One beer festival a year isn't enough for the Germans. Oktoberfest, widely publicised as the biggest and best, is now being challenged by Springfest, which if it was a person, would be arguing “even though I’ve got it, size isn’t everything”. And as Spring is just around the corner, we thought we’d look take a look at the differences between the two.
So what is Springfest? Otherwise known as Fruhlingsfest, Springfest (like Oktoberfest) is a beer drinking festival in Munich - but with a twist (it’s warmer and there are less tourists). You’ll most likely be staying in a tent, making a bunch of new friends, and spending your days dressing up in your lederhosen and dirndls whilst glugging huge steins of German beer.
Springfest is also a chance to see the winter out and your “summer bod” in. I would say “in style” as well, but after eight steins of beer, crawling through the mud in the vague direction of your tent, style hasn’t got much to say. But anyway, whether this experience endows you with a six pack, or keg-like stomach, you’re inevitably going to get up on a table and show it all off, aren’t you...
Springfest has everything about Oktoberfest that you love (and more). Think of it as the younger sibling who gets all the advantages the eldest had to work so hard for. At the moment only tens of thousands of people attend, as opposed to the millions of billions that go to Oktoberfest… But what goes down is very similar - big beer halls and steins of luscious Bavarian beer and cuisine.
And because it’s less well known than it’s big bro’, with far fewer tourists, in many respects it’s a more authentic experience. Think less drunken ‘lads on tour’ and more beautiful German women with big jugs… of beer. At Springfest the beers are a little lighter, the sun a little brighter, flowers are blooming, and there’s also a carousel that doubles as a bar so as you drink everything begins to spin round and round… There’s also a giant flea market, dance music, and firework displays, depending on the day.
n the other hand Oktoberfest, if nothing else, is the real deal. Drunken tourists? So what? The merry locals aren’t exactly going to encourage you to stay sober. And there’s something special about having so many people in one place to let their hair down - and nothing breaks down cultural barriers quite like delicious beer. Repeat offenders swear by it, and once you’ve sung proudly along with elderly German folk and young travelers alike, you will too.
Oktoberfest is Stoke Travel’s beer soaked jewel, in a crown dripping with sangria, shots, and cheap lager - a free poured Springfest, if you will. When asked what the ‘Alemanian experience’ is like, we only have one answer - ‘ale-ways-fun’ (see what I did there?). DJs, live radio shows, bands, carnivalesque celebrations, traditional lederhosen and many many beers is just half of it. Oh, and Stoke Travel offers a direct private bus to Oktoberfest from Amsterdam, complete with pre drinks and ‘socialisation’ opportunities.
And that, my friends, is Springfest vs Oktoberfest. Time to take your pick. And then go to both anyway. As a wise man once said, “I used to be indecisive but now I’m not so sure…”. If you’re dying to go but not sure if you can, check out the Stoke Travel Passport - new and improved to make your adventures easier, cheaper, and more spontaneous. Why not win one here?
Read more: Oktoberfest, what's to lose?
Read more: Amsterdam city of sin? Red Light District Insights
Read more: Five Festivals for your next Eurotrip
Amsterdam community Forum
Festivals: Top 5 Festivals for your next Eurotrip
Amsterdam: Top 5 Waterfront Canal hangouts
Thailand: Mainland Must-do's and Western Island Wonders
What To Do In Amsterdam: An Expat's Top Picks