Gluhwein mugs in front of the Christmas Pyramid at the Christmas Market in Munich
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Best Christmas Markets in Munich, Germany – Top Guide 2023

Welcome to the enchanting world of Munich’s Christmas Markets, where centuries-old traditions come alive against snow-dusted streets and festive lights. As you wander through the city during the holiday season, each market you encounter—from the historical Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt to the vibrant Tollwood Winter Festival—tells a story steeped in Bavarian culture.

Experience the warmth of Glühwein at the Bogenhausen Mulled Wine Festival, marvel at the medieval charm of the Moonlight Express at Bahnwärter Thiel, and find unique gifts and handcrafted treasures at the Fairytale Bazaar at Olympiapark.

Munich’s Christmas Markets are more than just a shopping destination; they are a festive journey through a winter wonderland filled with delicious treats, heartwarming traditions, and the joyous spirit of the season.

Join us as we explore the best of Munich’s festive offerings, a true highlight of the Bavarian winter.

History of Munich’s Christmas Markets & Bavarian Christmas Traditions

The history of Munich’s Christmas Markets is deeply entwined with Bavarian Christmas traditions, dating back to the 14th century. Established as seasonal gatherings for locals to buy winter supplies and food, these markets have evolved into the festive celebrations we know today.

The oldest and most iconic, the Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt, has been a cornerstone of Munich’s Yuletide celebrations for centuries, embodying the essence of the Bavarian Christmas spirit. Traditional customs like the Advent singing, the crafting of intricate Nativity scenes (‘Krippen’), and the baking of Lebkuchen (gingerbread) and Stollen (fruit bread) play a central role in these markets.

Each stall and activity at the markets reflects these age-old traditions, from hand-carved wooden ornaments to the warm, spiced Glühwein, offering a glimpse into Bavaria’s rich cultural heritage. The blend of historical customs with contemporary celebrations makes Munich’s Christmas Markets a vibrant tapestry of festive joy, attracting visitors worldwide to experience the unique charm of a Bavarian Christmas.

Benefits of Visiting a German Christmas Market

Hitting up Munich’s Christmas markets is a must-do for many reasons. The food is next-level – every food stall is dishing out something delicious, from holiday sweets to hearty German classics. Then there’s the live music.

Each market, from the traditional vibes at Christkindlmarkt at Sendlinger Tor to the medieval Christmas market vibes at Wittelsbacherplatz, has its own thing going on. They’re the places to pick up unique gifts and soak in that Christmas spirit.

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Munich Christmas Market Guide

The husband and I at the Marienplatz Market in Munich with the new Town Hall behind us.

Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt

Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt, nestled in the heart of Munich, is the epitome of a traditional German Christmas market. As the city’s central square, Marienplatz transforms into a festive wonderland during the holiday season.

Visitors are greeted with the enchanting sight of a towering Christmas tree adorned with thousands of twinkling lights, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. Stalls brimming with handmade crafts, ornaments, and seasonal treats line the square, offering a delightful shopping experience.

The air is filled with the aroma of mulled wine, roasted chestnuts, and gingerbread, adding to the market’s charm. With the picturesque New Town Hall as its backdrop, this market offers a magical shopping experience.

It is a gathering place for locals and tourists to enjoy the festive cheer, live music, and the daily Glockenspiel performance. Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt is more than just a market; it’s a celebration of the holiday spirit in the heart of Munich.

November 27 – December 24, 2023
Monday – Saturday, 10.00 am – 9.00 pm; Sunday, 10.00 am – 8.00 pm; December 24, 10.00 am and 2.00 pm
Marienplatz (The Main Square) and the Fubgangerzone (pedestrian street)

Kripperlmarkt – A Nook for Nativity Enthusiasts

For those who are particularly captivated by the charm of nativity scenes, the Kripperlmarkt is an absolute must-see. This market is dedicated to all things ‘Krippe,’ the German word for ‘crib,’ and offers an array of nativity scene figures and accessories.

Located close to the Marienplatz area, the Kripperlmarkt is a niche market within a market, offering everything from simple wooden figurines to lavishly painted pieces that bring the story of Christmas to life. It’s a tradition that’s been part of Munich’s Christmas culture for over a century, making it a timeless stop on your market tour.

