Bavaria: Heaven on Earth in Southern Germany (Part 1)

  • Neuschwanstein Castle, near Fuessen, Bavaria, Germany

    Bavaria's Most Famous Castle Shines in Fall Splendor

    The majestic Neuschwanstein Castle, a 19th-century Romanesque Revival palace perched on a rugged hill in Southwest Bavaria, is one of the region’s icons and one of its most visited attractions, welcoming more than 1.3 million people annually.  Bavaria is known for its rich history (dating from Roman times), its art and culture, lovely old cities and towns, spectacular scenery, and a warm and friendly people. Read more about Bavaria, Part II

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Beer Festival, Kumback in Bavaria, Germany

    Raise a Glass to Bavaria's Many Beer Festivals

    Bavaria prides itself on its excellent beer and celebrates its local brew with frequent festivals. Although the Munich Oktoberfest is the most famous of such events, smaller cities and towns across Bavaria (such as Kulmback in the northern Bavarian region of Franken) orchestrate lively beer festivals during the summer and fall months.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Lake Staffelsee, near Murnau, Bavaria, Germany

    Bavaria is a Land of Lakes

    Bavaria is a land of lakes, many of them rimmed by incredible Alpine scenery. Lake Staffelsee near Murnau, south of Munich, is famous for its bird and wildlife sanctuary and its majestic views on the Alpine mountains to the south.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Folk Dancers of Garmish-Partenkirchen, Bavaria, Germany

    The Hills Are Always Alive with the Sound of Bavarian Music

    The hills of Bavaria are truly alive with the sound of music–and the joy of traditional dance.  This is one part of Europe where musical traditions are genuinely embraced by the local population, and not just orchestrated as a tourist attraction. The Bavarians' love of their traditional attire (Trachten) and folkloristic music and dance is evident throughout the region, in both larger cities and small towns.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Main Street of Landshut, Bavaria, Germany

    Bavaria's Intricate, Fascinating Architecture Spans Millennia

    The architecture of Bavaria reflects its long history, dating back to Roman times. One can admire a variety of architectural styles, from Romanesque and Baroque to Renaissance and Classical. The city of Landshut boasts colorful Gothic homes along its majestic main street.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Restaurant near Neumarkt, Eastern Bavaria, Germany

    Dine with Gusto in Bavaria's Restaurants, Beer Gardens

    Bavarian restaurants often have an adjoining beer garden where local brew accompanies traditional Bavarian cuisine. Food specialties include “Weisswurst,” a white veal sausage, “Schweinebraten,” roasted pork served with a bread dumpling, and “Kaesespaetzle,”  homemade egg pasta tossed with Emmentaler cheese. While beer is a regional favorite, some of Germany's most delicious wines are produced in the Northern Bavarian region of Franken.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Marienplatz in Munich, Bavaria, Germany

    Marienplatz, the Heart of Munich

    The Marienplatz, dating from 1158, is the central square in the heart of Munich.  The tower of the New Town Hall houses the famous Glockenspiel, century-old chimes that feature 32 mechanical, life-sized figures that reenact Bavarian historical events. Each day at 11 am and noon, visitors convene to watch the figures spring to life.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

  • Hiker Enjoying Alpine View, Bavaria, Germany

    A Wealth of Natural Wonders Welcome the Hiker

    Hiking is a national pastime in the countryside of Bavaria. Trails are clearly marked and range from easy to difficult, but they all have one thing in common….spectacular beauty.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Munich Oktoberfest, Bavaria, Germany

    Munich's Oktoberfest, the World's Largest Fair

    Some 6 million people descend upon Munich from around the world from late September to October to attend the 16-day Oktoberfest celebration. Touted as the world’s largest fair, it is also a significant part of Bavarian culture, having been held since the year 1810.

    Photo courtesy of Bavaria Tourism

  • Hofbraeuhaus, Bavaria, Germany

    Eins, Zwei, Suffa--Munich's Hofbraeuhaus has Cheered Millions over the Centuries

    The Hofbraeuhaus is another famous icon of Munich. Built in 1592, this brewery/restaurant continues to serve up delicious beer in signature mugs and a menu of Bavarian food specialties. Live traditional and “oomp-pah” bands play in its spacious halls and in the open-air beer garden, providing the perfect musical backdrop while diners enjoy their meal at long wooden tables. Read more about Bavaria, Part II.

    Photo courtesy of Joanne DiBona

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