Munich Meandering – A Free City Tour with Sandeman

My very first morning in Munich, I reached there pretty early in the morning. While waiting to check in at the Euro Youth Hotel where I was staying at, I decided to check out the city via the Sandeman’s New Munich walking tour. It’s free and happens twice a day (1045am and 1pm), so if you’re not familiar with the city already, it’s a great way to get acquainted – Munich’s city centre is full of history, and while a lot of it was destroyed during the World Wars, the city has taken a lot of effort into restoring it to its original glory.

The tour guides come to the hostel lobby to pick you up at 1010am, and gather up other interested folk from the neighbouring hostel as well. After that, it’s a 10-15min walk to Marienplatz where the other people interested in the tour gather.

Walking from the Hotel to Marienplatz

Sandeman has a few tours that all meet at this spot, the rest are paid tours but the most popular one is naturally the free city toue. To sort everyone out, each person is given a ticket to hang on to.

Ticket in hand

The tour starts out in Marienplatz at 1045am, so you’re just in time to catch the famous Glockenspiel at 11am at the New City Hall, a giant cuckoo clock of sorts that does this intricate little dance of sorts every hour. It really isn’t very exciting, a rather old-fashioned mechanism that displays some of Munich’s historical events. The guide did try and make it as exciting as he could though, kudos to him.

It’s about 3 hours of walking around, so wear comfortable shoes and if you’re there in winter like I was, make sure you stay warm! Here are a few of the highlights from the tour.

The New City Hall is the star attraction of Marienplatz
That’s the Glockenspiel. What I thought was interesting is that the music that the figures dance to are metallic chimes which are affected by the weather, so the music sounds different depending on the weather!
Our guide and our tour group
Looking up
Huddled in a rather cold corridor
A Gluhwein stop along the way to stay warm. Why everyone else headed for the Starbucks is beyond me~
Juliet (ala Romeo and Juliet) statue by the Old City Hall – apparently touching her right boob is good luck
The Church of St Peter is impressive not just for its architecture…
but for the fact that is has a real antique cannonball stuck in its window. After the war, the building was bombed and in pieces, but they managed to locate the original cannonball so they put it back in place when they rebuilt it!
The Frauenkirche, or Church of our Lady, icon of Munich
The tomb of Christopher Columbus
at this particular spot in the church, you can’t see any of the windows that line the sides of the church, which apparently is what tricked the devil in the legend all those years ago. 
And the devil got so pissed off he stamped his foot really hard and left behind a foot print… or you know it could just be a really careless worker back in the day…
The National Theatre
The Gold Line – memorial to those who resisted the Nazis
Distinctively yellow Theatinerkirche
Feldherrnhalle at Odeonplatz, with statues + lions

I recommend anyone visiting Munich to check out this free city tour – here’s more on their website, they’re good for tours to Dachau and Neuschwanstein as well.

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