A beer lover’s dream, and a perfect excuse to book a ticket to Munich, a fascinating German city.
So another autumn came and went, and you didn’t make it to Munich for Oktoberfest. Well, I’ve got good news: you don’t have to wait till next fall to party in a beer tent in a dirndl or lederhosen! Munich hosts a smaller scale (but still huge) festival in late April and early May, aptly named Springfest (a.k.a. Frühlingsfest)! It promises all the same jolly fun as its famous counterpart, and it more than delivers. It’s a beer lover’s dream, and it’s a perfect excuse to book a ticket to Munich, a fascinating German city. Here are some tips to help you make the most of the Springfest experience:
1. Arrive at the tents early, but not too early!
When my friends and I arrived in Munich, people kept telling us to get to the festival as early as possible to get in line for a tent to ensure we would get a table. So, we woke up painfully early and rushed to the door of the Hippodrom (one of the most popular beer tents). We were the only people there. Ugh. We passed the time braiding each other’s hair to complete our Bavarian look, and we did score a great table, but we definitely could’ve gotten a little more sleep. While it can’t hurt to get there early, you don’t need to stress about arriving long before they open. Getting a table in the morning is important though, because people tend to stay in the same spot all day long.
2. Buying dirndls and lederhosen is worth it!
This is part of the fun of Springfest! Most festival visitors dress up in these traditional Bavarian outfits, and there are stores selling them everywhere. Yes, they can get pretty pricey, but if you’re planning to spend the day in a beer tent, you’re going to want to look the part! While it can be hard to find inexpensive lederhosen, since they are made of leather, dirndls come in a wide range of prices. Ladies, I know it can be tempting to spend big on the most beautiful dirndl you see, but the less expensive the dirndl, the more money you’ll have for beer! The best price my friends and I found was €50.
3. Be prepared for cold weather!
Don’t be fooled by the word “spring!” While spring is far warmer than winter in Munich, it’s still pretty cold. Prepare for weather around 45°F and you should be safe. Consider bringing a puffer jacket to wear over your dirndl or lederhosen—unfortunately, we must sometimes sacrifice fashion for warmth.
4. Have FUN in the tents, but pace yourself!
Drinking beer is the name of the game, but these aren’t your average pints of brew. We’re talking about huge steins of beer, and they just keep coming! In order to have a full day of festival fun, try your best to pace yourself. It’s also important to remember that there are plenty of security guards in the tents, and they won’t hesitate to ask you to leave if you’re getting way too rowdy. If you find yourself maxed out on beer, go take a walk outside, where you’ll find carnival rides and food galore! However, you probably don’t want to hop on a crazy ride after many hours in a beer tent…grabbing a giant Bavarian pretzel might be a better bet.
5. Go on a bike tour to see Munich beyond the tents!
You’ve traveled all the way to Munich, so you should make a point to see more than just Springfest. This city is rich in history and incredible architecture, so going on a guided bike tour is the perfect way to see the most notable parts of the city in the shortest amount of time. Your guide will explain the significance of everything you see, and weaving through the streets on a bike is a unique and fun experience. You might even get to stop for a break at a beer garden—notice a theme here?
6. “Prost!” = “Cheers!”
If there is one German word you must know at Springfest, it’s “prost.” Obviously, you’ll be saying it a lot. Now you’re ready to have a fantastic time at Frühlingsfest! Prost!