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Córdoba and the 3rd(?)-Largest Oktoberfest in the World

January 3, 2011

At the beginning of October two happy events occured simultaneously: a long weekend (yes, another one) and the world-famous beer festival known as Oktoberfest. While the festival originated in Germany, it is also celebrated around the world, from Hong Kong to Australia, and of course . . . Argentina. According to any given Argentine, they host the 2nd-largest Oktoberfest in the world after Germany, but countless countries make this claim, so I am just going to stick with Wikipedia’s claim for now, and call it the 3rd-largest. Either way, it’s big…

Official Banner for the Festival

Ready for the Festivities to Begin

The home of the Argentinian “Fiesta Nacional de La Cerveza” (or simply “Oktoberfest”) is a small town called Villa General Belgrano, which is about 2 hours outside of the city of Córdoba. And while the festivities occur over the course of 11 days, by far the busiest time is during the long weekend in October, during which students and beer-lovers from around the country (and the world) flock to the tiny German-settled town to enjoy traditional performances, food, and of course, beer.

A Shop Employee in Traditional German Clothing

Many people choose to stay in Villa General Belgrano in order to avoid a commute, but the group I went with decided that we would rather brave the 2-hour bus ride so that we could spend one day at the festival, and the rest of the weekend enjoying the city of Córdoba. So, after an overnight bus we arrived in Córdoba early on Friday and spent the day settling into our hostel, walking around the city, and relaxing by the pool.

A quick note before I continue: if you are planning to go to Córdoba with a large group (there were 10 of us), then the Yiliana Hostel is the place to be. It has two rooms with around 10 beds, and one smaller room that sleeps 4 people, if I remember correctly. So, at capacity it sleeps about 24 people. In other words, it’s like renting your own, very nice, house. It has a large, fully-stocked kitchen, Wi-Fi, a pool, parilla (the Argentinian version of a Bar-B-Q), outside and inside tables, and a nice living room. It’s a 5-minute walk from a big grocery store and mall, and about a 20-minute walk fromt the city center. We had an absolutely wonderful experience there and I highly recommend it for large groups.

Matt lounging by the hostel pool

These potted plants were just one of many little touches that made this hostel so special

The first night we all pitched in to buy groceries and made an incredible meal together at the hostel, then we woke up bright and early to catch the first bus into Villa General Belgrano. We got there before the Beer Garden opened at 11, so we had some breakfast and walked around the adorable town for a while. After purchasing our mugs and mug-straps (you read that right) we headed into the park and bought our first beers. Honestly, the rest of the day was so crazy and hilarious that I don’t think words could do it justice, so instead I’ll just show it to you in pictures . . .

Mug and mug-strap? Check!

The entrance to the beer garden

With the owner of Mak Beers

This is how you rock a mug-strap

With some random guys in coordinated clothing (and wigs?!)

With more random guys in coordinated clothing (sans wigs)

We love Oktoberfest!

We had originally planned to go sky-diving and/or paragliding on Sunday, but by the time we arrived in Córdoba on Friday, everything was already all booked. So instead we slept in, then then headed to the store again to buy ingredients for a huge American-style brunch(we were all missing scrambled eggs by that time) and another parilla dinner. Then we spent the rest of the day lounging by the pool, cooking and eating. I know, I know, it sounds sort of lame. But honestly, if you are going to go to Oktoberfest, then I warn you now: lounging, cooking and eating will be about all you have in you the next day, so plan accordingly! 😉

American-style brunch

Relaxing at dinner with the girls

That just about wraps up my trip to Córdoba and Argentina’s Oktoberfest! Thanks so much for reading. As always, feel free to comment and/or contact me if you have any questions.


One Comment leave one →
  1. ian stone permalink
    October 4, 2011 9:57 pm

    Its going on right now!
    Oktoberfest 2011 in Argentina

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