Christmas Pyramid at the Christmas Market in Munich

Christmas Village at the City Palace

The Christmas Village at the City Palace, set against the majestic backdrop of the Munich Residenz, offers a unique and regal twist to the traditional Christmas market experience. As you step into the Residenz courtyard, you’re transported into a historical setting transformed into a quaint village adorned with festive decorations.

The market exudes an air of exclusivity and elegance, with beautifully decorated stalls offering a variety of high-quality handcrafted goods, perfect for finding that special gift. The atmosphere is further enriched by the aroma of gourmet treats and the sound of classic Christmas carols, often performed by local musicians.

This Christmas Village provides a delightful shopping experience. It allows visitors to immerse themselves in the grandeur and history of Munich’s royal past, making it a truly enchanting destination during the holiday season.

November 23 – December 22, 2023
Daily 11.00 am – 9.00 pm
Munich Residenz, entrance Residenzstrasse, Odeonsplatz

The may pole in front of the Vikualienmarkt.

Viktualienmarkt

Viktualienmarkt, a bustling daily food market in the heart of Munich, transforms into a festive culinary paradise during the Christmas season. This renowned market, famous for its variety of fresh produce and gourmet delicacies, takes on a holiday charm with its seasonal offerings.

Visitors can meander through the beautifully decorated stalls, sampling traditional German treats like Lebkuchen, Stollen, and sausages. Amid the festive decorations, the market also features unique food-related gifts, from artisanal cheeses to homemade preserves, perfect for the foodies in your life.

The lively yet cozy atmosphere of Viktualienmarkt, complemented by the cheerful chatter of vendors and shoppers, makes it an ideal spot to indulge in the flavors of a Munich Christmas, offering a delightful break from the more conventional holiday market fare.

November 22, 2023 – January 3, 2024
Monday – Saturday 8.00 am – 8.00 pm; some stalls are closed on Mondays.
Viktualienmarkt

The husband and I at the Medieval Market in Munich. They served Gluhwein in medieval style cups. This was one of our favorite markets.

Medieval Christmas Market

The Medieval Christmas Market in Munich offers a unique and immersive journey back to the Middle Ages. Located near Odeonsplatz, this market stands out with its medieval-themed decorations, stallholders dressed in period costumes, and an atmosphere reminiscent of a bygone era.

The air is filled with the scents of old-world culinary delights, such as honey wine (mead) and roasted game, while the sound of traditional medieval music adds to the ambiance. Visitors can explore an array of stalls selling hand-forged ironwork, wooden crafts, and medieval attire, making it a haven for those seeking authentic and unusual gifts.

The market also features historical entertainment like jugglers, minstrels, and fire shows, providing an enchanting experience that captures the essence of medieval festivity and charm.

November 27 – December 23, 2023
Daily 11.00 am – 9.00 pm
Wittelsbacher Platz, Briennerstrasse 6-10

Tollwood Winter Festival

The Tollwood Winter Festival in Munich celebrates culture, arts, and environmental consciousness, offering a unique alternative to the traditional Christmas market scene.

Held at the Theresienwiese, the same grounds that host Oktoberfest, this festival is a kaleidoscope of international music, theater, and performances, showcasing artists and performers from around the globe.

The festival’s ethos is deeply rooted in sustainability and cultural diversity. It is reflected in its eclectic mix of organic food stalls serving international cuisines and its workshops and exhibits focused on ecological and social issues. The “Market of Ideas” at Tollwood features handcrafted goods and artistic creations worldwide, making it an ideal place for finding unique gifts.

The Tollwood Winter Festival offers an array of sensory delights. It provides thought-provoking experiences, making it a must-visit destination for those looking to celebrate the festive season in an unconventional and meaningful way.

November 23 – December 23, 2023. After the 23rd, the festival concludes with a traditional New Year’s Eve Party on December 31st.
Daily 11.00 am – 9.00 pm
Theresienwiese (Oktoberfest fairgrounds)

Christkindlmarkt at Sendlinger Tor

The Christkindlmarkt at Sendlinger Tor, set at one of Munich’s historic gates, offers a more intimate and tranquil alternative to the city’s larger Christmas markets. This charming market captivates visitors with its cozy ambiance and picturesque setting, surrounded by the medieval walls of Sendlinger Tor.

