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Top 5 Tips for Visiting Oktoberfest – And Surviving.

Oktoberfest 2013 is coming up in Munich, and around the world. We want to share our top 5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013, and surviving it.

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Oktoberfest Celebrations

This weekend is a big deal for lovers of beer. We wanted to share our top 5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013, and how to make the most of your time from our own experiences last year.

5 Tips for Visiting Oktoberfest 2013

5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013

Tips for Visiting Oktoberfest 2013

Top 5 Tips for Visiting Oktoberfest 2013

These are our top 5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013!

When to Go

We went for the last 4 days of Oktoberfest (Thursday – Sunday). We had grand plans to go visit the tents at least 3 of the days.

Unfortunately we only managed to find an unreserved table on the Thursday, before getting kicked off a reserved table on the Friday at 4pm.

Having no table means no service. A good rule so the beer tents don’t get overrun, but it does mean you need a seat.

A few brave souls tried to go on the Saturday morning. They gave up after arriving at 9am and joining a queue of over 400 people trying to get into one of the tents. Nightmare.

Bonus tip: Go once during the day, from around 10am/11am. Then also try to get in one night after 7pm (or stay all day). They are two completely different atmospheres with a family affair during the day, before the party really gets going during the night.

5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2012

Tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013 – Get there early for a seat

Finding Accommodation

If you are reading this now and looking for accommodation… well, good luck. It is probably too late. However, there may be last minute accommodation so check out the campgrounds here.

Bonus tip: Print out your address so when you stumble out of the Oktoberfest grounds you can pass them to the taxi driver or people around you so that you make it home safely.

Spending

Oktoberfest is not cheap. We budgeted $50 a day each but ended up well over that.

Each stein costs $10 (with a tip). While you only drink a few that does add up quickly. Especially when you hang out with the locals and offer to buy them all a drink!

Unfortunately, there really isn’t any way you can save money. You don’t want to pre-drink as you will be drunk enough as it is. Just pace yourself and stick to a budget.

Bonus tip: Take a limited amount of cash with you, and no cards. This way you won’t overspend.

5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest

Tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013 – Dress Appropriately

Getting into Character

We made the mistake of trying to fit in by buying a pair of cheap lederhosens on eBay.

Don’t do it.

They looked exactly like they cost. Cheap. Either fork out for a proper pair of real leather Lederhosens ($100+). Or just wear jeans and a shirt.

Girls are able to just wear a nice long dress (below the knee) and a shirt. A few ribbons in the hair and you will be set.

Bonus tip: Don’t get caught staring down the girls tops. They look nice, but may not appreciate your over eager stares.

Drinking (and Eating) at Oktoberfest 2013

Beer is generally delicious. Oktoberfest beer is ridiculously delicious. And twice as strong as the beer women carrying them!

Take it slow. There is no need to chug the beers as if you are at your local tavern down the road. Sit back, relax and follow the locals example. They are quite happy to chat, sing and share the odd toast.

No one wants to see you throwing up in the garden outside. Nor do your friends want to have to leave early just to look after your sorry ass.

Luckily the delicious beer is equaled by scrumptious food. Don’t expect miniature portions of dainty food. Just expect meat. And lots of it. For example, when you buy a half chicken that’s what you get. No salad, no potatoes, no sides whatsoever. Elegance simplified.

Bonus tip: For every stein you drink, grab something to eat. Pretzels are cheap and perfect at soaking up booze.

Take it easy and we hope you enjoy Oktoberfest 2013 as much as we did.

Prost!

5 tips for visiting Oktoberfest

Tips for visiting Oktoberfest 2013 – Take it slow!

If you ever planning a trip to Germany we found the collection of Germany vacation rentals on Live Like a German very helpful. Book you Visit Oktoberfest 2013 with Busabout now:

We originally posted a few similar travel tips on TravelDudes, but they really needed updating for this year.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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Europe

Yellow Hostel Rome Review

If you are visiting Rome then check out our Yellow Hostel Rome Review for your stay. A brilliant place to have a drink and rest your feet.

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The Yellow Hostel in Rome

Yellow Hostel Rome reviews are overwhelmingly positive for the party hostel atmosphere, fun staff, and adventurous travelers that are easy to meet at the lending library and bar. We had been in Rome for ten minutes and were already dripping with sweat, grumpy, tired, and lost. Carrying your backpack around in the Italian summer is no fun at all.

As we turned the final corner, The Yellow Hostel Rome sign was like a beacon of light that got brighter as we saw the outside bar area and copious ice-cold pints.

The Yellow Hostel in Rome

 

Yellow Hostel Rome Review

Dumping our backpacks on the floor in reception, which was thankfully cool and shady, we were greeted by friendly staff who gave us a comprehensive rundown of the hostel. As well as the free drink token everyone gets when you check in.

Travel Tip: Also, “like” their Facebook page to earn another free drink after you check in!

