Schwabing is Munich's most versatile district being home to various theaters, museums, a university, the largest park in Europe, and shops that cater to those with money to burn. Schwabing's highlight is the Englischer Garten, with endless bike and hiking trails, the Eisbach stream, and the makeshift concerts that are put on for people's enjoyment, which makes this district the perfect place to end a day of sightseeing or a date.
Chinesischer Turm is the one of the landmarks of the Englischer Garten.
- Englischer Garten — At over twice the size of New York's Central Park and dating back to 1789, the Englischer Garten begins at the very center of Munich just north of the Residence museum and Odeonsplatz, and continues north just over 5km. The park is divided into two distinct sections by a small city expressway called Mittlerer Ring. The southern section starts near Odeonsplatz and the Residenz Museum, and runs north, parallel to the student quarter of Schwabing. More populated than the northern section, a surprising number of people take advantage of lunch breaks during the week to sun themselves in the Garten. Here you'll see all kinds of activity, such as joggers, cyclists, strollers, skateboard and roller blades, riders on horseback, even surfboarders in wet suits taking advantage of currents under a bridge. Tourists are generally amused -- or scandalized -- by nude sunbathers, who may be encountered in any quiet section of the park on a warm day, but tend to congregate in the "official" area beside a small tributary of the Isar River that runs through the park. The Chinesischer Turm beer garden is located near the Monopteros, a Neo Classical rotunda that is situated on a hillside in the Garden. The northern half of the park is connected to the southern section by a pedestrian bridge beside the Seehaus Biergarten. Whereas the southern section is graced with open meadows and is densely populated, this section has a quieter, rural feel, with forest lots interspersed with fields graced with beautiful wildflowers in summer. Don't be surprised if you come across a herd of sheep, watched over by a shepherd in traditional clothing and his German Shepherd dogs. Quiet streams run through the park, as well as many bicycle and pedestrian trails. Indeed, the very best way to see this park is to rent a bicycle and explore. At most times you can see one or more people trying to surf on the Eisbach; see below.
- Alte Pinakothek (Old Painting Gallery), Barer Straße 27 (You can easily reach it by taking the Tram 27 and getting out at Pinakotheken.), ☎ +49 (0) 89 23805 216, . Contains hundreds of great European masterworks dating from the fourteenth to the eighteenth centuries, including the largest Rubens collection in the world. The Alte Pinakothek recently underwent a major four-year closing and renovation. Admission: Adults €5.50, Concessions €4; €1 on Sundays!.
- Neue Pinakothek, Entrance on Theresienstrasse, ☎ +49 (0)89 23805 195, . Th-M: 10AM-5PM, W 10AM-8PM. Closed on Tuesdays and major holidays (including May Day). The Neue Pinakothek's collection includes nineteenth-century European paintings and sculptures, and has also been recently renovated. Perhaps the most popular of the Pinakotheks, there is also a very nice cafe here. The museum is located at the tram 27 Pinakotheken stop. Adults: € 5.50, Concessions: € 4, Sundays: € 1.
- Pinakothek der Moderne, Barer Straße 40, ☎ +49 (0)89 23805 360, . Features 20th and 21st century art. Go here if you're interested in frighteningly modern art. The building's architecture is quite interesting. If the exhibition is too modern for your tastes, the other two Pinakotheken are just across the street at the tram 27 stop; Pinakotheken. Adults €9.50 Concessions: €6; Sundays €6 Adults / €4 Concessions..
A masterpiece of Greek sculpture in the Glyptothek
- Glyptothek, Located on Königsplatz, ☎ +49 (0)89/ 286100 ([email protected]), . Tu-Su 10AM-5PM, Th 10AM-8PM. The Glyptothek is another of King Ludwig's large collections is contained in the Glyptothek: one of the greatest Greek and Roman sculpture collections in all of Germany. The collection is based around a core of sculptures, the Aeginetes, excavated by English and German explorers at the island temple on Aegina early in the nineteenth century. It was built by imperial architect Leo von Klenze for the King and completed in 1830. Though almost entirely destroyed in World War II, the museum was heavily renovated and opened again to the public in 1972. There is a very nice cafe also located here that extends to the lovely courtyard weather permitting. Adults €3.50 ; Free entry on Sundays!.
