Getting to Oktoberfest is easy from anywhere in Europe. Munich has been a transport hub for as long as Europeans have been travelling, and all roads, rails and flight paths go through here.
The first step to travelling to Oktoberfest is deciding when you want to go (answer: it’s always epic). The next is determining where you’ll be arriving from – if it’s from your home, that’s an easy decision, but if you’ll be travelling in the lead up to arriving in Munich, you might not know exactly where will be your departure point; if you’re travelling right, you might not know your departure point until the day of. The third consideration, and perhaps the most important, is how much you value your time. Will you be willing to save some money on your arrival by spending a bit more time on the road? Whatever your situation may be, this guide to travelling to Oktoberfest will help you get there and get into some tasty German beers.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by plane
Flying to Munich is by far the quickest way to arrive at Oktoberfest, and if you plan your travel early enough it could also be one of the cheaper options. Unfortunately for most of us, we’re a little bit slack with our travel plans, and often end up getting stuck with hefty, last-minute airfares. Nevertheless, we recommend scoping out flight aggregating websites, like Skyscanner, or using Google Flights, for flights from the lower cost airlines, or even with Lufthansa, which will allow you a little extra space, and a snack! From Munich airport you can ride the train straight into the city centre and the beer halls directly, or follow our directions to get to the Stoketoberfest campsite. Alternatively you could fly into Memmingen, or another airport near Munich, but we’d only recommend that if you were desperate. For a full guide on booking cheap flights in Europe, you should check this out.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by train
Train travel within Europe and to Munich for Oktoberfest comes in second to airline travel for convenience – sometimes even beating flying when you factor in that trains stop in the city centre and you don’t have to negotiate airport connections. That said, you’ll be paying a premium price for train tickets, too, especially if you’re booking last minute. The German rail system is very well connected with the rest of Europe, and you can book tickets and find timetables for Europe-wide train travel at the D-Bahn website. Alternatively, if you’re travelling around the continent for a spell and want to really get to know the railways, you should look into a Eurail Pass, if you’re not a European resident, or an Interrail Pass if you are. For more information, we’ve also done a deep dive into cheap train travel across Europe, and whether a Eurail Pass is worth it.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by bus
So this is going to take a little longer. Getting to Munich from anywhere outside of Germany – and most places inside of Germany – by bus can take a while. Buses travel slower than trains, don’t have routes that are as direct, and despite there being no official borders in Europe, sometimes buses will get stopped for passport checks and other searches. That said, bus travel is almost always cheap, and not so reliant on early booking. And, really, watching the world roll by from outside your bus window, reading a book, watching a movie, chatting, having some drinks, are not the worst ways to spend a few hours. FlixBus offers services from all over Europe to Munich, many without connections, and services like Omio can compare all different bus companies and deliver you the best price. Also, if you’re travelling from most of Europe you can link up with one of Stoke Travel’s own buses, and package up your stay with your travel. For a full guide on European bus travel, we’ve gone and done all the research for you.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by car
Yes, you can most certainly drive to Oktoberfest, either in your own car or a car you’ve hired. The German autobahn system is epic, you can drive really, really fast, and despite the high velocity travel and petrol stations that sell beer, the experience is an overwhelmingly safe one. Some things you’ll have to consider, include parking when you get to Munich – you’re going to have to leave your car where you stay, because there’s no way you’re getting it near to Oktoberfest – and driving home the morning after when you’re definitely, most likely, almost certainly still over the limit. We have parking at our Stoketoberfest campsite, and if you’re travelling Europe in a van or camper-car/motorhome set up, we have space for you too. For a full guide to driving in Europe as a backpacker, guess what, we got you.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by hitchhiking
Hmmm, yeah. You can. If you have to. If you like to. But, well, it could be weird, with all the language barriers and so on, and maybe not the safest safest. But if you’re already considering hitchhiking then you probably won’t be reading this for advice. We touch on it in this general guide to travelling around Europe.
Travelling to Oktoberfest by walking
This is for the real legends, the true travellers, the hectic slow movers who don’t care about how long it takes them and how stinky they are when they arrive. Europe is amazingly crisscrossed with well-marked hiking trails, that will take you through villages and over mountain passes. You could even hike to Munich across the Alps, if you really want to earn your beer when you arrive. We’ll let you do the research, crazy walkers, but generally in Europe you can just start walking in the direction you want to go. Find where Munich is, and take that first step!
Travelling from anywhere in Munich to the Stoketoberfest campsite