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Travel guide - Munich

A perfect example of a European city that perfectly combines the old and new, Munich has so much more to offer than just the Oktoberfest. Classical architecture, lively entertainment and delicious dining, there is something for absolutely everyone. Let the Finnair travel guide to Munich expose the best to see and do in Bavaria’s capital.

It’s impossible to not notice the beautiful buildings standing for centuries throughout the city. Starting at Marienplatz, look up to watch the Glockenspiel at the New City Hall. Nearby are the equally impressive Residenz with its ornate passageways and the iconic Frauenkirche at almost 100 metres tall. Stop for a beer at the world-famous Hofbräuhaus where cheerful singing is accompanied by huge mugs of local beer. For a break, head to the Englischer Garten, local residents’ favourite green refuge in this big city. Moving outwards we find BMW World, a shrine to all things from this iconic car manufacturer. Nearby is Olympiapark, site of the 1972 Olympics which is now put to great use by sporty locals. If you need to soak up some culture, you’re spoilt for choice in Munich with museums like the technical Deutsches Museum, Glyptothek with its ancient sculptures and Beer- and Oktoberfestmuseum.

Erding – This charming little town outside Munich is home to the Erdinger Weißbräu brewery and also offers plenty of fun and relaxation in the Therme Erding, one of the world's largest sauna, waterslide and spa landscapes.

Chiemsee and Starnberger See – Beautiful lakes within easy reach of Munich offering scenic retreats from the hustle and bustle of town. A favourite of locals and those who enjoy the water.

Garmisch-­Partenkirchen – An hour and a half by train sits this pretty town at the base of Germany’s tallest peak. Skiing in the winter and hiking in the summer, it’s a fantastic choice for an active trip.

Salzburg – A couple of hours away is the birthplace of Mozart, alive with history and European culture.

Shopping in Munich is as good as it gets anywhere in Europe. International chain brands mingle with luxury marques and local handicrafts.

Kaufingerstraße – The champion of local shopping, here you can find it all. Lined on both sides with shops, eateries and more, this is the place to come for all­day shopping.

Maximilianstraße – Come here for the luxury brands from all around the world. Bags, shoes and designer clothes are just a short stroll away.

Shopping centres – If the main streets aren’t enough, head to one of the numerous shopping centres in Munich for an even more intense experience. Notable examples include PEP, Olympia­Einkaufszentrum and Riem Arcaden, all easily accessible by metro.

Christmas markets – Truly magical, these spring up around Munich in December. Selling all manner of Christmas­themed goods and delicious treats, they have to be seen. Favourites include the Festive middle Age Market and Christmas Market Chinesischer Turm.

Bavarian food inspires thoughts of hearty meals and lots of it and if that’s what you seek in Munich, you won’t be disappointed.

Beer halls – Munich institutions, these large boisterous halls are filled with people enjoying both the food, beer and company. Often with histories dating back hundreds of years there are many to choose from, serving hearty traditional German cuisine.

Beer gardens – A hot summer day in Munich is not complete without a visit to one of the many beer gardens scattered throughout the city. Try one of the huge variety of local brews and soak up the atmosphere under a chestnut tree.

Weißbier – A naturally cloudy Bavarian wheat beer.

Schweinshaxe – Pork knuckle roasted till crisp and served with Kartoffelknödel (dumplings) and gravy.

Brathendl – Bavarian roast chicken served with Kartoffelsalat or fries.

Weißwurst – Traditional Bavarian sausage served with sweet mustard to be eaten before noon.

Pretzel – The ever­popular snack is a favourite in Munich, served big, hot and salty.

Like most things German, Munich’s public transportation system is very efficient. Covering all major sights of interest it is the best choice for the visitor. Day tickets and the 10­ride Streifenkarte are available and are the best bet if you’re staying multiple days.

Tram – Quick and easy, trams move about between most parts of the inner city at high frequency. They can take you to most sights of interest.

U­Bahn and S­Bahn – Faster than the tram for crossing longer distances, the U­Bahn and S­Bahn run below and above ground respectively. Take the underground if you intend to stay in the inner city area and switch to the S-Bahn for longer rides into the suburbs.

By bike – Munich is quite cycle­friendly and has marked paths for bike riders.

By foot – Most inner-city sights can easily be reached by foot. Many pedestrianised areas invite for a leisurely stroll, such as Viktualienmarkt.

Currency – Euro (€)

Electricity – 230 volts, 50Hz, type­ C plug.

Tips – It is common to add 5–10% to the bill.

Payment/card – Be prepared to bring cash as credit cards are not always accepted.

Time zone – Munich (Germany) UTC/GMT +1 hour

Water – Tap water is safe to drink.

Munich Franz Josef Strauss Airport (MUC)

The airport is located 33km northeast of Munich.

  • Finnair flights: Terminal 1D
  • Check-in opens 2,5 hours before departure
  • Check-in closes 45 minutes before departure

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