Innenstadt (Inner City)
The Innenstadt encompasses central Munich west of the Isar River, the area of most interest to visitors. Within the Innenstadt is the Altstadt (Old City), an oval-shaped pedestrian-only district. Munich’s Hauptbahnhof (main train station) lies just west of the Altstadt. Marienplatz, dominated by the Altes Rathaus and Neues Rathaus and with several major churches in the vicinity, is the Altstadt’s most important square. Kaufingerstrasse, a pedestrian-only shopping street, starts at the west end of Marienplatz, and Tal, a retail and restaurant street, begins at east side of the square. Just to the south of Marienplatz is the Viktualienmarkt, a wonderfully lively outdoor market. Between Marienplatz and Odeonsplatz is the Platzl quarter, famed for its nightlife, restaurants, and the landmark Hofbräuhaus, the most famous beer hall in the world. Odeonsplatz, to the north of Marienplatz, is one of Munich’s most beautiful squares, site of the Residenz (former royal palace) and the giant National Theatre, home of the famed Bavarian State Opera. Running west from Odeonsplatz is Briennerstrasse, a wide shopping avenue that leads to Königsplatz (King’s Square). Flanking this large square are three neoclassical buildings constructed by Ludwig I and housing Munich’s antiquities: the Propyläen, the Glyptothek, and the Antikensammlungen. Another trio of world-famous art museums—the Alte Pinakothek (Old Masters Gallery), the Neue Pinakothek (New Masters Gallery), and the Pinakothek Moderne Kunst (Gallery of Modern Art)—are located in the Museum Quarter, just northeast of Königsplatz. Theresienwiese, where Oktoberfest is held, is located southwest of the Altstadt.
Ludwigstrasse connects the Altstadt with Schwabing, a former artists’ quarter located north of the Altstadt and known for its cafes, restaurants, and nightlife.
Bogenhausen & Haidhausen
East of the Isar River, outside the city center, lie Bogenhausen and Haidhausen, leafy residential neighborhoods where you find some hotels and restaurants.
The northern section of the city, with Leopoldstrasse as its artery, had a Bohemian heyday before World War I and has become a restaurant and entertainment area popular with students and tourists. The Englischer Garten spreads out along its eastern border and Olympiapark and Josephsplatz mark its western border.
Site of the 1972 Olympics, the entire park is now a multipurpose complex hosting concerts, sporting events, fairs and more. BMW Welt, the car maker’s showroom, museum and factory, is located here.
Nymphenburg, about a 20-minute tram ride northwest of the city center, is of interest to tourists primarily because of Schloss Nymphemburg, the summer palace of Munich’s long-ruling family, the Wittelsbachs. The ornately decorated palace with its adjacent museums and beautifully landscaped grounds make a trip here worthwhile.