If you are in Abu Dhabi and love giant pretzels, lederhosen and hops then it’s probably your favourite time of the year.
While you could fly to Europe to join the party in Germany there’s plenty going on in Abu Dhabi to save you racking up the air miles.
From live German bands, Bavarian buffets and European hops, here’s what’s going on in Abu Dhabi for Oktoberfest this year.
Head to Khalifa City and enjoy a little bit of Germany as Oktoberfest takes over Appaloosa. You can check out the Bavarian-inspired hops garden and watch a wandering German band, Die Handwerker, meander through the venue playing some traditional oompah music. Enjoy a range of traditional snacks and dishes to pair with the Bavarian hops including sauerkraut, veal schnitzel, Bavarian knuckle, grills, sliders and more. You can even enjoy some food paired with a glass of German hops for Dhs45. Prost!
Free entry. Daily noon-3am (band from 7pm). Oct 24-31. Appaloosa, Marriott Hotel Al Forsan, Abu Dhabi, Khalifa City (02 201 4000).
The city’s longest-running Oktoberfest (it’s been going since 1993), is back once again and wants everyone to embrace their Germanic side. Head here for live entertainment, food and drinks in the outdoor terrace. Bavarian music will be pumping as the German oompah band perform every night and a host of German hops and dishes including pretzels, sausages, sharing platters are available. Sounds good to us.
Dhs100 (minimum spend per person). Oct 23 to Nov 2, 6pm-midnight. Beach Rotana, Al Zahiyah (02 697 9011).
If you’ve got lederhosen in the cupboard then bring them out because there’s a Bavarian-style party going on at Hamilton’s and you’re invited. The Saadiyat Island hangout is bringing Bavaria to the capital with some traditional dishes and drinks to get you celebrating the annual festival.Visitors can tuck into dishes including grilled meats, sausages, ribs and more. Plus there are plenty of hops to pair with your food and some great deals too. Enjoy a one litre glass of hops for Dhs65, a four litre barrel of hops on your table for Dhs250 and enjoy a hops and sausages combo for Dhs170.
Prices vary. 4pm-2am. October 1-15. Hamilton’s Gastropub, Saadiyat Rotana Resort and Villas, Saadiyat Island (02 697 0000).
Looking for some traditional music, food and hops? Head along the Corniche to Hemingway’s and they’ve got all the bases covered. Providing a truly Bavarian soundtrack, German band Die Aichvelder will be banging out the tunes to encourage you to throw a few shapes in between mouthfuls of food. You can dig in to a host of German specialities from sausages to freshly-baked pretzels and all the trimmings. A bunch of activities will take place, too including barrel tapping, table tennis, darts, dancing and a raffle with a bunch of prizes, too. For Dhs149 you can enjoy unlimited Bavarian food and soft drinks, glasses of German hops are sold separately.
Dhs149 (soft drinks). 7pm-2am, Oct 6-11. Radisson Blu AbU Dhabi Corniche, Corniche West (02 681 1900).
Le Méridien Abu Dhabi
The outdoor hops tent at Le Méridien Abu Dhabi is something of an Oktoberfest tradition and it’s back again this year to bring the fun. The tent is free to enter and will be booming with oompah music provided by the five-piece live German band who will bringing Bavaria to the city with some traditional music. Of course there’s plenty of German hops on offer and a load of German specialities to help keep your energy up between trips to the dance floor. And if you’ve ever asked yourself the question "how much sauerkraut, sausages and pretzels could I eat?" you can find out the answer with an unlimited German buffer from Dhs120.
Free entry. 7pm-late, Oct 3-5. Le Méridien Abu Dhabi, Al Zahiyah (02 644 666).
Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi
PJ O’Reilly’s may be an Irish pub but it’s turning German for Oktoberfest this year, with some great events to celebrate the Bavarian festival, with drinks starting at Dhs25. On October 10 you can enjoy a Bavarian barbecue that features a range of German delicacies. The next day an Oktoberfest brunch (starting at Dhs149) will celebrate the season with free-flowing beverages and loads of European dishes. Brass band Wunderbar will also be on hand for both events to provide a fitting soundtrack to proceedings, too.
Various prices. Oct 10-11. PJ O’Reilly’s, Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khalifa Street (02 695 0515).
Down in the Garden City the Bavarian fever is also spreading as Paco’s Bar embraces all thing Bavaria for Oktoberfest. A host of traditional Bavarian dishes will be on offer and of course German hops will be flowing too as guests are encouraged to embrace the celebration and don some Germanic clothing to have some fun. Plus, for Dhs89 you can enjoy some refreshing hops and bar bites as you try out some dance moves along to the music.
Prices vary. 6pm-midnight, Sep 21-Oct 6. Radisson Blu Al Ain, Khalid Bin Sultan Street (03 768 6666)
Get on your lederhosen and enjoy five days of Oktoberfest celebrations at Park Rotana this year. Taking place from October 28 to November 1 in the garden, the Bavarian-inspired celebrations will feature a live oompah band blasting out tunes, a host of German hops and other delicacies. Visitors can choose from a selection of dishes and grab a drink as they prepare to dance to the music all night long.
Dhs100 (minimum spend). Oct 28 to Nov 1, 5pm-late. Park Rotana, Khalifa Park area (02 657 3333).
The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa
What could be more traditional than celebrating Oktoberfest in a tent? The Bavarian Village at The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa is going all-out Germanic with live music and deals on food and drinks from October 17 to November 2. A traditional keg opening will take place on the first evening and live Oopah music will be performed every night as well as live entertainers and music from DJs. Plus, a special Spooktoberfest event will be held on Halloween to bring Halloween, Oktoberfest and the Rugby World Cup together in one place. You can get in for free before 7pm, too.
Free entry (before 7pm), Dhs65 (7pm onwards). Oct 17 to Nov 2, from 5pm. The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort and Spa, Sas Al Nakhl (02 616 9999).
Victor’s Bar and Restaurant
Victor’s is bringing Bavaria to the capital with an all-out celebration. Taking place from November 3 to 5, the popular venue will celebrate the German holiday with live entertainment, food and drink. The Bavarian Camel Band will be blasting out the tunes to get you in the mood as you enjoy a food package of Dhs99 (which comes with a litre of hops). Plus, with German hops on offer during the festival from Dhs20, you can get good value as you celebrate the season.
Free entry. Nov 3 to 5, 7pm-3am. Victor’s Bar and Restaurant, Hilton Capital Grand Hotel, Sheikh Radshid bin Saeed al Maktoum Street (02 666 5508).