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Places of interest in Bavaria

No other German state has such a diverse range of landscapes and deep-rooted culture as the Free State of Bavaria. In addition to the stunning countryside with its wild, grandiose mountains, elegant deep blue lakes and picturesque river valleys, Bavarian tradition also has a particular influence on the allure of this unmistakable region. However, those are the Bavarian castles which remain the favourite among visitors from across the world.

  • Starnberger See The nearest lake, Starnberger See, is the second largest lake in Bavaria and a favourite place for the citizens of Munich to go and relax. Here you can walk in the footsteps of King Ludwig II and Empress Sissi. When the Empress visited Starnberger See, she and the entire royal household resided in what was then the Hotel Strauch in Feldafing and is today known as the Hotel Kaiserin Elisabeth. Sissi went bathing at the Feldafinger Strandbad bath which still exists, including the wooden changing cubicles. From here you can see the Roseninsel island where the Empress met with King Ludwig II in secret. More Information Less Information
  • Ammersee Ammersee is Bavaria’s third largest lake and attracts numerous tourists to the region. The world famous Andechs Abbey lies on the eastern shore of Ammersee.
  • Königssee The romantic Königssee lies nestled in the Berchtesgaden Alps. With its crystal clear, emerald green water, the mountain lake is a real tourist attraction. The rugged cliff faces of the great Watzmann (2,713 m) are reflected picturesquely on the surface of the water. St. Bartholomä, the emblem of the Königssee, can only be reached by boat. Standing on a peninsula, the world famous Wallfahrtskirche church is a striking sight. The Königssee echo is also world-renowned and is demonstrated by every captain proudly sounding his horn. More Information Less Information
  • The Zugspitze Amazing views from the peak of Germany’s highest mountain (2,962 metres). Up to 5,000 visitors climb the Zugspitze every day.
  • Oberammergau Picturesque Oberammergau is the location of the world famous Passion Plays which take place every ten years. However, a slightly less well known fact is that Oberammergau is the origin of the Lüftlmalerei (painted building façades) which is so typical of Bavaria and the Tyrol. The artistically painted houses can be seen and wondered at throughout the region. More Information Less Information
  • Herrenchiemsee Versailles in Upper Bavaria: walk in the footsteps of King Ludwig between the Herrenschloss palace and the Lustgarten. Schloss Herrenchiemsee is located on the Herreninsel island in the middle of the Chiemsee lake.
  • Rothenburg ob der Tauber Where every day is Christmas Day. The Middle Ages and romance await you in Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Half-timbered houses and cobbled alleyways lead through the many gateways. The perfect Christmas backdrop. The scent, gloss and joy of Christmas can be found here the entire year round in the Käthe Wohlfahrt Weihnachtshaus Christmas museum. There’s everything here, from the smallest Christmas tree decoration, shining baubles, countless nut crackers, and even the largest Santa Claus. More Information Less Information
  • Bad Tölz Bad Tölz lies in the middle of the Isar valley at the start of the Isarwinkel (bend in the Isar). Here you have a wonderful view over the limestone Alps of Bavaria and North Tyrol. Bad Tölz is a town extremely rich in tradition, with handsome town houses surrounded by idyllic alpine meadows and deep blue lakes. More Information Less Information
  • Wasserburg am Inn The almost fully intact mediaeval town centre and the bright house façades make Wasserburg am Inn a definite must-see. A specific point of interest of the town is its unusual geographical location. The old town stands on a peninsula in the Inn and can only be reached via the Innbrücke bridge. The 12th century Wasserburg castle stands majestically over the town. More Information Less Information
  • Mittenwald Mittenwald lies right at the foot of the Karwendel mountains, surrounded by lush alpine meadows and beautiful mountain huts. Mittenwald is the town of the violin makers, some of the world’s best violins are made in Mittenwald.

Places of interest in Munich

Munich is best known for the Oktoberfest. However, the Bavarian metropolis has a lot more to offer than the special atmosphere of the folk festival. The legendary Frauenkirche, the central Marienplatz or the unique chimes of the Munich Town Hall – there is an enormous amount to discover. Bavarian Schmankerln (specialities) such as “Brez’n” or “Weisswürstl” are served at the famous Viktualienmarkt. And in the extensive Englischer Garten, you can marvel at the city surfers or relax in one of the Biergärten.

