After a brief stopover in Bamberg, we continued on the train line and ended our German journey in Munich. This was a city we couldn’t wait to explore. It tends to be the favorite for a lot of my friends who have visited Germany, and took no time at all to see why.
Munich is a very walkable city and has a bit of an historic element mixed with modern luxuries. The famed Hofbräuhaus is a highlight for most tourists, but a surprise for me was the number of parks pocketed throughout the city. This makes Munich all the more enjoyable for a stroll when you need a break from all the beer drinking (or just need to burn off some calories until your next pretzel).
Where to Stay
If you want to be close to the action, stay near Marienplatz. It’s walkable to the outer neighborhoods but puts you right in the heart of the city.
- Cortiina Hotel – I chose this hotel for its central location, but it was also a great value for the money. It was a little more than the other hotels on our trip (about $300 a night) but it was our last city on our journey and I like to end on a high note. The rooms are spacious and comfy and there is a spectacular wine bar in the hotel which is great for breakfast (although it’s definitely not cheap). Location wise it couldn’t be much better – around the corner from the Hofbräuhaus and walking distance to all the main sites.
- Hotel Opera – This one was also on my short list, although we didn’t end up staying here. A little farther east, and a little cheaper, this hotel has free breakfast which is a great perk.
- Hotel Novotel Muenchen City – On the other side of the river, this hotel is a bit farther from the center of town but also a great value.
What to Do & See
- Eisbachwelle – This surprising surfing spot in Englischergarten is where locals ride the river waves as they rush through the park. It’s a site to see in the middle of a city, and a great stop on a stroll through Englischergarten.
- Frühlingsanlagen – Stroll through this park along the Isar River when the weather is nice. Locals lounge and sunbathe along the river, and it’s a great spot for a picnic.
- Türkenstraße – Check out this trendy neighborhood popular with college students, and linked with lots of cute cafes and restaurants. Hit up the museums while you’re here (only 1 euro on Sundays).
- Beer gardens – Obviously an authentic German beer garden is essential to any German city. There is no shortage of famous beer halls in Munich. Read on…
Where to Eat & Drink
- Hofbräuhaus – The famed beer hall not only has great beer and pretzels, but it also has an intense history. Once the location where Hitler would give speeches, it’s now a three-story beer garden. It gets crowded, but it’s a must-visit.
- Max Emanuel Brauerei – Another great beer garden with less crowds, Max Emanuel has a great outdoor garden for when the weather is nice.
- Marienplatz – This is the main square and a central location to start your city wandering.
- Victuals Market – This open-air market has tons of local food vendors. It’s a great spot for lunch and a beer, and to browse for souvenirs.
- Ratskeller – This basement restaurant dates back to the 19th century. It’s a bit crowded with tourists, but the food is great if you’re looking for a traditional German meal.
- Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site – This is the only day trip we took from Munich, and it’s certainly worth it if you’ve never been to a concentration camp. It’s not an uplifting trip, but entirely necessary, and you won’t regret going. (A separate post on this is coming soon.)
- Neuschwanstein Castle Day Trip – We didn’t have time to squeeze this one in, but it’s definitely top of my list for next time. This is the castle Disney is based on and it’s only a short drive from Munich.
Want more places to visit in Munich?