Munich is known to be the home of the Oktoberfest, but there’s still plenty to do even if you visit outside the festival. While Munich is known for this annual party, it is one of the most livable cities in the world for residents and picturesque holiday activities for visitors.
Because it was established as early as 1158, Munich is steeped in history. You can feel the past in the city’s architecture, a mix of classical buildings reconstructed to its former glory and newer structures. Today, it is known as the “the village with a million inhabitants,” because despite of the city’s growth, it still feels like a cozy, old-world town. This feeling is highlighted when you see the cobblestone streets, the beer gardens, and the street musicians that serenade passersby.
But don’t make the mistake of thinking Munich is stuck in the past. In Germany, the city is one of the most prosperous and fastest-growing. It is now the municipality with the highest density of population, and is now a center of arts, architecture, culture and science. At Munich, there’s something for everybody.
Here are 10 things you can do in Munich:
The BMW headquarters can be found in Munich
10. Go see art. Munich is home to several museums. The art on display is breathtaking, but some museum buildings are works of art, too, such as the Bavarian National Museum, the Old and New Pinakothek, and the Museum Brandhorst. Automobile fans can also visit the BMW Museum. After all, this luxury vehicle maker is headquartered here.
The tranquil Schloss Nymphenburg Gardens is a quiet respite from the city
9. Reconnect with nature. In the city, you can find respite in the Englischer Garten, which is larger than Central Park in New York and one of the world’s largest urban public parks. For those who want to avoid “touristy” places, the Schloss Nymphenburg Gardens is home to colorful flowers and fresh air.
The imperial Frauenkirche, the cathedral for the Archdiocese of Munich and Freising
8. See beautiful churches. The Peterskirche is the oldest church of the inner city and dates back to 1368. If you climb up the 306 steps up the tower, you can see a magnificent view of the entire city! Meanwhile, the Frauenkirche is a symbol of the Bavarian capital city and is the city’s largest church. Climb up the top and you can see the city and a bonus view of the Alps.
One of the lavish halls inside the Residence Palace of Munich
7. Observe how monarchs lived. One key building to see in Munich is the Residence Palace of Munich, the former royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs. Today, it is a museum dedicated to interior design, but you can see how lavishly the royals lived in the 10 courtyards and 130 rooms.
The famous Weißwurst, a dining staple in Munich
6. Eat like a local. Try the Weißwurst, or white sausage, served with a dollop of sweet mustard. Make sure to also try the Bavarian baked sausage loaf, served with potato salad and a fried egg; and the Leberknödel soup (bread dumpling seasoned with liver and onions). Top it off with an apple strudel with vanilla sauce and you’re good to go! You can get these at the hundreds of beer gardens in the city. Feeling thirsty? Try the Weissbier (wheat beer) or the popular Helles, a pale lager.