In June, the bf and I met up with my sister in Munich. We had planned to wander around Munich, just take in the city and then my sister would leave for London (where she had landed a week earlier) and continue her vacation before heading off back home.
Then, a few weeks before my sister was about to leave for London, I had a sudden urge to follow her to London post our Munich trip. You probably already know that I have a love-affair with London and find it very, very hard not to travel there. I also felt bad to ditch my younger sister post Munich and let her worry about packing her luggage. We also made a deal for her to pass me anything she can’t take back with her (in case her luggage ran out of space) as I was going to go home 2 weeks later. So, I bought tickets for Munich–>London and London–>Oslo, and decided to forgo my Munich–>Oslo flight.
The trips were wonderful.
I have never been to Munich beyond a few stopovers at the airport. The bf was really happy to be in Munich as he’s a big fan of Bavarian food, so much so, I think he could live off white sausage and sweet mustard.
We visited the following spots:
- Ingolstadt Village – If you’re a shopping enthusiast, do check out Ingolstadt Village. It’s a bit out of the way as you’d have to take a train and then a bus, but it’s definitely worth it if you like bargain shopping. Most stores offer at least 20% discount on their products; if you’re lucky you can even get 40-60% discounts on the products.
- Maximilianstraße (Maximilian street) – a huge area with all the expensive shops you can name. It’s worth a walk as it’s got a lot of charm.
- Neuschwanstein Castle – I have so much to say about this castle. It’s such a beautiful palace but there’s a certain sense of sadness when you hear about the King for whom it was built (Ludwig II). I actually didn’t take any photographs of this castle because we had to rush to get in (it was a long hike) and cameras were forbidden for the tour inside. Here’s a photograph of what it looks like (it’s a wallpaper). Technically there are two castles when you go to Neuschwanstein – Neuschwanstein itself and Hohenschwangau. I believe, Hohenschwangau is the castle where King Ludwig II grew up in and Neuschwanstein is his dream castle. This is Hohenschwangau, it’s very simple compared to Neuschwanstein.
- Viktualienmarkt – A street market in the center of Munich. If you want to experience a market where the locals buy their produce, this is the place to go. I’m told that some things are a bit more expensive (because the Leberkässemmel was slightly more expensive here than elsewhere), since the market is a tourist attraction, but there were a lot of people buying things there anyway.
- Schrannenhalle – A beautiful market near Viktualienmarkt, you can see some pictures of its architecture here. Schrannenhalle is a covered market with lots of exotic food stuff and cooking ingredients. You can actually find TWG (a Singaporean tea company) tea here!
- Marienplatz – This is the central square in Munich. We hung around here most of the days as our hotel was nearby and we people watched (and shopped) a bit.
- English Garden – This was a bit of a walk, but definitely worth it. We ate traditional German beer garden food here. The bf and I had a currywurst and my sister had some roast chicken. It was good stuff.
- Hofgarten – This is the “court” garden. It’s nearby the Residenz, where the Bavarian monarchs used to live. The garden is gorgeous. It’s one of those places where you could spend a full day – chatting, eating, reading, daydreaming – and not realize that time is passing. Facing the east of Hofgarten is the Bavarian State Chancellery. It’s such a fusion building – with the old fashioned former Army museum in the middle and the glass wings to the left and right.
Then, I went to London as the bf headed back to Oslo with a heavy luggage containing my sister’s and my loot 🙂 Honestly I keep waiting for the bf to comment on this obsession of mine for shopping, but he never seems to say anything negative about it.
In London, my sister and I met up with a friend of hers who shared a hotel room with her. I have to say my sister does know how to pick nice friends. It was so comfortable sharing a hotel room with my sister’s friend. You’d think three women in a hotel room would be fighting for the bathroom and all – but no, no drama there whatsoever 🙂
Matthew, my friend of many years, had his birthday and we met him for brunch that day at Tom’s Kitchen in Somerset House. The brunch was delicious, but what was more awesome was meeting Matthew. I’ve probably written about Matthew before, but Matthew and I – we’re like chalk and cheese – yet we seem to have a fun friendship. Matthew has even been to Malaysia and stayed with my family while I was not there.
Excuse my tiredness. At that point, I had already been traveling for more than a week, so let’s just say I was ‘travel-weary’.
Apart from meeting up with Matthew, we did a bit of shopping and lots of eating. Overall, it was a really nice trip. I got to spend some nice time with the bf, my sister, and Matthew 🙂