- Antikensammlung, Located on Königsplatz, ☎ +49 (0)89/ 59988830 ([email protected]), . Tu-Su 10AM-5PM, W 10AM-8PM, Closed Monday. Ludwig I and his architect Klenze built a large square, Königsplatz, in classical style. Meant to be an "Athens on the Isar", the square encompasses many important buildings and collections, including the Antikensammlung. Formerly an exhibition venue (for the first 60-plus years of its life), then a museum of modern art, the Antikensammlung swung back in the exact opposite direction by the 1960s. At that time, the building was restored to hold Ludwig I's vast collection of Greek and Roman antiquities. It has the largest Greek and Etruscan vase collection in the world after the British Museum and the Louvre. With one's back to Karolinenplatz, facing the classical arch, the Glyptothek is on the right and the Antikensammlung is on the left. Adults €3.50; Free entry on Sundays (special exhibitions not included)!.
- Lenbachhaus, Luisenstrasse 33, ☎ +49(0) 89 23332 003, . Tues-Sun 10AM-10PM. (closed for remodels until 2012). A very important stop for Expressionist art lovers, this impressive collection in the former villa of Munich aristocracy includes numerous famous examples of the artistic vein known as 'The Blue Rider'. A must see if you have time in the museum district, this gem is located just across the street to the left of the Glyptothek (Königsplatz). A cozy cafe is also found here that extends to the outside grounds (weather permitting). Across the street, there is an underground gallery (entrance through the underground station across the street) that often exhibits seldom seen works by renowned names. Make sure to see the outdoor exhibits that are found on the lots facing the Propyläen. Adults €12, Reduced €6; Free entry to Lenbachhaus on Sundays (special exhibitions not included)!.
- Museum Brandhorst, Theresienstrasse 35a (corner Türkenstrasse) (Tram 27 to Pinakotheken), ☎ 089-238052286, . 10am-6pm, Thu -8pm, Mon closed. Most recent addition to Munich's museum district; a collection of modern and contemporary art (paintings, sculptures and installations) by Udo and Anette Brandhorst. 7€/5€, Sun 1€.
- Surfing— Who needs the ocean or a beach when you can surf in the Englischer Garten? Near Haus der Kunst, the Eisbach creates a standing wave. During the summer time, there are always a lot of surfers at this spot. As the wave is not created intentionally, there is no possibility to rent surfboards. The location is on the north side of Prinzregentenstrasse at the crossing of Bruderstrasse. It is about 5 blocks from the Lehel U-bahn station, or take tram 17 to Nationalmuseum/Haus der Kunst.
- Bicycling— Why not go for a bike ride or bike tour and explore Munich from the seat of a bicycle? Englischer Garten and the whole of Munich is lined with bike trails. Mike's Bike Tours  offers guided bike tours of Munich, which take you through the English Garden. The tour will stop at the beer garden for a break.
- Münchner Freiheit— Comfortable in size and quite popular, the Münchner Freiheit offers plenty of bars and restaurants. Reachable with varied buses and the U3 or U6, it is located at the station with the same name. The advantage: Once you've finished there, you can stroll over to Leopoldst and browse through the stores there.
- Bistro Cezanne, Konradstr. 1, Schwabing, Munich, ☎ 089/391-805. Authentic Gallic restaurant in the heart of Munich's bohemian quarter, chef Patrick Geay serves fine, tasty produce with a French flavor. Professional service by smartly attired waiters, and reservations are recommended for this highly sought after restaurant.
- Tantris, Johann-Fichte-Str. 7, Schwabing (""phone="089/361-9590"). With Germany's best chef in the country at the helm, expect to be impressed with an array of delectable dishes at Tantris. Consistently ranked one of the top fice dining establishment in the country, prepare to pay a high price for nouvelle cuisine, but once you have a bite of one of their specialities, you'll be assured that the bill at the end is worth it.
- Shamrock, Trautenwolfstr. 6 (U3 or U6 to Giselastraße), ☎ +49-89-331081. Thurs 6PM-2AM, Fri 6PM-3AM, Sat 2PM-3AM, Sun 2PM-2AM. Atmospheric Irish pub, with live music playing frequently. Fridays and Saturdays tend to get very crowded, with locals wanting to get a taste of the Irish.
- Löwenbräukeller, At Stiglmeierplatz. (Take U1 or U7 to Stiglmeierplatz.), . Traditional beer hall with an adjoining beer garden in the Maxvorstadt district.
- Schwabinger 7, Feilitzschstr. 7 (U3), ☎ 089-348470, . 6pm-1am. This pub has been around for decades and you can bet your bottom dollar that it hasn't changed at all. It is tiny, the walls are dark and the lighting is almost non-existent, but after 10pm it is always jammed. Despite the chaos, the service is swift. All kinds of people gather here, from alcoholics to smart business types.
- Aumeister, . Open Tue-Sun 9AM-11PM.. Located at the very north end of Englischer Garten, Aumeister is considered to be one of Munich's most beautiful beer gardens. It is a favourite of locals and mostly unknown to tourists. The restaurant on site dates back to 1810 and was originally one of Prince Regent Luitpold's hunting lodges. Large playground on site. It is a 10 minute walk from the Studentenstadt or Freimann stations on the U6 subway line, but the very best way to get there is by bicycle through the park.
