Our president Leigh visited Germany during Oktoberfest and sharing all her the details, from biking tours and rich history lessons to the energizing chaos of Oktoberfest celebrations. Here’s her itinerary:
Day 1: Frankfurt
I checked into Villa Kennedy in Frankfurt. It is a fabulous hotel, and they are currently re-doing the rooms (which was much needed). Though Frankfurt is more, I like to describe it as industrial; there are great wineries and wine country about 45 minutes outside of the city.
Day 2: Munich
We took the train from Frankfurt to Munich which is about three hours, plus or minus.
Upon our arrival in Munich, we were met by a young man who took our luggage and walked it to the hotel. The Charles hotel is a 5-7 minute easy walk from the train station. The seamless check-in was lovely and then we had some down time to walk around. Munich is a very cool city, and there is a massive church downtown with glockenspiels that go off every hour. Of course, we were in Munich for Oktoberfest. Where do I even begin with explaining Oktoberfest? It is definitely not something I was expecting. What you see in movies is nothing like it in real life. First of all, everyone is in dirndls or lederhosen. There are plenty of places to purchase or rent them around Munich. We walk up and it looks like the fair. There are games, rides, beer gardens and it is HUGE. The tents are full structures that hold thousands of people. We happened to have a table upstairs in one of the “smaller” tents (I use the word smaller very loosely.) The tickets for tents are arranged by morning session and afternoon session and VIP table and general admission. The afternoon session is the best, and if you have eight people for a table, the VIP table upstairs is the way to go. It is a mad dash to get inside and get the best table for general admission, and you must have eight people at least for a VIP table or else the tent will just start placing randoms at your table. Oktoberfest is a lot of drinking, eating, and meeting new people. It is so much fun, and I look forward to the day I can go back.
Day 3: Munich and Berlin
We did a walking tour around Munich the next morning. It would have been much better if it was someone else, but it was still fun to look at all of the architecture and artwork. In the afternoon, we caught a train to Berlin. It is about a 4-hour train ride from Munich and the scenery is beautiful. Hotel De Rome is very cool and very Berlin, which is a new old city; Lots of places are just finding their “true colors” since the wall coming down. It is fascinating to see how different each side looks.
Day 4: Berlin
We traded the walking shoes for wheels on a bike tour of Berlin. The owner of the bike tour company, Alex, is AMAZING. In fact, so awesome that what should have been at 2.5 hour bike tour ended up being 6 hours. He introduced us to the “old” Berlin with Moorish influences, to an old dance club from the 50’s and 60’s that had not been touched from the war and still had bullet holes and a working chandelier that was dangling from where the building had been bombed, to the “new” Berlin of artists and graffiti walls that are truly fascinating. Our bike ride only scratched the surface of Berlin. It truly is an incredible city and has so much to offer.
Overall, I cannot recommend Germany—especially the itinerary we did—enough. I think clients can add going into the Bavarian Alps, which is only 45 minutes from Munich, to their list as well. The options are truly endless!