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Things to do in Munich

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Nymphenburg Palace
The baroque palace in the west part of Munich was the summer residence of the Bavarian monarchs. Five generations of Wittelsbach rulers were involved in the construction of this stately ensemble, which houses several outstanding collections. With its lavishly decorated interior and the famous "Gallery of Beauties" commissioned by Ludwig I, the palace is one of Munich's favorite attractions. Among the highlights are the former bedroom of King Ludwig II and the impressive banquet hall with fine ceiling frescoes by Johann Baptist Zimmermann. The Nymphenburg Palace west of Munich is one of the largest royal palaces in Europe and is not to be missed on a sight-seeing tour through the Bavarian capital city. The oft-visited Baroque tourist attraction with it’s expansive landscaped garden and museum draws not only guests from around the world, but is also a beloved institution for Munich residents. In 1664, Prince Ferdinand Maria had the castle built as a present to his wife, who had borne him the long-awaited heir, Max Emanuel. Max Emanuel himself later played a significant role in expanding the palace layout.
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Marienplatz
Marienplatz is the central square in Old Town, Munich’s urban heart and the central point of the pedestrian zone. To the north is the magnificent neo-Gothic Neues Rathaus (“New Town Hall”), to the east the Altes Rathaus (“Old Town Hall”), and the passageway to Tal and the Viktualienmarkt (farmers’ market). To the south, the square is bordered by stores, office buildings, and restaurants. To the west, the pedestrian zone opens to Kaufingerstraße, which ends at the Karlstor (gate) located at the square known by locals as Stachus. Marienplatz has been the center of Munich since it was founded in 1158 and is the heart of the city. In the first few centuries, the approximately 100 x 50 meter large area was used as the central marketplace, which is attested to today by the fish fountain on the northeast corner of Marienplatz. In 1638 Elector Maximilian I had the Mariensäule (Mary’s Column) erected in gratitude for the city being spared during the Thirty Years’ War; Marienplatz takes its name from the Mariensäule. The column is used as a reference point in land surveying as the topological center of Bavaria. Today Marienplatz is a center for festivities and political, cultural, or sports events. During Advent, Munich’s oldest traditional Christmas market (“Christkindlmarkt”) takes place here.
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Munich Residence
The Munich Residence served as the seat of government and residence of the Bavarian dukes, electors and kings from 1508 to 1918. What began in 1385 as a castle in the north-eastern corner of the city (the Neuveste, or new citadel), was transformed by the rulers over the centuries into a magnificent palace, its buildings and gardens extending further and further into the town. The rooms and art collections spanning a period that begins with the Renaissance, and extends via the early Baroque and Rococo epochs to Neoclassicism, bear witness to the discriminating taste and the political ambition of the Wittelsbach dynasty. Much of the Residence was destroyed during the Second World War, and from 1945 it was gradually reconstructed. Today, with the museums of the Bavarian Palace Administration (the Residence Museum itself, the Treasury and the Cuvilliés Theatre) along with other cultural institutions, this is one of the largest museum complexes in Bavaria.
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Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall)
The Neue Rathaus (New Town Hall) is a magnificent neo-gothic building from the turn of the century which architecturally dominates the north side of Munich’s Marienplatz. The almost 100-meter-long (300 feet) main facade on Marienplatz is richly ornamented in neo-gothic style and shows almost the entire line of the house of Wittelsbach in Bavaria. The Glockenspiel in the tower balcony of the Neues Rathaus is also world famous and worth seeing. Since 1908, figurines representing stories from Munich’s history twirl on two levels daily at 11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., and 5:00 p.m. (the 5:00 p.m. show is omitted from November through February). In addition to the well-known coopers dancers, the Münchner Kindl (symbol of the city’s coat of arms), and the angel of peace also make an appearance in the almost 12-minute-long spectacle. At the top of the 85-meter-high (255 feet) tower on the city hall is an observation deck that can be accessed with an elevator and offers a grandiose view of the roofs of the city, even as far as the Alps in nice weather. In the generous and richly painted cellar vault of the Neues Rathaus is the Ratskeller, a traditional Munich restaurant since 1867.
