As cities go, Munich doesn’t always present good deals and savings. Considered one of Germany’s most expensive cities, a trip to Munich can quickly eat away at your budget faster than you can say schnitzel. However, the capital of Bavaria is loaded with cultural and leisure offerings you’d hate to miss because you’re strapped for cash.
If you don’t want to spend your Euros, luckily Munich is obliging, lending a number of fun and fancy-free attractions that won’t break the bank, or even put a dent in it.
Stroll Around a Garden or Two
You don’t have to pay up to appreciate Munich’s green spaces, namely the English Garden and the gardens at the Nymphenburg Palace. Considered one of the largest city parks on the planet, the English Garden beats out Central Park and Hyde Park in terms of size. Its foundations are historic too. It was put in motion back in 1789. Upon entering, you’ll be treated to tree-lined paths, some 78 kilometers of them, lakes and expansive lawns. Munich’s green lung is even home to a Japanese teahouse and beer gardens. A favorite beer garden within the English Garden is the one under the Chinese Tower, the second largest beer garden in the city. If you haven’t gotten your greenery fill, Munich answers with more formal gardens around the baroque Nymphenburg Palace. The formal French gardens surrounding the former summer palace of the Bavarian monarchs offers some 299 hectares to roam.
Experience the Smells and Scents of the Viktualienmarkt
Dating back to 1807, Munich’s Viktualienmarkt presents another freebie friendly attraction in the city. The oldest farmer’s market in town, Viktualienmarkt features 140 stalls and shops, littered with fruits, flowers, vegetables, meats, wine and more. Spanning an area of 2,000 square meters, this food market will cost you if you decide to purchase all of the Bavarian specialties your stomach can handle. It is worth a stroll for the sensory experience even if you don’t want to open your wallet.
Watch the 15 Minute Show at the Glockenspiel
Hopped off those flights to Germany and ready for some serious entertainment? Set up in Marienplatz, Munich’s central square, you can catch a historic show for free at the Glockenspiel, a chiming of the clock with a show. On the tower balcony of the neo-Gothic Town Hall, you can witness figurines act out Munich’s history everyday at 11AM, noon and again at 5PM in the summer. People gather around to watch the life-size figures put on a show until a golden bird chirps three times, signaling the event has ended. The Glockenspiel has been a tradition since 1908.
Step into German Auto Past, Present and Future at BMW Welt
Our last stop for free things to do in Munich is in the northern part of the city. While the neighboring BMW Museum will cost you to enter, you can still get your freebie fill of German cars at BMW Welt. Right near the main BMW factory, BMW Welt hosts exhibitions and essentially functions as a large BMW showroom. Customers can even pick up their vehicles here if they wish. You can also look at and sit in a number of BMW cars, marveling at past, present and concept cars. While the collection isn’t as extensive as the BMW Museum, those watching their Euros won’t complain.
Have you visited Munich and found a freebie or two? Share your favorite budget loving attractions in the city with us in the comments below.