Within minutes Fabio, the proud owner, came bounding down to meet us. If you get a chance to meet him, which is highly likely since he is always there, you will find that he is super passionate about The Yellow, Rome, and architecture, and he loves to dish out free advice on what to see in the city.

Fabio planned our itinerary, which was great as he knew we wanted to hit all the must-sees and top free attractions. We even found the best spots for pasta and gelato using his local knowledge. The best recommendation he gave us was Mama Angela’s restaurant right across the road, and it served delicious Italian food for a reasonable price.

The Yellow Hostel in Rome

The Yellow Hostel was voted Rome’s most popular hostel at the HostelWorld Hoscars by all its guests, and for a good reason. Yellow Hostel Rome is also highly ranked on TripAdvisor, too.

Yellow Hostel Rome Location

Its location is perfect as they are situated less than a mile from Rome’s city center. It’s just a two-minute walk from a metro stop, a ten-minute walk from the central train station, and a twenty-five-minute walk to visit the Ancient Roman Forum. Compared to other cities like London where you have to catch the tube for an hour, this hostel is perfect.

What amenities does The Yellow – Hostel provide?

There is free WiFi in the bar area and iPad rentals.

If you plan to stay here, make sure you are keen to have a good time. The Yellow Hostel tries to make sure they always have a super social environment which is pretty easy when you have beds for 200 people!

A massive bar area provides seating inside and out with top-notch yet budget-friendly wine (2 euros for a huge glass), happy hour deals, beer pong tables, nightly events, and after 11 pm, you can move downstairs to cut some sweet shapes with the in-house DJ.

The only flipside of this is that you shouldn’t expect to get much sleep if you are in a dorm. If you are lucky like us and stay in a private dorm, you won’t hear a peep from anyone—total bliss.

Don’t forget that and all the great things going on within the hostel. There is a pretty awesome city on your doorstep to explore. The Yellow has created a great map showcasing all the highlights, including Rome’s free excursions. We highly recommend speaking to their staff to get some travel tips on where to go and what to see.

Yellow Hostel Rome Food

Unfortunately, a huge downside is that breakfast is not included, and there is no kitchen. However, feel free to eat your food in the bar area as this is allowed anytime. They also have a cheap breakfast menu if you want one from 2.50 euro and up. Another thumbs up to go to their coffee with lattes, espressos, and cappuccinos (from a coffee machine) will help you get back on your feet after a night at The Yellow bar.

We were told that they are building a new kitchen area, so hopefully, that will be up and running in a few months.

Travel Tip: If you use FourSquare, make sure you “check-in” every morning and reward yourself with a free coffee.

The dinner that they provide is a highlight of the social scene. For a measly 3 euros, you can gorge yourself on homemade pasta, lasagne, pizza, rice, and broccoli. It’s a great way to save your pennies.

The Yellow Hostel in Rome

Yellow Hostel Rome Rooms

We stayed in a private double room, which was fantastic. Thankfully it was not above the bar. Peaceful and very spacious. The room came with its own newly refurbished bathroom, mini-fridge, a table to sit at, TV, soap, and ladies. There was even a hairdryer!

The only downside was that there was no safe and our air-conditioning was broken, so we had to stand right in front of the fan to get any relief from the heat.

Overall the Yellow Hostel in Rome is up there with being one of the best hostels we have ever stayed at. For a backpacking couple who wants to meet some friends on the road, enjoy a drink or two, or even chill out after an epic day sightseeing in Rome, then the Yellow Hostel is for you.

The Yellow Hostel in Rome

Disclaimer: HostelWorld kindly put us up for our stay, although, as always, our Yellow Hostel Rome review and thoughts are never influenced by them.

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Adventure Travel

Medieval Towns with German Castles Near Munich & Frankfurt

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Heidelberg Castle

Our favorite castles in Germany near Frankfurt and Munich:

Neuschwanstein Castle is there somewhere amongst all the fog!

Neuschwanstein Castle is there somewhere amongst all the fog!

We were crazy enough to visit Neuschwanstein Castle on a public holiday. This meant that along with all the Asian tourists, there were an awful lot of Germans. Plus, even though we arrived by 11 am, the soonest tickets we could buy were for the German tour at 2.30 pm, as the terms in English were sold out until 4 pm. So, if you don’t have German friends at hand to translate the tour for you, we recommend booking in advance online. The castle was impressive, and the time was undoubtedly fascinating! Don’t worry, I won’t spill the beans, but the manmade Grotto room made my jaw drop!

Mespelbrunn Castle

Mespelbrunn Castle

Mespelbrunn Castle is located on a pond between Frankfurt and Wurzburg. Unfortunately, we arrived 30 minutes after its closing time of 5 pm, but it looked cool from behind the fence!

Lichtenstein Castle

Lichtenstein Castle

Lichtenstein Castle is located on a clifftop near Stuttgart and costs 6 euros per person for a tour in German; however, they did give us a very informative written guide in English. This castle is small compared to Hohenzollern castle, but its story is fascinating. Tanks shelled it in World War II, and today you can still see the cracked mirror from where a small fragment of a tank grenade ricocheted!