The market is a treasure trove of traditional Bavarian Christmas items, including handcrafted ornaments, wooden toys, and festive decorations. Stalls adorned with twinkling lights and festive garlands add to the market’s warm and inviting atmosphere.

Visitors can indulge in classic holiday treats like hot Glühwein, gingerbread, and roasted chestnuts while browsing the unique array of artisanal goods. The Christkindlmarkt at Sendlinger Tor is a delightful destination for those seeking a more relaxed and authentic Christmas market experience in the heart of Munich.

November 27 – December 22, 2023
Daily 11.00 am –  9.00 pm
Sendlinger-Tor-Platz

Christmas Mulled Wine Festival in Bogenhausen

The Christmas Mulled Wine Festival in Bogenhausen is a unique and delightful event that adds a special flavor to Munich’s festive season. Nestled in the elegant Bogenhausen district, this festival is dedicated to celebrating the beloved traditional drink of Glühwein (mulled wine).

Visitors are treated to various variations of this classic winter beverage, from the traditional cinnamon and clove-infused red wine to more innovative twists featuring different spices and spirits. The festival’s atmosphere is cozy and inviting, with twinkling lights and the warm, spicy aroma of mulled wine filling the air.

Stalls at the festival also offer a selection of seasonal treats and snacks, perfectly complementing the warm drinks. The Christmas Mulled Wine Festival in Bogenhausen is a must-visit for those looking to indulge in the quintessential taste of German winter while enjoying a more laid-back and sophisticated market experience.

November 16, 2023 – January 7, 2024
Festival grounds in front of Cosimabad

Schwabing Christmas Market

The Schwabing Christmas Market, nestled in Munich’s bohemian and artistic district, offers a uniquely creative and vibrant holiday experience. Renowned for its artistic flair, this market is a hub for local artists and craftsmen, displaying an array of handmade gifts, artworks, and avant-garde pieces you won’t find anywhere else.

As you wander through the market, you’re surrounded by the creativity of painters, sculptors, and jewelers, all showcasing their talents amidst the festive stalls. The atmosphere is lively and inspirational, often accentuated by performances by street artists and musicians, adding a contemporary touch to the traditional Christmas market experience.

The Schwabing Christmas Market is not just a place for shopping; it’s a celebration of art and culture, making it a must-visit for those seeking a unique and artistic take on the festive season.

December 1 – 24, 2023
Monday – Friday Noon – 8.30 pm; Saturday & Sunday 11.00 am – 8,30 pm; December 24th 11.00 am – 2.00 pm
Forum Munchner Freiheit

Christmas Market at the Chinesischer Turm

The Christmas Market at the Chinesischer Turm, located in Munich’s picturesque English Garden, is a delightful fusion of traditional Bavarian charm and unique Oriental architecture. Centered around the Chinese Tower, a striking 18th-century pagoda, this market offers a serene and enchanting escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.

Visitors can wander through a winter wonderland of beautifully decorated stalls illuminated by the soft glow of fairy lights. The market is famous for its cozy and family-friendly atmosphere, offering a variety of traditional German Christmas delicacies and warm beverages.

Children are especially enchanted by the carousel and various activities designed for them. The tranquil setting, the distinctive architecture of the Chinesischer Turm, and the traditional festive offerings make this Christmas market a magical and unforgettable experience.

November 23 – December 23, 2023
Englischer Garten near the Chinesischer Turm (Chinese Tower)

The Fairytale Bazaar at Olympiapark

The Fairytale Bazaar at Olympiapark in Munich is a magical destination that brings the enchantment of fairytales to life during the festive season. Set against the backdrop of the iconic Olympiapark, this market is a wonderland for families and those who cherish the spirit of storytelling.

Each stall and attraction is whimsically decorated to reflect themes from beloved fairytales and legends, creating an immersive experience that captivates both young and old. Visitors can stroll through this dreamy landscape, discovering unique crafts and gifts while enjoying traditional seasonal treats.

