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Munich tours and excursions

Munich tours

Food tours

For those that think Munich is all sloshing beer steins and sauerkraut, Eat The World offers a taste of something different. Tours around the chic neighbourhood of Haidhausen, as well as Maxvorstadt and Schwabing, have gourmands gushing over modern meals, hidden cafés and tiny snack bars. Guides ensure there’s plenty of culture and history plated up as well.

Tel: +49 30 2062 29990.

Boat tours

Oceans away from you typical boat tour, IPS München Sightseeing & Events organises summer rafting tours of Munich on the River Isar. Aboard a log raft, complete with a Bavarian brass band and plenty of local beer and food, this seven-hour excursion harks back to routes sailed in the 12th century. Tours tackle locks and navigate around huge rocks, but mainly they’re about the drinking.

Tel: +49 89 871 2399.

Bicycle tours

Mike's Bike Tours offers a number of sightseeing tours on two wheels. The classic four-hour tour departs from the Old Town Hall and visits the Old Town and Englischer Garten, while the longer 16km (10 mile) tour fits in the Olympic Park and Nymphenburg Palace. Mike's also offers trips to Schloss Neuschwanstein and Dachau, with other themed routes available. Tours include a pit stop in a Munich beer garden.

Tel: +49 89 2554 3988.

Bus tours

CitySightseeing offers one-hour ‘Munich Highlights' city sightseeing trips in eight languages. These depart from Bahnhofsplatz, in front of the Hertie department store, and cover all the main sights in Munich, including the areas of Königsplatz, Schwabing and Maximilianstrasse. Tickets are valid during the whole day and holders can hop on and off at thirteen different stops.


Walking tours

Stattreisen München, Nymphenburger Str. 149, offers a number of two-hours walking and tram tours in German. Tours in English are available for groups, but must be booked in advance. Themes include the city's role in the rise and fall of Nazism and the history of the city's brewing industry. Departure points vary depending on the tour chosen.

Tel: +49 8954 404 230.

Munich excursions


Famous for its Passion Play, the small village of Oberammergau, 60km (37 miles) south of Munich, off the A95 toward Garmisch, is an attractive destination for a day trip, offering an Alpine setting, rural charm, elaborately painted houses and a heritage of woodcarving. The tradition of the play began in 1634 (as a thanksgiving for deliverance from the plague) and is performed once a decade, in years ending with a zero (i.e. the next play is in 2020).

Tel: +49 8822 922 740.


About 15km (9 miles) northwest of Munich, and easily accessible by public transport, the former Nazi concentration camp at Dachau makes for an unmissable, if emotionally draining, excursion. The free Konzentrationslager-Gedenkstätte (Concentration Camp Memorial) is open daily 0900-1700 and the library and the archive can be visited Tuesday-Sunday 0900-1700.

The complex consists of a central building housing a poignant museum, reconstructed barracks and the camp crematorium (including a gas chamber that was mercifully never used). Memorials to the victims can be found throughout the grounds. The entrance to the site is still guarded by the iron gates with their infamous message - Arbeit macht frei ('work makes you free').

Audio-guides are available in a variety of languages and there are also introductory talks and guided tours.

Tel: +49 8131 669 970.

Lake Starnberg (Starnberger See)

Munich's nearest lake, 35km (22 miles) southwest of the city, is a popular place for locals to escape to at the weekend. Many German TV stars and politicians own properties around this picturesque and quiet lake, which makes it a perfect location for celebrity-spotting. The S6 S-Bahn line stops at a couple of towns along the lake, from where Bayerische Seen Schifffahrt (tel: +49 8652 96 360; one- to three-hour boat cruises.

Tel: +49 8151 90 600.

Schloss Neuschwanstein

Neuschwanstein Castle is one of three castles built by 'mad' Ludwig II of Bavaria, who was born in 1845 and died in 1886. This fairytale castle perches among the natural splendour of the Alps. Its neo-Romanesque architecture imitates that of a medieval castle and, in turn, Neuschwanstein was the inspiration for Disney's Magic Kingdom. Built between 1869 and 1886, only about a third of the castle was actually completed as Ludwig II was found to be mentally unfit to conduct government business. Nearby Marienbruecke (Mary's Bridge), which spans a deep gorge, provides magnificent views of the castle.

The castle can be reached by car on the A95 toward Garmisch, then west on the B23 and the B17 (direction Füssen) to Schwangau. Follow signs to the village of Hohenschwangau where you can park and walk to Neuschwanstein (around 30 minutes) or take a horse-drawn carriage.

Tel: +49 836 293 0830.
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Featured Hotels


Mercure Hotel München Altstadt

This formulaic chain hotel in Munich, located between the Marienplatz and Stachus squares, is an affordable option right in the heart of the Old Town. The 80 standard rooms provide simple accommodation but are comfortable, clean and secure. The Mercure Alstadt offers Wi-Fi access, covered parking (a rarity in central Munich) and basic catering, within a short walking distance of all the historic attractions of the city centre.

Fleming's Hotel Munich-City

Part of the Fleming’s chain of accommodation and restaurants, Hotel Munich-City is centrally located, just a short walk from the Hauptbahnhof. Its contemporary flair is pared down with straight-lined furniture, while its 112 rooms come with glass cube bathrooms. The restaurant downstairs gives the diner décor a French brassiere twist, and its spa and fitness area boasts a Finnish sauna and aroma steam bath.

Creatif Hotel Elephant

Like someone knocked an array of paint pots over, this cream-walled hotel goes crazy with the bright colours elsewhere, but it works wonderfully. Rooms are basic, but all have ensuites and TVs, and each is dotted with retro furniture. You can’t miss the place from the outside as it’s sprayed with countless colours. Breakfast is included.

Motel One Munich-City-West

Located in the western part of Munich, but with good connections to the Old Town, Motel One Munich-City-West brands itself as a ‘boutique mote’, offering functional contemporary and stylish surroundings at budget prices. Rooms are compact but modern in design, and services such as Wi-Fi internet access are available, while drinks and snacks are on offer 24 hours.

Eurostars Book Hotel

Bookworms will find much to write home about at Eurostars Book Hotel, which dedicates each of its floors to a different literary genre. So whether you’re wandering the corridors with Don Quixote or bunking up with Anna Karenina, its 201 rooms have plenty space for tucking into a good read. Modern and stylish, the hotel doesn’t have the grandiose beauty of a Jane Austen manor, plumping instead for saunas, a lobby-bar, a business centre, meeting rooms for events, free Wi-Fi and small gym.

Hotel Olympic

This unusual hotel is popular with actors and media types - partly because of its trendy, central location near Gärtnerplatz and partly because of the combination of English colonial style and traditional Bavarian architecture. Its 32 rooms are tastefully furnished and follow a unique design scheme throughout. Definitely a hotspot to be seen at in Munich, yet still kept a secret from all but the in-crowd.