12 min read
After our Travel Expert Ellis spending 48 hours in Naples and bringing you some amazing travel recommendations, our Head of Operations Sam takes you on a journey to Munich, the capital city of Bavaria.
This week, BRB is transporting you to a city famous for its beer halls, beer gardens and beer festivals. I’m talking about the capital of the state of Bavaria, and Germany’s third largest city, the marvellous Munich! Although beer is a big part of Munich’s culture, there is so much more to this city than just the refreshing beverage. Though don’t get me wrong, the beer is a plus!
Munich is often overshadowed by Berlin, but it really shouldn’t be. There are royal palaces, stunning churches, and ornate architecture all ready to take your breath away. These historic buildings blend seamlessly into the modern city streets, which bustle with the atmosphere of people who know how to have a good time. The lush green spaces, friendly taverns, and quirky traditions create a feeling we in England don’t even have a word for but that the Germans term gemütlichkeit. This word refers to a feeling of comfort, acceptance, peace and good cheer. If that doesn’t sound like the recipe for a good holiday, I don’t know what does!
Navigating your way around everything Munich has to offer in just 48 hours is a hard task. But don’t worry, I’ve done it for you! You can thank me later! For now, read on and get excited about all the amazing things Munich has in store for you.
After a two hour flight from London Gatwick, I land at Franz Josef Strauss International Airport (the main airport in Munich). I want to make the most of my time in the city so I jump in a taxi and head straight to the 3* Cocoon Hauptbahnhof to drop off my bag.
You want your experience in Munich to be unforgettable? Cocoon Hauptbahnof is the place to be! In the heart of Ludwigsvorstadt in a quiet side street and only a few minutes’ walk from the main train station in Munich, you can immerse yourself into an Alpine experience. There is no way you need to give up all the comforts of modern urban living.
Decorated as a mountain cabin and at the same time a train station hotel (how exciting?) Cocoon Hauptbahnhof in Munich will become your favourite hotel. And with an average score of 4.5 I know this will be a great experience!
Kick of your trip with breakfast Munich style at Café Frischhut. This charming little bakery is reputed for serving the best schmalznudel in the city. Schmalznudel is a traditional Bavarian pastry made from deep-fried dough, crisp on the outside and soft on the inside, sort of resembling a donut.
Photo Credit: @munichfoodist
Maybe not a particularly healthy breakfast option but it’s all in the name of embracing the local culture! Pair with a fresh coffee and you will be ready to start your DIY walking tour of some of Munich’s top sites.
Start at the Frauenkirche, otherwise known as the Church of Our Lady, whose two iconic copper-green domed towers have become a symbol of the city. Admire the late Gothic architecture, peak around the small inner chapels, and find the grave of Holy Roman Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian.
Photo Credit: @munich_notes
Try and locate the ‘devil’s footstep’ at the entrance, which is a viewpoint from where the Frauenkirche’s interior appears completely windowless.
Finish here and you will be right on the Marienplatz’s doorstep. The Marienplatz is Munich’s central square and is often referred to as the heart of the city. In the middle of the square, you will find the Mariensäule column which is topped with a golden statue of the Virgin Mary who glints marvellously in the morning sun. On the east side of the square, you will find the Old Town Hall, a building whose history goes back to 1310.
Photo Credit: @haiderhelmut
Overshadowing the Old Town Hall is its replacement, The New Town Hall. This massive, ornate, Gothic building towers over Marienplatz. Make sure to arrive here slightly before 11 and take a place amongst the crowds gathering in front of the building for the famous Rathaus Glockenspiel show. At 11 on the dot, a 15-minute performance involving 43 bells and 32 life-size figures begins depicting two traditional Bavarian stories.
Photo Credit: @babox71
End your morning at St. Peter’s church, the oldest church in the city. Brave the 299 steps up to the top of the tower for extraordinary panoramic views of the city. You can spy all the buildings you just visited, and, on a clear day, you can even see as far as the alps.
Photo Credit: @munich.ig
Just thinking about that long morning of sightseeing has my stomach rumbling! Lucky for you the Viktualienmarkt is conveniently located right behind St. Peter’s Church. Describing the Vitualienmark as a food market is a bit of an understatement.
Photo Credit: @mybestspaces
Both tourists and locals flock here for the amazing atmosphere, sprawling stalls and delicious food. With a limited number of meals in Munich, this is a great way to sample a handful of the local specialities. Hop from stand to stand trying traditional soups, sausages and pretzels. And of course, wash it all down with a beer!
With energy levels replenished, move on to the Munich Residenz. The former royal palace of the House of Wittelsbach, the Residenz is an absolute must see. Within the stunning façade, is room after room all decorated with indescribable splendour. There are also all kinds of historic artifacts to be discovered, including a statue of Perseus beheading Medusa and containers of saints’ bones.
