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Austin (Texas)


What's the best way to experience Oktoberfest?

This will be my first time going to Oktoberfest (and Munich, actually), so I'd love some suggestions for good beer gardens, restaurants, or even street celebrations for Oktoberfest! We’re staying near Munich, but it’s really more of a base as we hope to explore a lot of the country. Thanks!

5 Answers

top answer by
Alex from London


If you do not have tickets for the private beerhalls, then I suggest you arrive early, before lunch to get a spot at the shared tables.  Oktoberfest is great fun but it can get crowded if you go only at night, and you will want to experience the atmosphere in the beerhalls, the dancing, eating and singing!

The first weekend of the festival this year is 21st September, on the first saturday there is a traditional procession of the all the beer brewers which is also fun to attend.

As for other activities, Munich is a super friendly and welcoming town, very manageable and easy to explore (great trains!) The city centre is Marienplatz from where you can easily walk to fun markets and the English Gardens (the main green space in central Munich).  The Englischer Garten has a number of biergartens, the liveliest being by the Chinese Pavillion with open air long tables and live bands.

If you are looking to visit a bierhall, the most central and famous is the Hofbräuhaus am Platzl. Personally, I prefer the Augustiner BräustubenWaldwirtschaft Großhesselohe and Augustiner-Keller.

For more information on how to prepare and what to expect of Oktoberfest plus and overview on Munich, check out my blog post:

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Oktoberfest (attraction)
  2. Marienplatz (attraction)
  3. Englischer Garten (attraction)
  4. Hofbräuhaus am Platzl (restaurant)
  5. Augustiner Bräustuben (restaurant)
  6. Waldwirtschaft Großhesselohe (restaurant)
  7. Augustiner-Keller (restaurant)
9 thankscomments (4)

answered by
Ryan from Redondo Beach

You're going to have a freaking blast! I went to Oktoberfest last year and it was amazing!

I went to the Hacker Festzelt tent at Oktoberfest. It's a 20s - 30s age crowd. I was there from 8:30AM to 10PM, which sounds like a long time but when I checked my watch for the first time it was already 3PM and I thought I had only been there for 2 hours. Time flies when you're meeting so many cool people.

I'd recommend getting there early to make sure you don't have to wait in a long line. Not sure what week or weekend you're going but I went on a Sunday (Day 2) and we walked right into the tent with maybe 5-10 people in line ahead of us. By 10AM the tent was completely full. We opted out of going Saturday (Day 1) but saw the parade which was cool to see.

I don't recommend jumping from tent to tent. Got to different ones on different days if you're going to do Oktoberfest more than one day.

As far as other beer halls, there are a ton around Marienplatz. Most people try to go to Hofbräuhaus because of the history but Augustiner-Keller is the spot. If you can get a seat inside it's the best.

As far as exploring the rest of the country you have so many options. Garmisch-Partenkirchen is a great town to check out. It's really more of a skiing town but you might enjoy it.

You can always hit up Neuschwanstein Castle, which although I've been to Germnay many times and also lived there I've never done. But report back if you go!A few hour train ride out of Munich is Salzburg. I highly recommend going here if you can. You can check out my other answer to another Trippy user here on Salzburg.Enjoy!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Hacker Festzelt (attraction)
  2. Oktoberfest (attraction)
  3. Marienplatz (attraction)
  4. Hofbräuhaus (restaurant)
  5. Augustiner-Keller (restaurant)
  6. Garmisch-Partenkirchen (city)
  7. Neuschwanstein Castle (attraction)
  8. Salzburg (city)
7 thankscomments (1)

answered by
Jen from Sydney

Hi Christine,

If you are planning on being there on the weekend I highly recommend getting to the tents early in the morning say around 8am even though they don't officially open until 9-10am. Midweek is much quieter but the atmosphere can be a little less exciting.

Also keep an eye out as most of the tents have more than one entrance. You will find that most people will be queuing at the main entrance. So I suggest you jump in the main queue and send someone from your group to look for a shorter queue.

If you're sick of visiting the tents there are some nice open beer gardens that you can also enjoy with less crowds.

Eat lots of pretzels to soak up the beer and most of all have fun.



5 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Jessi from London

Ah you are going to have such a great time!  I went for the first time last year and had such a blast that I'm going back again this year - and that's actually a photo of me at Oktoberfest as my profile picture!  We went to the middle weekend and got up before seven to make our way to the festival and queue at the Löwenbräu-Festzelt tent - it might sound crazy early, but we were rewarded with a great table for our large group.  I spent most of the first day in the tent, singing, dancing and of course sampling the beer :) Then I went on some of the rides - the Olympic Rings roller-coaster might sound ill-advised but it was a lot of fun.  The next day I looked around the site more - it is huge, and there are lots of stalls to see.  All the beer-halls are decorated very differently, and of course it is always fun to people-watch at festivals.  

My top tips are to make sure you have a dirndl (lederhosen) for the guys - it is such fun to dress up; to book your accommodation somewhere close to the festival grounds so that you can get to and from easily; and to embrace the singing-dancing-fun atmosphere!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Löwenbräu-Festzelt (attraction)
3 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Courtney from Los Angeles

Try Café Kaiserschmarrn! It's an adorable tent sponsored by a pastry company. It's great for kids if you happen to be bringing some!

Also, Schützen-Festzelt is great, too, especially if you like suckling pig! 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Café Kaiserschmarrn (restaurant)
  2. Schützen-Festzelt (restaurant)
1 thankscomments (1)

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