Lay of the Land
“Paris is the most beautiful city in the world, then comes Rome, then quickly thereafter Munich.”~Frank Wedekind, 1913
The City Center, which holds most of the major sites, museums and restaurants, is easy to navigate on foot. Other neighborhoods, like Schwabing, the Glockenbach Viertel and Maxvorstadt are easily reached via the city’s excellent subway and tram system or with a taxi.
Munich is a great base from which to explore the nearby alpine countryside, a paradise for outdoor aficionados who flock to hike at the Zugspitze, in Berechtesgaden National Park and around Lake Chiemsee. The Bregenz Opera Festival draws crowds to its lakeside setting every year, and Neuschwanstein Castle, a fairytale concoction on a hilltop, is one of Germany’s most visited attractions. Less overrun is scenic Schloss Herrenchiemsee and the castles and glorious mansions along the Romantic Route, which kicks off in Würzburg and runs from Würzburg towards Munich. Another scenic drive culminating in yet another wonderful European town is the one-and-a-half hour route to Salzburg.
When to Go
It is best to visit Munich in the spring when the city boasts lovely mild weather and few crowds. The winter is also a magical time to come when the city lights up with Christmas markets and festivals. Summers can get very hot and touristed, and in the fall the city becomes rowdy with Octoberfest.