Travel portal and city tours of Munich
Munich from A to Z - Guided tours of Munich in English with your personal tour guide
Königsplatz square king munich Theatine Church munich

Guide to the sightseehing of the City of Munich

Our website offers a selection of information on those sights of Munich which you really should see. Furthermore, there is a brief survey of the history of our city. Get an overview of the most important sights in an individual guided tour "Munich from A to Z" in cooperation with our partner Tour Agentur.

New Town Hall of Munich Cathetral of Our Dear Lady Oktoberfest & Hall of Fame Theatine Church St. Cajetan Saint Peter's Church Castle of the Residence Nymphenburg Palace The Food Market King's Square - Königsplatz Other monuments and places of interest in Munich and Bavaria The History of Munich

New &Old Town Hall

New Town Hall Munich

Built between 1867 and 1909 in three construction phases by the Austrian Georg Hauberrisser, the new town hall is the seat of the Mayor and the municipality of Munich. The architectural differences between the neo-Gothic phases can be seen on the façade, which highlights many personalities from Munich's history, including the Münchner Kindl (Münchner Kindl), who watches over the city from the 85-metre high tower. World-famous, you will also be able to admire the characters (32 in all) of the carillon (43 bells) who dance every day at 11 am, 12 noon and 5 pm in summer.

Munich's central square (Marienplatz) is dedicated to Mary as the patron saint of Bavaria with the Column of Mary built in 1638 in the middle. Also visible from the square is the Old Town Hall, a building with a long history, first mentioned in 1310, which was the seat of the City Council until 1847. Today it houses the Toy Museum and above all a room used by the town for various festivals and official events.

Munich Guide

View from the tower:
• Monday-Saturday 10h-19h - Sunday 10h-17h
• Tariff 4 € (Adult) and tickets at the tourist office

Tourist Office:
• It is located at the front of the town hall
• Monday-Friday 9:30am-7:30pm, Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 10am-2pm

Address:
• Marienplatz 8, 80331 München - www.muenchen.de

Cathedral of Our Lady

Cathedral Our Lady Munich

The Our Lady's Catholic Cathedral is, along with the City Hall, an emblem of the city. It was even decided in a referendum in 2004 that no building longer than 100 metres should be built, so that the 99-metre high towers of the Frauenkirche (12 centimetres difference between the two) and the 85-metre high tower of the Town Hall remain the dominant buildings in the panorama of the Bavarian capital.

As a replacement for a 12th century church, Duke Sigismund commissioned Jörg von Halsbach to build a red-brick three-nave hall church, which was begun in 1468 and consecrated in 1494 (Late Gothic), The famous domes (bulbs) were added in 1525 and are an excellent example of the Byzantine inspiration in vogue at the time, they are also said to refer to the Islamic Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem (the shape of the dome in the architectural vocabulary of the time is a figuration of Heavenly Jerusalem).

Interior: Unfortunately, the bombing hit the cathedral and part of the interior could not be rebuilt. However, you will be able to appreciate the quality of the surviving 14th and 15th century sacred artworks. The "Devil's blow - Teufelstritt" and the numerous tombs of the members of the Wittelsbach family as well as two of the Bishops of Munich and Freising are a must in the crypt.

Munich Guide

Opening hours:
• 7:30am-8pm (Summer 8:30pm) - closed during services

Address: Frauenplatz 12, 80331 München

Website: www.muenchner-dom.de

The city guided tours of Munich in English with your guide Valérie Kieffer

city guided tours Munich valérie

Thematic or tailor-made guided tours with your private guide

A guided tour is the best way to understand and appreciate a city like Munich with its long and fascinating history as well as its historical monuments.

Have you ever tried a private guided tour? Even if you pay a little more than a group visit on a fixed date, the great advantages are that you can visit at your own pace, according to your interests and, above all, you save time with all the good advice your guide will give you during the guided tour.

