Discover Germany | Travel Feature | Oktoberfest for Beginners
with lemonade. For those who do not love beer, there is also a wine tent but do not shout it from the rooftops if you do not like beer. It is true that the beer prices are increasing each year (this year prices are up to almost 11 euros per litre) and the Oktoberfest is generally not a cheap affair. But with the amount of beer per Maß, guests do not actually need that many. Be aware, the last round is at 10.30pm.
With all that beer, it is inevitable to get hungry at some point. If you ever dreamed of giant pretzels, this is your place. The German Bratwurst is of course a must as well as the Viennese favourite of half a roasted chicken, knuckles of pork or even ox roasted on a spit at the Ochsenbraterei. For the sweet tooth or just to compliment a pretty lady, there are plenty of colourful gingerbread hearts.
As lovely as a souvenir from the tent is, do not try and steal one of the beer steins. Security keeps a close eye on guests who try and take one home. Last year security guards managed to take back 145,000 steins from visitors attempting to steal them. If you want to bring a traditional beer mug home, there are plenty of souvenir shops where you can buy them whilst keeping your conscience clean.
The dress code is a no-brainer. If you want to blend in with the locals and make the most of this experience, you need to wear traditional Bavarian Lederhosn as a man or the Dirndl as a woman. The Dirndl also serves another purpose. If you wear the bow on the left side, it means you are single and flirting is encouraged. However, if a woman wears the bow on
the right side she is likely to be married or with someone. If you want to keep a low profile, you can of course also wear regular clothes. Many visitors do and it is just as accepted. As the Oktoberfest is also very family-friendly, there are many fairground attractions. They range from merry-go-rounds, haunted castles, the big Ferris Wheel (from where you can enjoy a great view of the mountains) and shooting galleries to thrilling rollercoasters. Tuesdays are family days until 7pm and all rides and performances cost less. All in all, the Oktoberfest is a truly unique experience and should be visited at least once so that you know what all the fuss is about. Who knows, you might just turn into a regular. Prost!
Photo: © BAYERN TOURISMUS Marketing GmbH
Issue 54 | September 2017 | 41