Friday, March 8, 2013

DULTfest Regensburg: The Other German Beer Festival

Oktoberfest, Munich

Yes, we've all heard of it and everyone wants to go.  That's the problem.  Everyone - and I mean everyone - goes.  Unless you go alone and arrive early in the morning, expect to walk around for 2 or 3 hours until a bench opens up.  I only found a spot at night by virtue of wearing my "Baracktoberfest" Schlafly Beer t-shirt.  Some Americans recognized Obama's smiling presidential face on my shirt and invited me to squeeze in on the bench.

DULTfest, Regensburg

Have you heard of it?  If you don't want to fight crowds and wait hours for a delicious German beer, there are hundreds of other smaller Beerfests around the country.  By sheer chance my hitchhiking trip through Regensburg in August coincided with DULTfest.  I randomly chose Regensburg, but it is a scenic UNESCO World Heritage Site which is well worth passing through for more than just the beer festival.  This is truly Bavaria.

Here's something you never see at Oktoberfest - an empty beer tent.  I found Brook Lane Hostel and spent the morning recovering from my nightmare hitchhiking trip from Austria.  After a brief rest I set off for DULTfest around 2pm.  The pictures are courtesy of Romy, a nice Bavarian girl I met at the hostel whose photography skills are far better than mine.  Thanks to her talent, I look almost professional even with a comically large beer and a massive wiener in my hand (*snicker*).

I was sober at the time this picture was taken.  I only spent a brief time at the festival sampling some local beers and Bavarian food before returning to the hostel to sleep some more.  When I awoke Romy was gone, but a few new guests had arrived.  A wandering Czech who was working in Germany and a young Irish business student became my drinking buddies for the evening.

The night progressed as one would expect at a beer festival.  We visited the 6 different tents and settled on the largest based on the fact it was hosting a curious sport where participates had to climb up the tent's tallest central pole in order to guessed it, beer.  We placed bets on the pole climbers, and after drinking several liters and bullshiting travel stories, we returned to the hostel considerably drunker than before.  Regensburg was a brief, but perfect way to end my Eurotrip 2011.

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