Information here and booking your guided tour :

By e-mail to valerie.kieffer@wunder-der-stadt.de or +49/ (0)170 437 89 48

Therese's Field, Oktoberfest & Hall of Fame

Ruhmeshalle Munich

The " Therese's Field " is a large 42-hectare fairground known worldwide for the Oktoberfest, the great Beer Festival which has been held every year since 1810. It was for the wedding between Princess Therese (hence the name) and Crown Prince Louis (I.) on 17 October 1810 that a horse race was organized with such success that it has been repeated every year for 200 years now.

The Oktoberfest, which takes place in September for 16 days and ends on the first weekend of October, is the world's largest popular festival (18 September to 3 October 2021). In 2019, it attracted 6.3 million visitors. Visitors can look forward to an extensive cultural and folklore programme throughout the festival from 10 am to 10.30 pm (9 am at the weekend), where they can enjoy the specially brewed Oktoberfest beer, the "Wiesn Märzen", with a higher than normal alcohol content (6-7%), naturally served in the traditional one-litre mugs, the "Maß" (Mass). The "Wiesn" is also waiting for you with its funfair; merry-go-round for all ages, roller coaster and ghost trains rub shoulders with numerous vendors of regional sausages, chickens and giant bretzels on the same square.

The Great Hall of Honour (Ruhmeshalle) with Bavaria is located on the heights of Theresian Field and was built between 1843 and 1853 on the wish of King Ludwig I. of Bavaria to honour great Bavarian personalities. Even today, new busts are added to the example of Bertolt Brecht and Karl Off. Photo: © Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung"

Munich Guide

Beer Festival / Oktoberfest:
• From 18 September to 3 October 2021
www.oktoberfest.de

Ruhmeshalle / Hall of Fame:
• From April 1st to October 11th from 9 am to 6 pm - Normal Tariff 5 €
www.schloesser.bayern.de

guided tours munich tips Guided tour in English
Contact your Munich tour guide Valérie Kieffer for a customized or thematic guided tour program. Whether you are a couple, a family or a group. - Find all the guided city tours in English here

Theatine Church St. Cajetan

Theatine Church St Cajetan munich

Located on the Odeon Square, the church of the Theatines bears a name referring to Father Theatin Antonio Spinelli who was the first owner of the building started in 1663 on the will of Prince Elector Ferdinand Marie and his wife Henriette Adelaïde of Savoy to celebrate the birth of their child, Maximilien-Emmanuel on July 11, 1662 (future monarch). The Bolognese architect was Agostino Barelli, while Zucalli replaced Spinelli during the construction. With the construction of the Elector's family tomb and the two towers, the first part of the church's construction was completed in 1690. The present façade was designed between 1765 and 1768 at the request of Elector Maximilian III on the basis of plans by the French architect François Cuvilliés. The mausoleum was built in 1864 for King Maximilian II. After the bombings, most of the damage could be removed and the church was opened again for services on 21 August 1955.

Munich Guide

Opening hours:
• Normally from 7am to 8pm - Closed during services

Address:
• Theatinerstr. 22, 80333 München
www.theatinerkirche.de

St. Peter's Church

église Saint Pierre Munich

Munich's oldest church is also a must for admiring the panorama of Munich. St. Peter's Church bears the nickname of "Old Peter - Alter Peter", thus attesting to its long history, its origin dating back to before the founding of the city of Munich. A wooden church for the monastic community of the monastery of Tegernsee Abbey was built on the Petersbergl in the 8th century, and a Romanesque church with three naves was erected around the 11th century. However, there is no exact record of the church's extension, dated 1190. A new church with today's base was built in 1294 before the major town fire of 14 February 1327 forced a restoration in the Gothic style and an extension around 1630 completed the eastern part of the church. In 1753, Johann Baptist Zimmermann began the interior transformation in the Rococo style, which was in vogue at the time. This is just a brief summary of the long history of the church, whose 91-metre tower (306 steps) is a must to climb.

