If you are planning a visit to the beautiful Munich, one of the most beautiful and interesting cities in Central Europe, here is the list of the ten essentials that you should not miss on your trip to the Bavarian capital, located in southern Germany. Munich is recognized worldwide for being the cradle of Oktoberfest, but this city is much more. It is full of history, a story in which there were dark moments, with the appearance of the Nazi movement and the Dachau concentration camp. After the Second World War, it was destroyed by bombing, but it was an arduous task of reconstruction, and today it is one of the most tourist cities in Germany.
Visiting Munich involves going through the famous breweries, but also enjoying its churches, palaces, old streets, and German culture. We are going to talk about the things to see in Munich if you are preparing a trip to this city. It has many places of interest, so it will surely take us a while to discover all its corners.
This is one of the central squares in the heart of Munich, from here you can explore many wonderful old buildings, as well as the most interesting churches and monuments. Marienplatz houses the Column of Mary or Mariensäule, work crowned with a golden statue of the Virgin Mary. Also, there are the Old Town Hall and the New Town Hall.
The New Town Hall
The New Town Hall is an impressive building where is the Glockenspiel, a beautiful carillon that is more than 100 years old. Go at 11 or 12 of the day to hear the bells of the Glockenspiel and appreciate 32 life-size figures that will relive the historical events of Bavaria. See also the golden bird that emits a sound 3 times to mark the end of each show.
Cathedral of Our Lady of Munich (Frauenkirche)
The Cathedral of Our Lady of Munich or Frauenkirche is an important historical place in the city, as well as being the largest church in Munich, with a capacity for 20,000 people; its construction is based on brick and has an architectural style typical of the Late Gothic of the 15th century. Its famous dome above each tower is inspired by the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem. Together with the Town Hall, the twin towers are part of the horizon and make the Munich Cathedral a great point of orientation. You can also climb the steps of the towers, from where you get an interesting view of the Munich cityscape and the Bavarian Alps.
Dachau Concentration Camp
The concentration camp of Dachau, 10 kilometers northwest of Munich, was one of the first concentration camps in Nazi Germany and would serve as a model for all the following camps in the Third Reich. Visitors to Dachau can follow the “prisoner’s way,” which is about walking the same route as the prisoners when they arrived at the concentration camp. You can see original items such as bathrooms, barracks, courts, and crematoriums, as well as several other monuments.
The English Garden
Only a few blocks northeast of the Munich Residence is the English Garden, the largest park in Munich. Even bigger than New York’s Central Park, this green oasis is a wonderful place to explore such as renting a pedal boat, strolling along tree-lined paths, visiting some of the most popular beer gardens, and seeing the German answer when surfing in the Eisbach currents.
Any trip to Munich should include at least one visit to the world’s most famous brewery, the Hofbräuhaus, which was built in 1589 and features old wooden tables on which you can find names, dates, and comments of more 100 years old. It is located near Marienplatz, and in it, you can taste a variety of local specialties such as veal sausages, roast pork and beer stew, besides here the beer is served in litre jars, and traditional bands of Bavaria decorate the place.
Just a few steps away from Marienplatz, you will find yourself in the bustling Viktualienmarkt, the open-air agricultural market in Munich. Go through the 140 colourful stalls and enjoy the unique touch of this market that offers a variety of fresh regional foods. The Viktualienmarkt, whose beginnings go back to the beginning of the 19th century, offers everything from flowers, honey, and spices, to meat, cheese, eggs, and pastry products. Enjoy among the garlands of sausages, mountains of fresh vegetables, fruit pyramids, and let your senses be seduced.
On the edge of Munich’s Old Town is the Residence, the former royal palace of the Bavarian kings, which was built in 1385 and consists of ten courtyards and beautiful historic gardens. Today, the Residence houses one of the best European museums of interior decoration, with 130 rooms where you can see antique furniture, art, porcelain and tapestries that include the Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo, and the neoclassical era.
The Three Art Galleries in Munich
To the west of the English Garden, you can find a unique collection of the three art galleries in Munich, the Alte Pinakothek, the Neue Pinakothek and the Pinakothek der Moderne, which in turn are part of the Kunstareal (Munich Art District).
- The Pinacoteca Antigua is one of the oldest art galleries in the world and home to more than 800 European masterpieces from the Middle Ages to the end of the Rococo.
- The Nueva Pinacoteca houses works of art and sculptures from the late 18th century to the early 20th century. It highlights the German art of the nineteenth century and a collection of French Impressionism.
- The Pinacoteca de Arte Moderno is the largest museum of modern art in Germany and focuses on twentieth-century art, including photography and video.
Deutsches Museum (German Museum)
This is an important museum dedicated to science and technology, so it is considered one of the most important in the world. It is located in the city of Munich and has outstanding artifacts that are part of the cultural baggage and a contribution to the advancement of science. Other highlights of the museum include exhibits on astronomy, transportation, mining, printing, and photography.
Munich Olympic Stadium
This stadium hosted the 1972 Olympic Games, and its design was revolutionary and futuristic for the time: The sweeping and transparent acrylic glass awnings inspired by the Alps are the characteristic of the Olympic Stadium.