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March 2005

Stepping Out

Where To Go for a Walk This Easter

An Easter stroll. The very notion evokes idyllic images of families in their best holiday dress, ambling leisurely on a warm spring afternoon. A long-treasured German tradition, the Easter stroll is most famously chronicled in Goethe’s poem Osterspaziergang, which evokes the retreat of winter and the magical atmosphere on Easter Sunday, as townspeople leave church and embark on their traditional spring walk. Creating your own Easter stroll in Munich is simple, as the city and surrounding environs abound with possibilities.

From Harlaching to Grünwald
Meandering along the Isar and through Munich’s most affluent communities, this route highlights why those who can afford to, live in the south of the city. At a leisurely pace, the walk takes approximately two hours. Should you stop for a meal, you can turn this stroll into a pleasant half-day excursion.
Either drive or take tram 25 or 15 to the Grosshesseloher Bridge tram stop. You’ll need to return from Grünwald on tram 25, so you may want to arrange for tickets before departing. Follow Geiselgasteigstrasse a few hundred meters south to Holzkirchnerstrasse, make a right and follow it until you meet the Hochleite trail. To your left is the Grosshesseloher Bridge, where you’ll find stairs down to the Isar.
From the foot of the Grosshesseloher Bridge head south (left) toward Grünwald. As the path forks, continue taking what appears to be the main path. You’ll walk through the woods along the Isar for over an hour before you reach the Grünwald Bridge. Take the stairs up to the town and look along Zeillerstrasse and Schlossstrasse for places to stop in. On Zeillerstrasse the Café Lindenwirt serves a variety of meals, snacks and impressive-looking tortes in a spacious, contemporary atmosphere. To make your return, follow Schlossstrasse to the 25 tram, which will take you back to Harlaching.

Giesing Garden House Tour
This hour-long walk will take you through the garden-house communities of Untergiesing-Harlaching and loop back along the tree-canopied Harlachingerstrasse. Quiet and green, it is difficult to believe this seldom-visited district is only 10 minutes from the city center.
Start from Wettersteinplatz, which is serviced by trams 15 and 25, as well as the U1. Take Weningstrasse west approximately 100 meters, until it intersects with a paved footpath called Harlachingerstrasse. Head down the bluff to your right toward a small footbridge. Cross the canal and follow Paula-Herzog-Weg until it turns into Birkenleiten. Along Birkenleiten you’ll pass an impressive Orthodox monastery shortly before the street again turns into a footpath and makes a little jog. In order to stay on track take a left on Wolgemutstrasse, at the end of which you’ll find access to the greenbelt.
The path will thread between garden-house fronts and a swift canal. When you reach the footbridge, cross it and follow the path immediately to the right. It will lead you to Siebenbrunn Wirtshaus and Biergarten, one of Munich’s best-kept secrets. Here you’ll find high-quality Bavarian fare in a warm, traditional atmosphere. In summer the 800-seat beer garden is festooned with flowers and hosts live musicians virtually every night. Behind Siebenbrunn you’ll find stairs up to the Harlachingerstrasse. Make a left and enjoy a leisurely 25-minute return north to Wettersteinplatz.

Nymphenburg Palace Gardens
Long a Munich favorite for Sunday promenading, Nymphenburg Palace offers a labyrinth of paths through its expansive grounds. If the weather is good, you likely won’t find yourself alone on Easter Sunday. However, by taking the trails less traveled, you’ll undoubtedly carve out an enjoyable walk.
One simple route that takes about an hour is to head toward the back of the gardens (west) along the main corridor. With the palace behind you, keep to the right of the waterway until you’ve reached a wall that appears to be the garden’s end. Pass through the door and continue. When the path ends, make a right and wind through the open spaces of the palace’s hinterland. After about 15 minutes, you’ll come to an intersection of trails marked with a sign (An der Schlossmauer). Here you can re-enter the palace grounds. The trails wind and split as they head back toward the palace. Choose any route. All of them are beautiful, and most will take you by Lake Pagodenburg. The area around Nymphenburg Palace is known for its dearth of eating establishments, but there are two options just around the corner. As you head out of the gardens and into the palace’s front courtyard, keep to your right. At a break in the palace’s buildings make a right into a narrow street where you’ll find the Schlosswirtschaft zur Schwaige, a somewhat up-market Bavarian establishment (which claims to be older than the palace itself). A few meters further, on Hirschgartenallee, you’ll find the Conditorei Flölzl selling an array of baked goods and sweets. <<<

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