Welcome to the secret capital of Germany, Munich; where traditions, thriving innovation, and scenic outdoors await you. Rich in Bavarian culture and the powerhouse of its economy, Munich is a significant city in Germanic political history.
Words by Venus Chircop | Extract taken from September's 2023 Il-Bizzilla Magazine
As the third-largest city in the country, the people of Munich place balance, work ethic and well-being central to their lifestyle and way of creating a pleasant society. With beautiful parks, impressive architecture, and a myriad of events and attractions, Munich has much to offer on any traveller's visit.
Munich is known for its greenery, where city living exists in an abundance of flourishing parks. Pay a visit to the English Gardens, one of the city's largest parks stretching from the centre to the outskirts. Enjoy panoramic views as people engage in all outdoor activities, such as yoga, Tai Chi, surfing or rowing on the Kleinhesseloher See lake, also found in the garden.
Do not miss out on sampling German cuisine while you’re here; excellent food is plentiful across the city. Known for its pork dishes, try local pork knuckle, written as Schweinshaxe. A curious attempt is the Bavarian white sausage delicacy, Weisswurst, made from minced veal together with pork and herbs. Not to mention the classic schnitzels, pretzels and hearty potato stews. Beer gardens and halls serve most of these authentic dishes alongside your drinks. Nothing goes better with German beer than a bowl of golden brown pretzels - the perfect beer-bar combo!
Bavarians take pride in their customs and festivals, such as Oktoberfest. There is no other better month to visit Munich than September! This year will be the 188th Oktoberfest celebration between September 16th to October 3rd. This world-renowned beer festival takes place every year - the ideal opportunity to experience the best of traditional German merry-making, food specialities, and craft beer.
If you're well-timed to be there on the first day of the festivities, reserve seating at an outdoor bar and watch the opening day parade go by with 9,000 participants marching in traditional clothing representing the different clubs and villages of Bavaria - then begin the celebrations with tent hopping! At Oktoberfest, beer gardens are set up in tents, each with a different atmosphere and theme, offering a new traditional food to indulge in. For the more daring, have a turn on the amusement rides, or if you feel the beer having its way with you, play the arcade games and attempt your go to win prizes.
Yet, even if you miss Oktoberfest, you will not miss out on the famous beer culture Munich is known for. The city's beer halls and gardens are integral to its social life. Have your experience of local bear culture and head to the sought-after Roofgarden Lounge on the 6th floor in the Hotel Bayerischer Hof. Featuring a breakfast buffet as well as an à la carte seating area in plush, modern interiors. Another well-recommended beer garden is the smaller Keisergarten in an art nouveau house with a lovely shaded area. Dine at its exquisite eatery, with regional beers and wines accompanying your meal.
Ingenious as the nature of this city is, you'll find beer gardens on the water too! Book a ride on a passenger raft at Seitner Jose, and expect nothing but a thrill. Like no other raft on the water, you'll be accompanied by a live-instrumental band as you slide down a river with an overflowing pint in hand!
Once you are done with the festivities, you'll find many other attractions to occupy your time. Visit the incredible Deutsches Museum, one of the world's largest science and technology museums. You'll get lost on the many floors and buildings exhibiting thousands of objects and immersive installations spanning over 50 fields of science and engineering. From model railways to atomic physics, pharmaceuticals, electronics to health, and musical instruments, you're bound to find an exhibit to inform any personal curiosity.
As the old capital of the Kingdom of Bavaria, visiting Munich is an endless delight in landmarks and monuments for history buffs. Take a tour around the former royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs, the Residenz München, boasting opulent interiors and a vast collection of art and antiques. Another must-see is the grand Nymphenburg Palace. This stunning baroque palace has beautifully manicured gardens to stroll through as you contemplate its historical significance.
So whether you’re seeking to immerse yourself in history and culture, visit countless museums, explore architectural beauty, spend time outdoors or enjoy a beer the way the locals do, Munich will not leave you unattended!