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Holiday, Vacation & Tour

 

The Best-Kept Secret Of Garmisch, Germany

Attracting droves of tourists every year, Europe promises the ancient, the diverse, and the completely fascinating. Most travelers scurry past the major sites and cram in as much as possible in order to get through a list of 'must sees.' Unfortunately, much is overlooked due to lack of time and money while the infinite unique treasures sometimes hidden for the resourceful traveler remain undiscovered and unappreciated. Not that visits to the key attractions should be dissuade...

Germany, Europe, travel, Garmisch, travel writing, European travel, Holiday, Vacation & Tour

Attracting droves of tourists every year, Europe promises the ancient, the diverse, and the completely fascinating. Most travelers scurry past the major sites and cram in as much as possible in order to get through a list of 'must sees.' Unfortunately, much is overlooked due to lack of time and money while the infinite unique treasures sometimes hidden for the resourceful traveler remain undiscovered and unappreciated. Not that visits to the key attractions should be dissuaded!

On the contrary, I'm simply inviting the European travelers to dig a little deeper into their destination country and find the gems that will make them smile as they recall them even decades later. Remember and celebrate the taste of a fresh German pretzel, the sweet smell of the air in a Tuscan vineyard, or the baby soft petals in a colorful field of Dutch tulips. Savor an entire spectrum of sensory bliss as you skip from one country to the next, searching for that tiny unique detail that you will fondly relish for the rest of your life.

Garmisch, Germany boasts of many things – the breathtaking Bavarian Alps, perfectly-carved wooden houses with flowerboxes that spill over with color, the delicate edelweiss alpine blossoms, mouth-watering schnitzel, stout German beer, and a myriad of talented local craftsmen. But did you know that at the edge of this quaint, picture-perfect town lies a violent display of Mother Nature? Known in German as the 'Partnachklamm,' it hides behind the old Olympic Stadium and attracts hundreds of hikers each year.

So what exactly is the Partnachklamm? In a nutshell, it's a struggle to the death – a knock-down, drag-out brawl between the Partnach River and a limestone gorge. The river peacefully runs through the trees until it hits the 262-foot tall gorge. From there the river's personality turns to fury as it slams into the rock walls, throwing its temper tantrum for over 2,300 feet before calming down again and continuing to flow through the Bavarian countryside. Visitors follow a carved-out rock path from the entrance to the gorge and up a gradual incline to experience firsthand what nature is capable of. Don't forget your raincoat, though! You may be able to avoid the mist from the tumbling cascades but the spray from the waterfalls above will most definitely christen you!

There are several ways to experience the Partnachklamm, each holding its own delight for the visitor. Late spring through summer will provide a green backdrop on the limestone rocks while the chilly alpine waters almost deafen its company. In colder months, the gorge becomes an enchanting world of icicles and snow. Check first before showing up during the winter, though…too much snow and ice will force the gorge to close for safety reasons. It's also possible to visit during the day or the night – daytime offers better views while the warming sunbeams force their way through the foliage.

After dark, torch-lit tours are offered, giving the gorge a mystical quality. Regardless of season or time of day, once you've made your way through this hidden natural treasure, continue up the mountain for a robust hike and then relax at the Forsthaus Graseck's restaurant. The food is excellent and the views are breathtaking. While indulging in their cuisine, ponder how you'll get back down – take the same path through the gorge or a restful two-minute ride down in the cable car. Either way, a trip to the Partnachklamm is well worth it!

 

Your First Time At The Oktoberfest In Munich

The Oktoberfest in Munich, also called Wies’n (meaning “meadow”) by the locals, is the largest festival in the world. Although there are many imitations of this huge beer party, none of them will manage to reach the dimensions of the original Wies’n in Munich that is carried out each year in late September and early October. It attracts as many as 6,000,000 visitors and about 6,000,000 liters of beer as well as an enormous amount of grilled chickens, sausages and pretzels are...

