tal'. Or you can browse on the internet for Dirndls: http://www.galeria-kaufhof.de/damenmode/damen-trachten.html and for Lederhosen: http://www.galeria-kaufhof.de/herrenmode/trachtenlederhosen.html.
If you really are trying to avoid the beer, there is a tent specially devoted to serving wine, called none another than the 'Wein-Zelt' (the wine tent). Each tent has it's own personality, something that is useful to know before arrive to ensure you have the perfest evening tailored for you. The Schottenhamel tent is one of oldest tents, and is a good place for the younger generation or those in the mood for a good old dance (mainly on the tables). The Hacker Pschorr tent is another party tent, along with the Ochsenbraterei, the latter of which is well known for it's popularity with the gay community. A quieter evening is to be found in the Käfer's Wies’n-Schänke, famous for it's gourmet food.
Putting aside for a moment the excellent eating, drinking, dancing and singing that makes the oktoberfest, it cannot go unmentioned that rides are also a worthy factor, with upto 80 rides each year, making it a child friendly visit too!
Flights can get pricey if you leave the too late, as with any event that people from all around the world are cramming to be at - But a small tip for those trying to save some pennies: book a ryanair flight to Munich Memmingen airport, it's an hour or so drive to munich from there, but often half the price and theres a very reasonable shuttle bus that takes you straight to the center!
Thanks for Stumbling