48 hours in Munich

Where to stay

For lodging, consider Munich’s Altstadt, a.k.a Old Town. It's a convenient location with markets, shops selling Bavarian trinkets, a central square called Marienplatz, and historically significant monuments.

Consider Cortiina or LOUIS Hotel, two design-forward hotels that contrast and complement the town's old-world splendor. Cortiina's airy rooms feature natural stone tubs and hardwood floors and there are four varieties of suites. 

LOUIS Hotel revels in a mid-century aesthetic. Stay in one of their 72 rooms and in the evenings, visit the LOUIS Sparkling Bar, which specializes in effervescent wines. Both hotels offer breakfast with fresh produce from the neighboring Viktualienmarkt, the main farmer’s market in town. 

Day 1

Settle in at your hotel for the first meal of the day or head to Café Königin43. Sample one of their fresh juices along with bircher muesli or eggs any style.

Choose your adventure:

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  • Option 1: Fitness

    Begin your stay with a run through the long, narrow park known as the English Garden, veering off onto side paths as you go. There are nearly 50 miles of running trails, including a four-mile loop from Odeonplatz in the south to 2R Ring Road in the north and then back down. The English Garden offers numerous points of interest like a Japanese teahouse, the Hirschau sheep pasture, and Eisbach, a river where urban surfers catch waves.

  • Option 2: Culture

    Visit the Munich Residenz, the 750-year-old building that housed the city's past rulers. It features a royal court garden and preserved interior decor. Then, pick from the neighboring world-class cultural institutions, like the Bavarian National Museum which displays historic decorative arts, the Schack Gallery, which showcases Romanticism masterworks, and Museum Brandhorst, which specializes in modern art. 

Head to a beer hall for the full, authentic experience. The most renowned is Hofbräuhaus München, a three-story hall built in the late 1500s, but Hofbräukeller am Wienerplatz is also famous for its sprawling beer garden. Both have comprehensive Bavarian menus, including lighter options like cucumber salad and spicy sausage salad.

Return to the hotel to regenerate before a reservation at French eatery Le Stollberg. Start with beef or tuna tartare then try the fish soup with crostini and rouille or steak entrecôte with chanterelles. Pair your meal with a local wine from their extensive menu.

Day 2

Head to Ooh Baby I Like It Raw and fuel up with a gluten-free smoked salmon sandwich or scrambled eggs with fresh herbs. Or, if you'd rather have a full Bavarian immersion, try an indulgent donut breakfast at Schmalznudel Café Frischhut.

Choose your adventure:

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  • Option 1: Fitness

    Rent a bicycle from your hotel (both LOUIS and Cortiina have them available onsite) and ride four miles northwest to Olympiapark, the site of the 1972 Olympic Games. Swim in the Olympic pool and do an ab series at the outdoor public fitness facility. Check out the neighboring BMW Museum afterwards.

  • Option 2: Culture

    Explore Altstadt and its numerous landmarks, like the Frauenkirche cathedral, as well as the 725-year-old Peterskirche, the city’s oldest church. Meander through the Viktualienmarkt, where you can find fresh produce and snacks. If you're so inclined, tour the Beer and Oktoberfest Museum, which outlines the history and traditions of Bavarian bierhaus culture.

Have a hearty vegan lunch at Gratitude Restaurant. Their rotating daily menu includes dishes like braised kohlrabi with celery purée and pumpernickel and the Moroccan bowl with hummus, avocado, pearled couscous, and falafel.

Complete your stay with dinner at Italian-Bavarian fusion spot Ella, located in the Lenbachaus museum. The menu, which changes often, lists the region and country from which each dish hails. Antipasti may include plates like Neapolitan gazpacho with buffalo mozzarella and the Insalata Ella with figs, Pecorino, and truffle dressing. Try one of their house-made pastas or main courses like the dorade fillet with baby spinach, roasted onions, tomato-caper butter, and ciabatta croutons. Walk off your meal and bid goodbye to the city with a 30-minute stroll back to the hotel.

48 hours in Milan

There are over 100 miles of cycling paths inside the city.