20 Top Tourist Attractions in Munich

Martina Rosado
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Hofgarten

Pinakothek der Moderne

(The Art Museum of Modern Art)

You are surely one of the many people who are excited to visit a new country, and you are happily visiting your destination when the problems start. These are the moments when you just wished you had packed a guide book; especially in Munich, where this is especially the case.

There is a lot to see in this beautiful city, regardless of whether you have a small time or are planning to spend a long while in the area. Right away after you land, you can be excited by the sights of the Cuvier Institute or the KUNSTHEIM Museum of Modern Art.

We’ll start with the first one because it is interesting enough to feature its location on the top 20 tourist attractions. Before we begin, what you need to know is that the museum is housed within the Cuvier Institute for Research on Domestic Animals. The place is famous among all those who love modern art. There are almost 2,000 paintings and sculptures of varying styles and sizes. There is also a collection of photographs that highlight the area’s culture.

The Cuvier Institute was established in 1969. It was set up to honor Georges Cuvier, a French zoologist who structured the science of his time. At the start, the institute was a private museum but soon after, it was made public to the public.

Olympiapark

Built in the mid-early 20th century for the Olympic games, this park represents the largest stadium in all of Germany. Even at its much smaller size, it is the 5th largest stadium in the world and 10th in the world for sporting events.

The Olympics in Munich led to the construction of the Olympic Park and it has been home to a variety of sporting events since the Olympics. From international level sporting events, to domestic sporting events, many sporting events take place here every year.

There are various sports fields, tracks, football pitches, and even a driving track. In-between all this human activity, there is the Olympic stadium. The stadium can also be used for other sporting events, with the Super Bowl even having been held there.

Olympiapark is the home to over 1,600 trees of varying species and also houses an impressive structure known as the River City Tower. This is an observation tower used for taking in the view of Munich.

For a budget-friendly way to see the city if it’s not the time of year for Oktoberfest, Olympiapark is a great option.

St. Peter's Church

This masterpiece, a three-fold church, was built at the beginning of the 13th century. Its basis is the ancient church of St. George. The cathedral boasts a beautiful stained glass window and is home to the “Crack Pipe Organ”, an 1835 model by Vacco, with over 2,500 stops and 15,000 pipes. This organ, which was known by its nickname, “Curl pipe”, is considered a miracle by organists from all over the world. It is also one of Europe’s largest organs.

The building stands on the highest hill in the area and offers, from its height, a panoramic view of the north, west, and south city. In addition to St. Peter’s Church, the hill is home to the City Tower and St. Mary’s Church. The entrance to the church is through a portal on the north wall. The central cross-ribbed vault originally spanned the nave and was flanked on each side by exterior pillars. The nave is divided by a passage with side chapels. The southern section, that includes two side chapels, was added later. This is the location of the marble High Altar and organ case. A wooden scaffold from the ceiling is carved with cherubs.

Allianz Arena Stadium

The Allianz Arena is the home stadium of Bayern Munich, and used to be known as the Olympiastadion. Built for the 1972 Summer Olympics, it hosted the opening and closing ceremonies, the football final, and track and field events. Since the Olympics, it has also hosted six International Champions Cup football (soccer) matches. It hosted the Final of the UEFA Champions League in 2012.

The stadium was originally planned to host six matches at the 2006 FIFA World Cup but had to reduce the number due to high demand on the hosting service. It was also the site for two matches during the 1999 Rugby World Cup, and most recently for the 2014 UEFA Champions League Final.

To make it accessible for events and all possible sports, the stadium was renovated and expanded several times. In 2007, the stadium was renovated for a cost of 21 billion euros. The roof, which had until then only been used for big events, replaced the entire natural grass field. The stands were rebuilt in a horseshoe shape to completely surround the field, with the Olympic-size swimming pool between the pitch and the stands.

The stadium hosted the finals of the UEFA Euro 2008 football tournament, the 2008 FIFA World Cup Final, and the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup Final. In addition, two Champions League finals were held at the Allianz Arena, in 2001 and 2012.

New Pinakothek

This museum features art from the Middle Ages, and it’s housed in the former Royal Residence of Bavaria. So, its art collection includes oil paintings, drawings, and a host of other works.

Eisbach Wave

Odeonsplatz

Asam Church

Neues Rathaus

The Neues Rathaus or New Town Hall of Munich is the main building of city hall. It stands at 19.30 m (63 ft) high. The building was designed by Georg von Dollmann in neoclassicist style. Today's ground floor is occupied by a restaurant and the upper floors comprise the town hall.

The entrance to the building is in the middle of architecturally significant Karlsplatz square.

Most of this was built between 1591 and 1598. The tower, built between 1796 and 1810, has a height of 53 m (174 ft). The foundation for the ornamental spire is an ancient Roman tower. The top is covered with a dome in the form of an octagon, designed by Paul Troger.

It is classified as a historical monument and protected under the Bavarian Monument Protection Act.

Neues Rathaus has always been the headquarters of the city council. The first section in the north was the meeting hall, the second section in the south is the mayor's office. The building is, however, used for a multitude of other purposes. The city council has its offices in parts of the building.

Viktualienmarkt

The Viktualienmarkt, in the center of Munich, is one of the largest open-air fresh food markets in Europe. It is located just a few minutes walk from the Theresienwiese, home of Oktoberfest. Here you'll find a huge variety of fresh food to choose from, especially seasonal Bavarian products.