  • Allianz Arena Already an historic site after hosting the opening game of the World Cup 2006. The state-of-the-art Allianzarena has walls made of 2874 inflatable cushions that can be individually lit to match the jerseys of the host team - be it red for FC Bayern München or blue for TSV 1860 München, who share the stadium

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  • BMW Welt Heart of the brand on the pulse of the city. In the BMW Welt, heart of the brand BMW, visitors can admire the latest models and discover technical details and sophistication Exciting tours through the BMW Welt, Museum and Plant give a behind the scenes insight into the history and production of the automobile manufacturer.

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  • BMW Museum The BMW Museum showcases the history of the BMW company, its brand and its products in an innovative and fascinating presentation format. Displayed over 5,000 square metres of exhibition space are around 125 of the brand’s most precious and appealing cars, motorcycles and engines.

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  • Viktualienmarkt In the most famous market right in the heart of Munich you can sense the distinct Munich congeniality. There are about 150 traders selling food and flowers in the roughly two hectare area. The market is just the place to stave off hunger and sample a few Bavarian “Schmankerln”: specialities such as “Obatzda”, “Brez’n”, “Weisswürstl” or “Brathändl”. More Information Less Information
  • The Olympic Park The Olympiapark sports complex was built for the 1972 Olympic Games. The 290-metre high Olympiaturm is a must-see in nice weather. It provides a spectacular view of Munich and on a clear day it is even possible to see the Alps.
  • Frauenkirche The Frauenkirche with its onion domes is a true emblem of Munich. In the vestibule of the impressive late Gothic interior you can find the legendary footprint of the devil in the floor of the church, to name but one interesting feature. According to the legend, master builder Jörg Ganghofer believed it impossible to construct such a large church and therefore struck a deal with the devil. In return for his help, the master builder had to promise the devil he would build a church without any windows. However, he outwitted the devil by building the church in such a way that the pillars which separated the side aisles from the central aisle completely covered the windows. The columns made the sides appear to be window-less walls. When the devil realised he had been outwitted, he was so annoyed that he stamped his foot in anger, leaving behind a footprint in the vestibule of the church. More Information Less Information
  • Englischer Garten New York has Central Park and Munich has the Englischer Garten. At over 3.7 km2 it is larger than Central Park in New York and one of Europe’s biggest city centre landscaped parks. This is a true oasis of relaxation in the heart of the city. In addition to the beautiful scenery, its attractions also include a number of Biergärten such as Seehaus. However, tourists are most amazed by the fact that the Schönefeldwiese located immediately behind the Haus der Kunst is actually a nudist area, right in the centre of the city. The world famous Eisbach flows alongside the meadow and city surfers can be found under the Eisbachbrücke bridge where the water rushes against the concrete wall at great speeds forming a wave. More Information Less Information
  • The Alte Peter Right in the centre above the rooftops: anyone who scales the 306 steps to the viewing platform of the Alte Peter in the centre of Munich will be able to see the Alps and even the Zugspitze on a clear day and enjoy the view over the entire city.
  • The chimes of the Munich Rathaus The chimes of the Munich Rathaus (city hall) consists of 43 bells. The chimes ring every day at 11 am and at noon. The so-called "Schäfflertanz” figures dance to the sound of the bells. Schäffler are coopers, whose profession is slowly dying out now that more and more breweries are switching from wooden barrels to aluminium barrels and containers. Today, the Schäfflertanz is the only remaining display of a historical Munich craftsman tradition. More Information Less Information
  • Karlsplatz (Stachus) Karlsplatz, also known as Stachus by the locals, is one of the most famous squares in the Bavarian capital. The large fountain with its many small jets is a very inviting way to cool down on a hot summer’s day. The famous Karlstor gate leads to Munich’s pedestrian zone (Neuhauser Strasse and Kaufinger Strasse) which continues on towards Marienplatz. More Information Less Information
  • Bavaria One of Munich’s emblems is the Bavaria statue on the Theresienhöhe hillside. The Bavaria is unusual in that the head of the statue contains a viewing platform with two benches. This is reached by a spiral staircase within the statue. It provides a wonderful view over the Theresienhöhe.
  • Marienplatz Marienplatz is located in the centre of Munich. It is often centre stage in events, such as the reception of successful citizens of Munich or to celebrate the great victories of FC Bayern Munich. The 11-metre high Mariensäule stands right in the middle of Marienplatz. The gold-plated statue of the Virgin Mary, the so-called "Patrona Bavariae” stands atop the column and is honoured as the patron saint of Bavaria. The favourite place for the citizens of Munich to meet on Marienplatz is the Fischbrunnen fountain. On Ash Wednesday the Lord Mayor of the city rinses his empty purse in the water of the Fischbrunnen. This is said to refill the city’s coffers. More Information Less Information
  • Schloss Nymphenburg Bavarian glamour and glory. Schloss Nymphenburg, the Schlosspark (palace gardens) and the small Parkburgen (pavilions) form one of the largest royal palaces in Europe.

