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Palaces Walking Tour (Self Guided), Munich

Munich city is a conglomerate of palaces that reflects a variety of styles. The enormous palaces have a long history and some of them have been added to and rebuilt over the centuries. While some were built to be royal residences, others were used as hunting lodges, temporary residences or castles. The palaces reflect a wonderful mix of renaissance, baroque and rococo styles of architecture.
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Palaces Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Palaces Walking Tour
Guide Location: Germany » Munich (See other walking tours in Munich)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.7 Km or 1.1 Miles
Author: clare
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Alter Hof
  • Residenz Royal Palace
  • Palais Porcia
  • Palais Holnstein
  • Palais Preysing
  • Prinz Carl Palais
Alter Hof

1) Alter Hof

The Alter Hof was the old residence of the Wittelsbach Royal family that ruled Bavaria for over 700 years. It was the main seat of the Royal Family for over 150 years until 1474 when it was moved to the nearby Residenz Royal Palace.

The Alter Hof is a complex of buildings that date back to the 12th century. They are the oldest medieval structures in the city. It was built as the royal residence of Holy Roman Emperor, Ludwig IV. The building has been extended and reconstructed several times. Major restoration work was carried out in the 19th century and after World War II. A portion houses local government offices today and the Vinorant Alter Hof, a popular restaurant and wine cellar occupies the west wing.

The Burgstock, Zwingerstock, Lorenzistock, Pfisterstock and Brunnenstock are the five wings that make up the Alter Hof complex. Among them, the Burgstock on the west side is the most picturesque. The St. Lorenz Chapel once housed the imperial regalia before being demolished in the 19th century. The inner courtyard is flanked by renaissance arcades. The western facade has a neoclassical style while the north facade has a neo-Gothic ornamentation. Open air concerts and theater performances take place in the courtyard in summer.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Residenz Royal Palace

2) Residenz Royal Palace (must see)

The Residenz Royal Palace (or Munich Residenz) in Munich was the seat of the Bavarian Government and the building where the Dukes, Electors and Kings belonging to the Wittelsbach family who ruled Bavaria lived between 1508 and 1918. Today, it houses a museum with the finest room decorations in Europe.

Maximilian I of Bavaria commissioned the construction of the Residenz Royal Palace. At the time, it was a small castle located in the northeastern corner of Munich. Ludwig I commissioned architect, Leo von Klenze to expand the structure to its present proportions. The building was severely damaged by the World War II bombardments and was completely reconstructed only in the 1980s.

The Residenz today consists of a museum, a concert hall, the Residenz Treasury and the Cuvilliés Theater. The Antiquarium of the palace is Europe’s largest Renaissance hall. The complex has 10 courtyards and 130 richly decorated rooms. The treasury preserves the jewelry and objects made of precious stones and metals belonging to the Wittelsbach family. The world’s most extensive coin collection of King Albert V consisting of 300,000 coins from the ancient world to the early 20th century is also on display. The palace is surrounded by a French-style garden with a fountain and a circular temple with the replica of the statue of Bavaria on top.

Why You Should Visit:
Versailles-like in its gilded opulence and glory, including the amazing courtyards.
This is a huge complex, and even more so now that several rooms and corridors have been renovated and opened to the public after many years.
There are an 'old' and a 'new' area to explore and a very good audio guide included with the ticket price.
The oldest part of the Residenz is the Antiquarium – a magnificent hall with statues from antiquity.

You can buy combined tickets with the Theatre and the Treasury for the complete experience.
The audio guide allows you to access more information about the artwork/rooms/historical event, or skip forward to other parts of the tour if you've lost your interest.
A full tour takes several hours, so you may want to break your stay into separate sections with a trip away from the building for coffee & snacks.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 9am-6pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Palais Porcia

3) Palais Porcia

The Palais Porcia is a large mansion located near the Residenz Royal Palace in Munich. It is the city’s oldest surviving Baroque style building.

The Palais Porcia was built in 1693 by the Fugger family of Counts. They were a wealthy family of bankers and generals from Augsburg in Bavaria. It was designed in Italian Baroque style by the Swiss architect, Enrico Zuccalli and was the first structure in Munich built in the style of Baroque Palaces of Italy. The Palais Porcia was purchased in 1710 by the scion of another Bavarian wealthy family, the Count Torring. The elector Charles Albert bought Palais Porcia in 1731 for his mistress, Countess Topor-Morawitzka. In 1736, he commissioned François de Cuvilles to redesign the interiors in Rococo style. The building gets its name from the husband of Countess Topor-Morawitzka, Prince Porcia. Jean Baptist Métivier integrated a concert hall in the palace in 1819. He was commissioned to do the task by ‘Museum’, a cultural organization that had at the time purchased the building.

From 1932, the Palais Porcia became the headquarters of a prominent Bavaria based German Bank, the Bayerische Vereinsbank. The building was severely damaged by the World War II bombings but was renovated and restored after the war by the bank between 1950 and 1952.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Palais Holnstein

4) Palais Holnstein

The Palais Holnstein is a large historic mansion commissioned by the Elector Charles Albert in 1733. It is regarded as the finest Rococo style building in Munich.

The architect François de Cuvilliés, a Belgian born Bavarian decorative designer who popularized the Rococo style of building design in Bavaria designed the Palais Holnstein between 1733 and 1737. The Elector Charles Albert had the building constructed as the residence for his mistress Baroness Sophie Caroline of Ingleheim and his illegitimate son through her, Count Franz Ludwig von Holnstein. He commissioned Johann Baptist Zimmermann, a well known painter and master stucco plasterer to decorate the interiors.

