Munich is a city of contradictions: one-half highbrow culture, universities and industry, the other half an alpine cliché of lederhosen, clockworks and beer halls. The city welcomes its tourists with the motto ‘Munich loves you’ (München mag dich), which is supported by its people, famous for their ‘Gemǖtlichkeit’, or cosy, kind-natured spirit.
The capital of Bavaria, Munich is located north of the Bavarian Alps on the River Isar. As the past home of kings and monks, the city is crammed with palaces, churches and cathedrals. With baroque and rococo influences, the architecture is more ornate than is typical of northern Germany.
From architecture and cuisine to beer gardens and memorials, visitors to the city will discover a diverse array of attractions. Although there is no port in Munich, cruise lines such as Avalon Waterways and Uniworld feature the city on some of their itineraries, usually as a starting point.
Munich has no local cruise port. Cruise ships commonly dock in the city of Passau, and passengers are transported to Munich via train or bus (around a 2-hour journey). In Passau, ships dock at two points on Danube close to the Old Town district, less than a kilometre from the central train station.
Facilities near the port in Passau include:
- Tourist information centres
- Shopping centres
- Post office
How To Get Around
Munich is a large city, but it is easily explored on foot and via public transport. The Altstadt or Old Town is compact, with all attractions in reach via an easy walk (as the area is off-limits to cars, walking is your only option). Munich has an excellent and easy-to-follow public transport system with U-Bahn (subway) and S-Bahn (light rail) trains, buses and trams (Strassenbahn). The same ticket is used to ride all of these forms of transport, with tickets available from vending machine on train platforms and on-board buses and trams. Munich is a very bike-friendly city; bikes are available for hire from many stores.
Travel times from the central train station (Hauptbahnhof):
- It is a 16 minute journey to the Aldstadt (Old Town)
- It is a 17 minute journey to the Alte Pinakothek
- It is a 19 minute journey to the Theresienwiese fairgrounds.
- It is a 5 minute journey to the Alte Pinakothek
- It is a 19 minute journey to the Theresienwiese fairgrounds
- It is a 34 minute journey to the Munich International Airport.
- It is a 2 minute journey to the Aldstadt (Old Town)
- It is a 9 minute journey to the Theresienwiese fairgrounds
- It is a 10 minute journey to the Alte Pinakothek.
- It is a 41 minute journey to the Munich International Airport.
Currency – The currency in Munich is the Euro (€). Notes come in €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200, and €500 denominations. Coins come in 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent and €1 and €2 denominations.
Time Zone – Munich follows Central European Time (CET), which is 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC); daylight savings changes Munich to 2 hours ahead of UTC between March and October.
Weather – Munich has a humid, continental climate, with mild summers and cold winters. Munich does not have a rainy season, and snow is common in winter. July is the hottest month in Munich, with an average high of 18 degrees Celsius. January is the coldest month, with an average high of only -1 degrees Celsius.
Oktoberfest – From the 21st of September to the 6th of October, Munich is transported back to medieval times with a huge tent city springing up to cover the Theresienwiese fairgrounds. At Oktoberfest, the world’s most famous beer festival, you’ll find a full Bavarian celebration, with traditional dancing, steins of beer, brass bands playing cheerful music, pretzels and meat roasting on spits.
Alte Pinakothek – One of the oldest and most famous art museums in the world, the Alte Pinakothek is Munich's main exhibition of works from the Old European Masters of the 14th and 18th centuries. With more than 700 works, the museum displays pieces from Rembrandt, Rubens, Botticelli and Rafael and many other artists.
Hitler and the Third Reich Munich Walking Tour – Sixty years ago, Munich was the headquarters of the Nazi Party. Many of its buildings still hold reminders of this dark chapter in the city’s history. This walking tour will demonstrate how Adolph Hitler grew his Nazi party in Munich and will take you to the place where he began to give his speeches. You will also get the chance to visit many of the moving memorials dedicated to the victims of Nazism, including the German heroes who lost their lives fighting against Hitler.