Get the most out of the lovely Englischer Garten—Munich’s version of Central Park—by exploring the interesting places in and around its periphery. Start at the treasury of the Residenz München, the largest city palace in Germany. Among sparkling diamonds and rubies, you’ll find weird fourteenth-century oddities, like old skulls with their own beaded cozies (They say one is John the Baptist’s). Afterwards, cut through Hofgarten park to Haus Der Kunst’s restaurant, Café Goldene Bar, which reopened this month after renovations. Order a homemade focaccia filled with ham ($5) in the historic bar, decorated with golden maps from 1937. Turn left out of the building until you come to a stone bridge overlooking the Isar River, the most famous river surfing spot in Europe, where wetsuit-clad surfers ride the waves year-round. Make your way to Seehaus, situated beside the tranquil Kleinhesseloher Lake, where you can rent a paddle boat or relax in the outdoor beer garden. If you’re hungry, sample the mixed platter of grilled red mullet, salmon, pikeperch, and prawns ($30) at the sophisticated Seehaus im Englischen Garten restaurant. Continue on the path out of the park until you reach Feilitzschstraße, a cobblestoned street lined with jewelry shops and boutiques. You’ll soon come to the experimental wellness salon Float, where you can relax in a pitch black floating tank filled with body temperature salt water ($58 for 45 min; pair floats for $91). As the sky begins to turn purple, head back to Seehaus to watch the sun set over the lake.
5. Oddball Day
Published on Sep 17, 2010 as a web exclusive.