I had wanted to get to Oktoberfest probably from my first visit to Munich in 2013. In 2019, we managed to do this. In this article I will share with you my photo report about attending the Oktoberfest and give some tips and advice on planning your trip.
The main recommendation is to prepare in advance, at least pre-book the hotel. I bought tickets for about 10 days, and it was almost impossible to find a more or less decent hotel / apartment for sane money.
Wikipedia says: “Oktoberfest is the October festivities, a folk festival held annually in Munich.” All over the world, Oktoberfest is known as the largest beer festival. Beer and entertainment – this is precisely why 6 million people annually come to Munich in September-October.
I will not delve into the history of the holiday, you can read about it on any Wikipedia. But here are some interesting facts:
- The first Oktoberfest took place on 12 October 1810 in honor of the wedding of Ludwig I and Princess Theresa of Saxony.
- Theresa Meadow (Theresienwiese), where the festival is held, is named after the wife of Ludwig I.
- In 1819, the city council decided that Oktoberfest should be held annually.
- Since 1872, Oktoberfest is celebrated not from mid-October, but from the end of September.
- Since 1892, beer has been served in glass mugs.
- According to some reports, Einstein participated in the electrification of Oktoberfest (1886).
- In 1913, the largest tent in the history of the holiday was erected (accommodating 12,000 people).
- The tradition of uncorking the first barrel by the mayor of Munich was laid in 1950.
Munich Oktoberfest Dates
Oktoberfest is held annually from mid-September to early October. Oktoberfest dates 2019 – from September 21 to October 7.
Oktoberfest 2020 officially canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic
Oktoberfest dates are set for 2020: September 19, 2020 – October 4, 2020.
Where is the Oktoberfest in Munich
The venue for the Oktoberfest beer has been unchanged since 1810 – Theresa meadow, located about 1 km from Munich Main Station, 800 meters from the Main Bus Station, 2 km from Marienplatz.
The location of Theresa Meadow is marked on the map:
Oktoberfest: my review
The Oktoberfest in Munich is a festival to visit at least once in a lifetime! A special atmosphere, fun, tasty beer, blurring the boundaries between nationalities, ages, languages - for what it is worth going.
But in advance you need to be mentally prepared for:
- a huge number of people
- to those who “went through” (and this is not always clean, festive, and indeed not very pleasant)
- the fact that it’s almost impossible to take a table in the tent without a preliminary reservation
- to high prices
We were at Oktoberfest for 2 days (Sunday – Monday). Frankly, this is more than enough. For the first evening, we walked pretty well around the territory of the festival, ate local fast food, went into several tents, drank beer in the Augustiner beer garden and were even able to sit in the Leuvenbrau tent. The day after a walk through the center of Munich, we went into several tents and took rides.
A trip to Oktoberfest can be perfectly combined with a trip to Bavaria or even with Prague (we spent 4 days in Prague and 2 days in Munich ). By combining cities in this way, you can save a lot on housing (during Oktoberfest, housing prices in Munich skyrocket 3-4 times).
Approximately 90% of Oktoberfest visitors wear national costumes. Local tourists, in their true tourists, in carnival ones. I also really wanted to immerse myself in Oktoberfest as a whole, therefore, the first thing we did in the city was to buy national costumes.
Before the trip, I wrote out 2 stores where you can rent suits for Oktoberfest:
- Bavarian Outfitters – Lederhosen & Dirndlverleih, Auenstraße 31
- Leather pants hire – Wolfgang Zeilinger, Amalienstraße 51
They have Internet sites, you can see all the information there. These costumes or carnival ones – I can’t say, because in the end they didn’t go there.
During Oktoberfest, costumes are sold in the city – at least one tent is in the train station building, one is at the exit of the train station, I also saw costumes in shops along the Bayerstraße.
We bought at the kiosk at the station.
Women’s costume (Dirndl): skirt, apron, corset (in fact – a dress) + blouse = 70 euros (in general, prices were from 50 to 120 euros)
Men’s suit: leather pants (Lederhose) + shirt + hat + leggings = 110 euros.
Approximate prices: pants 80-100 euros, a shirt – 20-30 euros, leggings – about 10 euros (but they gave us a present), a hat (very carnival) – 10 euros.
