Located to the north of the Bavarian Alps, on the River Isar, MUNICH is the capital city of Bavaria, the largest federal state of Germany and one of Europe's most prosperous and expensive cities
unich itself was founded in 1158 on the River Isar, and acquired its name, Munchen (home of the monks) from its first monastery. It was the monks that started the beer brewing tradition for which the city is now world famous, particularly since it started celebrating an annual beer festival in 1810. Today close on six million people visit the Oktoberfest every year, and consume more than five and a half million litres of beer during its two-week run.
Munich is noted for its architecture and culture, and the annual Oktoberfest beer celebration is world famous. Munich's cultural scene is second to none in Germany, with the museums even considered by some to outrank Berlin in quality. Many travelers to Munich are absolutely stunned by the quality of the architecture. Although it was heavily damaged by allied bombing during World War II, many of its historic buildings have been rebuilt and the city center appears mostly as it did in the late 1800.
Founded by Duke Henry the Lion, in 1158, within a century, the city had become the seat of the Wittelsbach dynasty, who ruled the duchy, electorate and kingdom of Bavaria until the end of World War I. Their influence is evident in the concentration of grand Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and neo-classical architecture adorning Munich's streets. Possibly most significantly, the Wittelsbach's patronage of the arts and extensive collections provided the basis for Munich's world-class museums and galleries.
The city was the cradle of the Nazi movement after World War I and was the scene of Hitler's first attempt to seize power on 8 November 1923. Furthermore, in 1938, the treaty that surrendered a large portion of Czechoslovakia to the Nazis was signed by Germany, Great Britain, France and Italy in Munich, an act of conciliation that started the slide towards World War II. The city was severe bombarded at the end of the war, but in the post-war years the city was rebuilding with an intensive restoration program, and since then Munich is become in one of the most popular tourist destinations in Germany.
Munich is one of Germany's cultural centers, with an amazing array of museums, a vibrant art scene and the world-famous Oktoberfest. Despite its name, events begins in late September and spills into the first week of October, dancing oompah bands and food dominate. With a strong cultural scene, abundantly endowed art collections and excellent shopping, Munich certainly has more to offer than just light entertainment.