There are over 40 museums in Munich. I’ve been to a few of the big ones like the Deutsches Museum, one of Europe’s leading science and technology museums and the Pinakothek der Moderne, a modern art gallery
They are no doubt impressive, but they just don’t do it for me. I leave feeling underwhelmed and like I should have enjoyed it more than I did. This is not the museum’s fault, it’s just that I much prefer quirkier offbeat museums like the World’s Largest Pig Museum in Stuttgart or the Bread Museum in Ulm or the German Emigration Center in Bremerhaven (my favorite museum that I’ve visited in Germany – so far). Fortunately there are no shortage of quirky and offbeat museums in Munich.
Das Kartoffelmuseum (The Potato Museum) in Munich
With a description like “The Potato Museum is the world’s only museum devoted exclusively to the potato in art…” how can I NOT visit the Potato Museum. Admittedly I haven’t been yet, but I’m going on the weekend. There are eight themed rooms ranging from history, to market scenes, to the most intriguing sounding multi-talented potato room. Entrance is free. The Potato Museum is only open on Fridays from 9:00 – 6:00 pm and Saturdays from 11:00 – 5:00 pm. For further info (in German only) see Das Kartoffelmuseum.
Bier and Oktoberfest Museum in Munich
Beer steins on display at the Bier and Oktoberfest Museum.
Everything you realize that you didn’t know about Oktoberfest. The Bier and Oktoberfest Museum was the first museum I visited when I moved to Munich. It’s housed in the oldest residential house in Munich dating back to 1327. It has rickety steep stairs, small cozy rooms and ceilings with dangerously low wooden beams. All of the signs are in German, so visitors who don’t understand German may not get a lot out of it. But it is fun to look at the collections and walk through the house – the house itself was my favorite part. And a beer is included with your entrance ticket. The Bier and Oktoberfest Museum is open Tues – Sat from 1:00 to 6:00 pm and closed on holidays. Visit the Bier and Oktoberfest Museum website for more info.
Bavaria Film Studios (Bavaria Filmstadt) in Munich
Photo courtesy of Bavaria Film Studios in Munich
While not technically a museum, Bavaria Film Studios does provide insights into German movie culture. Its to Germans what Universal Studios is to Americans. I haven’t been yet but when I do go will definitely go on the tour to get the insights. The English language tour, complete with a 4D motion simulator cinema is at 1:00 pm. Many of the movies might not be familiar to English speakers with the exception of the NeverEnding Story, for which there’s even a ride. That for me is reason enough to go! See Bavaria Film Studios‘ website for further info.
Alpine Museum (Alpines Museum) in Munich
Photo courtesy of the Alpine Museum in Munich
As an avid hiker I was eager to check out the Alpine Museum and did so on a Sunday when it was pouring rain – in other words when I wasn’t hiking. The most fascinating (and disturbing) part of the museum to me was learning about the Alpine Club’s ties with the Nazis. It was the first large sports club to exclude Jews in the 1930s and trained soldiers from 1933-1945. My German husband, J.P. wasn’t aware of this either, but wasn’t surprised. I, on the other hand was shocked. I’ve always considered hiking and mountaineering to be non-political – how wrong I was. The museum itself was interesting (if you’re into hiking/mountaineering), but it was the Berg Heil! Alpenverein und Bergsteigen 1918-1945 ( Berg Heil! Alpine Club and Climbing 1918-1945) Exhibition that is on until June 24, 2012 that really held my attention. Most of the signs are in English so non-German visitors will also benefit. The Alpine Museum is open Tue-Fri from 1:00-6:00 pm, Sat & Sun from 11:00-6:00 pm and closed on holidays. See the Alpines Museum website for further info (in German only)
Although I’m not a museum person per-see I’m open to your recommendations for museums in Munich that you’ve enjoyed and will check them out…on a rainy day of course!
Check out these posts about museums in other parts of Germany from the Blogger Stammtisch: