Prost! See Munich celebrate Oktoberfest in style as the beer-loving festival officially kicks off

Oktoberfest 2017 has officially started, with thousands of beer-loving patrons donning traditional dress and taking to the streets and beer halls of Munich to celebrate in style.

Running from 16 September to 3 October this year, the traditional folk festival, often called Wiesn in Germany, is one of the biggest annual events in Germany.

Oktoberfest originally began as a wedding celebration that was held in Munich over 200 years ago, when Crown Prince Ludwig, later to become King Ludwig I was married to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. Horse races were held to mark the occasion, and the festivities have evolved every year since then, with beer stands being replaced with dedicated halls.

This year marks the 184th Oktoberfest, and while the festival is a celebration of Bavarian culture, it has grown to become a globally celebrated occasion. The hallmarks of the event are beers served in enormous steins, traditional dishes such as bratwurst, sauerkraut, pretzels and pork knuckles, while men can be seen sporting lederhosen, and women wear Dirndls.

Prost! See Munich celebrate Oktoberfest in style as the beer-loving festival officially kicks off

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