1 Cannstatter Wasen, Stuttgart, Germany
www.cannstatter-volksfest.de - 0711/520893300
Cannstatter Volksfest Stuttgart Reviews
Awesome time! Jul 16, 2011
If you want to experience the atmosphere of Munich's Oktoberfest but not be overwhelmed with people, than the Cannstatter Volksfest in Stuttgart is the place to go. This will be my second year attending in September and I will be sure to attend as long as I'm in Germany. Lots of huge beer tents and carnival rides make this a good location for all ages. If you have enough people and are early enough, I would recommend reserving a table. Though I haven't handled the reservation myself, I understand that it is free, but you will have to buy a voucher for each seat. The vouchers are then used to buy food, beer, or other drinks. It is conveniently located off the S-Bahn and is easy to get to from the Hauptbahnhof. If you will be in Stuttgart area around the end of September, this is a must see!
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Stuttgart beerfest: Better than Oktober fest? Mar 12, 2011
You arrive from the City Centre on the U-Bahn and are greated by huge rollercoasters and other fair rides but this isn't your local fairground ides, these are more like Theme Park rides that have taken weeks to set up.
After these you pass tonnes of food stores selling the usual german selections of bratwurst; chicken; pasta; pizza; drinks; gingerbread hearts; sweets; etc. We had a pasta based local specialty that gave our stomachs a great lining ahead of the hard work we knew was ahead of us! :)
Now you may have heard of the beer tents. But did you realise these things are actually huge structures that take 6-8 weeks to build and hold up to 5,000 peopel each? Some tent eh!
The outfits are fab. A large number of the girls are in Drindls whilst the Oktfest outfit of ledenhose are still in plentiful supply.
We arrived about 1500 on the Friday afternoon and walked straight into a tent, found a table and ordered our first beer. Some local friends joined us about 1800 by which time the people that reserved the table arrived so we had vacated it. We chatted, drank and sang and before we knew it a group left and the 6 of us sprang forward and we were in play for the rest of the night. A lucky break considering there was so many of us.
The following day we arrived earlier and with a different local friend with us sweet talking some italian men dressed as cowboys again managed to grab a space for the night. It took us a while to get in the tent and think any later on the Saturday and we may not have got in until much later, if at all, so get in early on go on a less busy day of the week!
Lesson here is you have to be bold to grab a space as people are too involved in the night to see you waiting to be asked. We found if the space is available, you'll be allowed on!
As wll as the Italians we met, we soon realised there were people from all over Europe. However the tourist levels are not in the sheer volume of numbers you'll find in Munich, which I think is a big plus. This is still prodominately a Baden-Württemberg festival but they love the tourists that do make it and of course join in.
Its a great friendly experience as long as you're prepared to stand on your bench; drink your Mass of beer (same as a stein); bang glasses whilst say "Prost"; include them in your photos; sing and dance along to the songs.
Oh and of course those songs! Your favs will still be going around your head and making you smile when you're sitting at your desk at home months later.
You may not start out knowing the words to all of these but they're repeated several times. A fair number you'll know too like
Living next door to Alice
I Will Survive
Mambo No 5
The atmosphere is great, the bands are good and so is the standard of singing. On the stage at least rather than on the benches!
Besides these songs you'll soon find a favourite new one or two like perhaps,
Das rote pferd
Das geht ab
And when either "So a Schöner tag" or "Cowboy und Indianer" you'll love picking up the moves! Everyone is enjoying themselves rather than looking for people that can't dance so just go for it!
Usually you can only prebook a whole table - so 10-12 people - and a certain spend needs to take place re food and beers. This varies between tents. You can usual find the link to the bookings via the main website (ie http://www.cannstatter-volksfest.de).
A Mass of beer (one litre) was about 7-8 euros whilst food inside the tents was quite expensive so if not part of a reserved table best to add some lining to your stomach at one of the food stalls outside the tents before (and perhaps after) you go in.
You would have to give up your place at the table about 1600-1900 if that table is reserved (a reserved table has stickers on it) but as long as you are in a big tent there is plenty of areas to stand as long as you are not in the way of the aisles or more important the waitresses! The nearer you are to the band/singers the more chance it will be reserved.
Not a single bit of trouble during either night we were there, either inside or outside the tents.
I will be returning again and again but perhaps I'll try and consume slightly less beer next time (but probably not!).
It usually takes place a week behind Munich's Ockfest but running for the same 3 week duration. What are you waiting for? :)
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