Munich Guide

Opening (bell tower):
• Monday-Saturday 9am-6pm Sunday 10am-6pm - Tariff 3 €

Address:
• Rindermarkt 1, 80331 München - www.erzbistum-muenchen.de

The Castle of the Residence

Residence Munich

The Munich Residence cannot be summed up in a few words, it is a complex of 130 rooms divided into three ensembles and with ten inner courtyards. It was built, enlarged and modified over several centuries from 1385 (Le Neuveste, the Gothic castle of the Dukes of Bavaria) to 1870 (a winter garden by Ludwig II of Bavaria dismantled after the death of the king). It was the official residence of the Dukes, Prince Electors and Kings of Bavaria. Its history makes the building a showcase for the Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo and Classical styles. However, the bombings have left traces with parts that have been definitively lost despite major restoration and reconstruction work (Cuvilliés Theatre rebuilt at another location). Among the many sections of the Residence open to the public, we recommend the Treasure, which contains, in ten rooms, the important collection of jewellery and other precious objects from the house of Witttelsbach. On this page you will find all the opening times for the Residence Museum, the Treasure, the Cuvilliés Theatre and other places of interest in the Residence (in English and German).

Munich Guide

Opening hours:
• Visit our museums page for all opening hours.

Address:
• Residenzstraße 1, 80333 München
www.residenz-muenchen.de

Guide munich Valérie Kieffer Guided tour of the museums
Let's discover the main museums of Munich: the three Pinacoteca, which allow us to follow a linear tour of Western pictorial art from its origins to the present day Read more...

Nymphenburg Palace

Nymphenburg Palace munich

The Nymphenburg Palace was the summer residence of the Wittelsbach family and is considered to be one of the most impressive castles in Europe due to its dimensions, its circular layout and the wealth of interiors that has been modified and supplemented over the course of time. The central body of the castle was built by the architect Agostino Barelli between 1664 and 1675 under Elector Ferdinand Maria of Bavaria as a gift for his wife Henriette Adelaide of Savoy on the occasion of the birth of Crown Prince Maximilian-Emmanuel. In the course of time, further extensions in the form of side wings, stables and orangeries were added to the circular ensemble completed in 1730. Don't miss the ceiling frescoes by the Zimmermann brothers and the decorations by the Belgian François Cuvilliés, the "Gallery of Beauty" of King Ludwig I of Bavaria and the porcelain collection of Nymphenburg porcelain.

We also recommend a visit to the Palace Schleissheim which includes, the Old Castle (1617-1623 Maximilian 1st), the New Castle (1701-1726 Max Emanuel) as well as the Castle Lustheim (1684 for the marriage of Max Emanuel with the daughter of the Emperor of Austria). The castles are located in the town of Oberschleissheim near Munich (S-Bahn S1 Freising). Photo: © Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung

Munich Guide

Getting there:
• By S-Bahn to "Laim" or by U-Bahn to "Rotkreuzplatz", then by bus to "Schloss Nymphenburg". Cycling is a good idea!
• April - 15 October: Daily from 9am to 6pm
16 October to March: 10am to 4pm

Address: Schloß Nymphenburg 1, 80638 Münche

Website: www.schloss-nymphenburg.de

The food market - Viktualienmarkt

food market Viktualienmarkt munich

The Viktualien (Food) market had been a green market for farmers since 1807, replacing an old market that had become too small. In the course of time, the market grew by the destruction of neighbouring buildings and the construction of several covered halls for the butcher's shop, the tripe and fishmonger's stalls, pavilions for bakeries, fruit and flower shops, poultry and game stalls. Today, the market covers an area of 22,000 m2 and offers an exceptional choice of fresh, exclusive and gourmet products in its 140 stalls. The Market is open every day except Sunday, from 8 am to 8 pm. The Biergarten opens at 9 a.m. and the restaurants and some stalls have separate opening hours.

Munich Guide

Opening hours:
• The market is open Monday to Saturday from 8am to 8pm
• Visit the covered market eataly - Restaurants in Munich here

Address:
• 3 minutes from the Town Hall, behind Saint Peter's Church

Gastronomic guided tour eataly Gastronomic guided tour
The gastronomic tour will allow you to discover Bavarian specialities and its beautiful traditions. Information and booking

King's Square - Königsplatz

Königsplatz king square munich

The design of Königsplatz (King's Square) by Karl von Fischer was decided by Crown Prince and future King of Bavaria Ludwig I in connection with the creation of the "Brienner Straße" to enrich the old road from the Residence to Nymphenburg Palace. Characteristic for the time of Ludwig I (1st half of the 19th century) is the influence of ancient Greece on the square and its buildings; when you discover it, you will understand the nickname Munich "Athens on the Isar", because the three buildings were directly inspired by Athens and the Acropolis for the Propylæa. The Glyptothek (1838-48) houses the State Antiquities Collection. You reach the square with the underground line U2 (stop Königsplatz).