Photo Credit: @msubirats
As the evening rolls in, only one place seems acceptable to celebrate your first full day in Munich, and that is the city’s oldest beer hall, the Hofbrauhaus. Built 500 years ago, the hall feels like a slice of traditional Bavarian life. Rows of benches are paired with a friendly upbeat atmosphere and there is even a band who play folk music to really get you into the Munich spirit.
Photo Credit: @daniel_mssnflash
For dinner, head to Augustiner-Keller. Dating back to the early 1800s, this restaurant serves the tastiest of authentic local delicacies. The stone ceiling, candlelight, kegs and traditional wooden seating, all add to the wonderful and relaxed atmosphere.
Photo Credit: @awtray
Munich is buzzing by day and only gets more electric at night! Ease yourself into the night ahead with a drink at Alte Utting, a fun and wacky bar which lives inside an old ship resting on a disused railway bridge!
Photo Credit: @boredinmunich
If you want to take it up a notch, just around the corner is Bahnwärter Thiel, a club and event space that rivals Alte Utting for its quirkiness! Spread across shipping containers, an old subway carriage and a decommissioned tram you will find bars, club scenes and outdoor raves. This is an awesome party space where the techno beats will last all night long.
Photo Credit: @mitvergnuegen_muenchen
Begin your second day in Munich by paying your respects at the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. Munich was the capital of the Nazi movement and Dachau was the first Nazi concentration camp, opening in 1933. Located just outside the city, you can reach Dachau by taking the S2 underground train, followed by the 726 bus to the memorial.
Photo Credit: @jojouerdingen
It is a harrowing experience to walk around remembering the 200,000 prisoners who were held here but it is a part of Munich’s history that should not be missed.
Return to the city centre and have your faith restored in humanity at the Asamhof Passage. This little alley is tucked away just behind the busy Marienplatz, and it feels like a secret oasis. The passage is almost entirely covered with brightly coloured umbrellas which provide shade for al fresco diners. What will really blow you away however are the reems and reems of gorgeous flowers!
Photo Credit: @markus_weinkopf
Grab some lunch at one of the many sweet little cafés here. Next, head to the Englischer Garten or the English Garden. I know, I know, you didn’t fly all the way to Germany to see something English – but trust me it’s worth it! Spreading across 900 acres, this wonderful park is splendid for a sunny afternoon stroll. It’s home to a Japanese Tea Room, a Chinese Tower, a small Greek temple and even the second largest beerhall in Munich.
Photo Credit: @maximilian.wittmann
Running through its centre is the Eisbach, a small manmade river, which provides endless entertainment for splashers, swimmers, surfers and spectators alike. Yes, you read that correctly, you can even surf on the rapids of this river! Watch the pros with an obligatory ice cream in hand! Finish up your afternoon with a potter around a museum.
Try the Alte Pinakothek, one of the oldest galleries in the world, or the Pinakothek der Moderne, where you’ll find art from the 19th and 20th centuries. The Alte Pinakothek collection includes masterpieces by artists such as Vincent Van Gogh and Leonardo da Vinci, while the Pinakothek der Moderne showcases works by René Magritte, Henri Matisse, Judith Joy Ross and more. Whichever you choose, prepare to be blown away by incredible artwork.
Photo Credit: @simplymunich
We have something a little bit different for your final evening in Munich. The Müllersches Volksbad is an incredible Art Nouveau complex with a swimming pool, Roman steam bath and a Finnish-style sauna. Swim a couple of laps, gawking at the intricate decorations of the ceilings and walls, before relaxing in the bath and sauna.
Photo Credit: @muenchen
Swanning around this building feels like the height of elegance. You could even add a massage to the experience and sip on a glass of prosecco at the sophisticated pool bar if you’re feeling extra fancy!
The glamour continues with a delicious dinner at Theresa’s Bar and Restaurant. The stylish and softly lit restaurant offers a diverse menu of sumptuous dishes guaranteed to tickle your tastebuds. For the cherry on top, compliment your meal with one of their many enticing cocktails. You may feel sad that your holiday is coming to its end, but I still have one last trick up my sleeve!
Photo Credit: @mitvergnuegen_muenchen
The Nymphenburg Palace is spectacular by day but at night it appears truly magical. Lit up from corner to corner, the grand archways look magnificent and the palace seems to sparkle. Admiring this beautiful building is the perfect way to bring your time in Munich to an end.
Photo Credit: @44muc
If like me you love taking short weekend breaks across Europe and spending 48 hours in cities like Barcelona, Prague, Porto, Split, Bologna, Stockholm or Venice, but if like me you hate wasting hours trawling travel sites to plan and research your next weekend break, only to be hit by increased flight prices just before booking, then BeRightBack is for you!
The team at BeRightBack believes that the mission of a travel company should be to save you both time and money.
With BeRightBack, you get three trips a year to three surprise European destinations, all for the monthly cost of £49.99, which includes your return flights and your hotel.
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I hope you enjoyed my 48 hours city guide to Munich and do not hesitate to use our website chat or to email us if you have any questions!
Sam Norman (Head of Operations at BeRightBack)
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