Arrive in Munich
Founded as a fortified trade settlement on the bank of the Isar River in the 12th century, Munich was later granted a monopoly in the salt trade, which was so important in the Middle Ages, thus gradually growing in wealth and importance. In the early 16th century, it became the capital of Bavaria and reached its greatest growth in the 19th century. Famous for hosting the annual Oktoberfest beer festival, Munich also has a multitude of architectural monuments, excellent historic sights, museums, and shopping.
This morning you will have an overview walking tour of Munich’s Old Town.
You will first head to Marienplatz (Mary’s Square), which has been Munich’s focal point since it was first laid in the 1300s. Next, you may wish to see the historic Frauenkirche church and Viktualienmarkt, the open-air food market frequented by locals and tourists alike. It’s a great place to pick up a fresh pretzel for a snack. On your way there, you may want to step inside St. Peter’s Church, the oldest parish church in the city and referred to by locals as “Old Peter”.
Continue your tour with a stop at Feldherrnhalle – Field Marshals’ Hall, a monumental loggia modeled after the one in Florence. You will finally reach The Munich Residenz – the former royal palace of the Bavarian monarchs and the largest palace in Germany.
Hiking to Neuschwanstein
This morning your special hiking guide will meet you for the short walk to the train station. Begin with a journey via train to the historic and pretty town of Füssen, just about two hours from Munich.
Today you may visit Neuschwanstein, one of the most recognized symbols of Bavaria. It took 17 years and over 6 million Gold Marks to turn “Mad” King Ludwig II’s fantasy into reality. Although the castle is still, to this day, unfinished, the interior is stunning.
Your experience today will begin with a hike. Marvel at the ancient houses with their abundant trope-l’oeil paintings and then cross over the river Lech. Your hike will then take you past two lakes while you enjoy panoramic views of the castles – all without the tourist crowds. At the end, you will join one of the group tours inside the castle to see the grand rooms.
Your guide will take you back to Füssen for the return journey to Munich. This is a unique, picturesque, and relatively crowd-free way to experience Bavaria and nature.
Exeter International Extraordinary Experience
Meet your local food guide today for an off-the-beaten-path discovery of Munich’s food scene. This will take you outside the historic center and to places where only a local would know. You’ll use the efficient public transportation system to explore a variety of shops, restaurants, and more as you taste your way through Munich’s history and culture.