[Sponsored] German beer lovers may be well acquainted with the famed Oktoberfest, but it’s not the only noteworthy boozy event around. From big names like the International Berlin Beer Festival to iconic cultural celebrations like Maifest, these are some exciting options. Zum Wohl!
Photo credit: Awaya Legends
This traditional celebration welcomes the arrival of spring and is most famous for its colorful maibaum (maypole), a five-meter high structure that is typically festooned with festive decorations that display the town’s heritage and symbolize vitality and the fertility of nature—it’s also believed to bring good luck to those who dance around it.
Intrigued? You don’t have to travel across continents for an authentic experience. Head on over to Clarke Quay and Holland Village on May 20 (8-10pm) and 28 (7-9pm) respectively to dance around a maypole for wealth and luck, and partake in two-hours of boozy German activities like stein hoisting and gelande quaffing at the Erdinger Maifest.
For those unfamiliar with these traditional German games, stein hoisting involves hoisting a one-liter glass of beer with a straight arm for as long as possible—anyone who spills or bends their arm is disqualified, while gelande quaffing is a competitive team “sport” where one slids a beer down the bar to another team member who has to catch it and then drink it. You’ll be an expert in no time.
Spin the virtual Erdinger Maypole on Facebook to receive your fortune prediction for the year, and get a special discount on Erdinger beers!
(c) berch.info. photo: Christoph Thümmler
Also known as “The Berg”, this 12-day annual beer festival and traveling fair takes place in Erlangen, a city in Bavaria, Germany during the month of May. The centuries-old event, which started in 1755, attracts about one million visitors each year—they go there for its many open-air beer gardens that feature historical, family-owned cellars lining a one-kilometer hill, Frankish and international food stalls and the event’s famous Ferris Wheel (said to be the largest in Europe at 55-meters). For the next event, check out their website.
Happening from Jul 1-10, this festival highlights Germany’s best marksmen and the country’s top beer. Watch out for the famous Grand Parade of the Marksmen, a procession of floats, marching bands and marksmen travelling through the city center to the fairground, a 25-acre space that features about 50 food and drinks stalls, shooting galleries and 13 stomach-churning rides.
International Berlin Beer Festival
Showcasing an estimated 340 breweries and 2,000 beer varieties from 87 countries and 22 beer regions, the 20th International Berlin Beer Festival (Aug 5-7) is one of Germany’s largest beer events. Held at Karl-Marx-Allee, this contemporary affair focuses on a different country or region each year and is most famous for its 2.2km beer garden, which made it to the Guinness World Records as the “World’s Longest Beer Garden”.
Stuttgart Beer Festival, Stuttgart
Photo credit: Tim RT
This three-week harvest festival (Sep 23-Oct 9), established by King Wilhelm in 1818, is one of Germany’s more authentic (and less tourist-driven) ones. Dubbed the second largest beer event after Oktoberfest, there are the requisite beer tents, Frankish food stalls and carnival rides.
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