Visiting the Oktoberfest 2023? Take some time to see what Munich has to offer
If you’re travelling to the Oktoberfest this year, be sure to visit some of the sights and things to do the buzzing city of Munich has to offer. Whilst the beer festival has to be one of the greatest attractions of the year, there’s a lot more to see in Munich.
Why not hire a car for the days when you’re not at the festival and make the most of your trip to Germany? We’ve put together a list of the must-visit attractions in Munich.
The beauty of Marienplatz
The main square, Marienplatz will inspire you. With the sophisticated shops, amazing architecture and historical landmarks, this is the beating heart of Munich. In the centre of the square sits the Marian column that represents the four plagues suffered by Munich – heresy, war, famine and plague.
This is the place where locals meet friends for a leisurely coffee and catch up on their daily lives. There’s always something to watch in the square, from street artists to singing and dancing. If you happen to be visiting outside of the Oktoberfest, Marienplatz is the place to see one of the best Christmas markets in Germany.
Be amazed at the Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall)
This stunning building is a prime example of German architecture at its best. The meticulous detail of the intricately designed Neo-Gothic architecture will take your breath away. The longer you look, the more detail you’ll see. Neues Rathaus depicts the history of this culture-rich city, with statues of knights, saints, and princes adorning its façade.
The highlight of a visit to Neues Rathaus is the chiming of the Glockenspiel when the figures move to the chimes of the bells. This takes place at 11.00 a.m. and 12.00. p.m. daily and at 5.00 p.m. from March to October. The event draws the crowds so make sure to get there early.
View Munich from a height
The ancient 12th-century Peterskirche church is the best place to view the fantastic skyline of Munich. If you’re not afraid of heights you can climb the 90-metre tower, Alter Peter, and view the landmarks of the city.
Peterskirche is the city’s oldest church and combines a stunning mix of Gothic, Rococo and Baroque architectural styles. If you’re into scary relics you’ll be fascinated by the jewel-adorned real skeleton of Saint Mundita, the patron saint of spinsters.
Taste the delights of Viktualienmarkt
The famous Viktualienmarkt outdoor market is the largest in Munich and offers a wealth of fruit, vegetables, cheeses, fish and cooked meats. This is the perfect opportunity to sample the famous German wurst sausage and grab a delicious picnic to eat in the market’s beer garden.
Not only is the Viktualienmarkt the place to buy fresh produce, but it also has several fountains with statues and is home to the city’s maypole (one can be found in every city in Germany). Of course, this is also the place to pick up a few souvenirs from your trip to Munich.
Relax at Olympiapark
For a spot of relaxation after the bustle of the beer festival, you should visit Olympiapark. Constructed for the 1972 summer Olympics, the park offers acres of paths and greenery, a swimming pool, an ice skating rink and an aquarium. There’s plenty to keep everyone entertained.
You’ll also find plenty of events happening at Olympiapark. There’s a lakeside cinema and an outdoor event venue where concerts take place throughout the year. Not to be missed is the Olympic Tower, with its observation deck and the chance to dine in the revolving restaurant.
Do you love cars?
If you’re a BMW fan visit the BMW Welt museum near the Olympic stadium. Here you can learn about the history of the BMW brand, take a peek into its future and take a tour of the exhibitions. Racing enthusiasts can try sim-racing – the virtual way to drive a racing car at speed!
For the ideal gift why not book a BMW driving experience as part of your trip to Munich? From high-performance driving to safety driving – there’s a course for anyone that loves driving.
Visit the English Garden
As the largest park in Munich, the English Garden is a peaceful place to spend time away from the crowds. This 21-acre park contains a lake, pagodas, forest paths, meadows and even a Japanese tea house. The park gets its name from its layout, which takes a natural format rather than the formal Baroque styles of the region.
Surfers ride the waves of the Eisbach River and entertain spectators with their stunts. If you want to see the surfers in action, you can watch this spectacle from near the Haus der Kunst art gallery. If you want to take to the water, you can only surf if you’re a professional, but you can rent a rowing boat or pedalo and enjoy the Kleinhesseloher lake.
Munich is a big city and renting a car while you’re there means you’ll be able to see so much more when you’re taking a break from the Oktoberfest.