On Monday, Alexandra and I took a train from Salzburg to Munich. We arrived in Munich around noon, then hopped on the tram to our home for the next four days – an Airbnb with the loveliest couple ever, Heiko and Nadja 🙂 Upon arriving at their flat, we settled in for a bit before heading out with them! Heiko and Nadja walked with us to the Nymphenburg Palace, then showed us around the beautiful grounds.
Then, we sat down with them at a cafe within the palace grounds and chatted and got to know each other. After that, Alexandra and I explored the city on our own for a bit!
We went to Marienplatz, the main square of the city. Here is a picture I took of city hall from the ground – later on I took one from the tower!
We kept exploring around Marienplatz and found a beautiful church: Heiliggeistkirche.
Then, we accidentally stumbled across what turned out to be one of our favorite parts of the city: Viktualienmarkt! This market square has so many stands selling different products – mostly food. Alexandra and I went into one shop completely dedicated to honey! I tried honey wine… it was so delicious.
We were getting hungry, so we started walking towards Hirschgarten, a beer garden which Heiko and Nadja recommended to us, for dinner. Beer gardens are huge in Germany – they originated in Munich! I had never heard of them before this trip, but I really love them. The concept is so simple – they are outdoor areas, shaded by trees to stay cool, with food and beer. I really don’t like beer at all, but I like food… 😆 and I love the atmosphere. People gather at beer gardens with their friends, and there is often some kind of other entertainment like music or movies or games.
After dinner, we returned to Heiko and Nadja’s and prepared for our exciting day trip on Tuesday…a tour of the Neuschwanstein Castle!
During our trip to the Neuschwanstein Castle, we learned all about King Ludwig II of Bavaria. Admittedly, I am usually pretty bored by history but Ludwig II was really interesting to learn about. He was exceedingly eccentric and imaginative, and lived a very unique (though quite sad) life. The Neuschwanstein Castle was entirely a product of Ludwig II’s fascination with fairy tales. Photos were not allowed within the castle, but it really looked like a storybook castle realized.
After we returned to Munich and our tour ended, we went to Augustiner Keller with some new friends from our tour!! Augustiner Keller is another beer garden in Munich and probably my favorite one we went to, though I loved all of them.
On Wednesday, we went on another day tour. This one was called the Romantic Road tour. First, we went to the Harburg Castle, a beautiful medieval castle.
We took a tour of the castle, then proceeded along the Romantic Road to Rothenburg. Rothenburg is the most adorable and quaint little town. Look how lovely!!:
They are famous for their Schneebälle (snowballs), which are a type of pastry made of shortcrust. It is round and typically covered in powdered sugar. There are so many other possibilities, though: cinnamon sugar, chocolate, nuts, and on and on! Of course, the pastries are in the shape of a ball!
We walked around the town and went into a few shops, most notably a beautiful Christmas market. The town is encircled by a wall, which has a walking path, so we climbed up and walked part of the perimeter of the town that way!
When we got back to Munich after our tour, we got dinner at Hofbräuhaus, a beer hall that has been around since 1589! Alexandra heard about it from a friend, and Heiko and Nadja also told us about it.
Our meals were absolutely delicious – unsurprisingly so, considering how unhealthy they were 😳 (our diet while in Bavaria consisted entirely of fatty meat, potatoes, and pretzels… typical foods of the region).
Sadly, that marked our last truly full day in Germany. Thursday was our last day – luckily, we had a pretty late flight, so we got to do quite a bit!
We made the most of Thursday! In the morning until the early afternoon, we did a walking tour to learn about the city and see the highlights of Munich. Our tour guide, Mark, was phenomenal, so we were really glad we went on the tour! After our tour ended, we went back to Viktualienmarkt, where we got a giant pretzel! We also came across an authentic Italian food stand, so obviously we had to buy chocolate… 🙂
Next, we went to St. Peter’s Church, where we climbed the tower for this incredible view of Marienplatz:
After climbing the tower, we went inside.
Next, we went to the Gärtnerplatz District, a cute little area for boutiques popular among young people.
Our last destination in Munich was Olympiapark, where the Olympics were held in 1972. We ascended to the top of the Olympiaturm (Olympic Tower), where we were able to see the city from way up high. Here’s a picture of Olympiapark from the tower:
And, just like that, our spring break adventures came to an end 🙁 We went back to Heiko and Nadja’s to gather our things and say a very sad goodbye, then headed to the airport. We arrived in Edinburgh after midnight and Alexandra had an early morning flight. I was sad to see her go, but immensely grateful for the time we spent together, the places we visited, and the memories we made!
As always, thank you for taking the time to read this!