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Asam Church
The late Baroque Asam Church is located on Sendlingerstraße just a few minutes’ walk away from the Sendlinger Tor (Sendling Gate). It was erected between 1733 and 1746 by the Asam brothers and bears the official name of St. Johann Nepomuk. Originally planned as a private church for the builder, its Baroque facade is integrated into the row of houses on Sendlingerstraße. Two massive rocks arise from the base of the columns at the entrance. The luxuriously furnished interior breaks from Baroque convention with its proportional distribution.
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Olympic Park
At Olympiaberg in Munich, every skier can find just the right slope. The highest hill in the city offers a variety of options for descending: gently descending slopes for everyone who wants to learn to ski and bobsled, and steep descents for those who like to fly across the snow. The Olympic Park in northern Munich is well known beyond the borders of the capital city. The unique tent architecture of the buildings and the Olympic Tower are some of Munich’s well known landmarks. After the Olympic Games in 1972, a 300-hectare-sized park was developed into a recreation center for the entire city. Joggers, cyclists, and walkers take their laps here, and swimmers do lengths in the Olympic swimming facility. At over 50 meters (150 feet) high, the Olympic Hill towers over the park grounds and is an ideal spot to enjoy a view of the roofs of Munich and to the mountains beyond.
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Beer & Oktoberfest Museum
Munich is the capital of beer - with six breweries, the Hofbräuhaus and the Oktoberfest. Interested in the story of beer? So go into the Bier- und Oktoberfestmuseum. Learn more about the history of beer from migration of peoples, the monasteries, the purity law, and the unique quality of Munich's beer. And what about the story of the Oktoberfest? Established as the national festival for King Luis's wedding with Princess Theresa from Sachsen Hildburghausen to the world's great fair. Moreover, you can visit one of Munich's historical buildings.
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Deutsches Museum Verkehrszentrum
The Deutsches Museum shows its impressive collection of track and road vehicles in a completely new light. Historical coaches or steam locomotives take you to the roots of mobility. Exhibits and demonstrations clarify the interaction between the pleasure and tribulations of mobility. Motion as the basic principle of life, from inline-skate to Transrapid, is another topic. The exhibition was opened in 2003 in the historic halls of the old Exhibition Center.
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St.Peter
"The Kirche St. Peter (“Church of St. Peter”) is one of Munich’s landmarks, the oldest parish church in the city, and is known affectionately by the locals as Alter Peter (“Old Peter”). The church stands on a hill called Petersbergl, which is the only noteworthy elevation within the Munich’s historic Old Town.
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English Garden
"The Englische Garten (“English Garden”) is one of the largest urban parks in the world. The layout has undergone constant change throughout the centuries as new buildings and green spaces were added time and again.
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Linderhof Palace
Situated in the midst of the Bavarian Alpine foothills, Schloss Linderhof (Linderhof Palace) attracts visitors to the imperial villa with its spacious landscaped garden and impressive terraces.
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Jewish Museum
Together with the Synagogue and the Jewish Community Center the Jewish Museum Munich forms part of the Jewish Center at St.-Jakobs-Platz. It is situated in immediate proximity to Marienplatz and Viktualienmarkt.
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Lustheim Palace
Exemplary pleasure palace with novel (for the time) ceiling frescoes. Maximilian Emanuel's "hunting palace" was built to celebrate his marriage to the Emperor's daughter, Maria Antonia, in June 1685. The palace houses an outstanding collection of Meissen porcelain from the Ernst Schneider Foundation. The collection includes over 2,000 valuable plates, table centerpieces and animal figures, and is surpassed only by the collection in the Dresdner Zwinger Palace.
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Neue Pinakothek
Outstanding works of European art and sculpture from the late 18th to the beginning of the 20th century are in the spotlight of the Neue Pinakothek. One focus is on the German art of the 19th century - this collection, which goes back to the private collection of King Ludwig I, is one of the most comprehensive of all.