Here are the top 20 best things to do in Munich while you are in Germany
If there is any city in Germany that you have probably heard about other than Berlin, it’s probably Munich. This city is one of the largest and most populous of the German cities, and it’s quite big even on a European scale. The city is a cultural, technological, educational and financial hub of both German and the EU. Giant corporations like the BMW, Allianz and Siemens are all located here, not to mention big and famous events like the Oktoberfest. If you are coming to Germany and want to get a feel of just how Germans live, definitely come to Munich. For this, we have collected the top 20 best things to do in Munich.
The Frauenkirche is a Bavarian cathedral, and is a prominent landmark in Munich, which is the capital of the Bavarian state of Germany. Although this gothic cathedral is plain in style, it is still liked by many, especially for its towers which are one of the highest locations of Munich, and which offer great view of the city. Much of the interior was destroyed during the World War II, but the buildings has since been renovated.
2. Englischer Garten
The Englischer Garten, German for “English Garden”, is one of the largest urban parks in Europe, and even larger than the Central Park of New York. It got its name from the informal English landscape style. Citizens and tourists alike love to come here for recreation, as the park offers numerous great ways to have a break. There is also a Japanese garden and teahouse, a Chinese tower, an artificial stream for surfing, an Apollo temple, an open-air theatre and many more.
Not mentioning the beer gardens that originate from Munich would be a mistake. The Hirschgarten is the largest beer garden in the world, able to seat about 8000 people. The beer gardens are outdoor areas where local food and, obviously, beer are served, usually on big shared tables. This might sound very simple, but it’s quite popular on a social level throughout Europe, and especially in Germany. People love to come here to talk and have fun while drinking beer, and listen to the music they play. Hirschgarten is just like this, but on an even larger scale.
4. Deutsches Museum
The Deutsches Museum is a museum unlike any other in terms of variety and size. It is the largest museom of science and technology in the world, and has around 30 thousand objects on display from about 50 fields of science and technology. It’s everchaning and evergrowing, so there is always something new to see in the six floors of the building. There is literally everything one can imagine in terms of science. Chemistry, chronometry, aerospace, microelectronics, hydraulic engineering and much more. If you care about any field of science or technology, make sure to come here.
5. St. Peter’s Church
St. Peter’s Church is a Roman Catholic church in Munich, and the oldest one there. It is famous for both being varied in its architectural style, having baroque, renaissance, gothic and romanesque parts, and for the supposed skeletal remains of St. Munditia, a martyr. The skeleton decorated with gold and jewels can be viewed by everyone if they wish so.
The Marianplatz is the central square of Munich. It has been so for a long time, as events like executions and jousts were held here in the past. It’s not only a busy square with street peformers like musicians and mimes, and also food stalls selling beer and local food. Some important buildings are located in the area as well. The square is a popular tourist destination in Munich throughout the year, and especially during winter thanks to the Christmas market held here annually. The Marienplatz is a must-see among the things to do in Munich.
7. New Town Hall
The New Town Hall is, just like its name suggests, the town hall of Munich found at the Marienplatz. The old one is nearby, but it’s not used anymore. This new town hall houses the city council and the office of the mayors. The building was built in a gothic revival architectural style and is worth visiting for its beauty.
The Rathaus-Glockenspiel is part of the New Town Hall of Munich. Every day at 11 a.m., the 43 bells and 32 figures play two little stories from the 16th century. The figures provide a short 15 minute spectacle that is very popular among tourists, and people often gather there to witness this and take photographs or make a video of it.
The Viktualienmarkt is a daily food market and a square in the center of Munich, and was once a farmers’ market. It’s a popular destination for both citizens and tourists, as you can find all kinds of food stalls here, or just have a beer under the shade of trees. Festivals and folklore events are often held here, which are quite beloved by those visiting the area at the right time.
The Maximilianeum is a palatial building which is famous as the location of the Bavarian Landtag (state parliament). Newer wings were added to the building which originally served as a gifted students’ foundation, and the building is still used today for the meetings of the Bavarian parliament. The building can be found at the end of the Maximilianstraße avenue.
11. Alte Pinakothek
As one of the oldest galleries in the world, the Alte Pinakothek houses a great collection of Old Master works, especially paintings. These include works from people like Leonardo da Vinci. The museum is part of the three “Pinakotheken” galleries, and its dedicated to works of art from the older periods.
12. Neue Pinakothek
The Neue Pinakothek is the second of the three “Pinakotheken” galleries, and focuses more on European art from the 18th and 19th century. Styled that can be found here include impressionism, realism and art nouveau, and famous painters like Van Gogh are featured here.
13. Pinakothek der Moderne
As the last of the three “Pinakotheken” galleries, the Pinakothek der Moderne is dedicated to modern and contemporary art, completing these three eras of art. Industrial and graphic designs can be found here, along with other applied art, and modern works.
14. Munich Residenz
The Munich Residenz, or the Residenz Royal Palace, is the former residence of the Beverian monarchs. It houses the Crown Jewels, the State Collection of Egyptian Art, the Residenz/Cuvilles Theatre and the Herkulessaal concert hall, along with beautiful courtyards, fountains and a chapel. Apart from these, halls dedicated to different styles can also be found here, like the Renaissance Antiquarium, the Baroque Ancestral Gallery and the Neoclassical Small Throne Room.
15. BMW Museum
As the home of the BMW vehicles, the BMW Museum is an exhibition dedicated to the history of BMW. Many old cars and motorcycles can be viewed here. It’s a must-see on the list of things to do in Munich for car enthusiasts.
16. BMW Welt
The BMW Welt of Munich offers a great exhibition and experience for those interested in the modern part of BMW vehicle. They can check out the upcoming cars and can even buy one here. Promotional events and meetings are often held here.
The Olympiapark of Munich was built for the 1972 Summer Olympics, but it’s still used even today for cultural, social, and religious events. Many giant and well-designed stadiums and structures can be found here, which are quite the spectacle in themselves, let alone if you come here for an event.
18. Nymphenburg Palace
The Nymphenburg Palace, the “Castle of the Nymphs” is the former summer residence of the rulers of Bavaria. The building was built in a beautiful baroque style, and features the so-called “Gallery of Beauties,” a portrait gallery of 36 beautiful women of the time. Other attractions are the Marstallmuseum (Museum of Royal Carriages), the Amalienburg hunting lodge and the Pagodenburg (for royal tea parties).
The Drückebergergasse (German for “Shirker’s Alley”) is the name given by the public to the Viscardigasse street, which was used by many citizens who opposed the Nazi party during the 1930s and after. They used this city to circumvent the nearby Nazi memorial to the martyrs of the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, so that they didn’t have to salute near the guarded memorial. Golden cobblestones are now placed in the ground in a curvy path as a memorial to this.
One can’t mention Munich today without mentioning the world-famous Oktoberfest, the largest and most popular volksfest, or beer festival. It’s an event held annually since the Middle Ages. The festival is held throughout Munich with many bigger and smaller locations. It’s obviously all about drinking beer and having fun at the numerous attractions, amusement rides and games, while eating lots of local food at the food stalls. If you like beer, be sure to visit Munich during late September and early October, during this festival, just like the 6 million other people who visit the Oktoberfest.