Oktoberfest, Munich, Bavaria, Germany, Festival, Beer, Advice

The Oktoberfest in Munich, also called Wies’n (meaning “meadow”) by the locals, is the largest festival in the world. Although there are many imitations of this huge beer party, none of them will manage to reach the dimensions of the original Wies’n in Munich that is carried out each year in late September and early October. It attracts as many as 6,000,000 visitors and about 6,000,000 liters of beer as well as an enormous amount of grilled chickens, sausages and pretzels are consumed yearly.

These statistics may seem overwhelming for anyone with a dislike of crowds but the Oktoberfest is such an enormous event that everyone should experience this festival at least once in their lives. Miss the Oktoberfest and you will you will miss a major experience and maybe a lot of fun as well. To make the most of your trip to the Oktoberfest, it is worth planning in advance and there are some essential things you should know and prepare for when you go there for the first time.

The Oktoberfest was first held in 1810 when Crown Prince Ludwig (later King Ludwig I) of Bavaria married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. The marriage took place on October 12th, 1810, and on October 17th, a large horse race was organised. The event was repeated and in 1819, it was decided by the city council that the festival would take place every year, no matter what the circumstances. Since then it has been carried out every year at the Theresienwiese, named after "Therese" of Saxony-Hildburghausen, in Munich for two weeks in late September and early October.

The preparation for the Oktoberfest starts about two months before the festivities are opened. Six Munich breweries and about eighty showmen set up their beer halls and various attractions such as ghost trains, roller coasters and a variety of fairground rides.

Don’t be surprised to see a real city with its own infrastructure like streets, toilets, police, post office, first-aid station and even its own sewage system. Hundreds of people are employed every year just to work there. The Oktoberfest boosts not only tourism but also has a major impact on the economy of Munich.

Due to the popularity and scale of the Oktoberfest, it is highly recommended to book your flight and your hotel well in advance and a few months will certainly be much too short. Prices for flights and hotels usually skyrocket during the time of the Oktoberfest. The same applies if you want to sit in one of the large beer halls, most of which are in one of the main roads also referred to as “Bierzeltstrasse” (beer-hall road). Although the beer halls are really huge compared to ordinary beer tents, the places are already booked even one year in advance and it will be difficult to enter one of them without a reservation. You will probably be luckier in finding a seat outside in a beergarden which most beer halls have. This may be the better option as the beer halls can get very stuffy, hot and loud.

The best way to get to the Wies’n is to go there on foot. It is about 15 minutes away from Munich’s main Hauptbahnhof station and is easy to find. In most cases you don’t even have to ask someone, you only have to follow the crowds. Another way of getting there is by underground: use lines no. 4 or 5 and get off at “Theresienwiese” or no. 3 or 6 and get off at “Goetheplatz”. When you use the first option, you will be directly on the Wies’n when you leave the underground, from Goetheplatz you will have to walk a few meters. Tram no. 19 also stops near the Oktoberfest. It is not advisable to use your private car or bike as you will not find a place to park your car. If you come by bike, be sure to leave it somewhere safe but this can be difficult as vandalism by drunkards is quite common.

Another consideration is to be aware of pickpockets by taking care of your belongings. When you use one of the fairground rides (which is better done before drinking beer and eating), it is best to have your money safely in the closed pocket of your trousers – otherwise you might just lose it.

Beer is drunk in large and heavy 1-liter mugs. It is hard to get the usual portion of ½ liter but if you are lucky, you might be able to order ½ liter of Weißbier (“eine Halbe Weißbier”) but this is not the usual thing. The Oktoberfest beer is a special kind of beer that is stronger than the ordinary beer so beware. When you are not used to drinking, even one of these 1-liter mugs with this strong Oktoberfest brew might be too much! Not only beer, but everything is quite expensive on the Wies’n compared to normal prices.

Although there are many toilets in the Oktoberfest mainly in the side streets next to the beer tents, you will probably have to queue up for quite a while. This causes many drunkards to pee directly on a meadow (they call it “wild peeing”) and is not something to be recommended as you will be charged if caught by one of the many policemen that are around. So, don’t be shocked when you see people peeing out in the open or lying drunk on the meadow near the main entrance.

Things become worse as the evening progresses and it is important to keep your distance when you see aggressive drunkards with large beer mugs as it can be quite dangerous to be hit by one of them. For many, the best option is to go to the Oktoberfest quite early or even better, during the week. The same applies if you want to attend one of the many popular events held on the first weekend as you have to arrive very early to see something.