Hohenzollern Castle

Hohenzollern Castle

Hohenzollern Castle is not too far from Lichtenstein Castle. It is located on a hilltop near Hechingen, and we enjoyed the guided tour. Along with getting to wear GIANT slippers, make sure you explore the casemates and secret passages. One sign made me want to learn more. It read, “Exactly where these steps lead to is unknown. More casemates and secret passageways are likely waiting to be discovered in the heart of the mountain”!

Heidelberg Castle

Heidelberg Castle

Heidelberg Castle was a lot larger than we expected! Unfortunately, we had spent far too much time at the Auto & Technik Museum in Sinsheim, so we did not have time to explore this castle. But if we get the chance, we will explore the town and its castle next time in Germany.

On our drive from Munich to Frankfurt, we also loved:

Andechs Monastery

Andechs Monastery

The beer garden at Andechs Monastery was just like Oktoberfest but amongst trees and more family-friendly. The beer was cheaper, and the food was great, including the giant pork knuckle, which Moss could not finish. It was also fun walking up multiple flights of stairs to the tower’s very top.

River surfing in Munich

River surfing in Munich

Rothenburg

Rothenburg

Three hours in Rothenburg was not enough to explore this wonderful medieval town! We recommend getting your hands on a city map from the tourist information office. We enjoyed Roder Gate, walking along the wall and exploring the 17th-century spital bastion, plus Moss lost me in the Kathe Wohlfahrt Christmas shop for over half an hour, and I didn’t even buy anything!

Bamberg

Bamberg was a neat town with old buildings in the center of the river and had a famous smoked beer which Moss just had to try!

Auto Technik Museum in Sinsheim

I’m not the hugest car or plane fanatic, but even I enjoyed the Auto & Technik Museum in Sinsheim. A highlight for me was sliding out of an airplane (from the museum’s roof)!

The worlds narrowest street

Don’t go out of your way to see it, but the world’s narrowest street in Reutlingen is worth a photo if you are passing through.

Frau Rauscher spitting statue Frankfurt

In Frankfurt, go to the old part of town for an apfelwein and see the Frau Rauscher statue – watch out, she spits about every 12 seconds!

The average person would Google Munich to Frankfurt and see that it only takes about 3 ½ hours depending on how fast you wish to drive on the autobahn! However, we are NOT typical. We took one look at train prices and decided that hiring a car wouldn’t cost too much more.

Suppose you’re interested in traveling to Germany for a damn good deal. In that case, plenty of tour companies have some pretty unique and affordable vacation packages to Berlin, Munich, and Bavaria.

It may be small but this building on Trappensee Lake is classed as a castle!

It may be small, but this building on Trappensee Lake is classed as a water castle!

We aren’t going to tell you our exact route. Still, after surviving Oktoberfest in Munich, we did a giant zigzag to see as many castles and medieval towns as possible. So to save you doing so much driving, we have picked our favorite cities and castles. First of all, ‘Ausfahrt’ is not a destination accessible from every off-ramp! It means ‘Exit’! Another word of wisdom to keep in mind is that the autobahns with speed limits do have speed cameras… and the flash is blinding!

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Adventure Travel

Running with the Bulls Video

Our shaky Running with the Bulls Video footage from the Festival de San Fermin in 2012. Experience it first hand in Pamplona. Enjoy.

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San Fermin Running with the Bulls still

We recently wrote about our life or death experience of Running with the Bulls this year at the Festival of San Fermin in Pamplona. On that run, I carried along with our GoPro video camera and tried to shoot some footage for our running with the video of the bull.

Running with the Bulls Video, Pamplona

Running with the Bulls

All our travel video shooting techniques went out the window when the bulls’ hooves started to shake the ground beneath our feet.

Once we had lined up for the running with the bulls, there was no escape from it as we were walled in by apartment blocks, shopfront windows, and 3-meter high wooden barriers packed with photographers along the entire length. At one end lay the relative safety of the bull ring pulsating with the cheers of the crowd who were still partying from the night before. Behind me, a dozen wild bulls pawed the stony ground looking for freedom.

Unfortunately, I was standing in their path. 

What we ended up with is below. However, I think what we filmed for our running with the bull video captures the chaos, craziness, and complete madness a lot better than if I had stood my ground.

Enjoy it and watch for the guy that nearly gets trampled to death near the beginning!

Running with the Bulls Video

Would you ever consider running with the bulls?

While we are very aware that not all people agree that the San Fermin Festival should be allowed to go ahead mainly due to animal cruelty, we think there are two sides to every story. We wrote a post about the controversy surrounding Bullfighting in Spain and the Festival de San Fermin.

We would love to hear your thoughts on the Festival de San Fermin and whether you would ever consider running with the bulls.

If you want to join the next Festival of San Fermin or any other wild festivals in Europe, such as Sail Turkey, book with our partners Busabout.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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