More To Munich Than Oktoberfest

By: Gaizka Pujana

Apart from the week long beer festival, there are a number of sights that attract visitors to Munich, such as beautiful gardens, architecturally-pleasing buildings and the natural beauty of the nearby Alps. Holiday accommodation options range in price and quality and it is possible to find something to suit every tourist's needs.

Munich is the third largest city in Germany and is the capital of the German state known as Bavaria. There are a number of beautiful architectural buildings in Munich, along with large squares and stunning gardens. For those looking for a bit more culture, it is home to some excellent museums and art galleries.

The Glockenspeil is probably Munich's most famous landmark. It is located in Munich's main town square. Be sure not to miss its performances which take place every day at 11am, noon and 5pm in the form of eighteen figures that dance around the founder of Hofbrau brewery and his wife, as well as jousting knights. The Cooper's Dance also takes place on a lower level.

The Marienplatz is the center of Munich. It is a large open square with the Marian column in the center and the old and new town halls. A long wide pedestrian road leads to the main plaza where you can view the Glockenspeil. The area is a center for shopping where you can find anything from small souvenir stores to large department stores.

Munich's English Garden is a treat to behold. It is the largest metropolitan park in Europe right in the city. It has stunning grounds and beautiful ponds. You can spend a whole day there taking boat rides or swimming, renting carriages or just relaxing. If you are walking around Munich on foot, be sure to stop in at the Hofgarten. It is a palace garden where you can also view the impressive buildings of the University of Munich.

Olympic Park (from the 1972 Munich Olympics) is a treat to visit. It is a huge park and recreational area where you can enjoy rollerblading, walkways, a bike track and a lake. You can also visit the lookout platform and revolving restaurant. Many concerts take place at Olympic Park that are worth going to.

There are many day trips that you can do from Munich. A trip to the Bavarian Alps offers many exciting sights and the lakes are a treat. One of the most popular day time excursions from Munich is to Neuschwanstein Castle where you will see the gorgeous design that inspired the Matterhorn at Disneyland. On a different note, a trip, the 20 minutes out to Dachau, one of the Nazi's most notorious concentration camps, provides an important view of the darker aspect of German history.

Oktoberfest this is the biggest beer festival in the world and it is certainly worth trying to plan a trip around, particularly if you are a fan of beer. In fact, if you do plan a trip then, make sure to book your accommodation well in advance. You will probably easily find a room in one of the luxury hotels of the city, but you may be more hard put to find a room in the cheaper holiday accommodation options that are usually available.

In general, you can choose to stay in a range of hotels, hostels, pensions or rental apartments all around the city. These range in price and quality so choose according to the type of place you like to stay in and area you want to be based in.

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