Looking to immerse yourself in a destination that combines cosmopolitan offerings with rich history, cultural landmarks, natural oases, and the ability to experience it all on foot? Look no further than the city that perhaps most embodies the German lifestyle, Munich—a vibrant, world-class city where authentic experiences are only a stroll away. Use this three-day sample itinerary to customize an international trip that’s as relaxed as it is enriching.
Amble among museums, architecture, and more
To start your adventure with a bang, head to the Deutsches Museum, the world’s largest science and technology museum. Located on Museum Island, it houses 25,000 exhibits with 100,000 objects from 50 fields of science and tech.
Next, head across the Isar River toward Maximilianstrasse, a luxury shopping boulevard known for its big-name brands and neo-Gothic architecture. Plan ahead for lunch at Schwarzreiter Tagesbar & Restaurant, an upscale spot that reimagines traditional German fare through set menu offerings. Then, walk off the indulgence as you head into the heart of Munich’s Old Town.
Explore the Residenzmuseum (aka The Munich Residence) to get a sense of how the former monarchs of Bavaria lived. The largest city palace in Germany, it’s known for its original interiors and 17th-century Italian Renaissance gardens. Admire the Frauenkirche and its skyline-defining, green-domed towers. Then, head to Marienplatz, the city’s main square since 1158, and take in sights like Fish Fountain, Old Town Hall, and New Town Hall’s famed Glockenspiel. Top it all off with a view of Munich from the tower at St. Peter’s Church.
If you’re ready for an afternoon snack, pop into the 200-year-old Victuals Market for more than 100 stalls of items ranging from meat and cheese to wine and flowers. Looking for something a little heartier? End your day with hearty Bavarian eats, a stein of beer, and live music at Hofbräuhaus, one of Munich’s oldest beer halls dating back to 1589.
Wander through a grand historic estate
Begin day two with an outing to Schloss Nymphenburg, a nearly 500-acre estate with expansive gardens that was once the summer residence of Bavaria’s rulers. To get there, employ Munich’s easy-to-navigate public transit system, which combines trams, buses, underground trains (U-Bahn), and suburban rail lines (S-Bahn). Both bus and tram routes can deposit you directly at the palace.
Enjoy touring the castle and its grounds, known for Rococo interiors and baroque gardens, either self-guided, or with an audio guide. If you’re more of an app person, download the free Nymphemburg Park App, and immerse yourself in history via written excerpts, audio files, pictures, and films. Leave plenty of time to stroll the gardens, embellished with lakes, fountains, greenhouses, and a property-spanning canal. Visit the various pavilions, which served as a tea house, Rococo hunting lodge, bathing pavilion, and neoclassical temple.
If you’re up for a short walk following your tour, stroll just one mile east to Acetaia Restaurant, one of Munich’s 55 Michelin-listed restaurants. Enjoy a stylishly presented Italian dinner in a leafy courtyard to complete your day of palatial wanderings.
Stroll to centers for art and nature
Your third day begins with a shot of culture in Kunstareal. Known for its 18 museums and art venues, upwards of 40 galleries, six universities, and numerous cultural institutions, Munich’s Arts District offers a vibrant mix of arts and culture in a compact footprint. Whether you’re a modern art fan, sculpture lover, paleontology aficionado, or an ancient history enthusiast, this corner of the city has something for you.
Follow your arts adventure with a meander east through Maxvorstadt, Munich’s university district, which is home to numerous boutiques, small galleries, and stylish eateries offering a wide range of international cuisines.
Continue onward to the Englischer Garten, which, at 926 acres, covers more ground than New York’s Central Park. One of the largest city parks in the world, this natural oasis was created in 1789, and today provides about 50 miles of paths for walking, running, or cycling.
The northern portion of Englischer Garten offers an escape from the bustling city, with large, wild meadows and a resident flock of sheep. In the southern reaches, residents gather to exercise, socialize, and revel. Experienced surfers ride the waves on the Eisbach river, while more leisurely visitors row on Kleinhesseloher See lake.
Pop by one of the park’s four beer gardens for an alfresco refreshment. The Biergarten am Chinesischen Turn is the second largest beer garden in Munich, holding space for over 7000 thirsty souls beneath a five-story wooden pagoda.
Once you’ve had your fill of Bavarian treats, stroll uphill to Monopteros, an open-air structure with circular colonnade. Take a seat as the afternoon fades and enjoy a panoramic view over your new favorite city.