10 interesting facts about Oktoberfest

The 25 most interesting facts about Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest is the largest national festival in the world, and many people associate Germany or beer with this particular holiday. Oktoberfest has been held for over 200 years, and every time at the end of September millions of people, both locals and tourists, flock to it. They all come to enjoy the Bavarian culture and the integral part of the festival – beer. The traditions of Bavarian culture are clearly visible throughout the sixteen-day festival, from the parade on the first day of the festival to the food, drinks and national dress.

This list tells you everything you need to know about Oktoberfest – and according to Coolday.today, this post will be especially helpful to those who, for whatever reason, have not yet been to the fest, but are definitely planning to in the future! Raise your glasses and say “Prost!” – and proceed to our list of the 25 most interesting facts about Oktoberfest.

25. History of Oktoberfest

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Going deeper into the history of this great festival, the first Oktoberfest in Munich took place on October 12, 1810, on the occasion of the marriage between Crown Prince Ludwig (later King Ludwig I) and Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. All the inhabitants of Munich were invited to the celebration, which took place in a field on the outskirts of the city.

24. No longer a wedding, but still a celebration

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Although no royal wedding was celebrated the following year, the locals of Munich were looking forward to some other big event. So they organized mass festivities, where there was also an agricultural show, and children’s rides and beer stalls were brought in (which has now become the hallmark of the festival).

23. The festivities never end

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Oktoberfest has been held every year since 1810, except for 24 years when it was canceled due to cholera epidemics or periods of war.

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22. Traditional dress at Oktoberfest

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The expression “dress to impress” is a slogan for many Oktoberfest fans. Men tend to dress in leather shorts with suspenders, a white shirt, socks and traditional boots. Bavarian women, on the other hand, wear a dress with a narrow bodice, short sleeves, low neck, wide skirt and an apron.

21. Oktoberfest is not really a German national holiday

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Although to most people Oktoberfest is the epitome of all of Germany, it actually represents only a small part of German culture: only the traditions of southeastern Bavaria are represented. Other states also hold their own folk festivals, but they are less well-known than Oktoberfest. For example, Coolday.today recommends visiting the Freimarkt in Bremen or the Cannstatter Wassen in Stuttgart.

20. When is Oktoberfest?

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Many tourists come to Munich throughout October (without first reading our list of Oktoberfest facts), and they leave back a little disappointed because all they see is the most usual amount of Germans drinking beer somewhere in a bar. The thing is, Oktoberfest actually takes place in September and ends on the first Sunday in October. And why? Because it’s just warmer at this time! ;)

19. Who gets the first glass of beer?

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Oktoberfest details: when is the first glass of beer drunk? The beer festival doesn’t start until the procession of farmers and brewers has taken place. The mayor of Munich leads the parade and it is he who must uncork the first keg of beer in the Schottenhamel tent. Then the mayor shouts: “O’zapft is!” which means “uncorked” and then the beer sales at the other beer stalls begin.

18. The emergence of beer halls

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The festival has grown several times over its more than two hundred year history, with the famous beer halls first rented in 1896 (with the support of major Bavarian breweries). Prior to that, beer could be tasted in small beer stalls that were scattered throughout the city.

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17. Oktoberfest is not just a celebration for beer lovers

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It’s hard enough to understand why, but every year at Oktoberfest a tent with… wine is set up. The best varieties of Bavarian wine are presented there, which even the French can appreciate!

16. Who comes to Oktoberfest?

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There is a stereotype that the international fame of Oktoberfest discourages Germans themselves from visiting their national holiday. However, this is absolutely not true: about 70% of the festival participants are residents of the nearest Bavarian lands, another 15% come from other parts of Germany, and only 15% are tourists from Europe, the USA and other countries.

15. What do the locals call Oktoberfest?

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A lesser-known fact about the festival: the people of Munich don’t call it Oktoberfest! From them, you’re more likely to hear the Wiesn Festival, which came from the name of the field where the festival was first held. This field, named after Princess Theresa, Theresienwiesn (which means “Theresa’s Meadows”) is still the site of the Oktoberfest.

14. The festival is so large-scale that there is its own post office for it

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Organized specifically for the festival (even its own stamps have been developed) the Oktoberfest post office opens every year so that visitors to the festival can send souvenirs and postcards to their friends and family. About 130,000 parcels and postcards are sent from this post office each year.

