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10 things people living in Munich take for granted

Imogen Goodman
Imogen Goodman - [email protected]
10 things people living in Munich take for granted
A view of the Munich Old Town. Photo: Photo by ian kelsall on Unsplash

Bavaria's capital of Munich is one of Germany's most beloved cities - and for good reason - but if you live there you may take some of these amazing things for granted.


When many people think of Germany, the images that come to mind are often of Bavaria: big brass bands, rosy-cheeked locals in Dirndls and Lederhosen, stunning alpine scenery and bombastic beer festivals, not to mention the chocolate-box villages. 

That may be one of the reasons Bavaria is so treasured and why the state's capital, Munich, is one of the most popular travel destinations in the country. 

Year after year, Munich ranks as the second most visited city in Germany, only coming in behind the national capital of Berlin. What's more, for foreigners who move to the country, Munich is often at the top of their preferred places to live.

But despite all the attractions, if you're a resident of Munich, you may sometimes find yourself losing touch with what makes the city so special. To help remind you, we've compiled a list of the things that visitors love about the Bavarian capital - but residents take for granted. 

The array of incredible bakeries 

We know Munich is known for its beer, but once you sample the delicious sweet treats at any of the city's incredible bakeries, you'll soon see why lovers of coffee and cake feel equally at home in this city. 

Whether you're tucking into a warming Apfelstrüdel or enjoying a velvety Prinzregententorte on a sunny patio, residents of Munich are never too far away from the high-end cafe culture that nearby Vienna is famous for.


Getting everywhere in 20 minutes 

OK, this may be a slight exaggeration, but it's certainly true that Munich is a pretty compact city that's easy to traverse by train and bicycle. 

With high rents pushing people further out to the suburbs, you can take comfort in knowing that most places you want to go are within easy reach within 20-30 minutes on a bicycle or using Munich's impressive public transport network. Once you're in the centre, of course, everything is easily reachable on foot. 

READ ALSO: 'World's largest village' - How foreigners in Germany feel about Munich

Surfing in the middle of the city 

When you first encounter the impressive sight of somebody surfing the waves of the Isar, most people forget whatever they're doing and stop and gawk for a while.

But after a litte time in the city, you may forget just what an incredible attraction the Eisbachwelle really is. 

Whether you're a surfer or not, it's always fun to watch wet-suit clad surfers perform awe-inspiring feats on their boards, and it's yet another example of the fun outdoorsy activities that Munich is known for. 

Munich Eisenbachwelle on the River Isar.

A surfer takes to the waves at the Munich Eisenbachwelle on the River Isar. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Peter Kneffel

Escaping into breathtaking landscapes 

Cologne and Frankfurt may have the Rhine and Berlin may have its forests and lakes, but nowhere in the country offers such awe-inspiring natural landscapes as Bavaria. 

Whether it's bathing in the crystal alpine waters of Königsee or soaring down pristine pistes near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, residents of Munich have easy access to unmatched scenery just a short car or train journey from the city centre. That means that, whenever the stress of city life gets too much, you're only ever an hour or so from peace and tranquility. 


With so much incredible nature and outdoor activities on your doorstep, Munich truly feels like one of the best places in the country to live, no matter what the season. 

READ ALSO: 10 of the best hiking day trips from Munich

Perusing artistic masterpieces 

Having more than a millennia of great art on your doorstep isn't something to be sniffed at - and that's exactly what residents of Munich can enjoy when visiting the Alte Pinakothek and the Pinakothek der Moderne. 

Although the Neue Pinakothek is still closed for renovations, you can see highlights of its collections in the Alte Pinakothek, enjoying the titants of 19th and 20th century art alongside medieval masterpieces. 

The most incredible thing is that these world-class art collections are free for visitors, meaning you can stop by anytime to immerse yourself in art history. 

A beer garden on every corner 

In Munich, beer gardens are more than just places to enjoy a refreshing Maß of Helles: they're bustling communal spaces where locals can gather and socialise in the sun. 

These leafy watering holes make ideal meeting spots for friends and family at the weekend or a quick Feierabendbier with colleagues after work. In true Munich tradition, many even allow you to take your own food to snack on - provided you buy a few drinks!


Although beer gardens aren't uniquely confined to the Bavarian capital, Munich residents are unusually spoilt for choice: according to the latest estimates, there are more than 100 beer gardens throughout the city, many of which are attached to famous Bavarian breweries. 

Chilling in the largest park in Europe

Forget Berlin's Tiergarten or Frankfurt's Grünburgpark, the Englischer Garten wins all competitions hands down, not only in size but in beauty.

Stretching over 900 acres, this green expanse is not only the largest park in Europe but also a welcome escape from the hustle and bustle of city living - and where else in Germany can you find both a Japanese tea house and a Chinese pagoda with a beer garden? 

The Japanese padoda in Munich's English Garden.

The Japanese padoda in Munich's English Garden. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Felix Hörhager

As a resident, it's easy to forget how special it is to have this incredible expanse of green space right on your doorstep - but visit a handful of grey, concrete jungles and you'll appreciate Munich's urban oasis that bit more. 

Feeling safe wherever you go 

Munich has a reputation for being one of the safest cities in Germany, making it a pleasant and relaxed place to spend time, whatever your age or gender.

Though it's easy to get used to walking the peaceful streets at night and not having to feel on edge, it's worth remembering that not everywhere in the world is so tranquil, so it's definitely something to treasure.

READ ALSO: Why Munich is the only city I've ever really felt at home

Delicacies fresh from the market

Residents of Munich may sometimes see Viktualienmarkt as something of a tourist trap, but it's definitely quite magical to have such an idyllic spot with all sorts of regional delicacies right on your doorstep. 


Whether you're hosting a dinner party or simply want to treat yourself, you'll find everything you need at the Viktualienmarkt: fine wines, cheeses and homemade Obatzdn (traditional Bavarian spread) at Thoma Fromages et Vines; freshly caught fish at Fisch Witte and hearty soups and meaty stews at the Munich Soup Kitchen, not to mention homemade cake and sekt at Café Nymphenburg Sekt. 

And if you get tired of all that food shopping, the Viktualienmarkt beer garden is the ideal place to rest your legs and whet your whistle. 

The neverending festivals

True residents of Munich know it's not all about Oktoberfest (though a visit to Wiesn is always a good laugh): Bavaria's rich folk culture and Munich's buzzing cultural scene guarantee a packed calendar of exciting events and festivals almost all year round.

In winter and summer, the multicultural Tollwood festival is a firm favourite, with arts and crafts, music, theatre and circus performances, as well as a vast array of street food from all around the world.

Tollwood summer festival

Festival goers drink at bar in Munich Olympiapark during the Tollwood summer festival. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Stephan Jansen

If you've fallen out of touch with the endless festivals and cultural events going on in Munich, it's worth refreshing your memory and getting out and about again to rediscover the beating heart of the city.

To adapt a well-known quote by the English writer Samuel Johnson on London, "If you are tired of Munich, you are tired of life." 

Do you have any thoughts on the parts of Munich life that people take for granted? What do you find special about the city? Drop us an email and let us know. 



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