The Fairytale Bazaar also features a variety of entertainment, from puppet shows to live performances, making it an ideal place for creating lasting holiday memories. Its charming and whimsical atmosphere makes the Fairytale Bazaar at Olympiapark a standout among Munich’s Christmas markets, offering a delightful escape into a world of fantasy and festivity.

November 23 – December 29, 2023
Monday – Thursday 4.00 pm – 11.00 pm; Friday 4.00 pm – Midnight; Saturday 12.00 pm – 12.00 am; Sunday 11.00 am – 9.00 pm
Premises of the Tollwood Summer Festival, Spiridon-Louis-Ring 100

Moonlight Express, Bahnwarter Thiel

The Moonlight Express at Bahnwärter Thiel in Munich presents a unique and eclectic Christmas market experience, blending traditional holiday charm with a touch of urban, alternative flair. Set in an offbeat cultural space known for its repurposed shipping containers and vibrant street art, the Moonlight Express offers a refreshing twist on the conventional Christmas market.

As the name suggests, this market comes alive under the moonlight, creating an enchanting atmosphere with its dimly lit pathways and creative lighting. Visitors can explore an array of unconventional stalls offering artisanal crafts, vintage items, and local art.

At the same time, DJs and live bands provide a soundtrack that ranges from chilled beats to lively tunes. The Moonlight Express is more than just a market; it’s a lively celebration of Munich’s contemporary culture and artistic spirit, making it a must-visit for those seeking a unique and memorable holiday experience.

November 23 – December 23, 2023
Monday – Friday 4.00 pm -10.00 pm; Saturday & Sunday 1.00 pm – 10.00 pm
Bahnwarter Thiel, Tumblingerstrasse 45, Atelierpark

Neuhauser Market

Neuhauser Market, situated in the bustling heart of Munich, offers a charming and convenient Christmas market experience, perfect for those looking to soak up the holiday spirit amid their city exploration. This market, located on the busy Neuhauser Street, is known for its accessibility and vibrant atmosphere, making it a popular stop for locals and tourists.

As you wander through the festively decorated stalls, you’ll find a delightful array of traditional German Christmas items, from handcrafted ornaments and festive decorations to a selection of warm, seasonal treats.

The market’s proximity to major shopping areas and its blend of traditional and modern offerings make the Neuhauser Market an ideal spot for a quick and joyful immersion into Munich’s festive cheer.

November 27 – December 23, 2023
Daily 11.00 am – 8.30 pm
Northern and Southern side of Rotkreuzplatz

Blutenburg Christmas

Blutenburg Christmas, held at the picturesque Blutenburg Castle in Munich, offers a truly enchanting Christmas market experience. This idyllic setting, with the castle’s historical architecture and surrounding moat, becomes a scene from a storybook during the holiday season.

Visitors are treated to an intimate and grand market focusing on high-quality, artisanal crafts and local products. The serene and majestic backdrop of the castle adds a touch of elegance and tranquility, setting this market apart from the bustling city center markets.

It’s the perfect place for those seeking a peaceful and scenic environment to enjoy traditional festive treats, shop for unique handmade gifts, and bask in the glow of the castle’s romantic Christmas illumination. The Blutenburg Christmas market captures a sense of historical charm and warmth, making it a hidden gem in Munich’s festive offerings.

December 7 – December 10, 2023
Blutenburg Castle

Planning on visiting more than one Christmas Market this season? Check out our other blog posts about Christmas Markets in Europe.
Ultimate Guide to Christmas Markets in Colmar, France 2023
Best Christmas Markets in Strasbourg, France 2023 Guide
Best Christmas Markets in Basel Switzerland 2023 Guide                           
Unveiling the Magic of Zurich Christmas Markets – 2023       

German Christmas Market Foods & Drinks

Munich’s Christmas markets are a treasure trove of festive culinary delights, offering a gastronomic adventure through traditional Bavarian and German holiday specialties. Let’s dive into some of the heartwarming treats you can savor.

There are many styles of cups for Gluhwein that would make wonderful souvenirs for a cheap price. This one is blue with Munich outline in gold.