- Chinesischer Turm (Chinese Tower). http://www.chinaturm.de. One of the best-known beer gardens in Munich is the Chinesischer Turm in the center of the Englischer Garten. This piece of chinoiserie doesn't seem out of place at all after a few good beers. Oompah bands play from the second story of the pagoda on summer weekends.
- Hirschau, Gyßlingstr. 15, Munich Schwabing (U-Bahn U6 to Dietlindenstrasse followed by 15 minutes on foot. Or bus number 44 to Osterwaldstrasse followed by 10 minutes walk.), ☎ +49(0)089 3221080. With a live jazz band playing at weekends, this is not a typical beer garden, which is not too crowded and a good place to linger over a drink or two.
- Seehaus. A lovely biergarten by a lake, the beer garden and structures (artistically configured boathouse) were designed by the locally famous architect Gabriel von Seidl in 1882-83. Enjoy a beer and great Bavarian fast-food fare on the banks of a lake while boaters drift by.
- Wintergarten, (Take 27 tram to stop: Elisabethmarkt.). This is a very small beer garden in which you can get the feel of a true local's beer garden. It has a small children's playground with swings, a slide and sand close enough for you to be able to see it, and is located next to a grouping of market stalls where you can buy fruit or fish (but don't worry, it doesn't stink of fish!). Sometimes live music is played there, which is usually Bavarian music.
Clubs and Discos
- Crash, Ainmillerstraße 10, ☎ +49 89 39 1640. Currently an "in" disco for youngsters. One of the few discos where there is something happening before midnight. You can get in from 16 onwards (but are chucked out at midnight, or refused entry if it's too full if you're under 18). You need your passport to get in, otherwise there's no entry. Best to get there before the 8PM opening time, because the queue gets really long.
- Parkcafé, (Sophienstr. 7), ☎ +49 89 5161798-0, . The Parkcafé is Munich's magnificent "dance temple", situated behind the picturesque Old Botanical Garden. It has a relaxing chill out area in the form of a beer garden (which closes at 11PM). The in-crowd, who appreciate and perpetuate the little refinements of this club, meet here. The bar in the rear is decorated bright red, in front are comfortable sofas and a golden chandelier in the entrance flatters the illustrious guests. The music stretches from Black Mission to house.
- Skyline Club, Leopoldstr. 82 (U3/6 Münchener Freiheit), ☎ +49(0)89 333131, . The Skyline is situated above the rooftops of Munich, in the Hertie building at Münchner Freiheit, in the middle of Schwabing. Once past the bouncer (which is usually not a problem), you are taken by a glass lift up to the club itself, where you will find two bars, a separate dining area, plenty of seating and of course a large dance floor. The ambiance is clear, styled with lots of glass and chrome. Musically the DJs stick mainly to mainstream and dance music.
- Titanic City, Nordendstr. 64, ☎ +49 (0)89 2717219, . A grungy underground rock music bar. They have all sorts of hard hitting alternative club nights here. Gothic, hard rock, trance, and so on. This club has closed in 2010, no successor
- Podium, Wagnerstrasse 1 (corner of Siegesstrasse), ☎ +49 (0)89 399482, . Looking for some live classic rock? This may be your place. Located a block away from the bustling Leopoldstrasse/Münchner Freiheit, there's almost always a live rock band here - usually playing 60's/70's/80's rock and sometimes you may be fortunate enough to catch some original material. Also there is the occasional live jazz.
- Hotel Pension Theresia, Luisenstraße 51, ☎ +49-(0)89-521250 (fax: +49-(0)89-5420633), . Budget hotel that delivers a clean and comfortable stay. Decor is a bit dated but for €48 per night, it's good value.
- Holiday Inn Munich North, Leopoldstr. 194, ☎ +49-(0)89-381790 (fax: +49-(0)89-38179888), . It is a quality hotel with 362 standard and deluxe guest rooms. Situated directly in the heart of Schwabing, close to the park “English Garden” and the underground station “Münchener Freiheit“ and “Universität”. All rooms have wi fi access.
- Flemings Hotel Munich, Leopoldstr. 132-134 Munich, 80804 (Driving directions: From the airport take the A9 motorway into Munich city centre. Exit towards Munich Schwabing, and the hotel is located at 132-134 Leopoldstrasse.), ☎ 89-206-0900. This 4 star hotel showcases a contemporary design, with a high standard of elegance in all rooms. Fleming's Brasserie offers dining and a range of take-away dishes.