Yes, that’s right – we’re back in Germany! After a great few days in Prague, we moved on to Munich today. We had a wonderful time in Prague, but we were excited to come to Munich to experience this great city. We traveled via bus on DB Bahn (the German national rail company) and, although I’ve never traveled that sort of distance on a bus in Europe (just trains and planes before today, though I have been on buses for day trips), I was surprised at how comfortable the journey was and would definitely recommend it. It’s a two-level bus, with our seats being on the first level. We had requested seats across from each other and, despite the fact that there are only a couple of spots where you can do that (those sections have two pairs of seats facing each other over a table rather than standard bus seats in rows), we got them. And there was only us and one other couple on the first level, though we were joined by a foursome of somewhat noisy people from the US partway through the journey (they came down from the second level). Despite them though, we had a good journey. Look into this bus service if you’re making a similar journey in the future!
Anyway, how about Munich? Because our Airbnb host said our apartment was close to the station we arrived at, we decided to walk there. It’s never fun to schlep baggage around, but it only took us about 15 minutes to reach the apartment, where our host was waiting to meet us. Perfect! She was very nice and took time to show us around and answer any questions we had. The apartment is great – modern (probably remodeled recently), big, and comfortable. And after the galley-style bathroom we had in our Prague apartment, the nice modern one we have here is a great change of pace.
We couldn’t hang around the apartment too long as we wanted to get out and see at least some of Munich tonight. Tomorrow is our only full day here as we’re taking a day trip to Neuschwanstein and Linderhof Castles on Wednesday, so we want to see everything we can. This apartment isn’t quite as central as the other ones we’ve stayed in on this year’s trip, so we had to walk about two miles to reach the central part of Munich, but that was no problem for us. We’re walking experts by now. 🙂 We were heading for Hofbräuhaus, a famous brewery and restaurant (though we did make a brief stop in Marienhof as well, which was another sight we wanted to see and was on the way anyway). Hofbräuhaus is famous for its beer (of course) as well as its food, servers, shared tables, and more. When you come here, it’s totally fine (and often necessary) to sit down at a table that’s already being used. They’re all picnic-style tables, so there’s lots of room! Many tables will have reserved signs on them, so don’t sit at any of those (lots of local groups have reservations, so respect that). Despite reading some reviews from people who said they waited upwards of 30 minutes to place their orders and another 30 minutes to get their food, we found an open table right away and happily shared it with a couple who asked to join us about ten minutes later. If you can go outside of prime eating hours, you’re much more likely to have a better experience, I think. Also, be aware that the smoking area is outside, so if you want to avoid that, sit inside (that’s what we did). Try the beer, try the sausages, and try the pretzels (although you can order a pretzel off the menu, if you want a HUGE one, wait for one of the girls who work to walk by selling them from a basket). Heck, try whatever looks good! Between the two of us, we had sausage, potato salad, pork steak, au gratin potatoes, potato soup, a (small) pretzel, and apple strudel. Wow, typing that all out makes it seems like a huge amount of food! We aren’t totally gluttons though – I swear! 🙂 Hofbräuhaus is really a place you go to for the experience, so be sure to go when you’re in Munich!
Needing to walk off some of our meal, we decided to head over to Marienplatz, which is Munich’s central square and is just a short hop from Hofbräuhaus. We were going to go to St. Peter’s Church, but instead ended up going to New City Hall. The New City Hall is a fabulous-looking building and they have an observation tower that’s both cheap (€5/$6.50 USD for the two of us) and doesn’t require walking up stairs. Win! We didn’t even see an option to climb any stairs – just the elevator. However you get up there though, just make sure you do it because you get a great view of the square below as well as the city. It’s the perfect place to snap some memorable photos!
Speaking of photos, want to see some?
I think we did pretty well considering we didn’t even get to Munich until after 3p! We’re hoping to see and do a lot tomorrow, so stay tuned for the next installment.