Part 1: Munich Essentials - How to get there, where to find hotels, how to stay connected.
Destination: Munich Germany
- Founded: June 14th, 1158 by Henry the Lion, Duke of Saxony.
- It's Germany's third largest city.
- Munich has the second biggest number of working people in Germany.
- Munich has 10 Universities as well as 45 Museums and Collections.
Munich Germany Quick Facts
Munich is located near the geographical center of the Southern German region of Bavaria. The population of Munich is 1.2 million people, about 280,000 of which are foreigners. About 80% of Munich was bombed by the Allies during World War II and subsequently rebuilt.
Getting to Munich
From Munich's airport, Franz Josef Strauss Flughafen, you can get to the Hauptbahnhof (the city's main train station) by S-Bahn #8. The bus station is near the train station, which is located on the northwest corner of the old city: [Munich map]
While German is, of course, the main language used in Munich, English is widely spoken and taught in schools. Most restaurants in the town center offer English menus, many with quite interesting translations. It is easy to get by with little or no German language knowledge.
There are many hotels within walking distance of the main train station. The average price of a reasonable (or inexpensive) hotel with private bath and breakfast is around 100 €. We stayed at the Hotel Europäischer Hof for 99 €. The Hotel Monaco, nearby on Schillerstrauss, was voted the best two star hotel in Germany.
The recommended youth hostel is found on nearby Senefelderstrasse. Euro Youth Hotel is number 5 on the left side of the road coming from the train station.
Other user-rated Munich hotels can be booked directly through Venere: Munich Hotels
Munich Climate and Weather---When to Go to Munich
The climate of Munich differs from a Mediterranean climate in that there is more chance of rain in the summer than winter. Expect moderate temperatures in the summer, cooling for Oktoberfest. For weather and climate graphs, see: Munich Travel Weather.
If you find yourself in the tourist center near the Marienplatz, The Neues Rathaus (The New City Hall) has two "kellers", a winestaube and a beer cellar. The winestaube has music (accordion when we were there) starting at 5. The beer cellar has good food, but don't be persuaded to sit in one of the empty rooms, enter the hall from the Diener Street entrance and try to find a table in the big, noisy, main room where Munichers eat. They do try to funnel English speaking people into dull, empty rooms.
In Depth: Best Munich Restaurants.
Tipping in Munich
While service is included in the bill, generally waiters are tipped 5% for good service.
Internet Access in Munich
Internet access is right in the main train station. Just follow the signs to the Times Square Bistro. They charged us .5 Euro for 5 minutes, a bit steep for Europe, but you can sit anywhere in front of a big LCD screen, order a beer and feel you're part of a bar scene rather than crammed into a steamy room full of beige boxes. The Bistro features a friendly owner, too. Just take a seat and start surfing--the time is recorded automatically.
There are other internet services near the station on the south side of Bayer Strasse.
Nudity and Munich's English Garden
Now here's a controversy for you--the tourist powers that be are worried that there aren't enough attractive natives baring it all in the middle of Munich. Yup, that's right, nudity was once a feature of designated areas of the Englischer Garten and the practice is fading--you used to be able to count on gawking at naked people downing liters of beer in the beer gardens. Perhaps you can apply to be a token Munich nudist and make money while vacationing--if I hear anything I'll let you know.
In any case, Munich's Englischer Garten is the largest in Europe and twice the size of Central Park. And you can still practice your nudity there while slugging down some strong beer. There are several restaurants in the garden.
In Depth: English Garden Munich.
Other Sage Advice for Munich Germany
Many museums in Munich are closed on Monday.
Pick up a copy of "The Inside Track," the EurAide newsletter, at the ticketing office in the train station. The newsletter offers many tips on getting around and enjoying Munich. The EurAide office is near track 11, room three at the station. Get advice, find excursions, passes and travel deals there.