Oktoberfest for Tourists (Part 2) • Travel Guide and Tips • Iva Says

Last modified: March 15, 2018

Oktoberfest – “Things to Love”

(Part 2)

Hopefully, by now you’ve read the first part of my Oktoberfest for Tourists guide and you are impatiently waiting for the next blog post in this series, where I shall write about all the wonderful things for the largest folk festival on the Planet. Since you know what to expect when you get there, I won’t bother you with such information in this post.

Those that still haven’t read Part 1 of my Oktoberfest series are advised to read that text first; it can be found here.

So, this is the text dedicated to the Things to Love about Oktoberfest in Munich.

I must say that I personally don’t consider all of the things on this list as positive, but they can be very important to some tourists. For example, I’m not a fan of crowded spots and a beer festival with millions of visitors isn’t exactly the place of my dreams; however, for the majority of the people and the drunk crowds are what makes this event so special. Therefore, I’ll try to be as objective as possible and number as many things as possible, so you can choose your favorites and prepare for the experience accordingly.

Ringispiel or Merry-Go-Round at Oktoberfest Munich 2017
Merry-Go-Round at Oktoberfest

It’s Much More than A Beer Festival

All my life I’ve been hearing about the beer festival called Oktoberfest in Germany; I love beer so that seemed attractive to me, but when I first set foot at the Oktoberfest’s grounds I discovered that it’s much more than just a beer festival. I would describe it as a fair on steroids or a two-week party with millions of visitors.

Yes, there is lots of beer at Oktoberfest and it’s impossible not to get drunk since the only beer mug available is a1-liter one. Nevertheless, this festival is about having a good time, eating delicious German and especially Bavarian specialties, enjoying Bavarian music etc.

Moreover, there are probably a hundred different fair rides, so pretty much everyone can find something to suit their taste. I tried one of the Scary House rides, but there were many other extreme options too like free falls, round-ups and so on.

Oktoberfest Attracts Millions of Visitors

This is probably one of the most popular and best-known events in the world; therefore, Oktoberfest attracts millions of visitors that come looking for a good time. Thus, this is a place where you can meet all kinds of different people; some friendly, some drunk…all in a great mood and ready to party.

This event is a great spot for social butterflies that aren’t afraid of sharing a table with strangers, making friendships and partying all night long.

Inside one of the tents at Oktoberfest Munich 2017
Trying to get a table after 12 PM at Oktoberfest…it was impossible.

No Dress Codes

Even though most of the visitors will be wearing the traditional Bavarian outfit – Dirndl (for the ladies) and Lederhosen (for the gentlemen) – there is no actual dress code to force you do wear one of those.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, dirndl is great and looks fantastic; however, not everyone is willing to spend money on something that will be worn only several times, plus not everyone feels comfortable in such an outfit.

So, you should know that you can wear jeans or pants or skirts or even pajamas as long as you feel comfortable and warm. After all, the festival is in late September, and Germany at this point gets fairly cold. 

It’s Not Too Expensive

All high-profile events usually cost you a fortune; this isn’t the case with Oktoberfest, especially if you plan your visit well.

Yes, the rides could be cheaper and yes, the prices inside the tents are a bit higher than the regular ones; however, considering the German standard, they aren’t unreasonably high, quite on the contrary. Plus, the stands outside the tents offers tasty food and beverages for cheaper prices; so, those on a budget won’t neither starve nor spend their last penny for a dish in the tents.

I noticed that even the souvenirs were affordable and almost the same price as the ones I bought in Nuremberg, for example.

Oktoberfest is Great for Everyone

You know how there are children fairs, late-night parties, and casual festivals that target a specific audience? Well, Oktoberfest is not such an event because it’s great for everyone.

The festival opens in the morning and closes late at night; it has fair rides for the youngest visitors as well as cool stuff for party-animals and thrill-seekers.

Those with kids can go in the morning and have fun without being forced to avoid drunk people and extreme crowds, while those that want to party can go in the tents and get wasted without having to worry about making noise or being inappropriate (usually after 8 PM the tents are full of drunk people that dance, sing, spill beer etc.).

Delicious Food and Memorable Drinks

It would be a sin not to mention the food and the drinks when listing all the positive aspects of Oktoberfest.

Visitors can enjoy many different kinds of the best German beer or spice up their night with some delicious (and strong) schnapps. The food options are numerous, with various kinds of wursts, as well as pork chops, being the top choices among the people.

Germans Found a Way to be Eco-Friendly

You would expect for an event of this scale to produce dirty streets and lots of garbage; well, that may be the case everywhere else, but not in Germany. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that even during Oktoberfest Germans are very conscious about the environment and they have come up with cool ways of helping it.

For example, when buying plastic bottles from festival businesses, you pay 1 or 2 euros extra and receive a voucher; when you return the bottle with the voucher you are given back the money. So, many visitors (at least the ones that aren’t wasted) are motivated to return the bottle instead of just throwing it on the streets. Also, instead of plates, you may expect interesting edible options like, for example, cone-plate for serving pancakes.

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It Feels Safe

Unfortunately, we live in a time when crowded places and popular events often seem like a scary choice. Like it or not, many tourists worldwide wonder whether it’s smart or safe to visit a festival like Oktoberfest and they have every right to do so. However, it seems that Oktoberfest and safety are taken very seriously by the authorities, which makes everyone feel safer.

First, there are entry points with guards, where visitors wearing backpacks or large bags are asked to show the contents of those bags. Secondly, there are groups of police officers present on the grounds and outside the festival, so even if something bad happens you can easily find help. Finally, before entering any of the tents everyone is thoroughly checked for bag/backpack contents by several police officers. Therefore, I felt very safe even though I had certain insecurities prior my arrival at the festival.

Oktoberfest is in Munich

If any of these positives didn’t seem quite attractive to you, well you shouldn’t forget that Oktoberfest is in Munich. Believe me, this is a gorgeous city with amazing architecture, awesome places to visit and see as well as excellent public transportation.

So, if you’re bored at the Oktoberfest or just got enough of it, you can always leave and go explore the beautiful City of Munich. Actually, that’s what we did as well on our second day and I plan on writing all about it in my upcoming Munich destination review.

Lowenbraun barrel display at Oktoberfest Munich 2017
Lowenbraun barrels

Concluding Thoughts

That’s it guys, these are the things that left the biggest impression on me regarding Oktoberfest; when it comes to things to love at least.I promise to add Part 3 – Things to Hate fairly soon, so you can get a complete image of what to expect at this unique event.

In the meantime, you can check out the rest of my adventures on my last trip to Germany – visiting Nuremberg and the fairy-tale Bavarian castles.

Also, don’t forget to prepare accordingly for your Oktoberfest adventure by buying some of these must-have Oktoberfest items! These are all affiliate links, so if you buy something at no extra cost to you I will earn a small commission, which will go to my travel fund. ?

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Travel Tips and Guide to Oktoberfest Munich 2017

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