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Munich
Munich is Germany's third largest city and one of Europe's most prosperous and expensive. The city has a population of about 1.3 million (as of 2006) and the Munich metropolitan area is home to around 2.7 million people. The city is located on the River Isar north of the Bavarian Alps.

Main monuments

Marienplatz
Marienplatz Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Marienplatz is the heart of the city of Munich. In the Middle Ages, the square used to be a market place as well as the place where tournaments and festivities took place.
In the 19th century Marienplatz's market moved to the nearby Viktualienmarkt, but the square still functions as the central place in Munich.
The square is dominated by the New Town Hall (Neue Rathaus): the monumental, 79 meters (259ft) high town hall was built between 1867 and 1909 by Georg Joseph Hauberrisser in Flemish Gothic style to alleviate the overcrowded Altes Rathaus nearby.
At 11, 12 and 17 o'clock each day, visitors can watch the famous Glockenspiel or carillon.The figures perform the Schläffertanz or cooper's dance, which was originally performed in 1517 at the Marienplatz to commemmorate the end of the plague.
Above the dancers, figures hold a tournament, originally held in 1568 at the wedding of Wilhelm II and Renata von Lothringen in 1568.
The Glockenspiel exists since 1903, but the original clocks have been replaced by a music tape.
The original Old Town Hall or Altes Rathaus was completely destroyed by fire in 1460. Between 1470 and 1480, the old town hall was rebuilt in Gothic style by Jörg von Halsbach (who was also responsible for the Frauenkirche). The building was completely destroyed again during the second world war, but rebuilt afterwards.
The tower is now also home to the Toy Museum, which traces the history of toys from the early 19th century toys up to the current modern toys.
The Mariensäule was built in 1638 to fulfil an oath made by the Elector Maximilian I after Munich was occupied, but not destroyed, by the Swedes under Gustav Adolf during the Thirty Years' War. The column was erected as a reminder of the plague of 1634 in which 7,000 residents, a third of the city's population, died. On the pedestal you can see the baroque symbols for war (lions), hunger (dragons), disbelief (snakes) and the plague (basilisk) being fought (and defeated) by small cherubs. The twelve-metre-high Corinthian column is crowned by 'The Virgin Mary on the Crescent Moon' (late Gothic with Renaissance influences). Originally created in 1593 by Hubert Gerhard for the grave of Duke Wilhelm V, the Virgin Mary symbolises the Queen of Heaven (with a sceptre and crown). The Infant Jesus is depicted holding the imperial orb in his hand.
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Viktualienmarkt
Viktualienmarkt Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The small central market at Marienplatz was once the center of activity in Munich. However, as the city continued to grow in the early 19th century, the need arose for a larger market where residents could purchase the food items they needed for daily life.
King Maximilian decided that the market should be moved a few meters to the southeast, so the buildings of the charitable Heiliggeist hospice were demolished and the market was constructed. Originally, the new market was called Marktplatz and later Viktualienmarkt. Victual is the Latin word for food. By 1823, the market already required enlargement and throughout the next several decades, more and more halls were added when the need arose. Separate pavilions were included for fish markets, fowl and other meats, flowers, produce, and bakery items.
Viktualienmarkt was severely damaged during World War II. Demolition was considered when the war ended but, instead, the city decided to save the market. Fountains and other new elements were added to spruce up the area.
The modern Viktualienmarkt is now a favorite with gourmets. The popular and lively market boasts 140 shops and stalls that offer flowers and plants, vegetables, exotic fruit, venison and poultry, eggs, butter, honey, fish, meat and sausages.
The market has grown considerably in size since it was built in 1807, now occupying 22,000 square meters (about 5 ½ acres).
Viktualienmarkt is often the site of festivals and other special affairs, offering traditional and folkloric events, music and dance, and much more.
The market square is dominated by St. Peter's to the west and the Schrannenhalle (grain hall) to the south, a fantastic construction which resembles the Marché de la Madeleine in Paris. Several fountains are dotted around the market and serve to commemorate the legendary local singers Karl Valentin, Weiß Ferdl and Liesl Karlstadt.
Mon-fri: 7.30 am - 6 pm; sat: 7.30 am - 1 pm

