One of Germany’s most famous cities, Munich is the ultimate tourist city. It is home to the Marienplatz, the bustling main square of the city; the Hofbräuhaus, the world’s most famous beer hall; the Munich Residence, a huge and stunning palace; and many more exciting attractions. In this post I’ll be bringing you on the ultimate tour of Munich, throughout only one day. This itinerary is focused within Munich’s old town, as most of the city’s main sights are all found within that neighbourhood, though it also includes a couple stops in other parts of the huge city. So, if you only have a day to spend in Munich and you’d like to make the most of it, this is the perfect post for you!
8AM – Karlsplatz / Stachus
Begin your day in one of Munich’s busiest squares – the Karlsplatz. During the wintertime, the square is home to a skating rink; during the summertime it is home to a fountain; and all year round you’ll find numerous restaurants and cafes that all make for great places to stop for breakfast. Spend some time exploring the modest square and look for a spot to get some breakfast before heading on to your next destination of the day.
9AM – Neuhauserstraße & Kaufingerstraße
Neuhauserstraße and Kaufingerstraße, two hustling, pedestrian-only streets, lead you from the Karlsplatz to the Marienplatz. To get to both Neuhauserstraße and Kaufingerstraße from the Karlsplatz, you’ll pass under the Karlstor, a part of Munich’s medieval city walls. On your way down these streets, you’ll pass by many famous landmarks as well as many shops and stores. One of the famous landmarks you’ll pass by is the Frauenkirche, the tallest church in Munich, which can be found through a hidden side street. After you pass the Hirmer store (which is on the side street that will lead you to the Frauenkirche!), the street changes from Neuhauser to Kaufinger, which, if followed to its end, will bring you to the Marienplatz.
9:30PM – Marienplatz
An essential stop on any trip to Munich is the heart of the city, the Marienplatz! This lively square is home to both of Munich’s town halls, New Town Hall and Old Town Hall, both of which are stunning and very famous. Within the Marienplatz you’ll also find the well known Fish Fountain and Mary’s Column, more of Munich’s iconic attractions. Spend some time here people watching, admiring the stunning views, and maybe even check out the square’s surrounding stores. If you’re visiting during the winter, make sure to check out the Marienplatz’s classic Christmas market!
10AM- St. Peter’s Church
Just around the corner from the Marienplatz is where you’ll find St. Peter’s church, a Roman Catholic church that is the oldest church in Munich’s altstadt. From the top of this church’s tower, which is 91 metres tall and 299 steps up, there are breathtaking views of all of Munich. Personally, I think one of the best things to do in a city is to visit somewhere where you can get a stunning view of the city, which is exactly what you’ll get at St. Peter’s church after a bit of a workout and a small fee!
(5 min walk)
11AM – Munich Stadtmuseum
Another important thing to do when visiting any city is to learn a bit about the city, which is what you can do at the Munich City Museum (or Munich Stadtmuseum!). This historic museum’s “Typically Munich” exhibit tells the story of new, old, and current Munich, and teaches you a lot about Munich’s long and interesting history. Spend an hour or so exploring the museum, and make sure to stop somewhere close by for a lunch or quick snack (I’d recommend checking out the nearby Viktualienmarkt) before heading to your next stop of the day.
(15 min walk)
Just northeast from the museum you’ll find Maximilianstraße, a street known for its many luxury stores, galleries, and hotels. It is one of Munich’s four royal avenues, all of which are named after one of the monarchs of Bavaria. Spend some time exploring this street before heading west on the street towards Max-Joseph-Platz, one of Munich’s main squares that is surrounded by many of the city’s main sights. There you’ll find your next stop of the day!
1:30PM – Munich Residence
The former home to the monarchs of Bavaria, the Munich Residence (found at Max-Joseph-Platz) is one of the Munich’s most famous and beautiful attractions. It is one of the world’s most impressive and magnificent palaces, and its history spans over 600 years. Though much of it was destroyed during the second world war, it was gradually rebuilt and part of it is now available to tour and visit. I didn’t get to tour the residence during my time in Munich, yet I really wish that I had. So, I planned the next couple of hours in this itinerary towards touring the residence so that you don’t make the same mistake as me and miss getting to tour the palace.
(15 min drive)
3:30PM – Olympia Park
Munich’s Olympic Park, the next stop of the day, is located in northern Munich, a quick 15 minute drive outside of old town. The park was created in the 70s for the 1972 Summer Olympics, which were held in Munich, West Germany. Within the park you’ll find a couple stadiums, the Olympic Village, and the Olympic Tower. The big, green park usually isn’t too busy with tourists, which makes it a nice place to explore and relax after spending some time in Munich’s bustling altstadt.
(10 min drive)
4:30PM – Allianz Arena
Also located outside of the old town, on the northern outskirts of Munich, the Allianz Arena is the second largest stadium in Germany. It serves as Bayern Munich’s home, Germany’s most prosperous football team, and it is the first stadium in the world to have full colour changing exterior. The stadium is fun to visit if you’re a big football team, but if you’re not too interested in the sport than you could probably skip visiting the arena (maybe spend the time at the Olympic Park instead).
(30 min drive)
Make your way back into Munich’s old town and find yourself at the world’s most famous beer hall, the Hofbräuhaus! This quintessentially Bavarian tavern is over half a century old, and it is an icon of the city. At the Hofbräuhaus they serve Bratwurst, Weisswurt, Currywurst, pretzels, cheese bread, beer of course, and much more; order something from here for a hearty and filling dinner.
(5 min walk)
End your perfect day in Munich by going back to the heart of the city, the Marienplatz. This square is much different at night, often a lot calmer and more serene than during the day (though it depends on the time of night!). Before heading back to wherever you’re staying, get one last look at the iconic New and Old Town Halls of Munich.
Spending more than a day in Munich/Bavaria? Check out some of my other posts on the city for some more ideas on what to do with your other days in the city.
That’s all for my one day itinerary to Munich! I really hope that this was either helpful or interesting to you – if you end up actually following this itinerary make sure to let me know in the comments below. That is also all for my Munich series on my blog; I really enjoyed writing about Munich and I learned a lot about the city that I never knew from writing these posts. That’s definitely not all for my posts about my Europe trip this winter though – I still have 4 other cities to write about (next up is Salzburg!).
Thanks for reading.