🍻 Three cold Spring days in Munich

This is the sixth in a series on a Europe trip that myself and my husband Nick took in April–May 2019. If you’re new here, catch up on the other posts – or you can read the previous instalment about Vienna! 😉

Munich was exceptionally cold during our short visit in May 2019. I mentioned this in earlier posts, but even the locals said Europe was experiencing a very cold May, colder than expected. I was glad I had my blue sweater to last me through the cold days.

We got a train from Vienna to Munich, and were able to enter our Airbnb straight away. I remember being rather underwhelmed by some of the Airbnb options in Munich when we were looking for accomodation, but our Airbnb was actually better than we expected. It had some homely touches like fresh fruit (!!!), tea, coffee, and our host even supplied a bottle of wine (which we didn’t have, but oh well).

I also got really obsessed with the sheets on the bed because they were in this radical, rainbow-coloured geometric print and were so fucking soft. I even took a look at the tag to see where I could buy a set for myself, but it was for a homewares store that wasn’t selling the exact same print anymore. I was bummed. The print also looks like the print of a skirt I purchased second-hand recently too… so I guess the skirt will kind of remind me of it. 😆

A woman in a blue sweater and black skirt in the foreground, she’s standing in front of an old building in Munich
We explored downtown Munich shortly after we arrived

On the afternoon we arrived, we caught the train to Marienplatz and explored the area, and also popped into a vintage shop or two. I was relatively new to vintage shopping at the time, and I think now I realise that vintage shopping isn’t really my thing. I was hoping to find some funky skirts from the 80s or something like that, but didn’t quite find anything my style.

A woman in a blue sweater and black skirt in the foreground, she’s standing in a town square in Munich where there are many people in the background as well as old but pretty buildings
Me in Marienplatz

I seem to have had a great obsession with pretzels during our time in Europe, so I had to order one as an entree for our dinner. 🥨 We went to Haxnbauer, a famous and very popular restaurant. I had pork slices while Nick had pork knuckle – I am not a big fan of pork and am especially not a fan of pork crackling, but I wanted to try it, so I played it safe with the slices. It was really delicious and the service was great. Because I was really hungry I got asparagus soup too, which is something you absolutely must try in Munich!

A woman with a light blue sweater holding a soft pretzel and smiling
oooomggg a pretzel!
A small white pot of white asparagus soup with chopped leek
Hearty soup is always welcome in this weather
A plate with a serving of pork knuckle and sauce, with two round potato dumplings
Nick ordered pork knuckle with some interesting potato dumplings. They were a bit like strange rice balls, apparently
A white plate with pork slices on bone, mashed potato, and white cabbage
The pork slices were really good!

While beer is also something you must try when visiting Munich, not everyone is a big fan of beer. They have an option which I think is called a Radler, basically a beer watered down with soda, which is a nice lighter alternative, so we ordered that. I didn’t mind it too much – it still tastes somewhat like beer, but not as strong.

A woman wearing a blue sweater at a table with two big glasses of beer mixed with soda
Me with two Radlers 🍻

Unfortunately the next day it was raining and often everyone has the same idea when it rains… we tried going to a cafe nearby that was recommended by our host, but it was full and very busy and we weren’t prepared to wait. We ended up going to a bakery across the road. (We were actually going to get a quick bite of McDonald’s, but just our luck they stopped serving the breakfast menu as we walked past. 🙄 This seemed to happen several times on our trip that we tried to go somewhere where breakfast only just stopped being served before we even had a chance to get breakfast. Gah.)

A small brown table with servings of coffee and two plates – one with a seed bun filled with cheese and lettuce, and the other with a chocolate dipped cookie
Quick bakery breakfast!
A view from the inside of a train window of a train platform. Five empty metal seats are on the platform, and the design on the walls consists of different coloured rectangular tiles, some with black-and-white photography
I thought the inside of this particular station was really bright and interestingly designed – a lot of the subways stations had different designs
A woman in a blue sweater and a long black skirt, taking a selfie in a mirror at a train station. In the background is a blue train
Haha hey. I spotted a lot of big mirrors in Europe…

Indoor activities meant visiting the BMW Welt and BMW Museum, which was busy but not crowded. I’m not really into cars at all, but I suppose the museum gave us something to do, and I did learn a few things about the history of BMW. They also had a cool exhibition on sustainable transport.

