Having lived here for a little while now, I consider myself vastly more experienced in all matters bier fest than I was at this same point last year. Across Bavaria there will be much excitement this evening as new Maibaums are hidden away in preparation for the big day tomorrow (more on that later) resulting in lots of tiny bier fests kicking off across the land tomorrow afternoon.
And of course Frühlingsfest is also well under way in central Munich. I spent the day there yesterday having a wander, and came up with these Frühlingsfest observations and suggestions (perhaps to myself?) as to how to make the most of this truly Bavarian affair:-
- It might be held at the same site as the behemoth of all Bier Festivals, but Frühlingsfest is definitely Oktoberfest’s little sister, which means there are fewer tourists and far more locals… This is a good thing as the bier is cheaper.
- There are only two main tents, the Hippodrom, the Festhalle Bayernland and an outside bier-garten, which should give you some idea of size of it (especially compared to the 14 football pitched size tents of Oktoberfest)!
- It is actually quite depressing going to a bier fest on your own, even if your sole intention was to take photos. In lieu of real friends accompanying me, my imaginary ones insisted I would get some good pictures if I spent some time inside the tents, and made me order an Aperol Spritz to look more authentic. This also served well for creative purposes, and made me realise how stressed and pushy some of the Oktoberfest staff can be compared to the lovely Frühlingsfest staff in the nice and relaxed Hippodrom Tent yesterday.
- Going on a quiet day means you will have your choice of tables, but a full tent for a better atmosphere definitely makes.
- Putting your camera on some slightly different settings (although not intentional at first) will create pictures that give the impression that you have spent the whole day (and quite a lot of money) in one of the bier tents, but without the cost, having to queue for the loo, or the guaranteed headache…
- People watching becomes more fun as the day progresses, as is the case with all bier fests in general.
- The cakes are good. Might I suggest an Apple Doughnut or three?
- Forget about getting any blue sky pictures this year, the cloud is here to stay it seems.
- There are family days at most of these big fests when rides are cheaper, as are food and drinks. See www.meunchen.de for more information.
- Although posters may advertise the Frhülingsfest opening time as 11am, on a weekday not much will be happening until around 12pm in all honesty.
- Watch out for those trying to cover up the fact that they might have over indulged on the previous day. Did anyone see the state of Michelin Man yesterday?
- Have fun, and make a mental note to keep Saturday free for similar shenanigans, but this time with friends. And not imaginary ones.