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My Dirndl Diary – One Night at Oktoberfest

Munich-Savvy-Spice-Oktoberfest-Diary

Over the weekend, we drove to Germany to celebrate Oktoberfest – the world’s largest ‘funfair’ held annually in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. According to Wikipedia, ‘It is a 16-day festival running from late September to the first weekend in October with more than 6 million people from around the world attending the event every year.’ I don’t know about you, but I’ve always loved Oktoberfest celebrations!

Before moving to Europe, I attended Oktoberfest in San Francisco, Huntington Beach and even Torrance, California. But if you’ve ever thought about coming to Oktoberfest in Germany, I will let you know exactly what to expect and a few questions to ask yourself before booking next year’s flight to Bavaria. Here’s my Dirndl Diary from our night in Munich…

Oktoberfest-Savvy-Spice

Have you Been to Your County Fair Lately? Oktoberfest has 6 main beer tents that hold thousands of people. The outside grounds are like a HUGE county fair with games, a Ferris Wheel and a ton of carnival rides which you can imagine don’t make for a pretty scene after people have been drinking beer and eating Schnitzel and sausage all day. Watch your step.

Oktoberfest behind the scenes -dangers - Munich

How Big are the Beers!? – Oktoberfest in Munich is unlike any atmosphere I’ve ever seen. But as you can expect, there is A LOT of drunkeness. Tents start serving beer at 10 am and the beers are 1 LITER – 33 oz in every glass mug. Only breweries within Munich’s city limits are allowed to serve beer (which is about 6% alcohol). In this photo I snapped above, just below the sunshine and carnival rides in the shadows by those trucks were about 10 police officers and medical aids assisting a man on a stretcher who did not look okay. We saw this scene a few more times during the night. AKA – Drink Responsibly. 

Oktoberfest-Savvy-Spice-Munich

What to Wear – If you go to Oktoberfest, definitely wear a Dirndl or Lederhosen! There are outlets all around Munich to buy your outfit including the top, Dirndl (dress), apron and ribbon for about 100 Euros in any color you like. You’ll feel like a local, plus it’s the ultimate souvenir. You are also able to buy the mugs in the tents before leaving, but need a special tag or they’ll take it away.

Breakfast-Bavaria-Savvy-Spice

What to Eat?! I’ll just put it this way, traditional Bavarian food is very hearty. And by hearty I mean huge slabs of meat. As a semi-vegetarian, I just don’t have the stomach for it. There’s Hendl (roast chicken), Schweinebraten (roast pork), Sauerkraut, Schweinshaxe (grilled ham hock), and of course Würstl (sausages). Thankfully, I was able to get a salad for breakfast instead of a Bavarian sausage. And yes, they drink beer with breakfast too. But for the most part at Oktoberfest, I eat pretzels and Knödel (potato or bread dumplings).

Oktoberfest-Food

The Vegetarian Menu at Oktoberfest – Thankfully, I really love German pretzels.

Munich-Savvy-Spice-fashion-Blog-Travel-Europe-Oktoberfest

If You Want to Go, Here’s How to Do It – I wouldn’t recommend coming to Europe just for Oktoberfest because there is so much more sightseeing to do! Munich is beautiful and Oktoberfest starts the 3rd week of Sept. which is still a perfect time to come to Europe. Summer is over so you can find lower priced airfare to other cities. Then, with a train pass come to Munich on the last leg of your trip for the celebration. PS – Learn some of the traditional German songs, like this one.

New-Oktoberfest-Savvy-Spice

My #1 Reason to Go – The aspect I love is there isn’t the snobby ‘club vibe’ in Oktoberfest tents. Or maybe there is and I just don’t notice because I’m not German, but everyone seems so happy. For example, there may be a line, but you can always get into tents if you go early and it’s FREE ENTRY. You pay for beer and food inside. What is so special is that everyone of all ages from Bavaria is celebrating and they make the tents family friendly in the earlier hours of the festival before it gets too crazy! So if it’s on your travel to-do list, this isn’t one of those ‘Oh, I’m over 25 and too old for this.’ You can go any time.

Overall, I’ve had just as much fun at Oktoberfest celebrations in the US, with a lot less planning involved, but if you ever get the chance to go to Munich, I highly recommend it! Do you love Oktoberfest too or is Halloween your favorite Fall holiday?

~xo,

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15 Comments

Comments

  1. This is making me even more excited for this weekend! I even just did some Oktoberfest nail art in preparation 🙂 I agree with you- oktoberfests are fun all over but Munich’s is quite a site to see.

  2. The casual vibe could be because you’re not German, but it seems like there is no reason to be uppity at Oktoberfest. Glad you had such a fun time.

  3. A gluten-free chick like myself……… Yes, I cannot take part in Oktoberfest. HA HA AH! BUT I WANNA! Because THOSE PRETZELS – OMG, I want, in my mouth!!

  4. Dale, You are adorable in your dirndl! I have always wanted to go to Oktoberfest, but had no idea how it actually works. Great tips here and good to know it is an ALL DAY affair including breakfast. Yikes. I wouldn’t make it after one of those mugs. Sounds like fun people watching too! Hope you had a great time! xx Kim

  5. Do I really have to chose between Halloween and Oktoberfest?? Love both!!

    Btw, Lodenfrey, the big Munich department store has an entire floor dedicated to Dirndl and Lederhosen for every possible mood and budget. xx

  6. Great!!!
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  7. Dale, you were the prettiest there!!! Love your outfit. Glad you had a great time.

  8. Yay, glad that you experienced Oktoberfest, I’ve been quite a few time and it’s fun, especially with the right people + the beer, lol. 🙂 Best part about being in Europe is hopping from country to country for such an afforable price. We used to always use Ryanair a lot.
    /Madison
    Style Traction

  9. Yay, glad that you experienced Oktoberfest, I’ve been quite a few time and it’s fun, especially with the right people + the beer, lol. 🙂 Best part about being in Europe is hopping from country to country for such an affodable price. We used to always use Ryanair a lot.
    /Madison
    Style Traction

  10. Yay, glad that you experienced Oktoberfest, I’ve been quite a few time and it’s fun, especially with the right people + the beer, lol. 🙂 Best part about being in Europe is hopping from country to country for such an affordable price. We used to always use Ryanair a lot.
    /Madison
    Style Traction

  11. Yay, glad that you experienced Oktoberfest, I’ve been quite a few time and it’s fun, especially with the right people + the beer, lol. 🙂 Best part about being in Europe is hopping from country to country for such an affordable price. We used to always use Ryanair a lot.
    /Madison

  12. Not certain if this comment will go through , as it says error.
    But, yay, glad that you experienced Oktoberfest, I’ve been quite a few time and it’s fun, especially with the right people + the beer, lol. 🙂 Best part about being in Europe is hopping from country to country for such an affordable price. We used to always use Ryanair a lot.
    /Madison

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