Oktoberfest 2015

Oktoberfest: when there is a lot of beer, but everyone behaves decently

Photo: leigh wolf/flickr. om

Everything you need to know about Oktoberfest 2015: history, how to get there, what to do and beer prices from Travel The World.

Oktoberfest ("October 1st", "meadow") is a traditional festival held in Munich, Bavaria every year in mid-autumn. The central place in it is the consumption of beer, which is specially brewed for the holiday. The festival is a kind of competition in which Munich brewers fight for the right to be the best. The event lasts for about a half moon.

Festival history

In 2010, Oktoberfest celebrated its 200th anniversary. The tradition of folk festivities, which take place in the Teresa meadow in the center of Munich and are accompanied by stormy streams of "foam", arose on the day when Prince Ludwig of Bavaria celebrated his marriage to Princess Theresa on a grand scale.

A year later, it was decided to repeat the celebration (wedding anniversary, after all). The Bavarians liked the massive event so much that they decided to celebrate Oktoberfest every year. At first, the financing of the festivities was at the expense of private individuals, but after 9 years this honorable task was assigned to the city authorities. At the same time, the holiday, which had already become a tradition, was consolidated, in modern words, "at the legislative level."

At the end of the 19th century, the dates of the festival were shifted, postponing it to September, but it must end in October. The program was gradually developed and supplemented. So, the familiar bar circles appeared only in 1892. Since 1881, fried chickens have been sold at the festival. Electricity first appeared in 1886, with Albert Einstein's hand in it. For the centenary of its foundation, Oktoberfest has sold 1.2 million liters of foamy drink to visitors. But difficult times soon began - the festival was not held for several years due to two world wars, the country's plight and restrictions from the Nazis.

Since 1960, the festival has become one of the main tourist autumn events in Europe, and certainly the most important in Germany.

Photo: leigh wolf/flickr. om

Oktoberfest program of the year

When and where is Oktoberfest celebrated? What events of this festival are worth visiting? Which Oktoberfest beer tents are the largest and most interesting? You will get answers to these questions by reading this article.

Oktoberfest is considered the largest folk festival in the world. In German, this huge folklore festival has several names: Oktoberfest, Wiesn (“meadow” from German), Volksfest. Every year it is held in Munich, the capital of Bavaria. And the second name Wiesn comes from the fact that it starts in the Teresa meadow in the city center next to the main train station.

Munich attracts more than 6 million visitors and tourists to Oktoberfest every year. The festival starts in the second half of September. It lasts no more than 20 days. If you moved to Germany for permanent residence on the basis of employment, write in advance a vacation application at the end of September. Then you can definitely get to Oktoberfest at a minimum cost. There is a train connection to Munich from almost every German city, and tickets are inexpensive.

The 187th Oktoberfest in Munich is celebrated in 2020, although the first time was held in 1810 - 210 years ago. The first Oktoberfest was a gala party to celebrate the marriage of Prince Ludwig and Princess Teresa in 1810. It was held on October 12, according to other sources - on October 17. The wedding has become an annual event where millions of people drink tens of millions of liters of beer.

It is difficult for beginners to understand and build a logical chain of all the Oktoberfest show programs, or, as the locals call it, Wiesn. The event has 14 large beer tents that can accommodate up to 10,000 people each, as well as 20 small tents, carnival rides, theaters and music performances.

2020 Oktoberfest kicks off on Saturday, September 19 at 12:00. First, there will be a parade of the owners of beer tents along the main streets of Munich. This procession will take about 1 hour and will be attended by over 1000 people. This will be followed by a traditional opening ceremony called "Uncorking!" (O`zapft is). During the ceremony, the mayor of Munich will hold a ceremony to scare off the first barrel of beer.

On the first day, the festival tents will close at 23:30. All beer tents will be open on weekdays from 10 am to 11 pm. However, the beer will stop pouring at 22:30. On weekends, beer halls open at 9:00 and close at 01:00.

Places in tents must be booked online in advance. There are more people who wish each year than the tents can accommodate during all the days of the festival.

But how do you decide which tent to go to? Just follow our guide.

Oktoberfest - tent guide - Schottenhamel

At the end of September - beginning of October, Germany gets into a wave of beer lovers from all over the world - Oktoberfest starts! The event is considered the largest folk festival in the world: in two weeks Munich receives 6 million guests (taking into account the fact that the population of Bavaria is only one and a half million).


