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Munich’s Colorful U-Bahn

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In theory, a mass transit system should just be about getting from Point A to Point B, hopefully quickly, safely, comfortably and without having some drunk guy try to talk at you. Unfortunately, as anyone living in any city knows, public transport all too rarely achieves those simple goals . The mere fact of a city having subway system, however, achieves something more than even the most well-managed bus service. Having a subway means that your city is in the big leagues, like London, New York and Paris. In Scotland, the citizens of Glasgow will forever pour scorn on the citizens of the country’s capital, just 45 miles away, because, for all its majestic beauty, Edinburgh does not have a subway. Glasgow’s subway is tiny and its route is a simple circle serving just a few parts of the city, but none of that matters: all that matters is that Glasgow has a subway while Edinburgh does not...

The Swans of Nymphenburg

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During a hard day of viewing the architectural glories and historic masterpieces of mankind, it is nice to take a quick break and enjoy some wildlife. When visiting Nymphenburg Castle, I always enjoy the sitting down by the lake outside for a few reflective minutes and watch the antics of the gang of swans that have made their home there. My experiments include confirming that they seem to understand both the German and the English language, which I consider to be a fine reflection on the German educational system. I have been to university and still only manage a few shaky phrases in the Swan language – it is very hard to get the tones right, they tell me I’m a semitone off. I’m learning how to say “I ring your bloody necks” in Swan”  So better get down to see them before my next...

Claudia Schiffer on Munich

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The stadium here in Munich is the best of the lot for me. It is absolutely fantastic, especially the way it lights up a different colour according to who is playing. It’s superb.

Claudia Schiffer

Neuschwanstein: A Castle Worth Feasting Your Eyes Upon

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The very embodiment of a fairytale castle, Schloss Neuschwanstein (Neuschwanstein Palace) is one of the most iconic structures of the 19th Century. Well worth the journey of under two hours from Munich, you can put this attraction firmly in the category of “must-see”. Until such time as you can see it in real-life, we have put together five galleries that will fill your eyes with some lovely sights and your brain with some fascinating details. The galleries are this one, which features photos, taken outside, of the castle itself and a few of the surrounding area, to give you an idea of what to expect when you visit. The second gallery will show you the well-preserved and historically interesting interiors. The third gallery shows some of the excellent views from the castle. The forth is a short slideshow early photographs that have somehow survived from the time of the construction of...

Munich and the Migrant Crisis

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It is a difficult and upsetting subject to discuss but, if you plan to visit Munich, it is important to be informed about the consequences of the 2015 migrant crisis upon this, Germany’s most southern major city, and, therefore, the recipient of a disproportionate share of the up to 1.5 million migrants expected to arrive in the country during 2015 (during September, up to 13,000 per day were arriving at Munich’s central station). There is nothing here which should affect your enjoyment of this marvelous town but, when traveling, it is always wise to be aware of local context. Also, be aware that the more visible side effects, such as migrants sleeping in the central train station, will ease over time as most of them are redistributed to other German provinces and as more accommodation is found for those who remain in Munich. This article will explain the background to the crisis and,...

Escape to Hohenschwangau

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One thing that your friends will repeatedly ask, when you say that you have been to Munich, is whether you visited the town of Hohenschwangau while your were there. Actually, they probably won’t say Hohenschwangau – that name hardly rolls off the tongue – but that will be what they mean when they say “That cool little tourist village surrounded by mountains and overlooked by a big yellow castle and an even bigger white castle”. You have almost certainly already seen that big white castle before, it is one of the most photographed buildings in the world, looking somewhat similar to that fairytale castle displayed at the start of Disney movies, but perching high among, steep, dark green, gothically ominous mountains. When in Munich, Hohenschwangau is somewhere that you escape to because it is actually 120 kilometers to the south of Munich, but it is well worth the trip because of the two...

A Winter Fairytale: Neuschwanstein Castle in the Snow and Fog

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Just when you thought that Neuschwanstein Castle could not be any more beautiful, along comes winter, transforming this part of Bavaria into a snow-filled vision. You will need warm clothes, but a visit to Schloss Neuschwanstein at this time of year is something you will never forget. You also should not forget that this Munich Vacation Guide includes a grand total of five slideshows featuring this lickably delicious castle. There is the main one, featuring shots of Schloss Neuschwanstein in the Spring and Summer, there is one of featuring the views from the castle, there is another featuring the beautifully preserved interior rooms and there is even one displaying fascinating photos that have somehow survived from the Nineteenth Century construction of the castle. So, after all that lot, you won’t even need to go see it for yourself. Just...