An industrial area with a building consisting of round sections in the distance, with a BMW sign on top. It’s a very cloudy day
The BMW headquarters as seen from the nearby train station
The BMW building seen from near a pedestrian bridge
Another view of the BMW building
A television tower on a rainy day
A tower (not sure which one!) from the BMW building
A small light cobalt blue coloured car being showcased indoors
I can’t remember if this particular car was on sale, but you could definitely have a consultation and buy a car if you wanted!
A woman wearing a blue sweater sitting on a motorbike in a museum
It’s like 3 times my size
A man in a dark sweater and beige pants sitting on a motorbike in a museum
Nick on the same bike!
Four Mini Cooper cars in a museum, in a row, in different colours. A banner behind them reads “60 years of Mini. The long distance runners”.
Mini Coopers in a row
A series of metal balls suspended from the ceiling in a wave arrangement
These metal balls suspended in the air moved up and down to create different shapes, as an introduction to the museum
Two BMW vehicles in a museum, labelled “The predecessor” and “The first generation”.
A couple of older cars on display
Hundreds of car model panels suspended in the air in a circle arrangement with larger panels showing year of manufacture
An exhibit showing the history of BMW models
A clay model of a car inside a museum
The famous clay car
A small yellow car on display inside a museum
A very small car, the BMW Isetta

That evening we went to a restaurant near our Airbnb. We had smelled really good-smelling chicken as we walked nearby and went to suss it out. It was a very homely restaurant and Nick and I both ordered turkey schnitzel with spaghetti. The schnitzel was cooked with egg, and although we thought it was a strange combination with the spaghetti, it was actually really delicious.

A white plate with turkey schnitzel and spaghetti served on it
Turkey schnitzel and spaghetti!

It was the last day of Frühlingsfest, the “little sister” of the world-famous Oktoberfest, so even though it was extremely cold (and kind of raining) and we just wanted to rug up inside, we walked to the location of the festival and sussed it out. Although the rides were wet from the rain, there were still people enjoying a few of them.

An open park area in the evening. The grass is wet from the rain. In the distance is a temporary festival ground set up with a ferris wheel and tents
Fruhlingsfest was not too far from our Airbnb
A temporary fairground area at night. The rides have their lights on.
It was pretty quiet but there were still people around for sure!
Another view of the fairground area
I’m sure it’s much more exciting during the day…

There were some stalls selling snacks too. We went into one of the beer halls and there was music playing, some people singing and being carried around the hall, and many audience members singing along and having a good time! I only took videos of that, unfortunately. 😆

The next day we had brunch at a cute coffee spot, which was actually using coffee beans from The Barn, which is a roastery we visited in Berlin. We had scrambled eggs which was really tasty.

A bench by a wall showing two small black plates of scrambled eggs served
Eggs for breakfast, can’t go wrong with that

We went to the Dachau concentration camp which took us about 45 minutes to get to via public transport from Munich (a train, then a bus). It seemed to be a popular tourist destination. I have to admit that the museum there was depressing, to say the least – the content was very educational and insightful, but emotionally rather heavy – as you can imagine. I definitely recommend going there if you have half a day to spare.

The gate to a concentrattion camp, with metal letters reading “Arbeit macht frei”.
The original gate to the concentration camp was stolen and returned and is now in the museum – this one is a replica.
A set of hand-carved chess pieces as part of a museum exhibit
This part in the museum about a prisonder carving these chess pieces by hand really struck a chord with me

Englischer Garten (translation: English Garden) was our next stop. It’s one of the biggest parks in Europe, and bigger than the famous Central Park in New York. We saw lots of people walking their dogs or going for a run. Perhaps the funniest thing we saw was someone’s dog continuously humping another owner’s dog, but the dog was not at all interested! Nick said he was pretty sure the dog was confused and didn’t realise the other dog was male too. 🤣

We also stopped by a spot famous for people surfing. They are obviously experienced surfers, and use the current from the waterways to surf. It was 10ºC at this time, and I wouldn’t dream of even touching the water, but the surfers were either used to it, or just really wanted to surf. They attracted quite a few tourists. I was pretty impressed with their skill.

A river inside a park, seen from a small bridge going over the river. The greenery is very lush
A beautiful spot in the Englischer Garten
A muddy river rushing over rocks inside the river. The trees surrounding the river are very green.
The garden was lovely and green
A section of waterway in a park, with high speed water running through it. Surfers in wetsuits are lining up to surf the waves, with one surfer already surfing
These surfers drew a crowd!
Another section of waterway in the same park, with surfers lining up to surf
Another spot a little further down the river
A similar photo to before but with a different surfer
Skills! 🏄‍♂️

That evening we went to Haxnbauer again because we liked it so much! This time we ordered sausages, which was just as hearty a meal as the meals we had the past two nights! ☺️

A white plate of two large grilled sausages and mashed potato
Sausages for dinner!
An old tower in downtown Munich, characterised by its old architecture. In the foreground are people taking photos and riding bicycles
Checking out downtown Munich on a clearer day

Although our stay in Munich was incredibly cold, we were able to warm up in our Airbnb with hot showers, and nothing quite beat the hearty food we had. Although Munich probably wasn’t my favourite German city, I’d still be keen to go back and explore more of what I didn’t catch. 😊 Munich does have a lot of historical museums but we weren’t really interested in seeing historical architecture, so that’s why there’s not a lot of it in this blog post.

Thanks for tuning into this blog post about our 2019 Europe trip! You can check out the hashtag #cookesEU19 on Twitter or on Instagram for summaries and photo highlights!

We’ll see you next time for a blog post about Colmar – a place that is truly out of a fairytale. 💙

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