From 1821, the Palais Holnstein became the Archiepiscopal Palace. The Archbishops of Munich and Freising use the building as their residence. The best known resident of the palace is Cardinal Joseph Aloysius Ratzinger who lived here after he was appointed Archbishop of Munich and Freising by Pope Paul VI between 1977 and 1982. Cardinal Ratzinger is now Pope Benedict XVI. He stayed at the palace again during his visit to Munich in September 2006 after becoming Pope. Visitors are not allowed to view the interiors because of the building’s function as the Archbishop’s residence but the magnificent Rococo facade is available for all to see.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Palais Preysing

5) Palais Preysing

The Palais Preysing was Munich’s first Rococo Style Palace. It served as the residence of the Counts of Preysing and is located opposite the Residenz Royal Palace.

The Palais Preysing was designed and built by architect, Joseph Heffner between 1723 and 1728 for Count Johann Maximilian of Preysing. The Preysing family built another palace nearby called the Palais Neuhaus-Preysing. Locals distinguished between the two residences by calling the older one, the Elder Palais Preysing. The Palace Preysing was almost destroyed by the bombardment during World War II. It was restored in the 1950s and houses high end shops and boutiques today.

The Palais Preysing has a richly decorated stucco facade. The interiors are also embellished with stucco decorations. A notable feature is a magnificent staircase flanked by female statues. Visitors are allowed to view the staircase. The little alley behind the Palais Preysing called the Viscardigasse that connects the Residezplatz with the Theatinerplatz is better known to locals as Drueckebergergasse. Hitler ordered that those who pass the beer hall near the Preysing Place called the Feldherrnhalle should give the Nazi salute in honor of Nazi sympathizers who were killed at the spot during a skirmish with the Bavarian Police called the Beer House Putsch. As a sign of resistance, locals used the Viscardigasse to avoid saluting. Drueckeberger, is a slang word in German for those who do not perform their duty.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Prinz Carl Palais

6) Prinz Carl Palais

The Prinz Carl Palais is a building in neo classical style located in a park north of the Hofgarten in Munich. It is named after one of its owners, Prince Carl, the brother of King Ludwig I who lived here between 1825 and 1875.

The Prinz Carl Palais went by the names Palais Salabert and Palais Royal after previous owners of the building. It was commissioned by King Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria as a residence for a retired priest, Abbe Pierre de Salabert. The Abbe was a former teacher of the King. It was built between 1804 and 1806. The king acquired the building after the death of the Abbe in 1807. Ludwig I who succeeded Maximilian I Joseph as King gave the palace to his brother Carl. It is served as the seat of the diplomatic mission of Austria Hungary after the death of Prince Carl and later as the residence of the Bavarian Prime Ministers. Today it serves as a venue for official receptions by the Bavarian State Governments.

The Neoclassical structure was designed by Karl von Fischer and the interiors were decorated by Jean-Baptiste Métevier and Anton Schwanthaler. The facade of the building is regarded as one of the finest examples of classical proportion with a portico that has a high pediment standing before a series of Ionic pilasters. Visitors get a glimpse of the opulence of German palaces in the 19th century while viewing the Prinz Carl Palais.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Munich, Germany

Create Your Own Walk in Munich

Create Your Own Walk in Munich

Creating your own self-guided walk in Munich is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Top Religious Sites Walking Tour

Top Religious Sites Walking Tour

Religion has been an important part of Munich's life for a long time and this is reflected in the city's numerous churches, chapels and cathedrals. During the 18th and the 19th century, many of them were reconstructed into Baroque and Rococo styles to represent the wealth and greatness of the city. This self guided tour takes you to the magnificent religious edifices of Munich.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 Miles
Shopping Tour

Shopping Tour

Munich city is a shopper’s delight with departmental stores, large international brands and local boutique shops jostling for space. The main shopping areas are the Neuhauserstrasse and Kaufingerstrasse. The best part about shopping in the city is the bargains that you can get. German style competition ensures that the prices are reasonable. Pick up your favorites from traditional garments, beer...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.0 Km or 1.2 Miles
Kreuzviertel Walking Tour

Kreuzviertel Walking Tour

Kreuzviertel is one of the four quarters of Munich Alstadt. Historically here was located the centre of the clergy as there was a particularly high number of monasteries. Take this tour to admire the beautiful palaces and churches located in this area, and explore interesting shopping spots and museums.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.3 Km or 0.8 Miles
Art District Museums & Galleries

Art District Museums & Galleries

Kunstareal is known as the art district of the city. This small district is home to some of the best museums and galleries in the world. Each of these museums portrays art forms from distinctly different eras. Located just north of the main train station, the artistic treasures here rivals the best in the world.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles
Third Reich Munich Walking Tour

Third Reich Munich Walking Tour

It was in Munich that Hitler had made his first attempts at grabbing power. The walking tour explores the places and events that are related to the Nazi movement. It traces the events from the first mass meetings at the Hofbräuhaus to the failed attempt to seize power at the Felderrnhalle.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.3 Km or 2.1 Miles
Munich Introduction Walk

Munich Introduction Walk

Bavarian capital Munich boasts an eclectic mix of historic and modern architecture owing to the careful reconstruction of centuries-old buildings and new landmarks built after World War II. In the Altstadt (Old Town), central Marienplatz square carries landmarks, such as Neo-Gothic Neues Rathaus (town hall). To find these and other historic attractions of Munich, follow this orientation walk.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 Km or 1.6 Miles

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