Oktoberfest Stag Do
All you need to know
Munich Oktoberfest Stag Do
An increasingly popular destination for Stag do's is the Munich Oktoberfest. This is an annual festival held over a two week period, ending on the first Sunday in October. The first Oktoberfest was held in 1810 to celebrate the marriage of the Crown Prince of Bavaria to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. The Munich Oktoberfest has been held every year since then, with exceptions for war and disease, and is now the world’s largest Volksfest (beer festival and travelling funfair). Your Munich Oktoberfest Stag do will be one you are all talking about for years to come!
This year the festival will commence on 19th September when around 1000 participants take part in the Parade of the Landlords and Breweries of the Wiesn. This parade is led by the Münchner Kindl, the city mascot, on horseback and the festive horse-drawn carriage of the Munich Mayor, followed by the flower-adorned carriages of the Wiesn landlords and their families, festival carts, bands and, of course, the magnificent carts of the Munich breweries, drawn by draft horses.
Following this parade, at the stroke of noon and officially kicking off the Wiesn (the local name for the Oktoberfest), is the tapping ceremony, where according to tradition, the Mayor of Munich taps the first barrel of beer of the Wiesn, in the Schottenhamel festival tent and fills up the first beer glass, which is then customarily handed to the incumbent Bavarian State premier. When the barrel is tapped the Mayor gives the call of “O’zapft is!” meaning “It’s tapped!” Following the successful tapping ceremony, twelve gunshots are fired to signal to the other tents that the festival has started and that the beer should start flowing!! Despite the fact that the festival ground opens at 9am, beer cannot be served in all the tents until after the gunshots.
As a destination for a Stag do, the Oktoberfest has a lot to offer. For example there is the beer. The beer that is served at the Oktoberfest must conform to the Reinheitsgebot, which are 16th Century regulations governing the purity and ingredients of beer in Germany, so it is only made from hops malt and barley (as the existence of yeast was not known at that time). For a beer to be served at the Oktoberfest it must be brewed within the city limits of Munich by one of 6 registered breweries. In 2019 a total of 7.3 million litres of beer were drunk at the Munich Oktoberfest, to put that in perspective, that’s enough beer to fill three Olympic size swimming pools! The beer is served in beer halls, which are large wooden structures, known as tents, there are 17 large tents and 21 small tents at the festival, ranging from the traditional to international, but all with the typical Oktoberfest atmosphere and hospitality.
It’s not just beer at the Oktoberfest, there is also a fairground with all sorts of rides, including a rollercoaster, Willenborg’s Ferris wheel and Skyfall, the tallest mobile drop tower in the world at 80m in height, and stalls selling all manner of goods. Even if you have reserved seating in a beer tent, that does not mean that you cannot go into other beer tents and generally explore the festival and with every festival comes the festival atmosphere, in the case of the Oktoberfest, complete with Oompah bands.
If you wish to attend the beer festival, anyone can walk in and enjoy a beer or some food, however if your Stag party wants to sit down then this costs money. If you want a seat in one of the more popular tents you are going to have to reserve this well in advance as they sell out very quickly. Your ticket to the Oktoberfest will be for one of two sessions, either daytime or evening and will ensure that you have seating and will give you vouchers for 2 steins of beer and a chicken meal. There is table service from traditionally dressed waitresses and the average cost of a stein of beer is about €13. One thing to ensure is that you buy your ticket from a registered outlet directly as Oktoberfest tickets cannot be resold, and if they think that you have brought a second hand ticket they will cancel your reservation.
In 2019 the Oktoberfest attracted over 6 million visitors from all over the world and it is because of its popularity that, if you want to secure a hotel anywhere near the centre of town, or tickets to one of the larger, more popular beer tents, you need to book ahead of time. If you are looking to book your Munich Oktoberfest ticket in May then firstly it is going to be expensive, and secondly you are going to be very lucky if you are in a hotel anywhere near the city centre, as these will all be fully booked. We would recommend that if you want to secure the best accommodation for 2021 then you book it now, to guarantee yourself a location near to the festival.