Top 10: Best Free Things to Do in Munich

Like A Local Guide • 27 Sep, 2013

With its rich history and beautiful architecture, Munich, the capital of Bavaria and the secret capital of Germany, certainly has a lot to offer travellers. If you’re travelling on a tight budget or just tired of paying tourist prices everywhere, keep reading as Toby, our local ambassador for Munich, shares his top 10 things to see and do for free.

1. Watch river surfers at the Eisbach in downtown Munich

When something is unique in the world, it’s definitely worth seeing. That’s the case with the Eisbach. It’s the birthplace of river surfing, which is quite an unusual sport. The waves are artificial, if you’re wondering. The funny part is that swimming in the river is prohibited, but no one takes this seriously. Regardless of the weather, people surf all year round. Read more…

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2. Feel the spirit of 1972 at Olympic Park

Olympic Park consists of various sports facilities, the Olympic Village, a shopping centre and a picturesque park with a lake. Besides being one of the architectural highlights of Munich, this place has a distinctive Olympic feel and still serves as a venue for cultural, social and religious events. Come and inhale the air of true sportsmanship. Read more…

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3. Be astonished by the beauty of Asamkirche

Whether you’re religious or not, this church is a must-see. Holding both architectural and historical value, it’s a real baroque masterpiece, with every inch covered in ornaments and embellishments. Don’t forget to bring your camera! Read more…

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4. See amazing Bavarian cars at BMW Welt

BMW Welt is a tribute to one of the most well-known car companies in the world. Take note that this is not the BMW headquarters or a museum, but an exhibition space for new BMW models. Even if you’re not a fan of cars, the building itself is worth a visit for its grand architecture. Read more…

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5. Find some peace by the Friedensengel

The Angel of Peace statue is located in a picturesque area with a beautiful park and river nearby. If you wish to sit back and relax while enjoying your surroundings, this is the place to do it.

Erected in 1896, the statue is a reminder of the 25 peaceful years following the 1870–1871 war between Germany and France. Read more…

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6. Meet the hipsters at Gärtnerplatz

The main square of the former gay/lesbian scene in Munich nowadays is the central meeting point for the city’s trendy people. You could say that Gärtnerplatz is the heart of Munich’s hipsterville, making it the perfect spot for people watching. Sit down with a group of friends and enjoy a picnic or BBQ. Read more…

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7. Discover the soul of Munich at the Isar

The Isar is the main river in Munich, with the surrounding area being a great place for biking, jogging or simply relaxing in nature. You won’t believe that you’re in the middle of a big city – it feels just like you’re in the countryside. Read more…

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8. Inhale the history and culture at Königsplatz

Besides the breathtaking architecture of the temples surrounding the square, Königsplatz oozes history; this is the place where the Nazis held many of their propaganda rallies. Nowadays it’s just another place where people lay on the grass and enjoy life. Read more…

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9. Take a walk in the garden of Schloss Nymphenburg

Everyone likes castles, especially if they look like they’ve been taken straight out of a fairy tale. This one used to be the main summer residence of the rulers of Bavaria, and is surrounded by a scenic park that’s perfect for romantic walks.

While there’s an entry fee for the museum inside the castle, it’s completely free to walk around in the garden. Read more…

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10. Make friends with locals at the Wiener Platz market

The smallest permanent market in Munich, Wiener Platz has a very cosy and local atmosphere. It’s a great alternative to the busy Viktualienmarkt (also free) as it’s less crowded and less touristy. If you don’t have time to visit any cute little villages in Germany, this is a good substitute. Read more…

7189626902_2377dcbf5e_kPhoto credit: wgutt
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Like A Local Guide
Like A Local Guide is about stepping off the tourist trail and finding cool and cosy spots where locals like to spend their time. We built a website and mobile app to bring insider recommendations from around the world to your fingertips.