Must-see places in Munich

Munich is a fascinating city. The Bavarian metropolis possesses many wonderful, intriguing places.

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  • 1. Dallmayr Munich’s traditional and stylish luxury delicatessen. A real paradise of delicacies awaits foodies in the historic halls. The store’s own gourmet restaurant is located on the first floor.
  • 2. Käfer One of the most traditional delicatessens in Munich, it has been one of the city’s most renowned delicatessens for the past 73 years, yet it still remains trendy.
  • 3. Elly Seidl In Munich’s oldest praline confectionery store situated between the Marienplatz and Promenadeplatz, delicious, hand-made speciality pralines are piled high behind the counter, and the saleswomen will happily pack them for you in an attractive parcel.
  • 4. Pinakothek der Moderne This is the most revered of Munich’s art galleries. The Pinakothek der Moderne is the third of the three Munich Pinakothek (galleries), located right next door to the Alter Pinakothek and diagonally opposite the Neuer Pinakothek. The most significant artistic developments in painting, graphics, design and architecture of the 20th and 21st centuries are presented in an area of more than 12,000 m².
  • 5. Museum Brandhorst Its background: private collector Udo Brandhorst offered his collection to the Free State of Bavaria which built him a museum to house all of his art. Its spectacular façade covered with 36,000 ceramic louvres in 23 colours was created by the architects Sauerbruch and Hutton and is a forcefully colourful response to the white glazed elegance of the Pinakothek der Moderne. Its three storeys display more than 700 classic modern works of art, from Joseph Beuys and Andy Warhol to Bruce Nauman.
  • 6. The Bavarian State Opera The Bavarian State Opera is one of the world’s most famous opera houses and the oldest opera in Germany. The world-famous American conductor Kent Nagano has been the technical director since 2006. The Munich Opera Festival is also held here every year from the end of June to the end of July. The festival lasts for 35 days and not only includes opera and ballet, but also a range of other musical performances.
  • 7. The Eisbach in the Englischer Garten The perfect wave: river surfing in the city. When you think of surfing locations, Hawaii and Australia immediately spring to mind. However, Munich is the German Mecca for surfing the waves. The Eisbach is one of the most famous river surfing spots in the world. Not only that, while there’s no beer in Hawaii, there’s plenty to go around in Munich.
  • 8. The Munich Residenz During the reign of the monarchy, the Wittelsbach kings ruled from the Residenz. Today, the building is used for a range of purposes: concerts are held on a regular basis in the Herkulessaal and the rooms of the Residenz also house the state collection of Egyptian art.
  • 9. The Alte Pinakothek The walls of the Alte Pinakothek display the paintings of the European Masters from the 14th to the 18th centuries. It offers a place to while away many an hour on a rainy day.
  • 10. Maxvorstadt Located between Siegestor, Königsplatz, the Pinakothek galleries and the university, the Maxvorstadt district of the city contains many trendy bars.
  • 11. LUDWIG BECK LUDWIG BECK named his flagship-store on Munich's Marienplatz “Kaufhaus der Sinne” (literally, “the department store of the senses”) with good reason: for it is a place where one can elude the daily grind for a little while. It is a place surrounded by its very own magic. Seven floors welcome you with a unique assortment of fashion, cosmetics, and music, paired with a passion for quality of service and trend awareness.
  • 12. Lodenfrey Here you can find almost anything – from traditional footwear and the good old loden jacket to the Gamsbarthut hat worn in the Tyrol. This department store is known around the globe for its range of traditional costumes and loden clothing which are particularly popular during the Oktoberfest.

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