Gluhwein

Amidst this backdrop of artisanal wonder, one of the most cherished traditions is enjoying a cup of warm Glühwein.

This spiced mulled wine, a staple at German Christmas markets, is more than just a drink; it’s a warm embrace on a cold winter’s night. The rich aroma of cinnamon, cloves, and citrus, simmering in red wine, fills the air, inviting market-goers to take a moment and savor the season.

In Munich, this experience is heightened by the option to customize your Glühwein. Imagine adding a splash of peppermint schnapps or Amaretto, giving your drink a personal twist that warms you from the inside out. This customizability enhances the flavor and adds a personal touch to the traditional beverage.

Gluhwein cup deposit & Germany’s sustainable system

The sustainable cup system is key to enjoying Glühwein at Munich’s Christmas markets. In an effort to reduce waste and promote environmental responsibility, many markets have adopted a system where you pay a deposit for a reusable cup.

These cups often feature unique designs, becoming collectible items themselves. When you finish your drink, you can return the cup and get your deposit back or keep it as a souvenir.

This initiative reflects Germany’s commitment to sustainability, even amid festive celebrations.

The husband looking to buy a sweet treat at the Medieval Market in Munich. There are so many tasty treats at the Markets! This one is a chimney cake.

Brezenknödel

This is a Bavarian bread dumpling made from pretzel pieces instead of regular bread, giving it a distinctive taste. It’s often served in a rich gravy or with sauerkraut and is a hearty, warming dish perfect for the chilly market evenings.

Marzipankartoffeln

Translating to ‘marzipan potatoes,’ these are small, potato-shaped treats made from marzipan. They’re dusted with cocoa powder to mimic the earthy appearance of potatoes, offering a sweet almond flavor that’s a delight after a savory meal.

Weihnachtsgans

The Christmas goose, or Weihnachtsgans, is a traditional holiday meal in Germany. At the markets, you might find it served in smaller portions, like a sandwich or a part of a plate with red cabbage and dumplings.

Lebkuchenherz

These are large, heart-shaped gingerbread cookies often decorated with icing and affectionate phrases like ‘Ich liebe Dich’ (I love you). They’re a staple at German fairs and festivals, and hanging one around your neck as you browse the stalls is part of the fun.

Münchner Weißwurst

This Munich specialty is a mild sausage made from minced veal and pork back bacon. It’s traditionally flavored with parsley, lemon, mace, onions, ginger, and cardamom. The sausages are usually heated in water, not boiled, and then enjoyed with sweet mustard and freshly baked pretzels.

Kassatzle was one of my favorite dishes. It is very similar to our macaroni and cheese in the US.

Glühbier

A twist on the classic Glühwein, Glühbier is a mulled beer with similar spices. It’s an interesting alternative for those who want the coziness of mulled drinks but prefer beer over wine.

Reiberdatschi

Also known as potato pancakes, these are made from grated potatoes mixed with flour, eggs, and onions, then fried to golden perfection. They’re typically served with apple sauce or sour cream and are crispy.

Feuerzangenbowle

This dramatic and fiery drink involves rum-soaked sugarloaf set ablaze and dripped into mulled wine. It’s not just a beverage; it’s a show, with the flames caramelizing the sugar before it mixes into the wine below.

Schufnudeln & Kraut plus Kasespaezle were our lunch on Day 1 of the Christmas Market in Munich

Käsespätzle

Consider this the German version of mac ‘n’ cheese. Spätzle are soft egg noodles or dumplings covered in melted cheese and often topped with crispy onions. It’s comfort food at its finest, especially on a cold day.

Nürnberger Bratwurst

These small, thin sausages come from Nuremberg and are a protected geographical indication. They’re seasoned with marjoram and typically served three in a roll or on a plate with sauerkraut.

Flammkuchen

Resembling a thin-crust pizza, Flammkuchen is topped with sour cream, onions, and bacon. It’s cooked quickly in a hot oven, giving the edges a deliciously crisp bite.

Gebrannte Mandeln

Candied almonds toasted right at the stall, these sweet, crunchy nuts are a favorite. The scent of the caramelizing sugar often leads you right to the vendor.