The first festival took place 200 years ago - on October 12, 110. The occasion was significant: the wedding of Princess Teresa, after whom the Oktoberfest meadow will be named, and Crown Prince Ludwig, the future king. In addition to the beer festival, horse races were organized in honor of the wedding.

The following year, the tradition was interrupted due to the Napoleonic Wars, then it became a private holiday, and in 1819 the festival took on such a scale that it was decided to hold it annually. The organizer was the Munich City Council.

Throughout its history, the festival has been canceled several times:

The first festivals took place in October - hence the name. In 1872, it was decided to postpone the festival to late September - early October. At this time in Germany is "Indian summer" - dry, warm and comfortable for mass festivities weather.

Timeline of events and activities

Traditionally, the festival starts at 10:45 am with a costume procession. The owners of beer tents try on traditional Bavarian costumes, sit on painted carts, which are pre-loaded with beer barrels, and, accompanied by folk music and cheers from guests, follow to the meadow - the venue of the festival.

The next obligatory event is the opening of the beer barrel by the Mayor of Munich. This tradition was canceled only once, in 2001, as a sign of mourning for the victims of the terrorist attack in New York's Twin Towers. At 12:00, the burgomaster should drive the tap into the beer barrel with the minimum number of strokes, while the exclamation “Uncorked!” - only after that the festival is considered open. A minor competition for the best result takes place between the burgomasters. The minimum number of strokes is only 1! - needed Christian Uhde in 2006. The worst result was shown by Thomas Wimmer in 1950 - 19 strokes.

After the opening of the festival, participants are expected to:

  • Thousands of costumed processions
  • A divine service at which the festival participants remember the Oktoberfest participants who have departed to another world. After the service, the children of the organizers of the event receive baptism and the first communion.
  • A concert of Bavarian folk music performed by a brass band and drummers
  • Fireworks from hand mortars, etc.

Brewing companies start preparing for the festival one year in advance - right after the end of the previous one. Algorithms of brewing are being improved, corresponding to standards released in the 15th century. Each tent offers something special: in one, the drink is poured directly from oak barrels, the second invites you to try the Octoberfest beer, specially developed for the festival, etc.

Family beer festival? Why not!

There are many myths and legends about beer, but we are sure of one thing - there are no people who do not like beer. If you do not like this intoxicating drink, then you simply have not found your variety yet. And where is the best place to find the right drink recipe? Of course, in the heart of the global beer industry, at the global Oktoberfest.

How did the beer festival in Germany begin

On October 12, distant 1810, the magnificent wedding of the future King Ludwig I and Princess Teresa of Saxony took place in ancient Bavaria. Celebrating this event on a grand scale, the people of the country held a grand beer festival with entertainment fairs. There were about 40 thousand guests, and in addition to beer tasting, there were also horse races.

This format of rest was to the liking of both the peasants and the nobility. Since then, Oktoberfest has been held almost without interruption. Although, to tell the truth, there were long pauses in the history of the holiday. For example, when the Napoleonic War broke out in Europe, the festival had to be closed. But as soon as everything returned to normal, the fair resumed. The holiday also stopped not only due to historical, but also social events. In the second half of the 19th century, there were several outbreaks of cholera in Bavaria, during which there was no time for mass fun.

In 1872, the holiday was postponed to the end of September, when the weather in Bavaria made the locals happy with the sun and a real "Indian summer".

Then there were breaks due to the First World War, financial problems in the country and other conditions. And only in the second half of the last century, Oktoberfest in Germany began to turn into a real secular international event. Foreign guests began to come here, having heard about cuisine, breweries, entertainment and the legendary culture of Bavaria.

At the moment, hosting the annual Oktoberfest, Munich is extremely proud of this event.

How and where the Oktoberfest takes place

Oktoberfest in Munich is traditionally held in the second half of September or early October. The average turnover of Oktofest visitors is approximately 5-6 million people.

The holiday itself lasts 16 days, and sometimes 17 days. The whole action takes place in Teresa's meadow in the city center. The beer festival is formed exclusively from local authentic brewery companies. Each brewery prepares an impressive batch of intoxicating drink specially for the holiday, the alcohol content of which ranges from 5.8 to 6.3%. In total, there are 14 main large tents on the meadow, with a total capacity of about 100,000 places. In addition, 18 smaller tents have been opened, each of which can accommodate between 100 and 500 people.

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