On Friday, Allie and I left for Munich! We woke up very early Friday morning to catch our flight at 9 AM. Surprisingly we were able to figure out the metro system enough to take it to the airport to save money instead of taking a cab. We arrived in Munich around 11 and we were so excited! We breezed right through the airport since we were traveling within the European Union and grabbed a cab outside. The cabs in Germany are all Mercedes which was a nice surprise! It took about 20 minutes to get from the airport to our hostel. We drove on the Autobahn! It was so cool, we went about 200 km per hour! Wechecked into our hostel which wasn't in the best location, it was across the street from a real brothel so that was interesting. We decided to go into town to have lunch at the Hofbauhaus, the most famous beer garden (bar) in Germany! We drank liter beers and tried the wiener plate, the specialty of Germany. We also bought giant pretzels bigger than our faces. It was so fun to be in the atmosphere and see everyone having an amazing time drinking and dancing. You could definitely tell that everyone was getting excited for Oktoberfest which started the next day.
It was the 200th anniversary of Oktoberfest so we knew we in for a great weekend. For the rest of the afternoon we explored Munich. It is such a cool city and there were so many people everywhere! It was so strange to see all the German language everywhere because I had absolutely NO idea what anything said! We couldn't even read the menus! A lot of the Germans spoke English but it was still difficult to navigate ourselves around the city and try to read the map. I have never been in a country where I didn't understand anything!
Later that night we met up with some of our friends studying abroad in Paris and I got to see Liz Archer! I was so happy to see her! We all went out to dinner together downtown in Munich and headed back to our hotels for a good night sleep for the big day ahead!
We woke up Saturday morning at 5:30AM to get ready to get in line. We were at the festival grounds by 7 and we definitely were not the first ones there! People had been standing in line since 5 that morning! Allie and her friend Erin made it into the tent where the mayor was tapping the first keg. Since it was the first day, beer isn't served until 12 when he opens the first keg. Since we were there so early, we walked around and bought more giant pretzels and saw all the different vendors. There was also a carnival behind all the tents. The tents are not actually tents. They are massive buildings decorated for each company of beer that are elaborate and amazing. Here is the inside of the one we sat in:
We ended up meeting up with even more SMU people that were in Munich! Some boys who are studying abroad in Copenhagen were also there. We sat in the tent all day drinking beer and dancing on the tables to the German band. It was definitely an amazing experience! I can't believe I actually got to be a part of this festival, something that is known around the world. I would go back in a minute. Our cab driver told us that during the 18 days of Oktoberfest, 6 million people pass through Munich!
After sleeping for a little after leaving, we had a quick dinner at McDonalds (why not?) and headed back to our hostel for some much needed sleep! We were at Oktoberfest from 7AM-6PM. It was a crazy day and I loved every minute of it! We headed back to Madrid the next day and we were exhausted. We all slept on the plane back home. I am so happy that I went to Oktoberfest and got to experience something so amazing.