Stachus (Karlsplatz)
Stachus (Karlsplatz) Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The Karlsplatz and the Karlstor (Karl's Gate) represent the entrance to the Historic City Centre and, since 1972, to the pedestrian precinct, which makes this the ideal starting point for a shopping spree along Neuhauser and Kaufinger Straße.
The Karlsplatz takes its official name from the Elector Karl Theodor, who had the square laid out in 1791. It is better known as Stachus, supposedly named after the popular innkeeper Eustachius Föderl. The name might however also originate from the expression 'Stachel' (prickle). This was the term given to the arrows of the marksmen who used to try their combating skills in front of the Karlstor during the Middle Ages.
During summer you will find respite next to the modern fountain, which invites tourists as well as locals to rest.
The Stachus, offering underground parking space, is located on the western Altstadtring and includes a S-Bahn station, making it the traffic nodal point of Munich and one of the busiest squares in Europe.
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St. Peter
St. Peter Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Alter Peter (Old Peter) is the tower of the oldest parish church in Munich, St Peter's Church. The valiant visitor who manages to climb the 302 steps to the top will have an incomparable view of Munich and, on a clear day, the Alps look close enough to touch. St. Peter's was named after the old hill on which it stands, the Petersbergl. There was apparently a chapel on the site before Munich was founded, which was then replaced with a Romanesque structure in the 11th century and later a Gothic building. In the 14th century, the double-tower was redeveloped to form the single tower facade of the church which remains today. Over the centuries, St. Peter's underwent even more changes, mainly in the Baroque and Rococo periods.

Heiliggeistkirche

This Gothic hall-church, originally belonging to the Hospice of the Holy Ghost (14th C.), was remodeled in 1724-30 by Johann Georg Ettenhofer (vaulting, refacing of pillars); in the interior can be seen fine Roccoco frescoes and stucco ornament by the Asam brothers. After the demolition of the hospice buildings, in 1885, Franz Löwel added three bays at the west end of the church and gave it an imposing Neo-Baroque facade. The church suffered severe damage during the Second World War and its interior furnishings were largely destroyed; extensive rebuilding and restoration was carried out after the war.

KÖnigsplatz
KÖnigsplatz Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Leo von Klenze drew up the plans for the Königsplatz in hopeful anticipation of the expansion of the city of Munich. He and Karl von Fischer viewed the new square as a “forum for the arts” – a place where Munich residents could enjoy a wealth of visual and performing arts presentations and displays. This was to be the cultural area of Munich, in contrast to the Ludwigstrasse, which was described as the “forum for the sciences.”
King Ludwig I commissioned the Königsplatz yet it wasn’t completed until 1862, nearly 14 years after Ludwig abdicated the throne.
KÖnigsplatz Munich tourist board visit Munich BavariaThree classical buildings eventually occupied the area - the Propyläen (an ornate gateway), the Glyptothek (a collection of
ancient Greek and Roman Sculpture, and the Staatliche Antikensammlung, an antiquities museum (daily except of monday, from 10 am to 5 pm, on wednesday to 8 pm).
It had been Ludwig’s dream to turn Munich into another Athens and he believed his plan for the Königsplatz would help accomplish his goals.
From 1933-35, however, things changed at the Königsplatz. This was the era of Adolf Hitler and the square soon became the National Socialists' "Akropolis Germaniae" in what had become known as the "Capital City of the Movement". Architects Paul Ludwig Troost and Leonhard Gall were responsible for the changes made to the Königsplatz.
Grassy areas were covered with granite and the neo-Classical buildings were used for large Nazi rallies. Trees were removed and the buildings took on different functions. One housed the offices of National Socialist Workers' Party of Germany while another was known as “The Führer’s Building.” Additional buildings, known as the Temples of Honor, were eventually blown up after the war to symbolize the fall of the Nazi party.
Today, grass and trees once again grow at this historical square. Thanks to a hefty renovation project completed in 1988, the Königsplatz and its buildings have been restored to its original grandeur.
Visitors can roam through the old sculpture garden and take in the hundreds of artifacts at the Antikensammlungen, known for its collection of 650 Greek vases, a collection originally started by King Ludwig I.
To get there: Underground (U-Bahn) lines U2 and U8 (Königsplatz)