This Bavarian costume also includes a vest, frock coat (Loden) and boots with thick soles. Here are the local costumes:
And this is a set of national clothes in the store (I don’t remember the price exactly, but about such a suit comes out at 1000 euros):
There is a small queue in front of the entrance to Theresa Meadow because they check things.
Important: with backpacks and large bags, bags at Oktoberfest are not allowed!
A small cross-body handbag for women – ok, with classic medium handbags, I saw just a few people.
How is the Oktoberfest beer festival organized? He reminded me a bit of Disneyland, only with beer)) Attractions, tents with food, sweets, gingerbread cookies, souvenir shops.
But on top of that are big beer tents.
Here is the map I managed to find on the Internet:
An interactive map can be viewed on the official website of Oktoberfest https://map.oktoberfest.de/
Oktoberfest prices: food, beer, entertainment
How much does beer cost at Oktoberfest? Beer prices at Oktoberfest: a beer at Oktoberfest costs about 12 euros (per 1 liter). In 2019, 11.60 euros were paid in Augustiner, 11.80 euros in Lowenbrau.
At the Oktoberfest in Munich, beer is served exclusively in liter mugs (it is called “mass”). And this is necessarily a beer specially brewed for this holiday. Märzen (marten) or March beer. It is in March that it is prepared so that by September it will acquire the necessary taste.
The menu at the festival is not very large; pretzels (5.50 euros), half-chicken, sausages, pork ham (shanks), and spit-roasted bulls are usually ordered from food at Oktoberfest. The average price of a dish is 10-15 euros. It is in the tents.
In tents with fast food – sausages, hot dogs, schnitzels – 3 – 6 euros, gingerbread cookies – from 3 euros, large about 15 euros, apples in caramel or glaze: 2.5-3 euros.
The price of rides is from 3 to 8 euros. We rode on two (beer barrels for 7 euros and some kind of roller coaster for 8). Attractions seem to be frivolous and may even be “childish,” however, in reality this is not so))) Everything is like an adult, it twisted so that I even closed my eyes and glared at the clips. So, it’s better to go to the rides BEFORE beer.
A popular attraction is the Ferris wheel, unfortunately, I do not know the price, but it should be around 8 euros. Weather permitting, you can view the surroundings. And I have repeatedly read that it is this wheel from the Oktoberfest that is installed on the Christmas market in Berlin – on the square near the Red Town Hall.
Oktoberfest Entrance and Tents
Entrance to Theresa Meadow is free. Theoretically, you can not spend money at all, but just come to see.
Entrance to the tents is also free, only things can be checked at the entrance. This is a huge plus, because I was sure that without armor they would not be allowed there at all. Yes, if you are not at the table, they won’t sell beer and food to you, but please see what is happening there.
Oktoberfest tickets (ticket price)
Reservation of a place in a tent costs from 100 euros. You can buy tickets for tents at Oktoberfest through local guides or online. I saw many offers on getyourguide, closer to Oktoberfest 2020 I’ll put more links, because while almost all offers have been withdrawn.
Oktoberfest: tour, table and beer without restrictions , from 340 euros per person.
This is a major international service for booking excursions and tickets, I have used it repeatedly, for example, in Paris , therefore, I safely recommend it to you.
Prices on all sites and all guides are about the same.
If you do not reserve a place in the tent, then
- The likelihood of sitting on the street in the birgarden is always higher. Just go to the empty seats, ask (in any language or gesture) if you can sit down and sit down. Usually no one refuses. We sat down on a bench to the Germans, then it turned out that they were waiting for two more girls, and then 2 more people came up. As a result, 12 of us sat on a bench for 8 people 🙂 And, you know, no one grumbled, everyone laughed, talked and drank beer.
By the way, it was in the Augustiner Beergarden. And this is the only brewery today where beer is poured from real wooden barrels!
And here is the tent of Augustiner.
- Go along the tent if you are lucky and see empty seats (they should not be marked with pieces of paper or “reserve” signs), also go up to the people sitting there and ask permission to sit down. Often these are people who reserved seats, but perhaps someone from these places has already left. If people don’t mind, sit down and behave yourself 🙂 We did just that. At first, they looked at us suspiciously, but did not refuse, but gradually they even started talking to us and even taking photos 🙂
In the tent of Lowenbrau
Some photos from other Oktoberfest tents:
And a video to appreciate the atmosphere of the Oktoberfest in Munich:
How to go to Oktoberfest on your own
Getting to the Oktoberfest in Germany is no more difficult than planning any other trip. But it’s better to plan ahead. It seems to me that at least six months. Although gathering in 10 days is also quite possible!
