After Class Activities
Our program allows you plenty of time to discover your new country, culture, traditions and everyday life after your class is over.
Activities could include: visits to Olympia Park complex, museums, galleries, Nymphenburg Palace, football matches, walking tour of Marienplatz (the main pedestrian street), tour the world-famous Hofbrauhaus brewery, Alter Hof (the original royal residence) and much more.
Main Sights: Get to Know Munich
The English Garden:
In the busy centre of Munich is spread a quiet oasis called The English Garden, which is the largest urban park in Germany. It is so called because of the style of landscaping called "informal gardening" which used to be popular in the United Kingdom in the early nineteenth century.
The Monopteros, a Greek-style temple built in 1832, stands atop a hill, whereas a Japanese Teahouse (Japanisches Teehaus) and garden were built in 1972 on the small island.
Other attractions include the Chinese Tower (Chinesischer Turm) and Kleinhesselhoher Lake in the centre of the park.
The Hofbrauhaus in Munich is the best known beer house in the world, and dates back to 1589. Lately other Hofbrauhaus beer houses have opened in other cities and countries as well, but the Hofbrauhaus in Germany is still the most famous. The Hofbrauhaus in Munich specialises in good music, food, beer and camaraderie. The traditional long wooden tables, the large glass mugs, the waitresses and waiters in traditional Bavarian attire, and the band which plays virtually nonstop, together create a typical Bavarian festive ambiance.
Nymphenburg Palace used to be the main summer home of the royal family of Bavaria, the Wittelsbach family. The palace is located on the western edge of the city, and has a stunning symmetrical layout. The beautiful surrounding parklands were given their English touches in the 18th and 19th centuries by Friedrich Ludwig von Sckell.
The front façade of the palace, about 700 metres wide, is in typical Baroque style. Within the main palace is the grand hall, the Hall of Stone (Steinerner Saal), which occupies three floors of the central pavilion, with ceiling frescoes. The “Gallery of Beauties” a collection of portraits of beautiful women.
The Marstallmuseum, earlier the court stables, now houses the museum of royal coaches and riding equipment, as well as the Bauml Collection of Nymphenburg porcelain.
The Olympia Park, set close to the city center and is easily accessible by the metro. It was constructed in the Oberwiesenfield in 1972, for the 20th Olympic Games, but continues to serve as a major tourist attraction. Many cultural, social and religious events are held there. The complex covers an area of 270 hectares, and has an ice rink, a pool, and a giant futuristic tent-like structure, the Olympic Stadium (Olympiastadion). Tourists can participate in a roof climbing tour of the PVC coated polyester fabric roof.
Set next to the Olympia Ice Centre is the 290 m tower, the Olympiaturm. The views from the tower are magnificent. There is a revolving restaurant at a height of 182 metres, and an observation platform at a height of 190 m.
Excursions: Explore More of The Region
This 19th century castle is built on a hill above the village Hohenschwangau, in southwest Bavaria. The magnificent neo-Romanesque style castle is the most popular castle in the world, as its fairy-tale appearance was the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland. King Ludwig II of Bavaria was very involved in its design, and had intended it to be in honour of his friend Richard Wagner and as a retreat for himself.
It was opened to the public after his death in 1886, and has since then been featured in many movies.
The first concentration camp was constructed in Dachau, today it's a Memorial Site. This was the prototype for the other camps that were later built during the 1930's. There were two sections in the camp – that for the camp itself and the other for the crematorium.
The gate had the words Arbeit macht frei (Freedom through Work) on it, which served only to mislead the prisoners. Today, the Memorial Site is a place of memory, pilgrimage, and education for future generations.
Berchtesgaden, in Bavaria, is located near the border of Austria, and was Hitler’s mountain retreat and the southern headquarters of the Nazi party. It is a major draw for tourists, and has incomparable views of the Alps mountain range.