Each of these specialties adds to the festive atmosphere of Munich’s Christmas markets, giving visitors a taste of local and traditional holiday flavors. Whether you’re in the mood for something savory or sweet, you will surely find a treat that warms you up from the inside out.

Souvenir and Holiday Shopping at the Munich Christmas Markets

At the Munich Christmas Markets, the array of potential souvenirs is as diverse and fascinating as the city itself. Here’s a list of some typical items you might find that would make wonderful souvenirs:

There are lots of interesting decorations at the Christmas Markets to buy. These little elf-like men are unique but also a bit scary.
  1. Handcrafted Nutcrackers: Traditional German nutcrackers are popular collector’s items and come in various sizes and figures, from classic soldiers to kings and other characters.
  2. Christmas Ornaments: These can range from delicate glass baubles, hand-painted with intricate designs, to wooden ornaments carved into shapes of stars, trees, and festive characters.
  3. Wooden Incense Smokers (Räuchermännchen): Quaint little figurines that emit incense smoke, typically resembling little cottages, animals, or people, adding a touch of whimsy and a pleasant scent to any home.
  4. Beer Steins: Ceramic or pewter mugs with a lid, often beautifully decorated with Bavarian motifs or Munich landmarks, are a great souvenir for beer enthusiasts.
  5. Bavarian Clothing Accessories: Items like dirndls and lederhosen for dolls, handmade woolen socks, or felt hats with a jaunty feather can serve as unique gifts or personal keepsakes.
  6. Gingerbread Hearts (Lebkuchenherzen): These are delicious and have endearing messages in icing, making them a sweet souvenir.
  7. Handmade Candles: From simple beeswax to elaborate candles shaped like pinecones, angels, or even the Munich skyline, they’re a beautiful and practical souvenir.
  8. Music Boxes: Intricately designed to play traditional German carols or classical music, they’re a charming reminder of the festive spirit in Munich.
  9. Local Delicacies: Packaged goods like Bavarian mustards, local honey, or beautifully wrapped chocolates and marzipan make for tasty souvenirs.
  10. Snow Globes: A classic keepsake, snow globes often feature Munich’s famous landmarks or winter scenes, encapsulating the Christmas market experience in a shakeable, snowy vignette.
  11. Handcrafted Jewelry: From delicate silver pieces inspired by traditional Bavarian designs to more rustic, hand-forged ironwork, the markets offer a range of artisan jewelry.
  12. Woolen Goods: Cozy scarves, hats, mittens, and even blankets made from sheep’s wool or alpaca are perfect for remembering the chilly market days once you’re back home.
  13. Wooden Toys and Puzzles: Ideal for the younger ones or those young at heart, these traditional toys are both durable and timeless.

Each item encapsulates a piece of the Bavarian Christmas spirit, making them perfect to bring back home as a souvenir for yourself or as gifts for loved ones.

How to use an eSIM Card

Are you going on a trip and want to stay connected without racking international roaming charges on your cell phone? Here’s what you need to do: set up wifi calling before you leave home. It’s easy to do and will allow you to call and text using wifi even when your phone is in airplane mode.

You can even Facetime other Apple users if you have an Apple phone. Android users can communicate with WhatsApp.

Another great option is to buy an eSIM card via Airalo. Upload an eSIM to your phone (don’t delete your eSIM from your cell phone carrier; switch it off for Data usage). Your eSIM provider will give you instructions on how to do this. Be aware that the eSIM is for data only and will only work in the countries where you’ve purchased the service. If you need to make calls or text using data, you can still use WhatsApp. Stay connected and save money with these tips!

Tips for Making the Most Out of Your Trip

Events held at Marienplatz for the Holiday Season

Traditional Krampus Run – December 10, 2023, 3.00-5.00 pm

Carols Under the Christmas Tree – a sing-along Wednesdays of Advent

Meeting Karperi Zettl – located in the inner courtyard of the Town Hall. Sundays: December 3, 10, and 17. 2.00 pm and 3.00 pm. The show is 20 minutes.

