• Germany edition
 
My Germany - Munich
'Munich is still just a village for many people'
Liang Li (left) and a friend. Photo: Liang Li

'Munich is still just a village for many people'

Published: 22 Feb 2013 07:09 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Feb 2013 07:09 GMT+01:00

Despite being busy working on his science PhD, 29-year-old Li made the time to fill us in on his experience of the Bavarian capital - how to choose between sausages, beer and how to best have fun for free. Although the Oktoberfest is less exciting than it used to be, he still finds more than enough in the city and its environs to keep him busy and happy.

What do you like best about living in Munich?

I love the access to nature. I live in the south-western part of the city, right next to the Westpark. In the summer and spring it's very beautiful. There are also a lot of lakes around the city. If you enjoy sports, there are loads of things you can do. In the winter you can ski and go snowboarding. In the summer I particularly like doing cycling tours in the Alps. I try to do a tour every month when the weather permits. Hiking is equally popular - it's so easy to get out of the city. Munich is surrounded by Bavarian villages, where you really can feel at ease.

How do you find the people?

Although Munich is the second biggest city in Germany, it's still just a village for a lot of its inhabitants. Many people aren't all that interested in what's going on elsewhere. They are just happy with Munich and with Bavaria. For this reason they aren't always necessarily very open to outsiders. But around a fifth of the population are newcomers. You hear a lot of different languages everywhere. So you can say that Munich is now an international place, and I think this has also made it more open.

There's no escaping traditional Bavarian culture in Munich, though. Are you are fan of the beer and sausages?

I don't actually like sausages much, but I enjoy drinking beer. I can't decide which kind I like best. I went through a stage of drinking a lot of white beer, which is quite sweet and delicious, but you can find such a huge variety here.

Where is your favourite place to drink it?

In the summer a beer garden is definitely the best place to sit back and enjoy a beer with friends and pass the time.

What about eating out?

Sometimes I spontaneously go to a local Bavarian pub. It isn't exactly healthy - there's a lot of meat and fat - but I find the atmosphere good. In general, though, I don't eat out much in Munich, because it is quite expensive.

Is there anything you can do in the city for free?

You can do all sorts of sports in the English gardens for free - football, volleyball, jogging and so on. And you can always just walk along the river. In the summer you can do salsa dancing outside in the Hofgarten for nothing. I really enjoy doing that.

Are you a fan of Oktoberfest?

My interest has fallen, largely because there seem to be ever more party people going. But it's a traditional highlight for Munich, and if you are a visitor here, it's fun to see the traditional Bavarian costumes - the Lederhosen and the Dirndl.

Where do you get your favourite view of the city from?

All the tourists go to the church on Marienplatz. I prefer the view from the TV tower in the Olympic park. But my top tip though would be to go to the university where there's a terrace with a beautiful view for free. There's also a nice café there.

What would be your ideal Sunday in Munich?

I'd grab my bike and go for a cycling tour - with lots of stops for beer along the way!

Can you tell us something about the city which only locals know?

Where to have a barbecue! Not many tourists know where, or realise that you can. You need to go to the Westpark, or head southwards along the River Isar.

Pippa Wentzel

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
German hospitals ready for Ebola patients
Hamburg's UKE isolation ward is ready to take patients. Photo: DPA

German hospitals ready for Ebola patients

Germany's high-tech isolation wards remained on alert on Friday, ready to receive Ebola patients should they be required to. German airports seemed less prepared for the potential dangers of the viral epidemic, however. READ  

Two die in Bremen plane crash
The fire caused by the crash. Photo: DPA

Two die in Bremen plane crash

UPDATE: Two men died on Friday afternoon when a plane crashed in Bremen, causing a fire and a series of explosions in a warehouse near the city's airport. READ  

Merkel's party mutinies over tax cuts
Merkel in Münster last year at a meeting of her party's workers' wing. Photo: DPA

Merkel's party mutinies over tax cuts

Chancellor Angela Merkel faced a rebellion from within her own party on Friday after an unlikely coalition formed in favour of tax cuts for workers on lower incomes. READ  

Expat Dispatches
'Look at those German shanty towns!'
Kleingärten in Leipzig. Photo: DPA

'Look at those German shanty towns!'

Visitors to Germany can sometimes be confused by the country's love of allotments in cities, known as a Kleingarten. Teacher and blogger Kathleen Ralf tells us what it's all about. READ  

Lightning rods further delay Berlin Airport
Closed until further notice: Berlin's troubled new airport. Photo: DPA

Lightning rods further delay Berlin Airport

Too few lightning rods and an undersized emergency generator have prevented part of Berlin's new airport from opening. Safety inspectors refused to sign off on the airport's north pier, thwarting progress on the massively delayed construction project. READ  

Two thirds of Berlin's tourist flats now illegal
Photo: DPA

Two thirds of Berlin's tourist flats now illegal

Two thirds of Berlin's 12,000 tourist apartments advertised on sites such as Airbnb were being run illegally from Friday following a law change, leaving hosts open to potential punishment. READ  

Lost goat halts Munich Airport trains
Fritzi underneath the train. Photo: Freiwillige Feuerwehr Unterschließheim/DPA

Lost goat halts Munich Airport trains

A lost pet goat called Fritzi halted trains to Munich Airport and had to be rescued from the tracks after suffering a concussion. READ  

Germany crowned U19 European Champions
Photo: EPA/Tibor Illyes HUNGARY OUT

Germany crowned U19 European Champions

Germany’s U19 football team added to a glorious summer of sport for the country by winning the European Championships in Budapest on Thursday night. READ  

World War I anniversary
100 years ago, Germans celebrated war's outbreak
August 1914. German soldiers march off to war in France. Photo: DPA

100 years ago, Germans celebrated war's outbreak

A hundred years ago on Friday Germany declared war on Russia and was preparing for an attack on France in the hope that Britain would stay neutral. Four years on, famine was ravaging the country and two million soldiers had been killed on the battlefield. READ  

Environment Agency urges fast fracking ban
Photo: DPA

Environment Agency urges fast fracking ban

Germany's Federal Environment Agency (UBA) is encouraging lawmakers to hurry up and ban fracking in all but name, saying the process is too dangerous to even consider allowing. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Society
Meet the man allowed to grow his own cannabis
Photo: DPA
Society
Your lottery numbers are 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13...
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Five reasons to visit Oktoberfest (and five not to)
Photo: DPA
Society
Huge Bavarian crop circle puzzles crowds
Photo: DPA
Analysis & Opinion
Have Your Say: Should Germany legalize cannabis?
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Hamburg harbour lit up in blue
Business & Money
JobTalk: 'Application process is failing'
Photo: DPA
Society
This man wants to give all of us €12,000 a year
Photo: DPA
Education
Top university switches master's courses to English
Travel
Plans unveiled for bike trail along former Iron Curtain
Photo: Europeana.de 1914 - 1918
Gallery
A German soldier's life behind WWI lines
Education
Raising the bar for law & business in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual school turning education on its head
Sponsored Article
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,290
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd