OKTOBERFEST CELEBRATIONS AROUND THE WORLD
Oktoberfest may have originated in Munich as, like, the best wedding celebration of all time, but today there are Oktoberfest celebrations all over the world. Think of it as the wedding reception that keeps on giving. These Oktoberfest celebrations have many things in common: beer, dirndls and lederhosen, merriment, cleavage, and more beer. However, the locations of some of the biggest Oktoberfest celebrations in the world may surprise you! Here are some of the most serious, the most popular, and the most biggest-est. Okay, maybe we’ve already cracked open a cold one.
OKTOBERFEST BLUMENAU // BRAZIL
‘Tis true – one of the world’s largest Oktoberfest celebrations outside Germany is Oktoberfest Blumenau in the province of Santa Catarina in Brazil. Obviously the country responsible for Rio Carnival, one of the most insane parties in the world, is going to throw a kickass Oktoberfest. Brazil doesn’t know the meaning of the term “amateur hour”.
The Brazilian city of Blumenau was actually founded by a German pharmacist a long, long time ago. He and some buddies founded and built a town in that signature German, half-timbered style and the rest is history beer. Blumenau’s Oktoberfest celebrations, surprisingly, didn’t begin until a good hundred years later – umm, guys, what exactly were you doing all that time?
Today, anywhere from 500,000-700,000 visitors party at Oktoberfest Blumenau each year in the festival that takes place in October rather than in September (like the original). We’re chalking it up to one hell of a time difference.
READ MORE about Oktoberfest Blumenau.
OKTOBERFEST KITCHENER-WATERLOO // CANADA
The Oktoberfest celebrations in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario are so big (“how big are they!”) that they needed not one, but two cities to host it. In what’s often called the world’s second largest Oktoberfest, Oktoberfest Kitchener-Waterloo began wayyyy back in the 1960s as basically a tourism stunt. And guess what? It worked!
Each year, an average of 700,000 people take part in Kitchener-Waterloo’s 9-day Oktoberfest celebrations that have now become Canada’s largest Thanksgiving celebration. Ya know, ‘cause Canadian Thanksgiving is in Oktoberfest, obviously. This version is spread out between 17 festhallen located all around town and features a 5k run, an Oktoberfest fashion show, a barrel race, and even an Oktoberfest bodybuilding competition. You didn’t think all those masskrugstemmens were for nothing, eh?
READ MORE about Oktoberfest Kitchener-Waterloo.
OKTOBERFEST BRISBANE // AUSTRALIA
The world is large, guys. Maybe you can’t make it from one side to the other to celebrate Oktoberfest in Munich. In that case, there’s are Oktoberfest celebrations for you – right here in Australia.
Oktoberfest Brisbane was started not all that long ago by a Brisbane-dwelling, German-born couple who clearly had a hankering for hendl. A craving for ‘kraut? A yearning for jaeger schnitzel? A passion for pretzels? We can do this allll day.
Oktoberfest Brisbane offers up your typical German culture and fun but adds in a little bit of its own magic. There’s a Bavarian Strong Man competition featuring masskrugstemmen and barrel racing, the Miss Oktoberfest competition including cow-milking and pretzel eating, and even the Beardmeister competition to reward the manliest of all facial hair.
Oktoberfest Brisbane even offers true German beers brewed specifically for the festival and according to the good ol’ reinheitsgebot.
READ MORE about Oktoberfest Brisbane.
OKTOBERFEST CHICAGO // UNITED STATES
The way most beer-related shindigs in the United States start, Oktoberfest Chicago began as a humble party in a parking lot. At a church.
In true Oktoberfest fashion, Oktoberfest Chicago takes place at the end of September and has all the makings of a great Bavarian bash. But, like, a bunch of other stuff for the Americans like craft beer tastings, children’s activities, and VIP packages.
READ MORE about Oktoberfest Chicago.
If you can’t make it to Munich this year (wahhhh) chances are there are some Oktoberfest celebrations near you. Don’t want to settle for anything less than the best? Check out our Oktoberfest tours and join us for the biggest party on the planet!