There’s still months to wait until Munich’s legendary Oktoberfest, but if you’re visiting the Bavarian capital in April, you can still get a taste of the city’s iconic beer festival at the annual Frühlingsfest, Munich Spring Festival. Oktoberfest’s smaller, less-crowded sister, Frühlingsfest has been held in Munich for more than 40 years and with live music, fairground rides and an endless flow of Bavarian beer, it’s the perfect way to celebrate the arrival of spring.
Rising to fame at the turn of the 19th century, Schwabing’s bohemian hangouts and impressive list of resident artists quickly earned it a reputation as Munich’s artist’s quarter and it remains an important creative and social hub today. Thomas and Heinrich Mann, Rainer Maria Rilke, Franziska zu Revetlow, Karl Valentin and Frank Wedekind are among the many artists who worked or lived in Schwabing at some point, not to mention that it was the first home of Adolf Hitler when he arrived from Austria in 1913.
With spectacular costume parties and masquerade balls, elaborate street parades and all-night parties, celebrating Fasching, Munich’s Carnival Season, is an incomparable experience and it’s one of the biggest and brightest carnivals in all of Germany. Fasching festivities in Munich start on January 7th and run all the way to Ash Wednesday, with the main events taking place on Shrove Tuesday (Mardi Gras). Munich’s central Viktualienmarkt and Marienplatz are the center of Fasching festivities, transforming into lively party areas with live band stages, street entertainers and stalls selling traditional Bavarian foods, Brazilian-style Caipirinhas and krapfen, traditional donuts filled with jam or chocolate.
With a name that translates as ‘King’s Square’, it’s no surprise that Munich’s Königsplatz is lined with grand architecture and the famous square is one of the city’s most important historic landmarks, home to a cluster of prestigious museums.
Sampling Bavaria’s hearty food and world famous beer is an important part of any tourist itinerary and there’s no better time to indulge than the festive season. From traditional sausages to delicious sweet treats, here are some of the best seasonal foods to look out for at Bavaria’s Christmas Markets.
Think of winter in Bavaria and you probably think of the enchanting Neuschwanstein Castle covered with snow, a medieval village glittering with fairy lights or sipping mulled wine at a Christmas market, but Germany’s southernmost state is also a hotspot for snow activities and there are plenty of opportunities for winter sports in and around Munich.