Eiszauber Ice Skating at Karlsplatz

The largest mobile ice area in Bavaria. 10.30 am 10.00 pm. Each day, there are specials, such as Dirnl & Lederhosen wearers, which are free. Sunday is two people skating for the price of one. Located at Karlsplatz-Stachus. November 24, 2023 – January 15, 2024

There’s More than Visiting the Christmas Markets in Munich

With its rich history and vibrant culture, Munich offers many activities and attractions beyond the enchanting Christmas Markets. Here’s a list of some must-see places and activities in Munich:

When visiting Munich, the Hofbrauhaus is a must visit. The decorating is not what I expected with the ceilings and walls painted. Definitely not a pub.
  1. Marienplatz and New Town Hall (Neues Rathaus): The central square of Munich, Marienplatz, is home to the stunning New Town Hall. The Glockenspiel in its tower is a must-see, showcasing figurines that dance to music daily.
  2. English Garden (Englischer Garten): One of the largest urban parks in the world, the English Garden is perfect for a leisurely stroll, a picnic, or even surfing on the Eisbach River.
  3. Munich Residenz: Formerly the royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs, the Residenz is a museum now and offers a glimpse into Munich’s opulent past with its ornate rooms and beautiful gardens.
  4. Deutsches Museum: The world’s largest science and technology museum, it’s a fascinating place for adults and children, featuring interactive exhibits and historic artifacts.
  5. BMW Museum and BMW Welt: Car enthusiasts will enjoy the BMW Museum, which details the history of the famed automobile brand, while BMW Welt showcases the latest models and technologies.
  6. Olympiapark: Built for the 1972 Olympics, the park is great for outdoor activities and offers stunning city views from the Olympic Tower.
  7. Neuschwanstein Castle Day Trip: Though not in Munich, this fairytale castle is a must-visit and is easily accessible via a short trip. Its picturesque setting inspired Disney’s Sleeping Beauty castle.
  8. Hofbräuhaus München: One of Munich’s oldest beer halls, it offers a traditional Bavarian experience with long communal tables, live music, and classic German brews.
  9. Munich Opera House (Bayerische Staatsoper): For a touch of high culture, catch an opera or ballet performance at one of the world’s leading opera houses.
  10. Alte Pinakothek: A haven for art lovers, this gallery houses one of the most significant collections of Old Master paintings.
  11. Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site: A place of remembrance and education, this memorial offers a sobering look at Germany’s past and is an important site for understanding WWII history.
  12. River Surfing in the Eisbach: An unexpected but exhilarating activity in the city is surfing on the Eisbach River, a highlight in the English Garden.
  13. Asam Church (Asamkirche): A small but intricately decorated baroque church, it’s a hidden gem in the city center.

These attractions offer diverse experiences, from historical and cultural excursions to leisure and adventure, making Munich a city with something for everyone.

Salzburg Sightseeing Small-Group Day Tour from Munich by Rail
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Neuschwanstein Castle and Linderhof Palace Day Tour from Munich
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Paul's Bavarian Beer and Food Event
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Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site Tour from Munich by Train
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Private Tour in Munich Old City

Put down your guidebook and learn about the history and culture of Munich in a much more interactive way—by joining a local guide on a private tour. To help you get the most out of the tour, the route is flexible and can be customized based on your interests. Along the way, learn about the history of the buildings and landmarks, such as the Viktualienmarkt and the Frauenkirche. A private and personalized tour of Munich’s sights is a great way to get your bearings without studying a map. Tick off many sights on one tour, such as the Old Town Hall. Receive plenty of top tips on Munich’s shops and restaurants


Read more about Paul's Private Tour in Munich Old City - https://selector.viator.com/tours/Munich/Paul-Private-Tour/d487-108380P4?mcid=56757

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What to Wear & Bring

As for practical tips, pack warm – Munich’s winters are no joke. Think of layers and comfy waterproof boots; don’t forget your hat and gloves. Timing is everything, too. Early mornings or weekdays can be quieter at the markets, giving you more space to wander without the crowds. Bring a foldable, reusable shopping bag to carry all your purchases.

