As the official travel partner of the UEFA Champions League, we’ve journeyed to the homes of the clubs that are through to the final 16 to give you the lowdown on the hotspots for your next away trip. In this article we head to Munich, home of FC Bayern München.
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With two national teams and over 70 trophies, Munich is one of Europe’s most successful soccer cities. The passion fans have for local teams FC Bayern München and TSV 1860 Munich is impossible to miss—throngs of supporters hit the streets in either bright red or baby blue to represent their favorite team on game days.
Visit historic Marienplatz, nibble on fresh pretzels, and enjoy a pint at the local beer garden while rubbing elbows with fellow fans and enjoying the “gemütlichkeit” (friendliness) that Bavarians take so much pride in!
From stadium tours to sports bars, here are some of the best things for soccer fans to see and do in Munich.
Meet the teams: FC Bayern München and TSV 1860 Munich
FC Bayern München
FC Bayern München is undoubtedly the most successful club in Germany, and one of the most well-known soccer teams in the world. Fans love to point out that the team has won Germany’s top soccer competition, the Bundesliga, a total of 28 times (more than any other team in the competition’s history), including the last six years in a row.
Of course, their success doesn’t stop there: the team also have five UEFA Champions League titles, one UEFA Supercup, and one FIFA Club World Cup to their name. With so many incredible accolades, few would doubt the talent of former players like Franz Beckenbauer, Sepp Maier, or current players like James Rodriguez, Robert Lewandowski, and Joshua Kimmich.
TSV 1860 Munich
Munich’s oldest team, TSV 1860 Munich (founded, as their name suggests, in 1860), are nicknamed “The Lions” in reference to the lion on the club’s crest. Though largely in the shadows of their local rivals, TSV 1860 Munich has had some noteworthy success, including one German Championship and two DFB German Cups.
Where once the two teams shared the iconic Fußball Arena München stadium in the north of Munich, TSV 1860 Munich now play their games at Grünwalder Stadion.
Visiting Munich’s soccer stadium: Fußball Arena München
Fußball Arena München is considered one of the most impressive and modern stadiums in Europe. It opened its doors in 2005, just in time to stage games at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, and seats 75,000 fans for international games. The arena has a round shape with inflatable exterior panels that have earned it the nickname “the inflatable boat”. These are made up of 300,000 LED lights that can shine in 16 million different colors, though they’re usually red for FC Bayern Munich games. Some say that the stadium can even be seen from the Austrian Alps on clear nights!
Tours of Fußball Arena München run every day of the week at regular intervals, and visitors can book a combi-tour that includes a guided stadium tour and a visit to FC Bayern München’s club museum. Spend approximately one hour exploring the stands, sponsor lounge, and press club, before walking in the players’ footsteps in the changing rooms and tunnel. On game days, ticket holders can book an exclusive tour that includes a visit to the Mixed Zone, where the media interviews players, before making your way to the pitch just hours before the team arrives!
Getting to Allianz Arena: Munich has an excellent public transport system. You can reach the arena directly from Marienplatz by taking the U6 light rail line in the direction of Garching-Forschungszentrum to Fröttmaning.
FUN FACT: The stadium is situated on Werner-Heisenberg-Allee, named after a German atomic physicist and 1932 winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics.
Where to eat and what to do before a game
Take in the buzzing atmosphere ahead of the game in Munich’s central square, Marienplatz. This lively and historic area is the heart of the city and there’s no shortage of things to see and do, or places to stay in Munich.
Beer halls and gardens
Enjoy a traditional German meal in the oldest and most famous beer hall, Hofbräuhaus. With ornately painted ceilings, cozy wooden tables, and waitresses dressed in dirndls, you’ll have no doubt you’re in the Bavarian capital! If the weather is nice, consider grabbing a pint and some oven-fresh Schweinebraten (roast pork) at Munich’s outdoor Viktualienmarkt beer garden, a beer garden surrounded by market stalls that sell food and souvenirs.
Hofbräuhaus, Platzl 9, 80331 München, Germany
Viktualienmarkt Biergarten, Viktualienmarkt 6, 80331 München, Germany
Exploring the area like a local
Once you’ve eaten, have a walk around and take in the impressive sights, such as the elaborate New Town Hall or the 100-year-old Glockenspiel. Wander the streets and enjoy the excitement of game day. You might even hear some traditional songs, like “FC Bayern Number One Forever”, in the air. Yep, no one can deny that they’re proud of their home team!
Getting to Marienplatz: If you want to rent a car in Munich, Marienplatz is a 30-minute drive from Munich International Airport. Alternatively, you can take the S-Bahn Metro from the airport to Munich Marienplatz Station.
Partying in Munich after the game
From the game, the U6 takes you straight into the city center, where you can find plenty of beer gardens, halls, and restaurants. If you’re in Munich during Oktoberfest (usually the last two weeks of September), make the rounds at the brewery tents (particularly the Paulaner tent) and you just might run into your favorite FC Bayern München player—win or lose, team members almost always make an appearance dressed in traditional Bavarian outfits, and are even known to partake in a glass of beer or two to celebrate the biggest folk festival in the world!
Celebrating after the game: Munich’s sports bars
Toast your team with visiting and local fans alike at one of Munich’s best sports bars back in the city center. Considered one of the most famous soccer bars in Germany, Stadion an der Schleißheimerstraße is a popular option, with table service where you can order currywurst, nachos, burgers, or schnitzel for an after-game meal.
Another option is Augustiner-Keller, one of Munich’s oldest beer gardens with over 5,000 seats. If you’re wearing a team shirt, you’re sure to spark conversation with fellow fans as you’re served pints tapped straight from wooden barrels.
Stadion an der Schleißheimerstraße, Schleißheimer Str. 82, 80797 Munich
You can fly direct to Munich from some U.S. cities—it’s about eight and a half hours from Chicago and eleven hours from Dallas. You can also fly via several cities in Europe and beyond, such as Dublin, Amsterdam, and Istanbul.
From luxury hotels in Munich and shopping avenues to historic cobbled alleys and cozy beer halls, the Bavarian capital really has something for everyone. Are you ready to head to Munich to watch FC Bayern München?