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Around Germany

Street car in Berlin

Munich

Munich is the capital of Bavaria. It is the home of the world-famous festival, Oktoberfest. (If you plan on going be sure to book hostels early!) Munich is a diverse city and is by no means a strictly German population. The people of Munich are interested in travelers and very friendly.

There is much to do and see in Munich. Marienplatz is the Old Town Square of Munich, so be sure to book hostels around this center area! The Deutsches Museum is one of the largest technological museums in the world. Munich is rich with history, including Hofbrauhaus, a historic beer hall with traditional German cuisine. Hofbrauhaus is where Hitler and his henchmen devised their "Final Solution."

Munich is not far from Dachau, which is a preserved former concentration camp from World War II. The history of Dachau is shocking and disturbing, but a potent reminder of this country's not-so-distant involvement in a horrendous tragedy.

Also close to Munich--the Bavarian Alps! Take a trip the the Alps for breathtaking scenery including the very castle that inspired Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom.

Dresden

Despite its history of being practically destroyed during World War II, Dresden is now a thriving city full of artists. There is so much happening in Dresden, from street art, to a Big-Lebowski-themed bar, and a thriving music scene. There is also an older, more traditional section with a beautiful palace. Try staying in the themed hostel Lolli’s (ask for the Giant Room).

More Destinations

HeidelbergCologneStuttgart, and Bonn are also worth checking out!

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Oktoberfest

Oktoberfest is a sixteen-day festival held each year in Munich, Germany during late September and early October. It is one of the most famous events in the city and the world's largest fair, with about six million people attending every year. It is an enjoyable event that is an important part of Bavarian culture. It is known for its German Beer, traditional food, and amusement rides.There are currently fourteen main tents at the Oktoberfest. The tents are temporarily set up for the festival and each tent is known for its beer, music and culture. It is recommended to book a tent well in advance since it is usually full by August. Hostels also get booked well in advance so it is recommended to plan ahead. Another option would be to take the overnight train into the city of Munich and take the overnight train back that night to avoid the cost of accommodations.

The traditional food includes: Hendl (chicken), Schweinsbraten (roastpork), Haxn (pork knuckle), Steckerlfisch (grilled fish on a stick), Würstel (sausages) along with Bretzel (Pretzels), Knödeln (potato or bread dumplings), Käsespätzle (cheese noodles), Reiberdatschi (potato pancakes), Sauerkraut or Blaukraut (red cabbage) and Weisswurst (a light coloured sausage).

The dates for the upcoming years are:

  • 2010: September 18 - October 3
  • 2011: September 17 - October 3
  • 2012: September 22 - October 7

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