Bavaria : in the land of castles and beers


Germany is attracting more and more tourists, Indeed, 2014, was the record year. It is not the first destination that will pop into your mind regarding holidays, but there are actually very interesting sightseeing to be done there .

Traveling along King Louis II footsteps

For instance, I think the most enchanting part of Germany, would be Bavaria, with mountains, castles, forest. The Neuschwanstein Castle, probably the most famous because, as they say Disney was inspired by this castle to create the Cinderella animation movie. A good base to reach this region would be to stay in Munich, by transportation it’s only a two-hour ride.

The eccentric King Louis II of Bavaria was the one who decided to build Linderhof, Neuschwanstein… His role model was the king Louis XIV, and he dreamt about being this absolute king with immense power, that is why Linderhof is like a little Versailles. Moreover, in the entrance room of the castle, is placed a big statue of King Louis XIV, the ceilings are often covered in gold, and the garden is alike Versailles garden, with huge fountains.

Growing up he was more interested in art and literature rather than in governing a country. Consequently, his refuge were his castles from where he stayed as if he was locked in from the exterior world. As the German are very true to their reputation, they are organized, so the tours to visit both castles are on precise time ; Either you have an audio guide,or you can follow an actual guide, in each castle it is a very informative account on the life of King Louis II.

Experience German traditions

Also, another place of interest is Oberammergau, it can be depicted as a typical Bavarian village, with the wooden chalet covered with paintings on the front walls, or some people wearing the classic Bavarian outfit, and the many stores selling beer glasses, postcards… In addition it is the city where they showcase the passion of Christ every ten years since the plague from 1633 cost the lives of many inhabitants. The last one was in 2010, during six hours, comedians, singers, instrumentalists were doing their part so that they deliver a perfect show.

In Munich, the most renown institution would be the Hofbrauhaus, founded in the 16th century by the duke of Bavaria who was unsatisfied that there were no good beer in Munich. Nowadays, the restaurant serves beer, food, and every evening a German band is playing music with traditional outfits. The place is packed everyday, with an average of 30 000 people coming each day. The company is also international, because you can find it in Las Vegas too.

Learn new things about Science and Technology

In my opinion the most interesting museum in Munich is the Deutsches. You have to be early at the entrance because the line are pretty long. It’s for everyone who wants to discover something about Science, in a fun way. You don’t get bored after half an hour because the museum is quite interactive. You have also a variety of topics which are displayed in several department.

For example, I think the best part is about coal mining, you go through the tunnels next to wagons. You don’t have all the explanation in English, but you understand the whole idea. Another good department is the one dedicated to transportation. A submarine is displayed, old aircrafts from the early 20th century, like the Bleriot airplane, the train section with driving units, and locomotive. There is also a section about new technologies and robotics, you can discover the moves of one small robot, which is quite amazing to discover how fast technology was enhanced in only a century.

A very nice place to go during summer is Olympia park which is easy to reach with the U-bahn, equivalent to the subway. You can enjoy a walk, taste a beer on a terrace, watch ducks on the lake, or maybe attend a concert. One must-do activity is to go to the BMW museum. The place is visible from the distance, it’s a four-tower building with a big BMW sign.

Inside, the cars are highlighted with technology : up-to-date ads screen, sophisticated design interior. It presents the last models. The most fun is to try the cars and bikes and take selfies. You have the impression to drive those beautiful cars yourself, some of them are even good for the environment : they use electricity.

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Appreciate culture and restaurants in Munich

The best way to finish the trip to Munich is to go to the Marienplatz area. It’s a very lively place at all times day and night. On May 1st some bands are singing for labor day. More importantly if you are on the place at noon or 5 pm, you can watch the « Glockenspiel » on the town hall frontage. The clock is composed of animated characters which are playing a piece of music at those specific times of the day.

After that, several good restaurants are right there on the place, and my favorite culinary specialties are the Schnitzel which is breaded meat, Weisswurst stands for white sausage, and for dessert an apfelstrudel : apple cake, the wole menu served with beer.

In order to be fit and remove all the calories ingested through your meal one way is to go up to Saint Peter’s tower which is nearly a 300 steps climb. The view at the top is worth the effort., you have a 360 view on all the main sightseeing highlights : the town hall, Notre Dame cathedral, and all the beautiful orange-like roofs. Inside the tower, seven bells are still ringing. The church is the oldest one in town, it was first build in 1180, and the architectural design is diverse because it crossed the centuries and the styles evolved with it.

In a nutshell, Bavaria is great to stay not only for a week-end, but for an entire week, if you want to take the time to explore the city and enjoy nature, a good wurst and beer, and learn more about the colorful German history.

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