Where To Stay in Munich - Best Neighborhoods Guide

By Grigory Lyubchenko a former professional tennis player discovering his new home in Munich

Edited by Matthew Wears

Munich certainly isn’t a huge city, but it still has a lot of different places to stay when you travel here. The different areas in Munich are really quite diverse, so if you want to know where to stay in Munich that’s right for you, you might need some help. It all really depends on what you want out of your trip because the city will most likely have something to suit your needs. If you’re a solo traveler or whether you want to know where to stay in Munich with family, you have a number of different options available. Do you want to be right in the middle of it all in the historic center, or maybe you want a little bit more of a true Bavarian experience by staying outside the city in one of the beautiful German towns? Whatever it is you want, after reading this you will one hundred percent know the best area to stay in Munich for you.

Central/Altstadt

If you want to know the best area to stay in Munich to be right up close to all of the fascinating history, then you should really stay right in the city centre for that. The Altstadt, in particular, refers to the old town, which is where you’ll find pretty much all of the city's major tourist attractions. Stick to this area if you only have a day or two in Munich. These cobbled streets are the home of iconic places like the Marienplatz with its Rathaus, or the Hofbrauhaus with its dark history that played a fundamental part in the rise of the Nazis in World War Two. Today, it’s the place to come for some traditional Bavarian food alongside some of the best beer in the city. It is places like this that are perfect for kickstarting your trip. Other than the historical aspect of city centre, it is one of the most exciting areas in Munich for me because there’s just always something going on. It’s such a diverse international city now that you can hear so many different accents and try so much food from around the world, and that all comes together in the centre.

For places to stay in Munich city centre, you can pretty much find every kind of hotel or room imaginable - it’s really just like any other international centre. All price ranges are accommodated as well as all styles, although you will be paying a bit more to be so central. Personally, I would recommend getting something quite traditional in the Altstadt area, simply because it can be a unique experience to spend a night inside a beautiful Bavarian building. Also, if you’re a big big beer fan and you want to find out where to stay in Munich for Oktoberfest, then I would say the city centre is probably your best option. It is held just to the west of the centre in a space called Theresienwiese, which can be reached pretty easily on foot from the main train station. The key is to be close enough that you can beat the queues in the morning, but far enough away that you don’t have to deal with all of the drunk people on the streets. When Okotoberfest isn’t on, there are plenty of beer gardens and beer halls for you to experience the true Bavarian nightlife.

Ostbahnhof area

Photo Credit: Wikiolo, Wikipedia

This is where I’d recommend staying if you want to be based somewhere that’s much quieter than the centre. Even though it’s a little bit far out, you can easily catch a train right into the centre and it takes no time at all. I have a friend that lives in this area and it only takes me around ten minutes to reach his house by catching the U-Bahn straight there. I think this mixture of quiet but connected would make it very suitable if you’re looking for where to stay in Munich with family. You can all kinds of hotels over here that will suit every price range, but less authentically Bavarian places. The east side of the city hardly gets any visitors either, which is pretty strange because it’s amazing. My personal favourite spot is the Ostpark – you could spend a whole afternoon drinking German beers in the sun here.

Hadern

Over in the opposite side of the city you have another place that’s kind of similar to the Ostbahnhof area. This is a very quiet part of the city with lots of greenery and it generally has a much more traditional feel to the rest of the city. This is one of the Munich neighborhoods where you can still feel as though you’re not in the city at all, despite having a U-Bahn station just a short ride away. I won’t lie and say there’s loads to do here, the point of it is that you’re kind of in your own little part of the city. You can get some bikes and head to the mystical Forstenrieder Park just to the south of the city though. This really isn’t a park at all, it’s more of an entire forest where you can see things like wild bores or just spend some time in nature. It really is one of the most beautiful areas in Munich. For places to stay, it is mostly little hotels really, but they will be much cheaper so it is good if you want to know where to stay in Munich on a budget.

Starnberg

It is all good talking about which neighborhoods to pick, but what if you want to know where to stay outside of Munich? For that then you have a couple of options; the first being the quiet Bavarian town of Starnberg just to the south west of the city. This is a complete change to the city in just about every way you can imagine. There is the beautiful Bavarian countryside with its rolling green hills and alpine views in the distance, alongside the picturesque town itself. The architecture is much more traditional over here as well – you won’t get any of that ultra-modern stuff you see in the city. For some accommodation, you should try Airbnb because you get some amazing places for your money. For just fifty to one-hundred euros you can get a room in an old Bavarian farmhouse or even a tiny little wooden cabin in the countryside.

Ebersberg

The second option you have is to stay in another town called Ebersberg, which is actually quite similar to Starnberg. Again, this isn’t really one of the Munich neighborhoods, but it’s a beautiful place to stay in its own right. The town has a load of fascinating things that are worth checking out, such as the Bavarian history museum called the Wald and Umweld. You should also go up the Ebersberg Turm which will give you unbelievable views of the German Alps all the way in the distance. There’s not really a huge selection of places to stay here, it’s probably going to be more of a basic hotel kind of place. It also kind of goes without saying that it isn’t exactly the best place to in Munich for nightlife or anything like that - it’s much more about chilling out and taking in the natural beauty. But, if you’re alright with these things, then you should think about basing yourself here.

Schwabing

There aren’t too many places that have a super artsy vibe in Munich, but I’d say the Schwabing neighborhood is probably a good place to start. Like so many places here, it has a really fascinating history of artists, writers, and poets who have all called this neighborhood home over the years. There’s probably less of that these days, but it’s still one of the coolest places to stay in Munich for a tourist who wants to see a different side of the city. Take a walk down the main street of Leopoldstrasse, and you will see a mixture of department stores and independent shops selling things like jewelry, clothes, and antiques. Some other must-visit things in this area are the historical Odeonsplatz and, of course, the absolutely beautiful English Garden - best visited in summer. For accommodation, an authentic Bavarian Airbnb should totally be your first choice.

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