It’s worth starting with air tickets. See tickets for flights to Munich ( how to get to the city from Munich Airport ) or Memmingen (how to get to Munich from Memmingen Airport ). Memmingen is located about 100 km from Munich. A ticket to Munich by express will cost about 15 euros.
Look at the price of tickets to Munich (Oktoberfest) from your city:
If you are a beginner, read my article
The option for the “advanced” is to combine two cities in one trip. As mentioned above, we spent 4 days in Prague and 2 days in Munich. They arrived from Prague by flixbus : it takes 5 hours to get there , a ticket is about 20 euros (but if you book in advance, you can buy cheaper). My review of flixbus is here . Used these buses already 6 or 7 times, never had problems.
As for air tickets, I bought tickets on the route “Ekaterinburg – Helsinki – Prague; Munich – Helsinki – Yekaterinburg. ” So it is also possible, keep in mind. It is a pity that Finnair leaves Yekaterinburg, and there are less and less options to get out of the Urals.
Accommodation: apartments and hotels in Oktoberfest.
Finding cheap accommodation during Oktoberfest is unrealistic. Prices rise 2-4 times. The sooner you book your accommodation, the better. You will have more choices. And, even if you pay a rather large amount, let it be comfortable living conditions.
When I looked for a hotel on Oktoberfest (10 days before the trip), there were options from 300 euros per night. Therefore, I decided to choose from the apartments. There are many options on airbnb ( how to use the service ). BUT: most of the options are local apartments, which they rent only at Oktoberfest. Moreover, the price of 100 euros per night will be for some dead barn. Find an apartment within walking distance of Oktoberfest for less than 150 euros. Do not expect. But even in this case, you will get some kind of “coat” with dirty socks of the owner. Moreover, this can be seen even in the pictures on AirBendby, there even reviews (which, of course, are not) are not needed there.
As a result, we booked apartments between the metro (U) Kolumbusplatz (direct line to the railway station) and the tram stop Mariahilfplatz (goes along Bayerstrasse, from the stop for about 7 minutes to the Teresa meadow). The place is not bad, safe, there are cafes and a supermarket around. And excellent transport links to the center. Apartments (very modest, 2 days – this is the maximum that I was ready to spend there) cost 330 euros for 2 nights. The usual price is 40-50 euros per night. I will not give a link.
Hotels at Oktoberfest
If you want to live within walking distance of Oktoberfest, see the map of hotels:
You can select the following options:
Hotel Uhland (8.4), from 404 euros per day
Hotel Krone München 3 * (8.5), from 346 euros per day, breakfast included
Hotel Senator München 3 * (8.2), from 295 euros per day, breakfast included
GHOTEL hotel & living München-City 3 * (8.1), from 284 euros per day, breakfast included
Eurostars Book Hotel 4 * (8.3), railway station – 650 meters, Teresa Meadow – 900 meters, from 389 euros, breakfast included
Four Points by Sheraton München Central 4 * (8.0), from 659 euros with breakfast, near the station
Sofitel Munich Bayerpost 5 * (8.6) – a five-star luxury hotel chain near the train station, from 791 euros per day with breakfast.
See also my selection of hotels in the center of Munich .
Excursions to Oktoberfest
You can go to Oktoberfest not only on your own, but also accompanied by a local guide, Russian or English speaking.
Tour with English speaking guide:
Excursion to Oktoberfest + table + beer and snacks , from 340 euros per person
How much does it cost to go to Oktoberfest
Let me give you a small example of how much a two-day trip to Oktoberfest can cost for two:
- Flights to Munich = 530 euros for two
- Accommodation in apartments two days = 320 euros
- Bavarian costumes = 180 euros for male and female
- Reservation of a place in a tent = 190 euros
- 4 glasses of beer at the festival = 50 euros
- Bretzel = 5 euros
- 4 hot dogs = 15 euros
- Attractions = 30 euros
Total: 1320 euros
This is a very conditional amount; it can be edited both to a smaller and a larger one. And I will not comment on it, everyone will decide for himself whether it is expensive or cheap, Oktoberfest costs such expenses or not …
And that’s all. If you have questions or additions, leave comments.