Monday, April 16, 2012

Munich, Easter Weekend 2012

On our way to Belgium, we stopped for a few nights in Munich.  We thought we could do some sightseeing and exploring, and break up the 12 hour drive.  

The first night there, after settling into the room at the hostel/hotel we were staying, we walked towards Marienplatz, an old town center with a beautiful building that has a glockenspiel.  It's currently being used as a city government type building.  On our walk there, we got SPLASHED by a car driving through a puddle...bigtime.  

We found a restaurant and had some pretzels, some schnitzel, some frankfurters, some wild boar, some white asparagus soup (white asparagus is a locally grown veggie) and, of course, some beer!  

Here are the photos from around Marienplatz on the first night.

We woke up Sunday morning (Easter) to snow!!  The kids were surprised to find Easter eggs hidden in our little hotel room.  We had brought the Resurrection eggs to hide and seek Sunday morning.  It was a good start to the day--snow and all.  

Afterwards, we headed to the Deutches Museum, a science and technology museum.  There were lots of neat exhibits about everything from flight to textiles (two favorites in this household!)  It was a good place to spend the morning, which was a bit cold and wet.

Lucy, sweet child that she is, had picked up a colorful brochure at the hostel for an aquarium.  More than once she had that thing opened at the Deutches Museum, as though she was looking at it as a map.  Eventually, after we had walked ourselves all over the museum (and yet still hadn't seen it all), we decided to make our way across town for a few hours at the aquarium.  Then, when Lucy figured out what the brochure she was looking at was all about (a shark museum) she got a little scared!  Crazy kid!

The aquarium was near the Munich Olympic Park, so we took a few pictures outside before we got our tickets to the aquarium.  

Unfortunately, I don't have a single good picture from inside the aquarium, but it was a lot of fun for everyone--we saw sharks, turtles, Dory and Nemo, rays, eels, seahorses...and we got to put our hands in a touch tank.  

After that we headed back towards the Marienplatz, where we eventually ended up at the Ratskeller for dinner.  This restaurant is underneath the Marienplatz.  They were hopping Sunday night, and the host led us through a winding path, through multiple sections of the restaurant (all with slightly different motifs) to an open table.  Definitely felt as though we were in a rat cellar at this point!!  Dinner was fantastic.  Riley's choice of the spaetzle with the fried onions on top was the winner for the night.  

Monday is a national holiday in Germany (Easter Monday), so other than restaurants and tourist attractions, very little was open--not even the souvenir shops!  But, we managed to enjoy our day anyway (and maybe saved a euro or two on souvenirs!)  We started the morning with some hot cocoa and cappuccino while we waited for the first of the two ringings of the glockenspiel at the Marienplatz.  The kids remarked that it "was awesome!"  It was like a "giant cuckoo clock" and their favorite was the jousting knights.  

Afterwards we took a quick walk over to the Hofbrauhaus where we enjoyed a beer in the beer hall of one of Munich's oldest breweries.  Although, beer at 11:00 was a little early for us.  :)

Cory did an excellent job taking this picture of us.

And then it was a stop at Hard Rock Cafe--we knew it was an American influenced restaurant when they brought out kids' drinks in plastic cups with straws--the kids very rarely get anything but regular glass cups over here.  At first it made us really nervous, but now we're used to it...and the kids are too.  
From there we headed back to Olympic Park to get a view from the tower and see the 1972 Olympic stadium.  The view from the tower was fantastic--we even caught a glimpse of the Alps after which the stadium is designed.
This direction out of the tower offered a great view of BMW headquarters/museum/plant/showroom.

The kids saw the bungee trampolines from the tower and insisted we take them there.  It brought out a lot of smiles...

Mary and Cory were able to flip while jumping...Riley decided it was safer just to jump.

We headed back into town on the subway--our main mode of transportation for the weekend--and checked Munich off of our to see list!

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