The best MICE events are intense, the impressions varied and exciting, so it's good to take some time out. This is particularly easy in Munich. Here, we present seven well- or lesser-known Munich moments that will let you easily and immediately relax from all the hustle and bustle of a congress – and at the same time give you the full Munich experience.
The white sausage is one of the most famous culinary legends of the Bavarian state capital – and rightly so. Anyone who hasn’t eaten white sausages with pretzel and sweet mustard at least once – preferably, but not necessarily in the late morning – has missed out on something essential.
You can get good white sausages anywhere in Munich, but very good ones that are maybe even produced in an in-house sausage kitchen are very rare. Possibly the best ones are to be had at Wallner, the wholesale market restaurant in Untersendling. From Marienplatz it's only a few stops away by subway. But watch out – food starts and finishes quite early at Wallner. just like at the wholesale market.
Gaststätte Großmarkthalle, Kochelseestraße 13. Monday to Friday 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Munich is one of the few cities in the world with over a million inhabitants where a wild river flows right through it – not just one that has been made navigable with locks. The southerly 8 km section where the Isar rushes through the city were restored to their natural state in 2011.
The river is most beautiful at Flaucher, the section a little north of the Tierpark where it meanders between several large islands with tall trees and expansive gravel beaches.
The subway only takes about ten minutes from the city center to Flaucher, a ride that is well worthwhile.
Right next to the Haus der Kunst art museum, the Eisbach, a mad-made side-arm of the Isar, shoots out from its subterranean course to form the world’s most famous standing wave – a long, long way from the sea on Munich's Prinzregentenstraße. Just stand there, watch the surfers, be amazed – and maybe shout like the locals: “Alohabedieehre!”
Munich’s most famous bar and Germany’s most famous barman – if not well beyond. Easy to reach by subway from any direction and difficult for many to understand, the high school of stylish grumpiness as cultivated by Charles Schumann and his waiters is easily misunderstood by the uninformed as impoliteness, but is merely a circumspect test of which guests are suckers.
Those who remain respectfully obliging will reap respect. All the others can always enjoy a stroll through the magnificent courtyard garden directly behind the restaurant.
Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. Saturdays closed. Sunday 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Odeonsplatz 6-7. Easy to get there by subway.
The English Garden, which begins directly behind Hofgarten (Court Garden) and the Haus der Kunst art museum in the heart of the city, is one of the world’s largest city parks – even larger than New York's Central Park. It’s called the English Garden, by the way, because it is laid out in the natural style of English landscape gardens and not in strictly geometrical fashion like French Baroque gardens.
In the southern section up to Kleinhesseloher See, there's always a big open-air party in the summer months for Munich's many self-expressionists. In the northern section, in contrast, you’re often on your own surprisingly quickly – yet still in the middle of a big city.
There are numerous beer gardens in Munich, and many of them are beautiful. But the beer garden at the Chinese Tower in the English Garden is perhaps the one with the best music. Mathias Achatz and his band play here on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday afternoons and on Sundays from 12 noon.
In and around Bavaria, the trumpeter, arranger and orchestra musician Matthias Achatz is considered to be one of the best brass band conductors. What's more, he and his band don’t sit on a stage well away but a good seven meters up on the second floor of the Tower, which gives the music much more scope and grandeur than is usually the case. An ear-opening experience.
English Garden 3: Take the subway to the Universität station and then walk through the English Garden.
Munich is a Catholic city. But the only real saints are the anarchic comedian and brilliant word twister Karl Valentin and his congenial partner Lisl Karlstadt.
The small but fine Valentin Karlstadt Museum in the Isartor is dedicated to their wit, which reveals more about the spirit and un-spirit of Munich than any travel guide, no matter how thick: "I’d have liked to, but didn't dare to." By the way, 99-year-olds accompanied by their parents get in free.
Im Tal 50. Open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Sundays from 10 am. Closed on Wednesdays.