Munich Museum Guide

Bavarian National Museum
Founded by the Bavarian king Maximilian II in 1855 and housed in a picturesque historic building, the Bavarian National Museum has made a name for itself as a primary museum for decorative arts and art history. The museum is widely known for its extensive collection of German sculptures, often crafted in the Middle Ages. Also on display are paintings and artworks made from ivory. A special section is dedicated to Nativity scenes from three centuries, another section has a collection of historic boardgames.
Prinzregentenstrasse, open daily 10 am - 5 pm, closed on Mondays

MUC Deutsches Museum

BMW Museum
The globally known car manufacturer maintains a popular company museum since 1973. It showcases the company’s history by exhibiting engines, motorcycles, planes and of course automobiles along with a view at future automobile concepts. The museum is housed in a circular building next to company headquarters. It welcomes more than a half million annual visitors and ranks among the most-visited Munich attractions.
Am Olympiapark, open Tuesday-Sunday 10 am- 6 pm

Deutsches Museum
The “German museum” is a widely famous museum of science and technology. It is the largest museum of its kind in the world, exhibiting some 28,000 exhibits from all fields of science and research. It was founded in 1903 and is located on an island called “Museumsinsel” in the Isar river. The museum’s objective is to explain complicated scientific facts in an easily understandable fashion. The entire exhibition is sectioned according to themes, allowing visitors to choose among the most interesting topics. Among the most popular parts of the museum are the one leading below ground and dealing with mining, the extensive and recently modernized installations on energy use and storage, or the air and space section, which contains several old aircraft. Other highlights include the walk-in reconstruction of a human cell and one of the first fully functional computers. The Deutsches Museum also has an interactive section for kids, a planetarium, offers guided tours even without advance reservation and has alternating special exhibitions.
Museumsinsel, open daily 9 am - 5 pm

A unique and valuable collection of antique Roman and Greek sculptures, going back in history until 650 BC for some of the exhibits. There are quite a number of artworks here that have become famous through depictions of all kinds, such as the “Barberini Faun”, a life-sized sculpture of the drunk Satyr. Glyptothek has other works in addition to sculptures on display, too. The museum’s collection had been begun by Bavarian King Ludwig I in the 19th century, who also commissioned the construction of the neoclassical building it is located in. The building is a piece of art in itself with 13 halls grouped arranged around a courtyard. It had been severely damaged in World War II and only re-opened in 1972 after extensive reconstruction.
Königsplatz near Central Station, open Tuesday-Sunday 10 am - 5 pm, Wednesdays until 8 pm


The old German word “Marstall” the museum has in its name means “royal stables”. In fact, the museum located on the grounds of the magnificent Nymphenburg Palace and housed in the former stables building is about historic royal carriages. The unique collection is highlighted by daily and special-use carriages, some of which more than 250 years old, the carriage used for the coronation of Emperor Charles VII and the prepared favorite horse of King Ludwig II. Also worth visiting is the collection of Nymphenburg porcelain on one of the upper floors.
Nymphenburg Palace, Entrance 19, open daily 10 am - 4 pm; 9 am - 6 pm April through October

Museum Fünf Kontinente
The “Museum Five Continents”, formerly known as the State Museum of Ethnology, has an interesting mix of exhibits from around the world, mostly artworks and photographs. It is dedicated to showing the global variety of cultures and ethnologies with the intention to emphasize both differences and similarities between them. Religious art, sculptures, crafted pieces and characteristical clothes also belong to the permanent exhibition.
Maximilianstrasse, open Tuesday-Sunday 9:30 am - 5:30 pm

Museum für Mensch und Natur
The “museum of man and nature” is also located in the Nymphenburg Palace building. The exhibition is focused on showcasing earth history and the beginnings of the solar system, but also presents topics such as anatomy and environmental issues. There is a dedicated section explaining natural sciences to children. One highlight of the exhibition is mounted brown bear “JJ1” which was killed in Bavaria in 2006 as the first of his species in Germany in 170 years.
Nymphenburg Palace, open Tuesday-Friday 9 am - 5 pm, Thursdays until 8 pm, weekends and bank holidays 10 am - 6 pm 

Neue Pinakothek, Alte Pinakothek and Pinakothek der Moderne
Making up the core of the so-called “art area” in central Munich, the three museums with the word “Pinakothek” (derived from the Greek word for “gallery”) make up one of the most important museum collections of art in Germany. All three parts of the museum are governed by the state of Bavaria. The names of the three galleries - old, new and modern - refer to the eras of the art on display. The Alte Pinakothek (open daily except Mondays 10 am - 6 pm) was established in 1836  and has its base in a collection that was begun in the 16th century. On display are artworks from Germany, Italy, Spain, France and the Netherlands created between the 13th and 18th centuries, including painting by da Vinci, Rubens, Cranach and others. The building the collection is housed in was commissioned by Bavarian king Ludwig I and was the largest museum in the world when it was opened. Neue Pinakothek (open daily except Tuesdays 10 am - 6 pm), located opposite of its sister facility, continues the collection by showcasing European art of the 18th and 19th centuries, with some works on display stemming from King Ludwig’s personal collection. Many paintings are from French and German artists, but English and international painters are represented as well. The gallery contains works from prominent painters such as Gauguin or Matisse. Finally, modern and contemporary arts are on display at Pinakothek der Moderne (open daily except Mondays 10 am - 6 pm). Its home is a modern, light-flooded building opened in 2002. On display here is art of the 19th and 20th centuries, mostly paintings, but also video installations, graphic designs, architecture examples and other kinds of art, Especially the design section and the architecture section, officially exhibitions of their own, are among primary museums of their kind in Germany.
There are separate admission fees for each of the museums. On Sundays, the rate is reduced for all visitors.

<< Back to page: Bavaria