Architecture: Discover Unique Styles & Structures
The Residence, situated in the centre of Munich, and famous for its architecture and exhibits, is open to visitors today. It used to be the home of the Bavarian Monarchy and represents over 600 years of Bavarian history.
The monarchs of the Wittelsbach dynasty expanded the original 14th-century castle to create a complex of palaces around seven courtyards. Architecturally, the huge palace is a grand mix of the late Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo styles, showing some Classicism. The rooms display sculptures, paintings, antiques, and tapestries of the Monarch’s times of between the 16th and 19th centuries.
The Palace suffered heavy damage during the Second World War. But most of the structure, including the Rococo Cuvilli’s-Theater, was restored.
In the year 1973, The Tower, the building which represents the BMW Headquarters, was inaugurated. In 1999 it was declared historical.
The four vertical cylindrical towers standing close to and across from each other, in the shape of a four-leaf clover, appear like an over-dimensional four-cylinder-engine. This was the idea of Viennese architect Karl Schwanzer, built to accommodate the offices.
The complex consists of four towers, flat factory halls below and a giant “egg cup” at the end of the halls, which houses the BMW museum. The exhibition at the museum displays classic old-timer car designs as well as the latest, technically up-to-date models of the German car producer. The highlight of the museum is the spectacular cinema-scope show at the end of the tour.
Museums: Experience The History of Past Generations & Cultures
The Old and the New Pinakothek:
The Old Pinakothek, or Alte Pinakothek, an art museum in the Kunstareal region in Munich, houses some of the most well-known Old Master collections, some from the 14th to the 18th centuries. King Ludwig I first ordered the constructed of the museum in the year 1826, and used it to house the paintings of the Wittelsbach family.
However, in 1939 the museum was closed and the paintings were removed from there because of the start of the Second World War. It was later reconstructed and reopened, and is today one of the oldest art museums and home to some of the most important collections of European Old Masters, including Dürer, Raphael, Rembrandt and Rubens
In 1853 King Ludwig I opened the Neue Pinakothek (New Pinakothek), to house his collection of contemporary art mainly of the 18th and 19th centuries, from Neo Classicism to Art Nouveau. This building was destroyed during the Second World War, and a new building was designed by Alexander von Branca and opened in 1981.
Pinakothek der Moderne:
The Museum of Modern Art was designed and constructed in the year 1995, but could only open seven years later. The museum is dedicated to contemporary art, architecture and design, taken from different collections throughout the city to complement the works housed in the first two galleries.
The Glyptothek, designed in the Neo Classical style and built as part of the Kunstareal, houses artefacts showcasing ancient Greek and Roman culture and art. Nearby, the Antikensammlungen houses antiquity, including a famous Greek vase collection started by King Ludwig I, and completes the arts collection at Königsplatz.
Deutsches Museum von Meisterwerken der Naturwissenschaft und Technik:
The Deutsches Museum has its main building on a small island in the Isar River. It has two other branches, in Munich and close to Munich, and another in Bonn. The Munich branches focus on aviation and transportation technology and history, and the branch in Bonn traces developments in German technology and Sciences.
The Deutsches Museum offers a wide-ranging review of science and technology, from prehistoric tools to space-age inventions. Interactive exhibitions are permanent features at the Museum, and are based on Aerospace, Computers, Mining, Technical Toys and Telecommunications. The Forum der Technik (Technology Forum) contains a planetarium and an IMAX theatre.
Festivals and Events: See What They are Celebrating
Oktoberfest, the largest beer festival in the world:
The most famous event in Germany is Oktoberfest that's held each year in Munich. It starts in late September and runs through to the first weekend of October, about 16 to 18 days. It's one of the world’s largest fairs, and around six million people attend it every year!
The Munich Oktoberfest originally started from a horse race organised to celebrate the marriage of King Ludwig I and Princess Therese. The festival is still held at the same place in an area called the Theresienwiese (field, or meadow, of Therese).