If you’ve suddenly started noticing Oktoberfest specials around your city and wondered what the big deal it’s about, help is at hand. Most of you would know that Oktoberfest is a drink-all-you-can beer festival that sounds like the perfect reason to hop on to the next available flight to Germany. However, like with everything else, the devil is in the details. Read on as we tell you some incredible facts about Oktoberfest.
1 – Oktoberfest started as a marriage celebration
Since there’s drinking involved, this shouldn’t surprise us too much. The first Oktoberfest was held in 1810 to celebrate the marriage between Bavarian King Ludwig I and Saxonia’s Maria Theresia.
2 – The real Oktoberfest begins in September
While most places in India will celebrate the festival until the end of October, Germany celebrates Oktoberfest in the later half of September. The celebrations last between 15 to 18 days and always end in October though.
3 – It’s a pricey affair
Blame it on it’s overwhelming popularity but the price of having a beer at Oktoberfest has been steadily going up over the past few years. The cost of a mug is now 13 euros, up from 8.5 euros just over a decade ago.
4 – It’s an intimate affair as well
The beer served at Oktoberfest is regulated. Only six Munich-based breweries are allowed to sell their beer at the festival under their tents.
5 – There’s more than beer
Oktoberfest is so much more than just the beer. You can spend your day in the carnival themed ground trying different games and watching some truly incredible shows. Much of Oktoberfest’s character has been retained from its early days, although horseracing has now been discontinued.
6 – Let’s talk about food
Drinking on an empty stomach is inviting bad news. Thankfully, the food at Oktoberfest has loads of options for you to try too. From ubiquitous German pretzels to pork sausages, roast chicken and even noodles and dumplings, there’s no reason not to indulge in some fabulous food as well.
7 – You can be banned
Some revelers try to sneak the Oktoberfest glasses with them, which is a strict no-no. Guards will likely frisk your bag to find these glasses and you might have a theft charge added to your bill. In extreme cases, the authorities can do a Paris Hilton on you and ban you from the festival altogether.
8 – The drinking age in Germany staggers belief
You might find yourself sitting next to a rosy-faced child enjoying her drink. Don’t be surprised. The legal age for drinking in Germany is 16 and if accompanied by an adult, the age limit drops to 14.
9 – Einstein once worked here
This one is for all the geeks out there. Albert Einstein reportedly earned part of his living as an electrician setting up one of the beer tents in 1896.
10 – People lose a lot of stuff
Over the years, the lost-and-found department has recovered cell phones, wallets, passports, glasses, keys, clothes and even dentures, an electric wheelchair and wedding rings.
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