 
Residenz (Royal Palace)
Residenz (Royal Palace) Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Built in 1385 and known as the Neuveste, the first tenant at the Residenz Palace was Duke Stephan III, who reigned from 1375 to 1392. His tenure in the palace was followed by Duke Wilhelm IV, who was king from 1508-1550. Both men immediately began adding to the palace.
Residenz (Royal Palace) Munich tourist board visit Munich BavariaEvery subsequent monarch that moved into the palace, it seems, added yet another room or two to the residence; from ballrooms and chapels to galleries, apartments, fountain courts, and gardens.
Because additions were made over the centuries, they vary greatly in style. It’s said that if you approach the Residenz Palace from one side, you’ll think it’s Palladian. Come in from another direction and you’ll think the architectural style resembles Italian or German Renaissance.
During World War II, the Residenz was almost completely destroyed but many of the masterpieces inside were moved to safety before the bombs hit the palace. Restoration began in 1945. Eventually, a concert hall replaced Ludwig I’s Throne Room and the palace reopened as a museum in 1958. Reconstruction continued and as each section was completed, new sections were added to the museum.
Today, the Residenz Museum occupies the southwestern portion of the palace and consists of about 120 rooms full of art, furnishings, and other treasures.
The Antiquarium boasts dozens of 16th and 17th century frescoes. In the Ancestral Gallery, portraits of the royal Wittelsbach family are set into gilded, carved paneling. Far Eastern porcelain and Oriental rugs can be found in the Porcelain Gallery. The rococo-style Cuvilliés Theater is the sight of many concerts and operas during the summer season.
The Schatzkammer (literally, the “treasury”) houses statues fashioned from precious gems and metals. (A separate ticket is required for the Schatzkammer.).
Residenz (Royal Palace) Munich tourist board visit Munich BavariaFacing Residenz Palace, the Hofgarten (royal garden) was commissioned by Duke Maximilian I and built between 1613-17. All its paths converge on the dodecahedral pavilion in the centre, which is crowned by a statue of Diana, one of Bavaria's most recognisable symbols. The Hofgarten is enclosed on two sides by a series of arcades which were originally decorated with murals. The only surviving painting is Peter von Cornelius' fascinating depiction of the story of the Bavarian royal family.
The museum is open daily and admission is free for those 15 years of age and younger. The admission price for others is quite affordable. Allow several hours to explore the Residenz Palace.To get there: Underground (U-Bahn) lines U3 and U6 (Odeonsplatz);
bus line 100 (Odeonsplatz);
tramway line 19 (Nationaltheater)

Frauenkirche
Frauenkirche Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The foundation stone was laid by Duke Sigismund in 1468. The building measures 109 meters (358ft) high and is 40 meters (131ft) wide. Its distinctive domes, which were built in 1525 would serve as a model for many of Bavaria's towers.
The church is huge but simple. Much of the original gothic interior has been destroyed or removed partially by contra-reformists. In the crypt, you will find the tombs of the Wittelsbach family, where many dukes and bisshops are buried.
One of the most interesting things inside the church is the memorial grave in black marble of Prince Elector Kurfürst Maximilian I.
Also inside the church is the 'footprint of the devil'. According to the legend, the architect of the Frauenkirche, Jörg von Halsbach, promised the devil you could not see a window from the inside of the church. In return, the devil would help him build the Frauenkirche.
After he completed the building, the architect led the devil to the middle of the church from where you could not see a single window, although all churchgoers would sit in an area where a lot of light came through the windows. The devil would have stamped his foot with so much rage that his footprint was visible in the stone floor.