Munich Guide

Opening hours:
• Visit our museums page for all opening hours.
• The "Staatliche Antikensammlungen" and opposite the "Glyptothek" (opens end of 2020) are dedicated to antiques - Visit also the "Lenbachhaus" and its Modern Art collection (Marc, Kandinsky, Klee)

Introductory guided tour Munich english Introductory guided tour of Munich
At your own pace, according to your interests, for the duration of your choice, the perfect visit for couples and families. Information and booking

Other monuments and places of interest in Munich and Bavaria

Neuschwanstein Castle

The cultural richness and places of interest to visit cannot be summarized in one page, so here are some indications that will help you in your discovery of Munich. Photo : © Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung

The main pedestrian area of the city stretches between the "Karlstor" Gate and its beautiful square and the Gate on the river Isar, the "Isartor". Along this route you will enjoy numerous churches such as St. Michael, the Bürgersaal church and of course the Frauenkirche and St. Peter's church. Between Munich's two famous gates you will reach Mary's Square with the Old and New Town Hall and you can eat in one of the many restaurants and brasseries around the Viktualienmarkt (Food Market).

Between the Residenz Castle and the Maximilianeum (seat of the Bavarian Parliament) lies the lively Maximilian-Straße, which is also a place of culture with several theatres but also an ideal shopping street, for example in the Maximilian Courts (Maximilianhöfe). A walk along the river Isar is also a must, for example to the German Museum of Technology. The other museums, the must-see attractions listed on our museum page, are located near Königsplatz and Karolinenplatz.

You can't say you've really discovered Munich without having tasted a good white beer with a bretzel and a white sausage. The most famous and gigantic breweries and Biergarten (beer garden) are the Hofbräuhaus and the Chinese Tower in the pleasant English Garden.

Sportsmen and architecture lovers will appreciate the Olympic Park (Olympiapark) created for the XX. Summer Olympics in 1972 by Günter Behnisch and Günther Grzimek as landscape architects.

With the castles of Neuschwanstein, Linderhof, Berchtesgaden and many others, Bavaria is a true cultural (and natural) paradise. You can find all the information you need at www.schloesser.bayern.de (in German and English) or on our page about museums and castles in the Munich region.

The History of Munich

Visites guidées Munich

The history of Munich began in 1156 when the Duke of Saxony, Henry the Lion, was appointed by Emperor Barbarossa as the new lord of the Duchy of Bavaria. Without delay, the Duke burned down the Unterföhring Bridge belonging to the Bishopric of Freising and built a new bridge over the Isle of Istar (on the site of the present Lüdwigsbrücke). The reason for this manoeuvre; the Duke wanted to recover the salt tax from the Bad Reichenhall mines previously collected at the bridge by the Bishop of Freising. As the new bridge was located near a Benedictine monastery, thus "to the monks", (Mönchen in German), the new town took the name of "Zu den Munichen" and then Munich in 1158.

One dynasty sums up the inseparable history of Munich with Bavaria, it is the House of the Wittelsbach whose founding member was in 1180, Otto of Wittelsbach who became Duke of Bavaria (until 1240 Munich was the property of the Bishopric of Freising), 738 years later, November 7, 1918 marks the end of this saga when Kurt Eisner proclaimed Free Bavaria and the end of the reign of Ludwig III of Bavaria.

Now here are the key dates in Munich's history :
Thanks to the bridge and the salt market, Munich soon benefited from the right to customs and to mint coins, then in the 13th century a Municipal Charter arrived, Munich officially became a "City" and the first fortifications were built. In 1255, on the occasion of the division of the Duchy of Bavaria into two parts, Munich took over the function of Capital of Upper Bavaria.

