We flew Air Canada from Toronto to Munich on May 19. We are on a 8 day trip organized by Cascadia tours.
We stayed at the famous Hotel Bayerischer Hof, the G 20 meeting was held there the week before our arrival, Michael Jackson is among many of the famous people who have stayed here. The hotel has many restaurants, a night club, gym, swimming pool, spa and beautiful views of Munich from the rooftop bar.
We had tickets to see the Munich soccer team play their final game of the season at Alliance Arena. Our tickets were behind the soccer net, the tickets we purchased were for a section, with no assigned seat, security found 4 seats together, we did not sit just stood the entire game. Very exciting even for non soccer fans. The atmosphere was electric. We took the subway to the arena, must cheaper than a taxi and an easy walk to the stadium. Police presence was everywhere.
Day 2 –
We took a tour bus to Neuschwanstein Castle , which is a 2 hour drive from Munich. This castle was built by King Luis IV. It’s a fairytale castle, only 1/3 of the castle was finished before the King was found dead. I would recommend you book your tickets to the castle in advance, as sometimes you can get there and the times could be sold out. The walk to the castle from the parking lot is about 30 minutes,a very easy walk but wear comfortable shoes. There is a horse and buggy you can pay extra for that will take you almost to the top of the mountain, but you have to walk the rest of the way to the castle. The area is known for the amount of hiking trails that go through the forest. If possible I would suggest you go the bridge where you will be able to photograph the castle with a running river and waterfalls beneath you, a must see view if the castle. On our way back we stopped at the village of Oberammergau, as it was Sunday many shops were closed. The buildings are all painted on the outside, very traditional Bavarian style. Many shops had beautiful hand crafted cuckoo clocks from the Black Forest.
We took the hop on/hop off city tour bus , blue line for 2 days for 27€, well worth it. We visited the Schloss Nymphenberg, we did not do a guided tour, but chose to walk around and read all the signs on our own. We went on a short gondola ride on the man-made waterway at the castle, as we only did half of it we paid 30€ for 4 of us for 15 minutes.
Since it was our last day we did as much as we could.
We went into St Mary’s and St. Peter’s churches. Munich has over 200 Catholic Churches. You can walk up to the tower of St. Peter’s which has an observation deck for 1€, a long walk up, approximately 19 flights, narrow in many spots but well worth the view of Marienplatz and the whole of Munich on all sides.
We went to the town of Dachau by taxi about 40€ each way (from train station) and approximately 30 minutes. Dachau is one of the infamous concentration camps from WW2, where thousands of Jewish, Polish, Russian, and Germans who defied the third Reich, were prisoners of war and then were killed. A must see, the self guided tour was about 2 hours but you can easily stay longer. So much history in one place. Very overwhelming to see where the largest of human atrocities occurred during WW2.
We then went to the BMW museum, very cool to see where BMW got there start – from an airplane engine in the early 1900’s. We then went to the famous Hofbräuhaus for dinner and beer. A Bavarian band entertained the group.
Travelled to Prague by coach. Stopped at Karlovy Vary , a town with hot springs which Charles IV founded in 1370. It is famous for its hot springs and is the most visited spa town in the Czech Republic. When we arrived in Prague we checked into the Mandarin Oriental – Prague, the hotel is easy walking distance of some of Prague’s most beautiful sights, like Wenceslas Square, the Charles Bridge, Prague Castle and the Old Town Square.
We did a walking tour of the Old Town and jewish Quarter. The Old town Square is home to the Gothic Tyn Church, a medieval astronomical clock and the Old Town Hall. Wenceslas Square, is dominated by the Czech National Museum and this large gathering area is where many important demonstrations have taken place during the 20th century. We walked to the Jewish Quarter, where for hundreds of years Prague’s Jews were required to live. Many Jewish immigrants came here to escape worse persecution in other parts of Europe. You can visit the Jewish Museum if time permits.
Day 7 –
We went to the Prague Castle, we climbed the almost 300 stairs to get to the top. The view of the city was breath taking, we walked around the compound, just be prepared for the line up and then the bag/security check at the gates. We waited about 20 minutes to get into compound. We went into St. Vitus Cathedral.
As everyday we walked across the Charles bridge which was extremely busy at all hours of the day and night to walk around the town and see anything we might have missed. We sat down at Bubbles and Oysters bistro – Veuve Clicquot champagne.
A great place to end our vacation.