St. Michael
St. Michael Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

One of the most significant Renaissance churches north of the Alps, St. Michael's (Neuhauser Straße 6) was originally built for the Jesuits. The inside is lavishly decorated and home to the second largest free-standing vaults in the world. There is an interesting answer as to why the church does not have a tower: when the first tower was destroyed while being built, Duke William V took it as a bad omen and built a much larger church, but without a tower. In the so-called 'royal vault', visitors will come across the resting place of 40 members of the Wittelsbacher royal family.
(mon-fri 9.30am - 4.30pm, sat to 2.30pm)

BÜrgersaalkirche
BÜrgersaalkirche Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The Baroque Bürgersaal (Burghers' Hall) in Munich is a "double" church with a prayer hall above and lower under church beneath, was the meeting-place and place of worship of the Marian Congregation (a community under Jesuit direction). It was built in 1709-10 to the design of Giovanni Antonio Viscardi and has been in use as a church since 1778. It was destroyed during the Second World War and rebuilt in 1945-46.

Theatinerkirche
Theatinerkirche Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The Theatine Church is located diagonally opposite to the Feldherrenhall (Field Marshals' Hall) and the Hofgarten (Court Garden) on the Odeonsplatz (subway) and is within reach of the Marienplatz. The church's impressive yellow facade introduces a breath of Italy to Munich. Henriette Adelaide of Savoy, wife of the elector Ferdinand Maria, donated this church to the Italian Order of the Theatines in gratitude for the birth of the long-awaited heir to the throne Prince Max Emanuel. It was built in Baroque style and largely completed by 1688 by the masters Spinelli and Zucalli and received finishing touches in Rococo style by the Cuvilliés, father and son, in 1768. The donator did not live to see the church finished. The church's interior is unusual for Bavarian Churches. It is monumental and full of southern pathos , dominated by the white stucco works of the Italian stucco masters Moretti, Brenni and Perti. The church's high altar, whose gable figures represent dignitaries of the House of Savoy gives further evidence of the Italian influence. Several members of the House of Wittelsbach have been buried in the Fürstengruft (Royal Sepulchre), amongst those the Elector Ferdinand Maria, his wife Henriette Adelaide of Savoy, their son Max Emanuel, elector Karl Theodor, the Emperor Karl VII, King Max I and King Otto of Greece, as well as Prince Regent Luitpold. Today the church's southern annex, the former monastery of the Theatines, houses the Bavarian State Ministry of Education and Culture.
Open from May to November,
Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. and 2 - 4.30 p.m.,
Sat. 10 a.m. - 3 p.m

Asamkirche
Asamkirche Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

During 1729 - 1733 E.Q. Asam (a well known and respected architect and stuccoworker) bought four houses in the Sendlinger Straße. One became a private house (The Asam House), two were foreseen for the church and the fourth was the priest´s house. E.Q. Asam provided a window in his private house through which he could see the high altar of the church. Together with his brother - the painter and architect Cosmas Damian - he created a masterpiece of sumptuous Rococo. Although the brothers decided to built on own expense they had to open their church to publicity. Passing through the vestibül of the church, the visitor is confronted by an interior that seems a cross between lavish theater, auditorium and mystic grotto. The visitor will be overwhelmed by the wasteful fullness of light, colour, decoration, wood, stone, silver and gold in the high and narrow room, with a gallery running around it all sites. Because of the light you should visit the church in the morning hours.
Sendlinger Straße 32
Mon. - Sun. 8.00 a.m. - 5.30 p.m.

