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Boutique Hotel near Oktoberfest in San Diego

San Diego’s an awful long way from Munich, but as it happens America’s Finest City still definitely knows how to celebrate Oktoberfest to the fullest. Come join us at Hotel Republic and welcome in autumn with some fine beer, a brat or two, and a great deal of beachside lederhosen and dirndls!

San Diego County actually has multiple Oktoberfests going down in the next month, which gives you greater flexibility planning your festive fall getaway to Hotel Republic here in downtown San Diego. Let’s have a look at some of your options!

But before that—a super-brief primer on Oktoberfest history, so you have a bit of context for your revelry…

Oktoberfest: Going Strong Since 1810

The very first Oktoberfest transpired over five days in October of 1810 as a Munich-wide celebration of King Ludwig I and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen’s marriage. It was a popular-enough soiree for the citizenry—not least the horse racing that went down—to recur the following year, thus kicking off the Oktoberfest tradition. Munich’s Oktoberfest, which attracts more than six million, is the biggest in the world (and considered the world’s largest “funfair” of any sort); the largest version in the United States is Cincinnati’s half-million-strong Oktoberfest Zinzinnati.

San Diego County’s Oktoberfest celebrations hold their own with any in the U.S., and it’s kind of great to see such Bavarian spirit playing out amid shining Southern California sunshine and surf.

El Cajon Oktoberfest (September 28-30, October 5-7)

Presented by the German American Societies of San Diego, the El Cajon Oktoberfest offers a delightfully traditional take on the festival for two consecutive weekends. Feast on everything from bratwurst and pretzels to potato pancakes and ox-on-the-spit, sample some fabulous German beer, and get those feet moving to polkas, waltzes, and more performed by the awesome band Guggenbach-Buam, which hails from Baden-Württemberg, Germany.

La Mesa Oktoberfest (September 28-30)

This year marks the impressive 45th iteration of the La Mesa Oktoberfest, brought to you by the La Mesa Village Association and ranking as the biggest Oktoberfest in San Diego County. You’ve got not one but two beer gardens—the Hofbrauhaus Biergarten and the Oktoberfest Craft Bier & Spirits Garden—serving up not only traditional German-style beer but also an array of craft brews as well as creative cocktails. Similarly, Bavarian classics such as bratwurst, knockwurst, schnitzel, and pastries will be available alongside a wide range of international cuisine. And the live-music soundtrack will include not only oom-pah beats but plenty of pop, rock, country, and other genres.

Ocean Beach Oktoberfest (October 12-13)

You can’t beat an Oktoberfest played out right along a stunning Southern California Pacific beach! That’s the magic of the Ocean Beach Oktoberfest, hosted by the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association. The beer-garden brews, diverse eats, and live music come accentuated by a variety of appropriately themed competitions, including stein-holding, bratwust-eating, and sausage-toss competitions, plus Ms. Oktoberfest pageantry.

Other Oktoberfests

Though they’re a little farther away from Hotel Republic, the Encinitas Oktoberfest (9/30) and Carlsbad Rotary Oktoberfest (10/6) are both totally doable options for more polka-tastic merrymaking along the San Diego County coast!

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