Check out the flowers, cook with an array of local produce, taste strange cheeses, enjoy coffee, eat your lunch in a beer garden and most importantly, take the opportunity to fall in love with the amazing German culinary diversity that you'll never encounter in other cities!

Alte Pinakothek

(Old Pinakothek)

The Alte Pinakothek is a large art gallery located on the Museum Island in Munich. It houses a collection of paintings that includes Italian Primitives, German Baroque, Dutch Golden Age, and German Romanticism.

The building was commissioned by Prince Elector Charles Theodore in 1754 and was completed in 1764. It was built to the plans of the architect Johann Dientzenhofer. The building was extended by architect Ignaz Venzmer after the opening of the Hall of Hercules in 1833. The neighboring Neue Pinakothek was opened in 1866.

The Alte Pinakothek is an example of the so-called Biedermeier Style, an international architectural fashion inspired by the style of Louis XIV in France.

This style, which was common also in other parts of Europe, is characterized by plain walls, solid surfaces and concrete for the foundation. The roof was constructed of copper in 1836. The building is accessed by two steps, the main hall lies on 19 columns.

The building was renovated thoroughly in 2004, and the formerly small main and ground floor exhibit space was enlarged to four times its original size.

Deutsches Museum

Munich Residenz

BMW Welt & Museum

Nymphenburg Palace

(Neue Hofreitschule)

The palace was built between 1745 and 1760 and is a baroque style building in white facade. The Nymphenburg Castle museum is located within the premises of the palace which presents the history of the Bavarian King Ludwig I.

Within the palace, you can imagine the life of the royal family during that period of time. The museum has over 70 rooms with paintings and tapestries to see. The King with the Seven Peers pictures are quite impressive in size with the mural design in decoration.

The spectacular garden Reitschule offers a view of Nymphenburg palace and is a must-see at the grounds. The gardens offer an insight into history of the beautiful palace and are embellished with fountains, gazebos, bridges and statues, making them a sight to behold.

You can also see the collection of fine arts at the museum, which has the world’s largest collection of Landscapes by Joseph Anton Koch. Exhibits include the largest single piece of painting in the world, a theatrical work weighing 126 kilograms. The number of visitors is limited to 2000 per day to ensure the accurate presentation of the objects along with the constant temperature and humidity.

Munich Frauenkirche

Munich Frauenkirche was built in the 15th century and is currently the largest Protestant church in Munich and the largest church building in Germany completely built before 1730.

The Frauenkirche is an unusual church structure, with a nave and a square bell tower at one end and a domed roof and three domes at the other. The interior of the church is dominated by a gilt altar, which was built in 1891. Before 1891, a much simpler altar stood here, which is now in the nearby Neue Pinakothek. The Munich Frauenkirche was designed by Georg von Dollmann.

Hofbrauhaus

The Hofbrühaus, located at Marienstrasse 9, in Munich, is one of the largest beer breweries in the world, with 118 thousand square meters of brewing facilities. The Hofbrauhaus is not just for tourists, it has served the Munich region with its brewing and feasting services for over 500 years.

It is the world’s largest functioning brewery and a famous landmark, as well as being Munich’s most famous beer hall. It is a fun place to experience Munich.

It is one of the most famous beer halls in the world, with great live music that is a combination of traditional German music and jazz.

The Hofbrühaus is also a very popular attraction for tourists in Munich. The building itself is a typical urban construction of the 19th century. In the first half of the century, it was built so that the hall could accommodate 5,500 people. However, before the end of the century and the start of World War II, the building’s capacity had been increased massively.

Englischer Garten

It is away from the old town of Munich, but still within walking distance. It’s the oldest public park in Europe and was meant to be the “English Garden for the Expression of 17th-Century German Classicism.

When you visit it, you will see that it is accurately named; there are wonderful elaborate water gardens and plenty of greenery. The park is called Tivoli in German and is a great place to take the little ones; there are playgrounds and lots of activity for kids.

If you are tired of the crowds of the old town, the English Garden is a great alternative. It is also a great place to lay down a blanket and enjoy the weather.

Drive time 40 minutes.

Hofbrühl Spaziergang:

The Hofbrühl Spaziergang is a great place to experience some old Bavarian charm. It is a picturesque walk in an area where you see how the old town used to be. It has from the 15th century, which was the time when the Hofbrühl, once one of Munichs most powerful families, were living in this area.

It is a wonderful place to get away from the crowds and stress and walk among the history. It is about two hours from the city center.

Marienplatz

The Marienplatz, or simply Marienplatz (until 1918) is the largest city square in Munich and a popular tourist attraction. The square is dominated by the red-brick opera house "Gärtnerplatzhaus", the construction of which started on 1 September 1750. The square has also been the hub of traditional Oktoberfest celebrations since their inception.

Oktobefest celebrates beer and traditional Bavarian Food. Marienplatz is the heart of the festival, with interior halls where the beer, food and entertainment are spread in abundance.

The square is flanked on the west by the Franziskanerkirche and the Jesuit university church of St. Michael, Michaeliskirche, on the north by the Naschmarkt, the on the east by the Residenz and the Neues Rathaus. The square is quite large, taking up two city blocks in area.