Where we stayed

We found the perfect place to stay in Munich! The Courtyard Munich City Center is seriously in the BEST location. It’s close to Marienplatz, and the train station is steps away. Plus, if you plan on hitting up the Christmas Markets, staying near them is ideal. That way, you can easily pop back to the hotel for a quick warm-up and to drop off any shopping bags. Trust me, it’s a game-changer!

Courtyard by Marriott Munich City Center, Munich
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Motel One Mnchen Sendlinger Tor, Munich
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Leonardo Boutique Hotel Munich, Munich
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How to Get to Munich and Getting Around

Getting to Munich is a breeze, whether by air or regional train. The city is well-connected and welcoming to visitors from near and far, making it an ideal holiday destination.

  • By Train: The train is often considered the best mode of transportation within Munich. Munich Hauptbahnhof (main train station) is well-connected and user-friendly, making accessing the city’s various attractions easy.
    S-Bahn – It comprises 8 lines that travel through the city. You can transfer from the airport on the S1 or S8 to the city center. Look for the green signs marked with a S.
    U-Bahn – Munich’s subway system has 100 stations in and around the city. The 8 S-Bahn lines are interconnected with the U-Bahn. Just look for the U on a blue background sign to find them.
  • By Air: If you are flying into Munich, you’ll likely arrive at the Munich Airport (MUC). From there, it’s a quick and convenient commute into central Munich with various transport options, including trains and trams. The S1 and S8 lines will take approximately 35 minutes to reach the city center.
  • Tram – There are 13 lines throughout Munich. It interconnects with the S-Bahn, U-Bahn, and the Bus.
  • Bus – There are bus services throughout Munich. Look for a N for routes that are operated at Night.
We were waiting at the trains station in Munich to return to the airport. We bought a large manger and they wrapped it up tight for us to bring back to the US.

Currency and Payment

Munich uses the Euro as its currency. While credit cards are widely accepted in Munich, carrying some cash is a good idea, especially when visiting the Christmas Markets.

Key German Phrases You Should Know

Sprinkle your conversations with key German phrases to blend in with the locals.

  • Guten Tag – Good day
  • Hallo – Hello
  • Bitte – Please
  • Verzeihung – Excuse Me
  • Verabschiedung – Goodbye
  • Danke – Thank you
  • Frohe Weihnachten! – Merry Christmas

Travel Insurance

Before embarking on your holiday adventure, it’s always wise to have comprehensive travel insurance. Travel insurance provides peace of mind by protecting against unexpected events such as trip cancellations, medical emergencies, and lost luggage. Ensure your insurance coverage is up-to-date to enjoy a worry-free visit to Munich.

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Final Thoughts on the Best Christmas Markets in Munich

In conclusion, Munich’s Christmas Markets are seasonal attractions and a vibrant testament to the city’s rich heritage and the enduring charm of Bavarian Christmas traditions. From the historical splendor of the Marienplatz Christkindlmarkt to the whimsical Fairytale Bazaar at Olympiapark, each market offers its own unique experience.

Whether it’s savoring a mug of Glühwein at the Christmas Mulled Wine Festival in Bogenhausen, browsing artisanal crafts at the Medieval Market, or experiencing the contemporary vibe of the Moonlight Express at Bahnwärter Thiel, these markets cater to all tastes and ages.

The variety extends beyond just the markets themselves. The backdrop of Munich’s beautiful architecture, the sounds of Advent singing, and the scent of traditional Bavarian delicacies like Nürnberger bratwurst and Reiberdatschi all combine to create a festive atmosphere that’s hard to find anywhere else in the world.

The markets are not just about shopping; they’re about experiencing the warmth and joy of the holiday season in a city that embraces its past while celebrating the present.

As the city lights up during this magical time of the year, visitors and locals alike are reminded of the season’s simple joys – sharing a meal, finding the perfect handcrafted gift, or strolling through the beautifully decorated streets.

Munich’s Christmas Markets celebrate community, craftsmanship, and holiday cheer, offering a delightful escape into Bavaria’s winter wonderland. No matter which market you visit, the spirit of Christmas is alive in Munich, making it a must-visit destination during the festive season.

Go Grab Life & Happy Exploring!

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One Comment

  1. There always seems to be something new to see at the Christmas markets in Munich. And, of course, many old classics. I love the hot drinks.

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