Munich has a worldwide reputation as a centre for the arts, culture and science – and for the Oktoberfest. With more than 1.5 million residents, Munich is the third-largest city in Germany, and Munich is the capital city of the federal state of Bavaria, officially known as ‘Freistaat Bayern’.
The city has a lively nightlife and an excellent public transport system. Residents of Munich particularly love their numerous green areas such as the English Garden, the Isar meadows and the gardens of the palaces as well as its closeness to the Alps and the lakes of Upper Bavaria.
Munich is economically very successful: A low unemployment rate and wide spectrum of economic sectors make Munich very attractive for many people who find interesting jobs in companies and research institutes or who come here to study at one of the renowned higher education institutions.
Munich was founded in 1156. From 1255 onwards, Munich was the royal residence of the Wittelsbach dynasty, whose prestigious buildings still characterise the city today, over 700 years later. There are many museums in Munich. One of the oldest and most well-known is the Deutsches Museum, focussing on history and the future of technology. The NS-Dokumentationszentrum documents Munich’s history during the time of the National Socialist dictatorship and is a central place of learning and memorial.
As well as the city’s rich culture, Munich residents love sport. The venues of the 1972 Summer Olympic Games in the Olympia Park are still used intensively. Constructed for the 2006 Football World Cup, the Allianz Arena is regarded as one of the most exceptional stadiums in Europe. The outer shell and stadium roof are often marked with a special illumination concept. For example, the arena glowed in the blue and yellow colours of the European flag to celebrate Europe Day, it glowed in green on the Irish St Patrick’s Day and in the colours of the rainbow to celebrate LGBTQ+ pride on Christopher Street Day.
The Munich Oktoberfest – the largest public festival in the word – is visited by six million people annually on average. Just as good, but a bit more peaceful, is enjoying Munich’s famous beer under the chestnut trees in one of the many beer gardens. These have a tradition in Munich that dates back over 200 years and are regarded as the epitome of the Bavarian way of life.