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Life Abroad: Munich

When making holiday plans or think about moving out to a new place one of the cities that you should include is Munich.  The German city’s history dates back to medieval times and is rated as the number one city in the country in terms of quality of life and standard of living; worldwide it ranks number four. Munich is a major cultural, artistic, educational, and business centre and is home to a number of publishing, advance technology, and innovative companies.  The vast range of attractions and activities in Munich has made tourism a major industry as well.

Exploring Munich

With such as vast number of choices, planning a holiday itinerary for a visit can be a bit daunting. There are a number of Munich tourist websites that offer pre-planned itineraries based on some of your basic interests, which include travel time and directions. The only downside is they come across much like a group tour package and have a tendency to make you feel locked in.

One of the best ways to explore a city for the first time is to take advance of “Hop On, Hop Off” tours, which Munich has. These are buses which cover all of the major tourist areas in the city, and literally allow you to “hop off” when you arrive at an area that interests you. The buses run regularly and when you are finished exploring you simply “hop on” the next bus and are off to a new area. They are a great way to get a quick overview for your holiday.

If you prefer a bit more fun and hands-on approach to touring the city, Munich also has a number of Segway city tours available as well.

Things to Do

With its diversity, Munich offers something for everyone from a thriving arts scene, museums galore, shopping ranging from upscale to funky, eclectic boutiques, every type of nightlife, and some incredible restaurants.


If you enjoy museums the German Museum and the Glyptothek must be on your list.

The German Museum is the world’s largest science and technology museum and contains more than 100,000 artefacts.  The Glyptothek is the city’s oldest museum and the only one in the world that displays only ancient sculpture.


The Munich public square dates back to medieval times has been the site of public markets, public tournaments, and public executions.  Marienplatz is filled with markets, shops, cafes, bars, and other interesting places.

Place to Drink

Munich is arguably the beer capital of the world and finding the “best” bars is highly subjective and basically impossible. One of the best ways to sample the area’s best beer is to sign up for one of the many guided beer tours. The tours last about 3-to-4 hours. You find yourself among other beer enthusiasts and knowledgeable guides will introduce you to some of the best micro and craft brewers and introduce you to some of the best in local pub fare.

If you are looking for something other than beer, Gamsei is worth a visit. The high-end cocktail lounge is owned by an Australian, but insists on serving only “regional” cocktails and local, fresh ingredients which are often foraged in the Munich countryside.

Bar Gabanyi is owned by author Stefan Gabanyi, the author of several books on whisky. Therefore the bar specializes in whisky. The bar has lots of nooks, corners, and couches and varied entertainment that is more highbrowed, such as chamber music, dance performances and poetry readings.

Where to Eat

Just as with beer, the variety of restaurants means that a recommended list is nearly impossible. Being a world-class city means that every variety of cuisine is available. However, every holiday should have a least one “unusual” food experience.

Schmalznudel fits that bill.  It sounds weird; it’s really, really unhealthy; and it has an addictive taste. Café Frischut specializes in Schmalznudel.

A visit to Der verrückte Eismacher, which serves ice cream, should also be on your list. The name means crazy icemaker in English.  One look at the flavours, which can include creations like sweet mustard, beer, and ginger bread ice cream, show where the name came from.

Where to Stay

You can spend the night in a hotels where the nightly rate is the same a month’s flat rent to hostels that are amazingly inexpensive or anywhere in between.

The Cortina Hotel, Hotel München Palace, Hotel Konigshof, and Mandarin Oriental Munich are among the best of the luxury hotels in the city.

A number of boutique hotels, which are mostly located outside of the city centre offer affordable rates while still providing some nice touches. Das Nikolai Hotel is one of the better rated in that category.

The Laimer Hof, a B&B in a 19th century villa and Hotel Schrenkhof a 17 room alpine chalet offer budget accommodations along with great amenities and charm. Owners Direct and AirBnb are excellent choices for finding budget friendly accommodations.

Remember that you can always send money back home when you are in Germany using TransferGO’s super low rates.


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