Munich, Germany. The largest city in the Bavaria region, the home of Oktoberfest, Hofbrauhaus and BMW, and a must-visit for anyone coming to Germany.
This past weekend, Vinn and I made the 3 hour drive from our apartment to Munich. We wanted a nice little getaway, without a real agenda and just spend quality time seeing a great city. And that is exactly what happened. Here’s what we did during our two days in Munich.
We stayed at the Le Meridien Hotel right across from the main train station. We decided to bring Copley, so we needed a pet friendly hotel. The hotel is very nice, a gorgeous bathroom and all-around nice. It’s a typical hotel room. The location is okay. It’s about a 15 minute walk to everything, not horrible, but not ideal if you want to just get up and immediately walk around. But for our price (thanks to my sister who works for Starwood!!), no complaints here.
Our first outing took us to Marienplatz, the main square of Munich. It is absolutely gorgeous. It has been the main square since 1158! Just think about that. This square has been around long before Columbus and his three ships found America.
The below is the new Rathaus. Every hour, the bells ring and there’s a little carousel with men and women that turn to the music.
Note: This picture was taken the second day we were there when there were less people and my camera had batteries in it.
We ate breakfast and continued to explore. We decided that we definitely need a beer, you know, since it was noon. And where do you get a beer when you’re in Munich? The original Hofbrauhaus, of course!
We were lucky enough to find a table in the outdoor garten, which was fantastic. The place is HUGE! There are three floors, quite a few shops and too many tables to count. The hall was built in 1589! Just incredible.
We shared our huge beer (mine is a Radler, light beer with lemonade and Vinn’s is a dark one), while trying to teach Copley not to bark at the wait staff when they walk by. The weather was absolutely perfect for sitting outside and we loved chatting and game planning the rest of our day.
The beer in Bavaria, Germany is part of a purity law, that was established in 1516, that limits the amount of ingredients that can be used in beer. Basically, the beer tastes the same no matter which brewery it comes from, but it’s really cool to think that we are drinking the same beer as people from the 16th century.
After our beer, I was already starting to feel it. The alcohol content is much higher than, say, a Miller Lite. I really wanted to see the English Gardens, because it would make the perfect place for Copley to run around. It’s like the Munich version of Central Park!
The best part is the Chinese Turm.
And another bier garten. We sat for a while to give ourselves a rest. And poor Copley really needed a rest. And if you’re in a bier garten, a beer is necessary. Well, Vinn did. I had some water.
The gardens are gorgeous and huge. People were playing games, laying in the sun, swimming in the streams and eating ice cream. We could have spent hours there.
It was late afternoon by then and we were getting hungry. So, off to another bier garten! We didn’t want to eat too much because we had big dinner plans. I switched it up and got a prosecco to drink, Vinn had a beer and we split some schnitzel with fries.
(This picture is from the morning, it was packed when we were there!)
Can you see Copley?
Then we went back to the hotel for a nap and to get ready for dinner. We had an amazing dinner at Shane’s Restaurant. The restaurant doesn’t have a menu because the chef goes to the market that day and creates dishes from the freshest ingredients. It deserves it’s own post, which will be live tomorrow!
Day two was very low key. We went to grab breakfast at a really great cafe, Cotidiano. They had cappuccinos IN A BOWL. Like, there’s no handle because it’s so big.
They even had soy milk, which was great for me since I’ve been trying to eliminate dairy from my diet. That breakfast was amazing.
We walked around the city a little more, just enjoying the views before we had to check out of the hotel. We then got in our car and drove about an hour and a half to Neuschwanstein Castle!! This was the highlight of our weekend.
I mean, no words. This is the castle that inspired the castle in Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella’s castle in Disney World. And, yes, I took this picture! It is not from the website.
We walked around the grounds of the castle and then headed to the Marien Bridge. It’s a foot bridge where you get a bird’s eye view of the castle. It was a little stressful because it’s small and there are people everywhere, but the pictures are definitely worth it!
Poor Bean was a little cold, but she’s such a trooper.
The castle started being built in 1869 and was finished in 1886. It started as a refuge castle for King Ludwig, but he died before it was completed. He never lived inside, so a lot of rooms didn’t get finished. It was definitely a sight and with more than 1.6 million visitors per year, I can definitely see why Disney chose this castle.
That was the end of our weekend getaway. We had a great time in Munich and hope it gives you some ideas if you ever visit the great city. We can’t wait to go back.
I leave you with this picture of Copley overlooking the Alpsee by the castle.
I have certainly touched on some of the cultural differences between life in Germany…
You would think getting mail would be the same everywhere, wouldn’t you…