On the first Saturday at 10.45 a.m., there is a march of the Oktoberfest innkeepers to the Wies'n with their brewery horses lead by the Münchner Kindl and the Major of Munich. Its route is from Sonnenstrasse via Schwanthalerstrasse to the Theresienwiese. At midday, the Major of Munich taps the first barrel of beer in the beer hall Schottenhammel. On the first Sunday, there is large parade of traditional costumes and riflemen to the Wies'n that starts at 11.00 a.m. at the Siegestor in Ludwigstrasse in Schwabing.

If you keep in mind everything mentioned here and are even lucky with the weather, you will have a great time at the Oktoberfest. Just watch the people (many of them being dressed in traditional costumes), enjoy the Oktoberfest beer and have a good time!

 

German Holiday, Vacation & Tour Destinations – Munich

Arguably one of Germany’s most celebrated, famous, and visited cities; Munich is a popular spot for visitors from across the globe ranging from ordinary tourists to jet-setting celebrities. Munich has sights, attractions, and events for everyone. The city is a bustling metropolis filled with modern flair and classic culture at the same time.

Munich is home to many castles, landmarks, and churches will keep the fine arts lover, history buff, and anyone else busy for days, e...

germany travel guide,travel to germany,munich travel

Arguably one of Germany’s most celebrated, famous, and visited cities; Munich is a popular spot for visitors from across the globe ranging from ordinary tourists to jet-setting celebrities. Munich has sights, attractions, and events for everyone. The city is a bustling metropolis filled with modern flair and classic culture at the same time.

Munich is home to many castles, landmarks, and churches will keep the fine arts lover, history buff, and anyone else busy for days, even weeks, trying to see them all.

Considered to be the “must-see” destination for visitors to Munich, the Nymphenburg Palace was built in the 17th century as a gift from Ferdinand Maria to his wife, Henriette. His heir, Maximilian Emanuel, expanded to the palace by adding symmetrical buildings that span from the central structure. The Nymphenburg Palace also features a large landscaped park with meticulously manicured lawns, trees, shrubs, and fountains. The associated pavilions include Amalienburg, a hall that is secular in shape and lined with mirrors; Badenburg, which houses the first modern heated pool; Pagodenburg, which was built with a mixture of French and Oriental designs; and Magdaleneklause, which was constructed to resemble ruins and built to honor Mary Magdalen.

The astounding BMW Museum features the history and technological advances of BMW. Motor sports fans will enjoy the history of BMW’s role in sports racing and its array of various prototypes on display. The BMW Museum is currently temporarily closed to the public for renovation, but will reopen in early 2007.

Historic churches of note that are often visited in Munich include Alter Peter or the Church of Saint Peter, the Cathedral Church of our Lady, Theatinerkirche, and Asamkirche.

Munich is the home of the world-famous Oktoberfest festival and houses the Beer and Oktoberfest museum, which is open year round. The museum gives visitors a lesson in the history of beer and Oktoberfest and is housed in one of Munich’s oldest historical buildings.

The Oktoberfest festival celebrates Bavarian Beer and lasts for several weeks each year starting in September and ending in October. The tradition is nearly 200 years old and is probably Munich’s largest attraction each year. Festival events include the Oktoberfest Costume and Rifleman’s Parade, open-air music, beer tents, and distinct German cuisine feasts. Oktoberfest draws over six million visitors each year, with rates of attendance increasing with each passing year.

Munich is a very modern and cosmopolitan city and is an imperative hub to the high-fashion and glamour industry. Famous, world-renowned artists, designers, clothiers, actors, and models flock to the city to set trends, be seen, and make themselves known to the world.

It is also a very active community for the family and outdoors enthusiasts. The Zugspitze is the highest mountain in Germany, towering over 2,900 meters above sea level. The Munich Zoo is a popular attraction and houses over 460 species of domestic and exotic animals. It has the distinction of being the first “geo zoo” in the world. Finally, the Isar River is a well-loved target for rafting fans for its natural beauty.

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