Schwabing
Schwabing Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Schwabing, popular among tourists and locals for its collection of bars, clubs, and restaurants, is a borough in the northern part of Munich: you will encounter it turning left or right from Leopoldstraße. It used to be a village only a few decades ago and was the legendary home to artists, intellectuals and writers throughout the 20th century.
Behind the facades of the art-nouveau period on Kaiserstraße, Hohenzollernstraße, Ainmillerstraße and Franz-Joseph-Straße are boutiques, second-hand shops, innumerable book stores and jewellery stores. Schwabing even has its own little victuals market: the Elisabethmarkt, at Elisabethplatz, sells fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and seasonings for all tastes, and is one of the most authentic sites of the borough.
St. Ludwig (Ludwigstraße 20) was built in the New Roman Byzantine style and boasts monumental wall paintings. Located opposite the Theatinerkirche St. Kajetan, St Ludwig's towers high over Schellingstraße. The interior, with frescos by Peter von Cornelius, exudes a peaceful, romantic atmosphere. The fresco Das jüngste Gericht, a copy of Michelangelo's Jüngstes Gericht in Rome, is one of the largest frescos ever painted. St.Ludwig's was built in 1829-44 by Friedrich Gärtner and acted as both the university and parish church. It was built at the request of King Ludwig I, who wished a church to be built on the newly constructed Ludwigstraße. The church was heavily damaged during the War, and repair work took until 1958 to complete. Nowadays, St Ludwig's basks in all its splendour.
The Siegestor is a three-arched triumphal arch crowned with a statue of Bavaria with a lion-quadriga, similar in style to the Arch of Constantine in Rome, the Marble Arch in London, the Arc de Triomphe in Paris and the Brandenburger Tor in Berlin. It is located between the university and the Ohmstraße, on the intersection of the Leopoldstraße and the Ludwigstraße.
The Walking Man, one of Munich's most famous landmarks, stands in front of an insurance building on Leopoldstrasse. The 17-metre-tall, 16-tonne figure by the American artist Jonathan Borofsky (1995) gives the impression of striving forward and serves as a symbol for a society geared to performance and dynamism. The sections were built in California before being shipped over and assembled in Munich.
The Schloss Suresnes (Mandlstr. - Werneckstr.) received it's Name from a Castle near Versailles. In the 20's famous artists, like Paul Klee and Ernst Toller, lived here. Today it is property of the Catholic Church.

 

Parks

Englischer Garten
Englischer Garten Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

The English Garden stretches from the center of the city (near Odeonsplatz) to the northern city border.  The park is both beautifully designed and historically very important as the first public garden on the Continent, which paved the way for the further development of public green areas in towns.
Englischer Garten Munich tourist board visit Munich BavariaWith its generous dimensions (one of the largest inner-city parks in the world, larger than Central Park in New York and Hyde Park in London) and constantly changing views of park architecture and landscape features, with its enclosed spaces and the play of light and shade, the English Garden is an outstanding example of a classical landscape garden; it is best known for its four beer gardens (Chinesischer Turm, Seehaus, Hirschau, Aumeister) and nude sunbathers.
Access: The best way to reach it is the bus No. 54 from "Muenchner Freiheit" underground station (exit at stop "Chinesischer Turm")

 
Olympiapark
Olympiapark Munich tourist board visit Munich Bavaria

Built for the 1972 Olympic Games, the Olympic complex is now used for a variety of leisure activities ranging from sports events to concerts. The 287m high Olympic Tower boasts a stunning view of the city and is open 9am-midnight, with the last ascent at 11.30pm. On a good day visitors can see as far as the Alps. There is also a rotating restaurant at the top. The famous canopy roof which spans the Olympic Stadium, the Olympic Swimming Pool and the Olympiahalle was very controversial in its day. It is, however, timelessly beautiful and has become an integral part of the modern cityscape. The Olympiaberg (Olympic Hill) is a grassy mound made from Second World War rubble and also provides great views. The ice rink and swimming pool are also popular with sports fans, as too is the Olympic Stadium, home to FC Bayern Munich, one of Europe's top football clubs.
Access: via underground, station "Olympiazentrum" Olympiapark München

