Our first Oktoberfest experience!
Ah, Oktoberfest, the world’s largest beer festival. Nothing could have prepared us for it! Our first Oktoberfest experience was also on our first day living in Munich. We literally hopped off the plane, dropped off our luggage, and took the U to the Oktoberfest grounds!
I have a friend from college who lives in Munich, which has been SUCH a blessing. She invited us to join her and her friends at their table in the Hacker Festzelt beer hall. This was SO nice, because they had reserved the table months in advance. We wouldn’t have thought to do this (newbies!) and would have spent all day standing. As it turned out, everyone ended up standing on the benches towards the end of the day anyways…which was so fun!
When we first entered the Oktoberfest grounds, we were pretty overwhelmed. Besides being jetlagged and running on no sleep, we had never seen anything like it. Nothing in the US compares. 6L of beer later and we were converted!
There are two main parts of Oktoberfest: the beer tents and the funfair. We entered through the funfair and walked by rides, carnival games, snacks and souvenirs. We were able to find my friend pretty quickly in the Hacker Festzelt beer hall because she gave us great directions. This beer hall is decorated with clouds because the Hacker Festzelt philosophy is “when surrounded by clouds and stars with a cold Maß (liter of beer) in the hand, you may feel as though you are truly in a ‘Bavarian Heaven.”
The atmosphere inside the beer halls is so fun – everyone is drinking, singing, dancing, cheering, and in ours there was even live music! It was especially fun when the band played traditional Bavarian songs because everyone would “cheers” and sing along. Besides the traditional songs, we heard a lot of ’80s hits.
We had a great day catching up with my friend, meeting new people, drinking lots of beer, and people watching. Everyone was so friendly, even though we felt super out of place in our travel clothes…everyone there was wearing the traditional dirndl and lederhosen!