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Top Munich Attractions

The first time you visit Munich, or any new destination, the question asked isn’t usually what attractions should be scene but what attraction to see first, what to expect, how to get there, and how much time is needed. We’ve provided tips, advice, and other information about the top tourist attractions in Munich to help with your itinerary planning.

Alte Pinakothek Alte Pinakothek
Deutsches Museum Deutsches Museum
The Olympic Grounds The Olympic Grounds
Beer Halls Beer Halls
Schloss Nymphenburg Schloss Nymphenburg

Alte Pinakothek

 Address Barer Strasse 27
 Admission $6.25 for adults, $3.50 for students and seniors. Free to those under 18.
 Hours Wednesdays to Sundays, hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
 Phone 089-23805216

Alte Pinakothek has nearly 900 paintings on display, a collection of the greatest European artists of the 14th to the 18th centuries. It is known as one of the most important art museums in the world. Why? To cite just one example: there are more Rubens on display here than you’ll find anywhere else in Europe. The collected works just grew and grew after the royal Wittelsbach family started it as a small court collection in the early 1500s. You will probably want to spend more than a day going through the dozens of rooms that house the artists. The works here of Albrecht Durer include his Christ-like Self-Portrait, which some art critics consider his best work. Another of his most famous works is his last: a two-paneled piece called The Four Apostles. Visitors will note that what makes this great art is that the Apostles are not idealized Roman statutes but real men with receding hairlines who in this portrait seem to be brooding. Other noteable works include Holy Family by Raphael and Madonna by Leonardo da Vinci.


Deutsches Museum

 Address Museumisenel 1
 Admission $9.40 for adults, $6.25 for seniors and $3.75 for students.
 Hours 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily
 Phone 089/21791

Deutsches Museum (German Museum of Masterpieces of Science and Technology). This is the largest technological museum in the world. It is also among the most popular places to visit here, drawing 1.5 million visitors a year. The museum was founded in 1906 by Oskar von Miller. It boasts a ton of “firsts” such as: first electric dynamo (Siemens, 1866), first automobile (Benz, 1886) and first diesel engine (1897). There are dozens of buttons to push and gears to crank. The knowledgeable, English-speaking staff gives demonstrations of glass blowing and papermaking, among other activities. Visitors will need time to see the 16,000 exhibits spread over four floors. The museum is divided into 45 sections. There are exhibits on mining, with a series of model coal, salt and iron mines. There’s also an electrical power hall with high-voltage displays that produce lightning. Large trains and motor cars are among many highlights here. Visitors should be sure to see the Aeronautics room where there’s an 1896 Lilenthal biplane that belonged to the Wright Brothers. Another can’t-miss room: the astronomy exhibition, which is the largest in Europe.


The Olympic Grounds

 Admission There’s a $5 charge for adults and $3.25 for children to ride up the tower.
 Phone 089/30670
 Website www.olympiapark-muenchen.dr

The Olympic Grounds, which was built for the 1972 Olympic Games, is a vast sports stadium that can be seen from almost anywhere in Munich. It’s the site of a 950-foot-tall television tower. The three main facilities here are the Olympic Stadium, which seats 62,000 visitors, the Olympic Hall and the Swimming Hall. The facility has one of the most original constructions of the 20th century with three areas covered by a vast transparent canopy, stretched between a series of tall masts to form a sort of tent. It took the work of more than 15,000 workers from 18 countries to transform the center into a park with nearly 5,000 trees, 27 miles of roads and 32 bridges. The real showpiece of the park is its stadium which is supported by two huge blocks. There’s a sports complex beside the park’s artificial lake that offers various sports events and concerts. There are also fireworks in the summer. Visitors can find German and international food at the Tower Restaurant or ride up the tower on the fastest elevator on the continent. Olympiapark is so large is has its own railway station, mayor and post office.


Beer Halls

 Address Residenzstrasse 12
 Phone 089/290/7060

The city’s famous beer gardens date back to the time when monks brewed their own strong beer and stored it in cellars under courtyards kept cool by busy chestnut trees. In the middle ages, beer was a food, particularly during Lent when the monks could drink but had limited food available. So it’s no accident that most beer is strong, though you can also order a blond version or a pils, which is slightly bitter but lighter. Today’s current beer halls evolved and many today still feature the monk’s old chestnut trees. The Hofbrauhaus is easily the most popular beer hall in Munich. It was established as a court brewery in 1589. The Schwemme, on the ground floor, is a large hall with painted ceiling. It can host 1,000 people. The beer garden itself is surrounded, of course, by chestnut trees. For those who are hungry, there’s an all-you-can-eat buffet. Lighter snacks are also available. 089/290/ A good place to get an inexpensive meal and a Lowenbrau is the Unions-Brau Haidhausen at the Max-Weber-Platz U-Bahn station, Einsteinstrasse 42. 089/477/6770. The Viktualien Markt beer garden in the Viktualien Market in the very center of Munich also offers some of the best budget food. Dozens of stalls sell Wurst. Biergarden-viktualienmarkt. Opera-lovers will appreciate the Spatenhaus, which offers a woodsy setting directly across the street from the opera.


Schloss Nymphenburg

 Address Schloss Nymphenburg 1
 Admission Admission covering most attractions is $13 for adults, free for children 6 and under. The Museum of Porcelain has a separate admission charge.
 Hours The park’s hours depend on the time of year.
 Phone 089/17980

If you ever wanted to see a real castle, Schloss Nymphenburg is among Europe’s most beautiful palaces. The palace grew up around an Italianate villa built in 1663. The palace was dedicated to the pastoral pleasures of the Goddess Flora and her nymphs (hence the name). It took more than a century to complete the palace, which features frescoes by an artist depicting Florida and her nymphs. The work of various famous artists, including J. Steiler, abounds in the large palace. Also on display here are the impressive coaches and sleighs of Ludwig I. His well-known longing for the grandeur of the past can be seen in his ornately designed, completely gilded state coach, which was meant for a royal wedding that was cancelled. The palace is set in the 500-acre Nymphenburg’s park, which has several pavilions. A peaceful canal runs through the park, which has on display an English-style garden. The park is also the site for the Porzellansammlung, or Museum of Porcelain. Some of the best pieces of porcelain in the 18th century are on display here, including some stunning miniatures that have noteworthy details. They were commissioned by Ludwig I.


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