A Saturday in Munich

September 23, 2015 - 3:13 am 1 Comment

My first day in Munich was really great – since I only have a weekend to explore, I was intent on maximizing my day! After the flight, I went to the hotel, quickly settled in, and then took off to the city center. The hotel is somewhat far away and the German train system is extremely confusing, but alas, a nice bystander helped me out and the train speed itself was very impressive. Since it’s Oktoberfest here, the streets teem with people everywhere, many of them dressed in the tracht – suede mid-calf pants with straps for men and elaborate corset-like A-line peasant dresses for women.

So despite a red-eye flight (with limited sleep), this is what I did:

  1. Went to the Viktualienmarkt where I had a tasty cured meat sandwich on bread that seemed to be a cross between pretzel and croissant – alas, if only I had the stomach to try out all the interesting little stalls! There are all these tasty looking desserts with long names I can’t pronounce

  2. Saw the Munich Residenz which is one of the most famous historical palaces/government buildings. There are ~300 public rooms so it was so much to see

  3. Went to Muncher Hofbrauhaus, the place recommended by Grace’s friend. It was as crazy experience! Every person there drank enormous 1 liter beers, and every 5-10 minutes, a band would play German music. The beer hall was gigantic – a labyrinth of tables! I ate sausages with sweet mustard – bratwurst and then a Bavarian variant (mild white sausage that comes in water)

  4. Browsed the Munich City Museum. The first two floors were most of your normal expected historical items (EX: statue of Duke Henry the Lion who founded Munich)…but the third floor went bonkers with psychotic puppets. Another wing was dedicated to National Socialism (Nazism) since it originated in Munich

  5. Ate dinner at Kochspielhaus, a place recommended in the NYT – by then, I was on the verge of collapse given general exhaustion

  6. Most importantly, I walked around the city historical center and the small garden areas. It’s really fun!

A few observations:

  • Germany is affordable – the food and admission prices are very reasonable

  • Core Munich is very small but there is a sprawling suburbia around it given central planning policy on housing stock

  • It’s very helpful to know at least some German words to get around…I don’t seem to have the memory to be able to remember words properly since many are so complex and tough to pronounce

  • The Germans are extra sensitive about the history of Nazism – the topic is treated with directness (unlike the Japanese…)

  • A large part of the city got destroyed in WW2 so most of the artifacts/edifices have been heavily reconstructed. Nevertheless, Munich is still beautiful and feels very historic

One Response to “A Saturday in Munich”

  1. yoda Says:

    Remember the movie Amadeus? When Mozart tried to compose am opera in German, it caused an uproar thinking that only smooth and inherently musical Italian accent would fit for music than raunchy, tongue-twisting German! Ha, that’s one common weltanschauung :-). Downing that amount of beer will inevitable release more human thought to make those thoughtful Germans! especially during the perpetual dark, wintry, Nordic nights after stomach-full of heavy sausages – where do you think their trolls and Idealism come from?

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