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Tourismusverband München Oberbayern e.V.

Picture-book locations set against spectacular mountain scenery, where traditions are very much alive

"May God be with you, land of the Bavarians". When Bavarians sing their regional anthem on special occasions, it is a heartfelt expression of love for their homeland. As alluded to in that musical tribute, the skies above this fiercely independent state are apt to assume Bavaria's regional colours of blue and white, a commonly seen expression of `national' pride in a region that does all it can to preserve its unmistakeable identity. Throughout the world, this part of Bavaria, with its famous lakes and rivers, castles and abbeys, quaint houses and traditional inns, has become identified with Germany in general.


Many traditional houses in Upper Bavaria are decorated with exquisite Lüftl art, but nowhere is this quite as magnificent as in Oberammergau. These illusionistic facade paintings are more prevalent in this region than anywhere else. The cultural highlight for visitors is undoubtedly the impressive Oberammergau Passion Play Theatre with its capacity for five thousand spectators. Every ten years the local community stages the famous Passion Plays portraying the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ, a tradition which has its origins in a vow made by the people of Oberammergau during the Thirty Years' War. The play, next performed in 2010, has long attracted visitors from all corners of the globe. Oberammergau also has a long tradition of wood carving spanning 500 years.


Located on the German-Austrian border is the spectacular Zugspitze, Germany's highest peak at 2,962 metres. It is a winter sports paradise: about 350 metres below the summit, the Zugspitzplatt plateau provides ideal conditions for skiing and snowboarding and is Germany's only glacial ski area. The Bayerische Zugspitzbahn (cog railway) takes you up to the plateau. There is an extensive network of walking trails around the Zugspitze. The routes are well-marked and take you through some breathtaking gorges such as the Höllental (hell valley).

Lake Ammersee

After Altötting, Andechs is Bavaria's most important pilgrimage town, with its Benedictine abbey set in idyllic scenery beside Lake Ammersee. The abbey is famous for the products of its brewery and kitchen, with Andechs branded bread rolls and cheese also made under licence. The former castle was originally the ancestral seat of the Counts of Andechs. A few years ago, the abbey and its rococo church celebrated their 550th anniversary on the `Holy Mountain', an event that many took as an opportunity to visit Lake Ammersee and see the newly restored pilgrimage church. An insider's tip for a relaxing break: spend a few days with the Benedictine monks. You can also watch wood carvers at work at Pilatus House in Oberammergau, or pay a visit to one of the local sights, such as Ettal Abbey, or the romantic Linderhof Palace and the fairytale castle of Neuschwanstein, both built for King Ludwig II of Bavaria.


After the 1936 Winter Olympics, there was no going back for Garmisch and Partenkirchen. The two market towns were merged for the games and have been associated with winter sports in Bavaria ever since. The original Olympic Ice Stadium is now a venue for both sporting and cultural events. Ludwigstrasse in the heart of Partenkirchen dates back more than two thousand years. With its cosy inns and little shops it is the perfect place to browse or shop. A trip to the area would not be complete without a visit to Partnachklamm gorge. An iron bridge over the river at a height of 68 metres provides an exciting vantage point from which to watch as the raging water surges through the narrow ravine.

Neuburg an der Donau

Neuburg Palace on the Danube houses a collection of 120 masterpieces of Flemish baroque painting including works by Peter Paul Rubens, Jan Brueghel the Elder and Anthony van Dyck. This offshoot of the Bavarian State Art Collection in Munich's Alte Pinakothek opened in 2005.

Traditional beer brewing

The art of brewing has been practised in the western foothills of the Alps since the 12th century. Every year in the summer and autumn, you can sample the great variety on offer in beer gardens and at beer festivals, which are popular with locals and visitors alike. The Munich Oktoberfest is Germany's best known and largest public festival. Here you can enjoy a huge glass of beer fresh from the barrel, roast chicken and pretzels accompanied by traditional brass band music. And for dessert, there are Tölzer Prügel, sumptuous chocolate fingers which get their name from the logs which are used for building rafts.

Romance and charm

The town of Landsberg am Lech, situated on the Romantic Road, hosts the Ruethenfest festival. It is one of the largest traditional children's festivals in Bavaria and dates back more than 100 years. It will next take place in 2011.

Food and drink

Asparagus from Schrobenhausen ­ this Bavarian speciality has been widely cultivated here since 1913. There are now 600 or so asparagus farmers, who grow this `royal' vegetable in the sandy soil around Schrobenhausen from Aichach to Hallertau.

History and tradition

The Blue Rider group of artists was based in Munich, Murnau and the area around Kochel. After the `Bridge' painters, they represent the second highly influential movement of Expressionist art in Germany.

Nature and scenery

The Schleierfälle (Veil Falls) in the Ammergau Alps are so called because the water looks like a fairy's veil as it flows over the moss-covered stones. A woodland walk takes you to this mystical place.