In 1314, Ludwig (IV) of Bavaria was elected Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, making him the first member of the Wittelsbach family to head the powerful Empire. After a fire in Munich in 1327, Emperor Ludwig IV rebuilt the city and gave it the status of "Great City" and first residence of the Emperor. The flag of Munich has borne the black and gold colours of the Empire since that time.

At the end of the 14th century, the popular tumult having led to several insurrections against the dukes, a new castle-residence was erected on the outskirts of the city (the famous "Residenz" which we invite you to visit) and a new fortification further extended the dimensions of the city (1429) in order to better protect the city against Hussite attacks. Munich experienced a cultural and architectural boom in the transition from the Gothic to the Renaissance, especially after the reunification of all of Bavaria under Albrecht IV, making Munich the Capital of Bavaria (1506) and one of the European centres of the Renaissance and Counter-Reformation.

Under Maximillian I Munich also became the residence of an Electorate (1623 - the 8th elector of the Emperor of the Holy Roman German Empire) followed by darker years with the occupation of the city by Swedish troops (the city had to pay a heavy price to be spared from devastation) and the plague which cost the lives of a third of the population. However, Munich quickly recovered under Elector Ferdinand Maria with many Italian Baroque buildings that we can still admire today.

The 17th century is marked on the one hand by political tensions between the Wittelsbach and Habsburg (Affair of the Spanish Heritage War) who occupied the city twice, on the other hand, it was during this century that the city laid the foundations for rapid economic and demographic development. Exactly 300 years after the reunification of Bavaria, Napoleon's foundation in 1806 of the Kingdom of Bavaria with Munich as its capital forever rooted the city at the foot of the Alps in the heart of Europe with a growing population; just 24'000 inhabitants in 1700 with a doubling of the population every 30 years, in 1871 already 170'000 inhabitants, in 1933 840'000 and today 1'330'440 inhabitants!

In the 14th century , King Ludwig I of Bavaria (1825-1848) left the greatest imprint on the present-day town with the development of Ludwigstraße, the Royal Square and the extension of the Residence. His son Maximillian II (1848-1864) promoted science and the arts above all, and then came the best known of Bavarian kings, Ludwig II of Bavaria, a king perhaps, but one who cannot be compared with his ancestors, a king who gave free rein to his Wagnerian fantasies by building mythical castles such as Neuschwanstein. In 1886 the reindeer were taken away from Ludwig II of Bavaria because of his mental instability and until 1912 it was Prince Regent Leopold and then his son Ludwig who held power, the latter even having the title of King (Ludwig III) in 1913 before the revolutionary events that made Bavaria a free state and marked the end of the 738 years of the Wittelsbachs' rule.

Towards the end of the First World War, on 7 November 1918, King Ludwig III was overthrown and the Free State of Bavaria was proclaimed by the Social Democrat Kurt Eisner (the Minister-President was assassinated on 21 February 1919). Unfortunately, the promising democratic beginnings of Bavaria and the Weimar Republic were soon overshadowed by the establishment of the National Socialist Party (NSDAP) in a Munich brewery in 1920, which was to become its capital. On November 9, 1923, Adolf Hitler's movement attempted a coup d'état (the Brewery Coup) which failed. Ten years later, when Hitler came to power, the first concentration camp of Dachau was built by Himmler in the suburbs of Munich (the site can be visited) even if there was resistance, as in the case of the student group "White Rose - Die Weisse Rose" and the failed attempt of Johann Georg Elser in Munich in 1939 (Hitler left the room 13 minutes too early to take a train instead of a plane as planned).

After the War, under the American occupation, many works were undertaken to restore the city to its former glory. Since then, the city has regained its reputation as Germany's cultural capital with its many museums, including the famous Pinakothek. In the modern history of Munich, 1972 will be the year of the Olympic Games obscured by the hostage-taking of the Israeli team members (11 victims and the 5 terrorists died).

We hope that this summary of Munich's history has given you a better understanding of the city. However, we strongly recommend a guided tours of Munich by Valérie Kieffer, the simplest and most user-friendly way to discover a city.