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    Hi, there, Thanks for sharing an article about Munich. It's considered to be one of the world’s most livable cities. The beautiful city offers such great places to enjoy such as Marienplatz, Nymphenburg Palace, New Town Hall and much more.
    Meagan Brown • Nov 16, 2016 • Reply
    This is a great tip especially to those new to the blogosphere. Simple but very precise information… Many thanks for sharing this one. A must read article!
    pre paid phone pda cheap • Apr 11, 2016 • Reply
    read again what Gala said and try to understand...if you don't understand read again...and than comment ;)
    bart • Oct 07, 2015 • Reply
    'm headed to Munich and Salzburg this december, I will take your list and let you know what I think. So far I'm excited about it!!! Very organized website, others I have seen are too commercial thanks!
    KG • Aug 17, 2015 • Reply
    I will be in munich for 3 weeks, and would like to know if their is any good tattoo shops I can visit? Thank you :)
    Mando • Jun 20, 2015 • Reply
    The massacre Maddy is talking about has nothing to do with the Nazis. Go and learn something.
    G • Dec 30, 2014 • Reply
    And if you want to stay up-to-date with culture tips in Munich, you should totally check out Arts in Munich: http://www.artsinmunich.com
    Rachel • Nov 28, 2014 • Reply
    So you're saying that each time we mention Germany, we need to mention the Nazi's? Give me a break!! It's a touristic website, just enjoy the beautiful articles and check the beautiful places.
    Gala • Oct 23, 2014 • Reply
    Hey, The closest to local experience in terms of accommodation I can recommend is Airbnb: https://www.airbnb.com/s/Munich Hope that helps!
    Kris Härsing • Oct 09, 2014 • Reply
    Hi, We are getting ready to travel to Munich, both for pleasure and business. So my husband will need to stay somewhere near easy access to the U-Bahn & S-Bahn, I can venture out to see all that is recommended here. Any suggestion in what area to stay? I am looking in renting an apartment, try to live a local: shop at the market and eat local food, etc. Any suggestion would be greatly appreciated. The Gibsons
    The Gibsons • Oct 06, 2014 • Reply
    hi, nice list but you forgot one of the most important places/festivals :o) The original Oktoberfest. I found a nice report about it http://www.oktoberfestlederhosen.com/munich-oktoberfest-experience-oide-wiesn-2013/ regards peter
    Peter • Sep 28, 2014 • Reply
    Writing about visiting the site of the 1972 olympics and not mentioning the massacre? Seriously?
    Maddy • Sep 25, 2014 • Reply
    […] top landmarks like Brandenburg Gate, Potsdamer Platz and the Reichstag for free. Strolling through Munich’s Old Town, hiking the Alps or admiring the majestic beauty of the Black Forest are also free of […]
    How to Travel to Germany on a Budget - Semiretired Traveler • Sep 13, 2014 • Reply
    Good morning, My name is Artal Gramunt and I´m originary from Barcelona. I used to live in London and now I live in Munich and I´m working as a turist guide with my own agency (http://www.munichandbavariatours.wordpress.com). Munich is a great city and around Munich one can find amazing places to visit. For example the cities of Nuremberg (Medieval ages, Renaisance, IIWW with nazi rallies, Salzburg (The Sound of Music movie, Mozart, and much more), also amazing castles and palaces (Herrenchiemsee palace, Newschwanstein castle, and more). So recomend you to visit Munich and make it with Munich and Bavaria Tours (http://www.munichandbavariatours.wordpress.com). Thanks, Artal Gramunt.
    Artal Gramunt • May 23, 2014 • Reply
    Although I'm no more than 2 weeks now in Munich, I've done most of these things and I have to agree that they are really worth doing! It's really cool watching people surf on the cold waters of Eisenbach. The Asamkirche stands out, when you walk down the Sendlingerstraße, and the interior is amazing too. Also, I've had my share of beers sitting on the grass at Gärtnerplatz and it's very nice to hang out there. After reading this article, my next stop will be: Wiener Platz!
    Nadia Mavroudi • Sep 30, 2013 • Reply