Steven Spielberg on the Controversy Caused by his Movie “Munich”

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Naturally, it is a terrible, despicable crime when, as in Munich, people are taken hostage, people are killed. But probing the motives of those responsible and showing that they are also individuals with families and have their own story does not excuse what they did.

Steven Spielberg

Nymphenburg Porcelain Manufactory

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Munich in Motion

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Inside Neuschwanstein Castle

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Well, if you have climbed all the way up to Neuschwanstein Castle, you might as well buy some tickets and pop inside for a tour of the interior. Don’t steal anything, they have security cameras hidden inside the suits of armor! Don’t forget, this guide offers, for your extreme viewing pleasure, four more slideshows featuring more photos of this stunning castle: Neuschwanstein Castle from the outside, Neuschwanstein Castle from the outside + snow, Neuschwanstein Castle being built (to be honest, I had hoped it had popped into existence as the result of a fairy godmother granting wishes but, no, apparently it did actually involve builders, bricks and all that humdrum stuff) and some splendid views from Neuschwanstein...

Mark Spitz on the Munich 1972 Olympic Games

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The memories of the Munich games for me are of triumph and tragedy.

Mark Spitz

Strange Happenings at The Fraunhoferstrasse U-bahn

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Munich is a terrific party city but if, on your way back to your hotel via the Fraunhoferstrasse U-bahn station, you see something like this, well, perhaps you should skip the partying tomorrow...

The View is Nice from The Top of The World

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Part of your reward, should you make it all the way up to Neuschwanstein Castle, is to enjoy the privilege of staring serenely down upon everything else in the valley, including all the low-lifes in Hohenschwangau Castle and Hohenschwangau village...

Why Munich is Graham Coxon’s Favorite German City

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I liked Germany; I’m not into Berlin, it’s too huge and empty and imposing, but Munich was good.

Graham Coxon

Munich and Terrorism

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In the wake of the November 2015 attacks in Paris by Islamic terrorists, it is natural for visitors to Europe to feel somewhat jumpy and to wonder how safe the various cities on their itineraries might actually be – sure, the chances of anything happening are incredibly slim but, of course, that is probably what the folks enjoying a rock concert, a Café au lait or a nice Cambodian meal thought, right up until the moments that a bunch of lunatics turned up with kalashnikovs. With a rich cultural history, Munich should be famous for many things but, for most people outside Germany, the word Munich is synonymous with the tragic 1972 Olympics, when what should have been a triumphant moment for the city became, instead, a dramatic and bloody introduction to the uncertain new world of Islamic terrorism. Those events shaped Munich, giving its security services an early baptism of fire and an...

The Munich U-Bahn … Naked!

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No, it’s not what you think! When I say that Munich’s subway system is “naked”, I am talking about this interesting image by artist Neil Freeman, depicting the Munich U-Bahn system stripped of all the usual colors and text labels. Seeing it as a simple network, we can admire the simple functionality of the system we are so familiar with that we usually don’t even notice it. I do not, however, want to leave those of you who excitedly visited this post, hoping to see actual nudity on a subway, bitterly disappointed 😀 Here is a fascinating art video, featuring an extremely brave young woman, traveling on the early morning subway in Dusseldorf (everyone knows that they are all certifiably crazy up there in the north of Germany). What I really enjoy in this video are the reactions (and strained non-reactions!) of the other...

How to Build a Fairytale Castle

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It might look as if appeared out of thin air, at the wave of a wand, but apparently the creation of Neuschwanstein Castle involved a little more actual...

Marcel Duchamp on Munich

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My stay in Munich was the scene of my complete liberation. Finding the perfect place to stay was a big part of it

Marcel Duchamp

Rubin Mehta on Munich

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There are three orchestras in Munich, all world-quality, in a city of one million. Yet every hall is full.

Zubin Mehta

Hitler on the Munich Agreement

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Well, Chamberlain seemed such a nice old gentleman, I thought I would give him my autograph as a souvenir.

Adolf Hitler After Munich Agreement September 1938