13. The number of visitors to Oktoberfest

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Let’s face it – although Oktoberfest offers plenty of entertainment and attractions for children, the main reason why so many people come here is because of the beer. Every year the fest attracts at least 5-7 million people to have a good time at Theresienwiese in Munich.

12. traditional Bavarian music

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You can also get into the spirit and mood of Oktoberfest when you are away from the festivities by simply listening to the traditional music of Bavarian wind instruments known as Blasmusik. The most famous German folk songs are “In München steht ein Hofbräuhaus”, “Marmor, Stein und Eisen bricht” and “Viva Colonia”.

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11. Tents at Oktoberfest

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Of course, there are now beer stalls and halls made of wood and steel at Oktoberfest, which is not as romantic as it used to be, especially since they are assembled and dismantled every year for the festival. But traditional tents remain, too, and the largest of them, the Hofbräu-Festzelt, can accommodate up to 10,000 visitors, with a capacity of 6,000 inside.

10. Oktoberfest – a celebration for everyone, rich and poor alike

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Although leather shorts and socks are worn only by Oktoberfest fans, traditional Bavarian hats – Tirolerhüte – can be seen on almost everyone. In the olden days, it was thought that the more goatskin patches on a hat, the richer the wearer. Nowadays, however, such hats are only worn during festivals.

9. How much does it cost to go to Oktoberfest?

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One of the nicest facts about Oktoberfest is that it’s completely free to attend! Well, sort of. It’s free to get into the festival grounds or any beer tent. The only thing is, Coolday.today advises you to go there early in the morning or book your spot in advance – because they fill up at lightning speed.

8. Drink, drink, but don’t get drunk!

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Due to the atmosphere of the festival and the beer flowing like a river it’s very easy to lose control and drink too much. About 600-800 people end up in the hospital every year because of alcohol poisoning.

7. Famous Oktoberfest workers

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In our list of interesting facts about Oktoberfest you will also read about… genius. Now the organizers of Oktoberfest are proud and boast that Albert Einstein once worked at the festival. The German genius worked as an electrician and beer tent construction worker in the late 19th century.

6. What kind of beer is drunk at Oktoberfest?

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Ah, that sacred elixir – beer. Germans love their beer, and the Bavarians are no exception. Both lager and Märzenbier, all beers at Oktoberfest are stronger (6-7%) than many other German beers.

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5. Expensive Beer

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Speaking of beer, a legitimate question arises: how much does it cost at Oktoberfest? A lot more than you might think. One mug of beer in 2011 cost in the region of 8.70-9.20 euros! That’s over $10 a glass! (And, as you can imagine, prices go up every year). Despite this high price tag, about 6 million liters of beer (!) are drunk at every Oktoberfest.

4. A glass at Oktoberfest: Maß

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So, although a glass of beer – there it is called Maßkrug – seems quite expensive, the following fact will calm you down a bit: the glasses there are one liter. So for a pint of beer (about half a liter) you’ll pay about 4.50-5 euros. The Maß glasses are made of glass (in contrast to the clay beer mugs that are usually on sale) and you’ll really get a full mug to the brim. Each mug belongs to a certain brewery, and they are very serious about making sure no one inadvertently takes it away ;). So if you want one as a souvenir you should look for it in the stalls around here.

Food at Oktoberfest

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Okay, so you had a glass of beer on an empty stomach and you’re already tipsy, right? So, in order not to make you feel bad, you better go for the traditional Oktoberfest food. You should try Hendl (fried chicken) – it is included almost in all menus. In addition, Bratwurst (pork sausage), Schweinshaxen (pork knuckle) and Steckerlfisch (fried fish on a stick) will conquer your palate. And once you’ve tried it, you can never forget Brezn, the warm and tasty German pretzels. Despite the fact that the famous snack at the festival is sausages, in fact much more there is eaten fried chicken – almost half a million pounds at each festival.

2. the best souvenirs are free

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Glass glasses are so popular with tourists that in 2010 alone, more than 130,000 beer mugs were confiscated by security guards from visitors trying to take such a memorable souvenir with them for free ;).

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1.How do I get a seat at Oktoberfest?

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If you’re planning to attend next year’s Oktoberfest, make sure you book your seats in advance! You should contact one of the beer tent hosts to reserve a seat at the hotel and at the tables (expect at least 10 people at one table). Some groups book the same tables year after year, which further reduces your chances of finding seats. So Coolday.today recommends you take care of that as early as possible!

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