München – Beer Country

I caught a cab driven by –this guy– to Köln/Bonn Flughafen, at which point I hopped on a Germanwings flight to München. A very expensive cab-ride took me past the Allianz Arena and the Olympic Stadium, before dropping me off at the hostel.

I met a Japanese guy, and a Lebanese-German from Trier, and we head out into the main part of town for a quick look. My first impression after arriving at the München Hauptbahnhof – the city is busy. Even at 11:00pm, there were still thousands of people making their way around Karlsplatz and Marienplatz, the central shopping district. After our Japanese mate left, the two of us headed into Münchner Freiheit, the club and bar strip, where we visited an awesome Shisha bar. We stopped at a few others before calling it a night, and then getting stopped by the Polizei on the way back to the hostel.

Following the hangover of the night before, I went for a preliminary wander around München, heading straight into Marienplatz. At 11:00am the clocktower on the Altes Rathaus plays a (long) song, and the statuettes act out a scene. There were heaps of tourists packed into the square to watch the clocktower’s five-minute show, oooh-ing and aaah-ing each step of the way.

Just like the other cities, München was filled with old buildings. It was easy (and preferable) to wander around and get lost in München city. I had to graciously ignore the fact that many of the façades had been covered for restoration over winter. Just another reason to come back, I suppose.

I took an evening trip with a friend to Andechser am Dom for a traditional Bavarian dinner and the bar’s specialty beer – Andechser. A litre or so later, we said goodbye to our neighbouring guests and their dogs, and head out to one of the larger beer halls in München – Augustiner am Dom. The beer hall was full of people, and judging by the oompa-band and amount of lederhosen I saw, it was always Oktoberfest in the building. Another litre or so later, we head out to a local club and I spent the next few hours drinking another mysterious München-only beer and dancing to miscellaneous German music.

On the final days, the weather was actually reasonable, and I got lost in the city before visiting the Residenz – the traditional residence of the King. The opulence of the building was remarkable, and the amount of gold in there was just unbelievable.

My favourite piece wasn’t the gold or the carved ceilings… it was the ‘relic room’ – a room dedicated to Holy Relics. Yes, in that picture is a skull and two shoulder blades. Note: crappy picture because they hate cameras in the room.

My last afternoon staying in München involved visiting the HQ of my favourite beer (Löwenbräu) and having a great Bavarian meal at the Löwenbräu Keller.

Highlight: Seeing two black swans trying to have noisy sex on the icy pond out the front of Schloss Nymphenburg.

Real Highlight: Spaten, Löwenbräu, Hofbräu, Andechser, Augustiner – all in large quantities.