A Guide to Visiting Munich in Winter!

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Home to beer halls and Oktoberfest, Munich needs little introduction. However, the city has so much more to offer than just Oktoberfest. Being the third-largest city in Germany, and Bavaria's capital, Munich is a great place for a weekend getaway. There are bustling plazas, impressive palaces, and beautiful churches. Add in some incredible Christmas markets, and you've got the perfect place to visit in Europe during the winter.



How to get there:
Munich has a major international airport with airlines such as Easyjet offering cheap flights from the UK that take under 2 hours. 

From the airport, you can then take the S1 train directly into the city centre. The train journey from the airport to the central station (Munich Hbf) takes 45 minutes. A group day travel ticket that includes trams, metro and buses, cost €24.30 for two people, which covers you for the entire network in Munich.

Where to stay:
We stayed in the City-Hotel Munchen which was a basic, clean, 3 star hotel. The best feature of this hotel though is its location. It's only a 1 minute walk from the central train station, and a 10 minute walk from the main plaza. Our twin room cost €90 per night and breakfast was included.  



How to spend a day in the city:

Morning:
After grabbing some breakfast at your hotel, spend the morning exploring Munich's beautiful churches and its main plaza.

Start off by heading to Frauenkirche, a huge cathedral that's also known as the 'Church of our Lady'. From there walk to the Marienplatz - the main central square. If you're visiting in December you'll find the Christmas markets setting up for the day. Don't worry, come back later in the evening when the stalls look their most festive!

The impressive building overlooking the square is the New Town Hall. Be sure to take the lift up the tower for views over the city. At 11am and 12pm each day there's also the Glockenspiel show where the figurines on the tower twirl and do a performance like an old fashioned music box. The 10 minute show attracts hundreds of passers-by each time. 

However, for the best views over Munich, climb the 300-odd steps of St. Peter's Church Tower. At the top you get the iconic view of the plaza and the New Town Hall with the Church of our Lady in the near distance.





Afternoon:
After getting back down to ground level, walk to Victuals Market, a food-come-Christmas market in December. Here you'll find classic cheese stalls, homemade Christmas wreaths and an abundance of smoothie stands.

However, don't fill yourself up on smoothies, as a visit to a traditional beer hall is a must-do for lunch instead. Hofbrauhaus is one of the oldest and biggest beer halls in Munich. Spread over 3 floors, it's famous around the world. The atmosphere is incredible, even at lunch time. I'd highly recommend the soup and a bread basket to share for a filling and delicious lunch - washed down with a beer of course!

When you've finished at the beer hall, head to Munich Residenz. Once a former royal palace, today Munich Residenz is open to visitors to explore. There are so many beautiful rooms that I suggest giving yourself at least 2 hours to wander around. 



Evening:
If you're lucky enough to be visiting Munich in December there's only one way to spend your evening - exploring the Christmas markets! The main market is set up in the central square, Marienplatz, and then they tail off into the adjoining side streets as well. 

Here you'll find plenty of Gluhwein (mulled wine) being served in traditional Christmas mugs. Be sure to remember which stall you bought yours from if you want the mug deposit back. However, if you're like me I decided I wanted to keep them and took two home in my suitcase instead...

There are stalls selling hot food, sweet treats, Christmas decorations, and so much more. It's impossible to wander around them and not get in the festive spirit!



Going outside of Munich?
If you have a spare day to venture outside of the city, then visiting Neuschwanstein Castle is a must.  The castle is a two-hour train journey away from Munich, and is famous for being the inspiration for the castle in Disney's Sleeping Beauty. 

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