City Center

The center of Munich is definitely a shopping paradise possessing a certain charm. With Marienplatz as the central point you have numerous options to saunter through the streets & lanes nearby with their many shops & boutiques. As shopping can be exhausting one of the excellent cafes & bistros are on hand providing that life saving refreshment before continuation of your shopping plan.

Photo Hotspots

Bavarian National Theatre

Odeonsplatz

Chrome Ball

Perusastrasse

Sendlingerstrasse

Maximilianstrasse

Hofgarten

Bavarian State Chancellory

Kaufingerstrasse

Müllersches Volksbad

Triumph Arch

Colour Gallery

Munich’s city centre has a lot to offer, full of shopping, cafes, churches & other historical architectural highlights. In general I would tend to place Munich in a more chilled out light than the usual ultra busy, fast moving town with overcrowded streets & traffic chaos. A large segment of the folks here like fancy wine or cocktail bars, expensive restaurants or a visit to the theater or opera as there is quite a high percentage of wealthy people living in & around the area. Munich also has many museums to offer, two of which, the Jagd & Fischereimuseum (German Hunting and Fishing Museum) & the Spielzeug Museum (Toy Museum) are to be found in the Kaufingerstrasse, near the Frauenkirche & Marienplatz in the Old Town Hall respectively.

FIRST ARRIVALS

As the sun disappears & the first lanterns light up the area around the Bavarian National Theater on Max Joseph Square, the first guests for the evening start to arrive for the evening performance.

RESIDENCE THEATRE

The present Residence Theatre built from 1950 to 1951 by Karl Hocheder preceded the original built around 1751 that was then badly damaged during World War II. Today, the theatre is seen as one of the most important theatres for German language world wide.

MAX JOSEPH SQUARE

The Max-Joseph Square, named after King Maximilian serves as the western starting point of the royal avenue Maximilianstraße where one can spend a fortune on expensive jewellery & clothing in boutiques a la Tiffany’s, Gucci, Chanel oder Vuitton.

MIRRORED IMAGE

On the corner where Oberanger & Klosterhof meet is this Office building with an interesting cluster of chrome balls in its inner courtyard displayed as a kind of modern art fountain.

CORNER DECORATION

On the corners of some of the older houses in Munich hang such decorative ornaments, normally of more religious significance for example statues of Our Lady with or without child. What the meaning of this one is I can’t say but I found it interesting nonetheless.

MAX ZECHBAUER

On the corner of Residenzstrasse meeting Perusastrasse is the traditional cigar manufacturer Max Zechbauer who boasts the largest assortment of cigars (over 500) in Germany & has been doing so since 1830.

STRASSENBAHN

The No.19 tram that runs between Pasing & St.Veit Strasse passes through the Maximilianstrasse past the National Theatre late in the evening.

SENDLINGER SHOPPING MILE

What Kaufinger Street is for the masses is Sendlinger Street for the middle class shopper just as the Maximilianstrasse more for the upper class is.

PERUSASTRASSE

The bridged over pedestrian zone on Maffeistrasse leads to the Promenade Square where the luxury hotel Bayerische Hof is to be found.

CAFE LUIGI TAMBOSI

A very popular Cafe at the entrance to the Residence Courtyard Garden where there is also seating for guests under Chestnut trees or on a terasse facing southwards along the Residenzstrasse.

RESIDENZ IN AUTUMN

Autumn is a great time to visit the Hofgarten when the sun shines through the golden brown leaves of the Chestnut trees & music drifts over the garden from the Dianatempel where dancing couples give a display of their talent or try some new steps.

BAYERISCHE STAATSKANZLEI

The Bavarian State Chancellory houses the office of the Minister-President as head of the Bavarian government. At present this post is occupied by Horst Seehofer from the Christian Social Union party.

CHRISTMAS PRESENT

Although Munich is home to BMW this doesn’t forbid the competition to sell its products here & so Mercedes built quite an impressive large showroom on Arnulfstrasse near the Donnersberger bridge to this end.

WINDOW SHOPPING

Munich in Christmas mood on the main shopping artery Kaufingerstrasse.

NEO MODERN LANDSCAPE

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MÜLLERSCHES VOLKSBAD

Vis a vis from the Deutsche Museum stands the Müllersches Volksbad, an indoor swimming pool built in Neo Barock, Art Nouveau style. It is said to be one of the prettiest swimming pools in Germany & was at the time of its construction in 1901 the largest & most expensive indoor swimming pool in the world.

BAVARIAN NATIONAL THEATRE

The Bavarian National Theatre is a historic opera house, home of the Bavarian State Opera, Bavarian State Orchestra and the Bavarian State Ballet.

MOONLIGHT ON MAX-JOSEPH SQUARE

A clear moonlit evening in the Bavarian capital. The statue of King Joseph Maximilian in front of the Bavarian National Theatre unfortunately has his back to the moon but I am sure he would have enjoyed the view.

GOING UNDERGROUND

To accommodate the many oncoming guests with vehicles who have tickets for the opera or a ballet in the National Theatre an underground car park has been built directly under Max-Joseph Square.

TRIUMPHAL ARCH

The Siegestor situated on the boundaries between Leopoldstrasse & Ludwigstrasse divide the two Munich districts of Maxvorstadt and Schwabing. The gate was built to commemorate the glory of the Bavarian army initially. Today however it is thought of as a monument to peace.

