Marienplatz from St Pauls Chapel tower

Sitting at the train station in Obertraun waiting for my first train I look out across the lake and the sun in shining and the skies are clear. Son of a bitch. Had to catch 3 trains to get to Munich, and of course one of them having to be from Salzburg. Arrived at the very familiar Munich HBF and made my way to my hostel, Euro Youth Hostel, which was only about 50m away. Its two neighbours were the Jaegers and Wombats hostels, all of them offering the same thing. Whilst checking in I asked if there was any mail waiting for me. The girl looked at me with a very strange look on her face. She thought I meant if there was a ‘male’ waiting for me…needless to say I straightened that up quickly. Thankfully there was actually some mail for me, my replacement credit card (the pin number one came a couple of days later as well). I had opted for the smallest dorm style room they had, which was 3 beds. You might not meet as many people as the larger rooms, but you have a far greater chance of having a good nights sleep if you need it. Also finally managed to not have a top bunk for once.

Munich is a great city to be a tourist, for many many reasons, one of which is that NewEurope run tours there. They are famous for their ‘free’ walking tours, so thats what I did on the first day. This is actually my third time in Munich, but ive never taken a guided tour before. Whilst waiting in Marienplatz talking to a few other people before the tour started, I turn around and there is Anna staring me in the face. Huge surprise, considering she lives in Hamburg. (I met her last year in Amsterdam, and she was also in Wiesbaden a few weeks ago for Charly’s birthday.) So she switched to the English tour with me which was great. Im not sure how great it was for her though because our tour guide just took the piss out of Germans the entire time. He was really funny though and a great guide.

Before the tour started we waited for the Glockenspiel to go off. Now for anyone that has actually seen this thing, they will agree that its just crap. It must be one of the biggest let downs of any tourist attraction in Europe. And yet hundreds of people flock to Marienplatz to see it go off and record it all. Tour was great though, I learnt a lot about the city that I didn’t know though, especially the exact places where Hitler marched in 1923. Very interesting that there are hidden memorials all over the city to these events, but if you cant speak German, or don’t look closely, then you would miss all of them. Apparently there is 115 of them.

After that tour I went back to the hostel to rest for a bit before 6pm, which is when the NewEurope ‘Beer Challenge’ tour started. Met at the main train station, and lined my stomach with some tasty pizza. Once we had all paid we got our first beer, an Augustiner Helles. You gotta watch yourself in Europe because all bottled beer comes in 500ml. One of the main reasons why German beer, especially Bavarian beer, is so good is because of the beer laws that were signed all those years ago. The six main breweries in Munich still all abide by this beer law, which basically states that the beer must only be made out of the 4 natural ingredients (ie no preservatives etc).

First beer stop on the tour was Lowenbrau Keller. This is obviously very well known to me, and everyone else in Sydney, as there is a Lowenbrau in The Rocks. The beer tastes far better in this one though. The second stop on the trip I cant even remember what the name of it was, not due to alcohol consumption, just that I cant pronounce the names. Third stop was the third biggest beer garden in Munich, which is also the third biggest in the world. It has a seating capacity of around 8000, and is regularly full. The beer served is Augustiner Lager which is probably my favourite beer of all the top 6. Its even served out of old school wooden barrels still. The fourth and last stop on the tour was the bar in my hostel. I have no idea why they don’t go to another beer garden, because the bar is just a normal bar and isn’t German in the slightest. Oh well it meant a pretty easy walk back to bed.

I didn’t actually take many photos while I was in Munich either. Being that its my third time here I already have thousands of the place, and im also coming back for Oktoberfest in a couple of weeks anyway.