Ok so, I forgot I had a blog again! But it is a new year and I am determined to keep this going. To make up for my poor attendance I am going to attempt to write about all of the places I have been fortunate enough to visit, even if it’s 3 months late…
October was a wonderful month as I got to travel with some wonderful friends, however the trip which began strangely to say the least. The day before we left for Munich there was an explosion in Ludwigshafen not far from where I live. Ludwigshafen is the home of the worlds chemical giant, BASF. After recently doing a tour of the company I’ve realised how huge it is and how much of an controversial impact it has on the livelihood in Ludwigshafen. The explosion on the 17th October caused 4 deaths ‘likely caused by a contractor cutting the wrong pipeline’.
The day after I set off with my pals Ellie and Elliot to Munich via the good old Flixbus. Flixbus is Germany’s version of Megabus and is drastically cheaper than using the train, however it always goes one of two ways:
- You are warmly welcomed onto a dazzling punctual clean green coach with all the space one could wish for, chauffeured by a kind bus driver, not forgetting the complimentary wi-fi!
or as I have often experienced:
2. You wait in the cold for an hour-late sweaty hotbox on wheels, are forced to sit next to a sweaty human who takes every opportunity to go for fag breaks and cough repeatedly in your face upon return, and yup no wi-fi.
More about Munich, I have compiled a lovely list of things I did that I would recommend doing if you ever get the chance! (Oktoberfest is an obvious one, but as I was there in October there was no Oktoberfest as it’s in September, yeah that’s right…)
What I can recommend in Munich:
- So the first thing that is a must-see is Marienplatz, the main square. The first thing you will notice is the breathtaking New Town Hall, as show below. I know next to nothing about architecture but this gothic masterpiece is awe-inspiring!
2. The city is made up of a vast combination of modern and historic architecture, as so much was destroyed in WWII meaning new landmarks had to be reconstructed. For example this was one of my favourite buildings, the Altes Rathaus (Old Town Hall):
3. The Englischer Garten is a must see if you are spending more than one day in Munich! Although it rained when we were there and I was poorly on the verge of vomiting (too much information?), I do have surprisingly fond memories of it:
4. The museums. There are so many to choose from in Munich and if you are on a student budget it’s always going to be hard choosing what to do, but we were happy with our choices. We did the Jewish museum, which I would recommend as it’s very interesting and cheap.
We also paid a set fee of around 10 euros for the München Stadtmuseum, which allows you entrance into various small exhibitions. I would 100% recommend this as we saw a national socialism museum, then moved on to a music exhibition called SOUNDLAB which tries to make museum visiting a loud interactive experience. Using this ticket we were then able to visit a photography exhibition which was amazing, however it started with a slightly eerie hallway displaying pictures of dead animals which I think had artistic value to the rest of the exhibition and I know we shouldn’t live in ignorance, but it wasn’t for me.
5. The Hofbräuhaus, the perfect way to end an evening in true Bavarian style with a 1 litre stein and a pretzel, musically accompanied with a brass band. Although I still felt ill and ordered peppermint tea which I made sure to hide from any photos, I would 100% recommend!
Tip: Try to tip, in Munich tips seem to be a bigger thing than I have noticed anywhere else and we got scowled at for paying the right amount, whoopsies.
6. The Hofgarten, we accidentally ended up here after trying to find the University but it is a lovely place to get some fresh air and chill out.
I am going to leave it there as I don’t really remember doing too much more in the couple of days that we were there. If I had the opportunity to visit again I would certainly love to visit Neuschwanstein, make sure I saw the insides of the all of the wonderful churches and also visit Olympiapark. In general Munich is a wonderful city, but BEWARE it is expensive, as we learnt upon ordering coffee – 4.50€ for a cappuccino?! As I mentioned earlier, there is also a big tipping culture. All in all, it is a magical place to be and there is a buzz about the place, especially in the evening when talented buskers play or when you get stuck in a crowd of Bayern Munich fans.