Frauenkirche (Cathedral of Our Dear Lady). Nymphenburg Palace. Viktualienmarkt and Allianz Arena. Everybody knows Munich’s top places of interest. But what about the hidden treasures the Bavarian capital has to offer? What about the places that also determine the charm of this city? Onesprime.de listed the most beautiful and most spectacular locations. We were inspired by Rüdiger Liedtke’s book „111 Orte in München, die man gesehen haben muss“ (“111 Places to See in Munich“), „Maxvorstadt – Reiseführer für Münchner“ („Maxvorstadt – Travel Guide for Munich Locals“) by Martin Arz and Duncan J. D. Smith‘s „Nur in München - Ein Reiseführer zu sonderbaren Orten, geheimen Plätzen und versteckten Sehenswürdigkeiten" („Only in Munich – a Guide to Hidden Corners, Little-known Places and Unusual Objects“).
The double staircase at Alte Messe
Located in the backyard of the global accounting company KPMG Dt. Treuhandgesellschaft AG at the premises of Alte Messe in Munich’s Westend, the staircase to nowhere called “Umschreibung” (“rewriting) by Ólafur Elíasson is a 9.30 metre tall double spiral – a walkable work of art. The Danish artist intertwined two corkscrew stairs in a way they seem to be going upwards and downwards at the same time. For his sculpture, Elíasson was awarded the „mfi Preis Kunst am Bau“ in 2004.
Address: KPMG Deutsche Treuhandgesellschaft AG, Ganghoferstraße 29
Opening times via phone: 089/ 92 82 00
The Poet’s Garden
Englischer Garten (the English Garden) is too noisy and Olympiapark too far away? Then you should visit the Finance Garden, also called Poet’s Garden which is located between Von-der-Tann-Straße and Hofgarten. There are many things to discover. The statues and commemorative plaques are dedicated to poets, writers and artists who are connected to the city of Munich in some kind of way. There is also a Heinrich Heine monument and a Frédéric Chopin statue.
The House of 1800 Statues
Museum für Abgüsse klassischer Bildwerke (The Museum of Classic Replica) in Maxvorstadt is the fourth biggest in Germany and was established in 1869. It has an impressive collection of 1800 statues from the Greek and Roman ancient world. The white statue forest is also impressive and worth a visit. As students of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität are the target group of the museum in Katharina von Bora-Straße, the opening times are quite offbeat. The entrance is free.
Address: Katharina-von-Bora-Straße 10, 80333 München
Opening times: Mon-Fri 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
On the internet: www.abgussmuseum.de
The oldest cinema in the world
When current blockbusters flicker on the big screen in the dark movie theatre, no one notices how old Neues Gabriel in Dachauer Straße actually is. Nevertheless, the cinema celebrated its 103rd anniversary on 17 May 2013. It is therefore the oldest still acting cinema in the world that screens films on a regular basis and has an entry in the Guinness World Records. Everything started in 1896 – when Carl Gabriel went from fair to fair with a so-called demonstration model. Then he established the “Theatre of Living Pictures” in Dachauer Straße.
Address: Dachauer Str. 16, 80355 München
On the internet: www.gabriel-filmtheater.de
Europe’s first potato museum
The potato is the fourth important aliment in the world. The names used for it – like spud or murphy – are not the only things that show that this food is everything but boring. Neither are the opportunities to process it. Whether it’s in beer, liquor, soap or sausages: it’s included everywhere. In 1996, the city of Munich dedicated Europe’s first potato museum to the staple. The entrance is also free here.
Address: Grafinger Straße 2, 81671 München,
Opening times: Tue-Thu by arrangement, Fri 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sat 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
On the internet: www.kartoffelmuseum.de
Where Munich becomes Little Venice
An idyllic place in the middle of a metropolis is Mondstraße in Giesing. Auer Mühlbach is one of the few brooks that haven’t still disappeared under a street of houses. The residents of the two-storey houses that were built right at the water’s edge are able to jump into the brook from their backyards and balconies. In summer, Mühlbachtage (days of Mühlbach) take place regularly. Then, numerous studios open their gates to the public and give a look behind the scenes.
The oldest kayak in the world
Munich has the biggest folk festival – but have you also known that the oldest kayak of the planet is hidden in Staatliches Museum für Völkerkunde (State Museum of Ethnology)? It originates from the 16th century and probably found its way to Holland from the Subarctic. The ship made of seal leather is situated in Nordamerika-Saal (North America hall) and shows evidence of impressive quality of technology in the Arctic.
Address: Maximilianstraße 42, 80538 München
Opening times: Tue-Sun, 9.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m.
On the internet: www.voelkerkundemuseum-muenchen.de
The dome of Hauptzollamt (main customs office)
The workplace of the staff at the Munich main customs office is already a feast for the eyes from the outside: although it’s in need of rehabilitation and coated with green rust, the glass dome at Donnersbergerbrücke is particularly striking. In the inside, however, it’s even more beautiful. The customs officers are able to enjoy historic frescoes and staircase railings during their labour time. Fans of architecture can make an appointment for interior sightseeing via phone.
Address: Landsberger Straße 124, 80339 München
Contact: 089/ 51 09 00
(Pictures: The Infinite Staircase by Òlafur Elìasson © Wikipedia/Oliver Raupach, Poet’s Garden © Wikipedia/Rufus 46)