In order to get acquainted with the history and traditions of the festival, as well as learn about where and when Oktoberfest 2018 will take place, we suggest you to read the review prepared by our Munich guides.
A brief excursion into the history of the holiday
The official date of "birth" of the world's largest beer festival is October 12, 1810. It was on this momentous day that the Bavarian Crown Prince, and later King Ludovig I, married the Princess of Saxony Teresa Hildburghausen. In honor of this event, the couple decided to arrange a feast, not only for themselves and their aristocratic entourage, but also commoners. In order to allow everyone to take part in the celebration, tables with refreshments and drinks were organized at several country pastures in Munich. The event was so much liked by the crown prince's subjects that he established to hold it on an annual basis.
It is noteworthy that the “apogee” of the festive feast in 1810 was not drinking your favorite beer, but horse racing.However, after a few years this sad “misunderstanding” was corrected. Since the Bavarian addiction to beer turned out to be much stronger than the love of equestrian sports, horse racing was replaced with a merry beer feast.
For nine years, the royal couple was the main founders of the holiday, but already in 1819, all powers to organize the event were transferred to the Munich City Council.
At the end of the 19th century, Oktoberfest acquired features similar to those that are characteristic of the modern format of the holiday. At the initiative of the Bavarian breweries, the venue of the event was equipped with spacious beer halls, and playgrounds for rides and dances were made outside of them. In 1882, the traditional tin mugs were replaced with liter glasses made of glass, into which the festive drink is poured to this day.
The official tradition of the Oktoberfest in the city of Munich is the solemn departure of the owners of beer factories in horse drawn carriages. This event is accompanied by live orchestral music and cheers from the audience.
This beautiful ceremony dates back to 1887, when the festival venue was located far outside the city. A festive procession of more than 100,000 participants began from the central square of Munich and ended on the meadow of Teresa, where beer tents were placed.
Currently, the solemn ceremony is headed by the Mayor of Munich. He also opens the festival itself. With a wooden hammer the mayor drives a faucet into a beer barrel located in the main tent of Oktoberfest - Shottenhammel. The first mug of the drink traditionally goes to the guest of honor of the event - the Prime Minister of Bavaria.
After the end of the ceremony, a festive salute flares up in the sky over Munich, after which twelve cannon volleys are heard, notifying the owners of the pavilions of the beginning of customer service.
It is worth noting the grandiose costumed procession, which traditionally takes place on the first Sunday of the holiday. As a rule, the main actors of the event are musical and creative teams from Bavaria and other regions of Germany. Often in the procession you can see the representatives of Italy, Croatia, Poland, Austria and Switzerland.
It is worth noting that only six Bavarian breweries are allowed to participate in the Oktoberfest, namely Augustiner, Hacker-Pschorr, Paulaner, Löwenbräu, Hofbräu and, of course, Spaten-Franziskaner-Bräu. However, guests of the festival can easily diversify their alcoholic card and other drinks. On the territory of the Terezinsky meadow there are many pavilions, where visitors will be offered to taste champagne, schnapps and young wine made by local producers.
When and where does Octoberfest take place in 2018?
According to the information published on the official website of the organizer, the dates of the festival have already been determined. The solemn opening ceremony will be held on September 22, a preliminary closing date is scheduled for October 8 - 9, 2018. The venue of the festival also remains unchanged. Festive events will traditionally be held in the capital of Bavaria - the city of Munich.
Popular festival analogs
Currently, in different countries of the world there are many similar festivals that are popular with beer lovers. However, the main rival of the Munich-based Octoberfest can be easily called the beer festival in Prague.Despite the fact that the history of the Czech project has only a few decades, he managed to win the recognition and love of the multi-million army of beer fans.
How to get to Oktoberfest?
You can get to the festival in Munich in various ways:
- tour package;
- on private transport;
- ordering tickets for the bus tour.
The most preferable for Russian travelers is the last option. Such tours are organized by many travel agencies, offering their customers an inexpensive and high-quality service.