Zoo

Hellabrunn Wildlife Park was founded in 1928 and was the world's first 'geo zoo', meaning that the 5,000 different species are exhibited according to their geographical origins. The spacious grounds on the plains of the River Isar lend themselves perfectly to a relaxing stroll. The elephant and predator enclosures and the huge aviary are well worth seeing and the feeding times (ask for information at the entrance) are a must. It is a good idea to go during the week because the zoo tends to fill to bursting point at the weekend.
Access: Underground (U-Bahn) line U3 (Thalkirchen).
Opening hours:
october - 24th march: 8 am - 6 pm
25th march - september: 9 am - 5 pm

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Museums

Deutsches Museum

Sailing ships, models of atoms, windmills, space probes, diesel locomotives, industrial robots, organs, lifeboats,...this unbelievable abundance of technical achievement - and lots more - can be found in the Deutsches Museum.
A house of superlatives: it is not only one of the first scientific-technological museums in the world, but also one of the most frequently visited, and with an area of 50,000 square meters the biggest of all. The laws of nature, instruments and technological methods are presented in this Mount Olympus of knowledge on a scientifically high level, yet in an enthralling and entertaining way. Machines hum, lightning flashes through the air, telescopes zoom in on star formations.
Learning by doing - this concept enthralls around 1.3 million people every year. And has been providing visitors with a comprehensive basic understanding of science and technology for one hundred years.
Understanding that is urgently needed to get to grips with a world that is becoming more and more complex. Also part of the Deutsches Museum: the Verkehrszentrum (featuring all kinds of vehicles - from formula 1 car to bicycle) and the Flugwerft (focussing on airplanes).
How to get there by public transport:
All S-trains (alight at Isartor),
Underground (U-Bahn) lines 1 and 2 (alight at Fraunhoferstraße),
Tramway line 18 (Deutsches Museum),
Bus line 131 (Boschbrücke).
Opening hours:
The museum, library and "Flugwerft Schleißheim" are open daily from 9 am to 5 pm.
The "Verkehrszentrum" is open daily from 9 am to 5 pm, on thursday to 8 pm

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Alte Pinakothek

The Alte Pinakothek is one of the oldest and most important galleries in the world. More than 800 masterpieces by European artists bring to life the development of art from the Middle Ages to the end of the Rococo period.
Venetian art is represented by its master painter Titian, as is Dutch baroque art by Frans Hals. Rubens occupies (with one of the largest collections of his works in the world) the center of the museum.
A further highlight is the Old German art by Altdorfer and Dürer. Both Dürer's epochal self-portrait from 1500 as well as his "Four Apostles" can be admired in the Alte Pinakothek.
How to get there by public transport: Tramway line 27 (Pinakotheken);
Bus line 154 (Schellingstrasse);
Underground (U-Bahn) lines U2 and U8 (Theresienstraße)
Opening hours: daily except of monday from 10 am to 5pm, on thursday to 8 pm

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Neue Pinakothek

Outstanding works of European art and sculpture from the late 18th to the beginning of the 20th century are in the spotlight of the Neue Pinakothek. One focus is on the German art of the 19th century - this collection, which goes back to the private collection of King Ludwig I, is one of the most comprehensive of all.
Works by Caspar David Friedrich show highlights of early romantic sentimentalism. Society painters such as Wilhelm von Kaulbach and Karl von Piloty represent the newly awakened interest for German history. The hall, with works by Hans von Marées, one of the most significant German artists, can be compared with no other museum.
With Thomas Gainsborough, Francisco Goya and Jacques Louis David, the Neue Pinakothek possesses celebrated portrait and landscape painters from England, Spain and France.
There is also a wonderful collection of French impressionists: artists such as Monet, Manet, Degas, Pissaro and Renoir are represented with principal works. Cézanne, Gauguin and van Gogh stand for the pioneers of the modern age. In addition to art, the Neue Pinakothek also shows important plastics of the relevant epoch.
How to get there by public transport: Tramway line 27 (Pinakotheken);
Bus line 154 (Schellingstrasse);
Underground (U-Bahn) lines U2 and U8 (Theresienstraße)
Opening hours: daily except of monday from 10 am to 5pm, on thursday to 8 pm

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