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Top Rated Attractions in Munich

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Englischer Garten

One of the oldest English-style landscape gardens and one of the largest municipal parks in Europe, the Englischer Garten is Munich's most fascinating park. Sprawling across an area of 3.7 square kilometres (1.4 square miles), this place is one of the largest public parks in the world. The park features some of the best architecturally diverse landmarks along its vast verdant expanse and rolling lawns. From a Chinese pagoda with an adjoining beer garden and the Monopteros Greek temple, to a Japanese Tea House, the park is full of intriguing monuments and landmarks. Artificial streams gush through the park and several surfers can be seen gliding effortlessly along its foamy waters. Also housing an artificial lake and an open-air theater, the urban park is one of the best socio-cultural hubs of Munich.

BMW Welt

BMW Welt is one of the defining landmarks of Munich's architectural and technological advancements. An immaculate glass cone design that combines form and function, the center is an exquisite socio-cultural hub used for large-scale exhibitions, meetings, conferences and other major events. Displaying the brilliant cars, this is also the collecting center for BMW buyers, with on-site restaurants and lounges serving delectable cuisine for visitors.

Nymphenburg Palace

Longer in width than the Palace of Versailles, Schloss Nymphenburg was the impressive summer residence of the Wittelsbachs. One of the most popular attractions in Munich, the palace and its grounds are home to several landmarks showcasing diverse architectural styles. Designed by Italian Baroque architect Augustino Barelli, the palace still preserves its rococo and baroque rooms. The ornate, marble polished Stone Hall is particularly impressive and the famous 'Schönheitengalerie' (Gallery of the Beauties) containing the portraits of 36 local women, is a must see for visitors. A few interesting smaller palaces can be found in the park: the Amalienburg, Pagodenburg and Badenburg. The Marstallmuseum has a comprehensive display of carriages, sleds and crockery, while the Meditationskapelle (Meditation Chapel) with its Magdalenenklause is also worth a visit.

Marienplatz

Marienplatz has been at the center of the city ever since it was founded by Henry the Lion in 1158. Named after the Marian Column of Mariensaule which was built in 1638 to mark the end of Swedish rule in Germany, the square is one of the most historically rich cultural hubs of the city. Serving as a bustling marketplace in its early days, the square retained its position as the city's social core even after the market was moved. Replete with monuments, Marienplatz is thronged by tourists admiring the intricate 100-meter (328-feet) high Gothic façade of the New Town Hall and the waters of the Fish Fountain. The Marian column forms the centerpiece of the square, with a golden statue of Mother Mary perched on its top.

Olympiaturm

The Olympic tower at Olympiapark is the tallest building in Munich, just a little shorter than the Eiffel tower. Built by the civic council in 1965-68 for the 1972 Olympics, it provides the best view of the city and surrounding area and in good weather, it is possible to see as far as the Alps. The Olympiaturm restaurant beneath the viewing platform is open from 11a-5p and 6:30p-midnight. Apart from providing a stunning view, this rotating restaurant also serves very good dishes from around the world at reasonable prices.

Hellabrunn Zoo

Founded in 1911, the Munich Zoo Hellabrunn concentrates on nature preservation in the Isar area. Various animal presentations like 'Flipper parade' by Sea Lions, 'Jungle Patrol' by Indian Elephants and 'Banded Mongoose in action' are very popular. As a Geo-zoo, one can see a number of various species of animals and birds at Tierpark Hellabrunn, including sea lions, birds of prey and pelicans inhabiting the area of their geographic concentration. Various special events, guided tours and trips are undertaken by the zoo as well.

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