SITTING ON THE THRONE

The monument Max-Joseph Denkmal in front of the National Theatre was created in the middle of the square Max-Joseph-Platz as a memorial to King Maximilian Joseph.

TAXI!

Created by Christian Daniel Rauch and sculpted by Johann Baptist Stiglmaier the sculpture of Max Joseph I in front of the National Theatre was first revealed in 1835 because the king had rejected to being immortalized in a sitting position.

SPIROGRAPHIC

In the vicinity of the Theatiner church is a shopping mall by the name of Fünf Höfe (Five Courtyards) where this modern piece of art is suspended.

SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW

Now & again even the Bavarian National Theatre has to be clad in a new look.

THE SKIES THE LIMIT

One of the few buildings that do reach for the sky in Munich are the two Highlights Towers in the Parkstadt, Schwabing.Generally though there is actually a law against building anything higher than the Frauenkirche in the city centre. The Highlights Towers exceed this height by 26 metres.

SUSPENDED IN TIME

In three of the five areas of the Fünf Höfe passage there are pieces of art to be enjoyed. In the Viscardihof for example is this hanging sphere produced from steel braid from Ólafur Elíasson, an artist from Iceland.

 

 

ACROSS THE STREET

If you have such a car in such a colour then you want to be seen I would assume & where better to be seen than in Munich’s noble shopping area, Maximilianstrasse?

THE ROUND OFFICE

I must admit there are some images that I have shot over the years where I just have no idea where I was at the time and unfortunately this is one of them.

INCONSPICUOUS

Painted in a bright yellow the Theatine church is a very distinctive landmark in the heart of Munich. Not just its facade is unmistakable but also the white stucco interior, it is unbelievable, an absolute must see.

SPIKEY

Designed by the Austrian Architect Wolf Prix the Pavillon 21 MINI Opera Space is a mobile Opera used by the Bavarian State Opera.

TRAM LINE THEATRE

An ants eye view of the Bavarian National Theatre & the long Maximilianstrasse reaching right down to the Bavarian State Parliament.

AROUND THE CORNER

I quite like the rounded corner of this building on the corner of Maffeistrasse/Theatinerstrasse as it flows nicely with the tramline through a pedestrianized shopping area.

FELDHERRNHALLE

The Feldherrnhalle is like the Siegestor at the northern end of Ludwigstrasse a monument honouring the tradition of the Bavarian army. Built in the same style as Loggia dei Lanzi in Florence it was commissioned by King Ludwig I & then built between 1841-1844.

A HEAVY BURDEN

A close-up of one of the 4 supporting corners of the statue of King Maximilian-Joseph in front of the Bavarian National Theatre.

LA DOLCE VITA

Enjoying a break after all that walking around town at Luigi Tambosi’s on Odeonsplatz on the south terace. In winter too this is a favoured spot on a sunny day by minus temperatures with a blanket on your lap. At least the beer doesn’t get warm.

IN THE THICK OF IT

This shot taken from the tower of the New Town Hall on Marienplatz shows Ludwigstrasse, the main arterie towards the north of the city joining at the Triumphal Arch at Leopoldstrasse where the city district of Schwabing begins.

WITTELSBACHER PLATZ

An equestrian statue sculpted by Bertel Thorwaldsen depicting Elector Maximilian I of Bavaria stands as middle point on the Wittelsbacher Platz where the headquarters of Siemens is also to be found.

 

CHERRY BLOSSOM TIME OF YEAR

As we all know office complexes are usually quite boring affairs with lots of large concrete areas, lots of glass & steel leaving little to the imagination but thank goodness for nature who keeps the balance witha splash of colour here & there.

PERUSASTRASSE

Rounding the corner of Theatinerstrasse into Perusastrasse we catch a first glimpse of the National Theatre/State Opera House on Max-Joseph Platz. Straight ahead leads on to the boutique mile of Maximilianstrasse.

NIGHT TRAM

Late in the evening tram N19 rumbles along Maximilianstrasse picking up & dropping off the last of the evenings guests. In the background we can see the Bavarian State Parliament building on the east bank of the River Isar.

TRACHTEN SPEKTAKEL

The traditional Bavarian costume is generally known as Trachten & the most common piece of clothing by the ladies is the Dirndl a relatively tight fitting garment that pronounces the figure & can be working class simple or upper class elegant depending on the budget & occasion. Trachten is very popular at the end of summer shortly before the opening of the Oktoberfest.

JUSTICE & PERSEVERANCE

The Equestrian monument in honour of King Ludwig I shows a rider with a raised scepter accompanied by two pages, these symbolize the ruling virtues of “justice” and “perseverance”.

ROUNDED OFF

A view to the sky from the courtyard of the new Siemens Headquarters on Werner-von-Siemens Strasse.

NEVER ENDING STOREY

The Infinite Staircase sculpture designed by Olafur Eliasson. This never ending spiral staircase is located right outside the KPMG accounting offices building, making it convenient for co-workers to go for a stroll or do a short workout in on their lunch break without having to go too far away.

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Did You Know?

Like many cities, Munich started out as a small town enclosed by a wall and then expanded beyond it. The ‘inner city’ occupies such a small area that everything is close at hand and easy to visit by foot and you will get a sense of those original walls, indeed, the gates are still visible at Isartor & Sendlingertor.

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