Munich is a big money town. Finance, high tech and cars drive this city, and the city’s natives tend to spend lavishly in their leisure time. Where does that leave the not-so-affluent visitor? Thankfully, even if you don’t answer to the name of Gunther von Money-Bags, the Free State of Bavaria’s capital has some free attractions. Here are five to get you started.
1. Get the spirit: Most of the city’s churches, including Munich’s symbol, the twin-spired Frauenkirche, and its oldest place of worship, St Peter’s, are free.
2. Get your rocks off: The ground beneath your feet is the subject of the Geological Museum. It might not sound like an earth-shaking destination, but the bling-tastic collection of crystals alone makes the museum worth the effort. And it will cost you exactly zero euros to enjoy.
3. Get plastered: One of Munich’s quirkier institutions, the Abgussmuseum (Plaster Museum), lets you admire masterful copies of Greek and Roman antiquities gratis. Mingle with the serene classical forms of gods, athletes and philosophers dotted around the exhibition halls: it’s like a cocktail party on Mount Olympus.
4. Get wet: The unique phenomenon of river surfing on the rapids of the Eisbach is famous the world over. Surfing is free but it’s not an experience for the novice surfer, so you can always watch, barrack and get splashed by spray (also free).
5. Get starry-eyed: The Observatory of the Deutsches Museum holds public star-spotting sessions on Tuesday and Friday evenings (provided they’re cloudless).
And if you’ve got to the end of the week with minimum outlay, it’s time to splash out. Most of the city’s major institutions, including the venerable Alte Pinakothek, charge just one euro admission on Sundays.