After arriving in Munich, I headed towards my hotel fairly close to Olympiapark and the BMW Museum and BMW Welt. I opted not to stay in the middle of the city since I was only going to spend one night in Munich before leaving early in the morning for Rothenburg ob der Tauber. Don’t worry, I came back to Munich towards the end of the trip for three nights (more on that later).
Since I scheduled the BMW Museum Guided Tour before arriving in Germany, I was in no hurry to get over to the museum. I spent the rest of our morning walking around Leopoldstrasse, a main street nearby full of shops and restaurants, and then grabbed my first meal in Germany at a cute Bavarian tavern and beer garden.
After lunch, I headed over to the museum to give myself some time to walk around BMW Welt before the tour. FYI: If you have a car, you can park in their parking garage on site for a small fee. BMW Welt is free of charge and consists of show rooms for BMW, MINI, and Rolls Royce. You can also find a restaurant/bar and gift shop inside this amazing building. If architecture is your thing, you will love the exterior and interior of this very clean and sleek structure. BMW Welt also offers a guided tour for anyone that wants to learn more about car delivery, the background information on the building and architecture, and more.
Across the street from BMW Welt is the BMW Museum. I recommend scheduling a guided tour beforehand if that is something that interests you. They book up pretty fast and when I called a couple of weeks prior, the Premium Tours were already sold out and I could only book the BMW Museum Tour by itself. The Premium Tour consists of the BMW Museum, BMW Welt and some sections of the BMW Plant and is 3 hours long.
The museum tour is 1.5 hours long and takes you through the whole museum which holds about 125 of BMW’s most valuable cars, motorcycles and engines. Admission to the museum (without a tour) is 10 euros and gives you access to all exhibits.
I have to say, I’m glad I decided on the guided tour. My tour guide, Vanessa, did an amazing job. She was very, very informative even when people were throwing random questions at her and she kept everyone’s (at least my) attention the entire time. I learned everything from the history of BMW to the evolution of the engine. I even got a glimpse of the world of MINI in the temporary exhibit… and I kind of want one now!
Did you know that the BMW logo is not an airplane propeller blade but instead the blue and white represents the colors of Bavaria? And to spot a correct logo, the top blue quadrant sits under the B (for blue) and the top white quadrant sits under the W (for white). Pretty interesting, right? And that is just 0.001% of the information I learned on the tour. I don’t want to spoil all the facts and history for you.
The temporary exhibit (until January 2016) is The MINI Story focusing on all things MINI. I’m going to sound really stupid now, but I thought the MINI came out only a few years ago (think The Italian Job movie) but I was wrong, so wrong. The exhibit showcases different models and designs throughout MINI’s history and even some newer concept cars that look really cool. I have never been a huge fan of MINI’s before but after walking through this exhibit, I can say I wouldn’t mind driving a MINI around Houston. Plus they were made for me, all 5’1″ of me!
If you have some extra time while in Munich, I highly recommend heading over to the BMW Museum and BMW Welt for a look around. Go for the guided tour if you can, but even without it, it’s still a great place to spend the afternoon walking around.
Have you been to the BMW Museum and/or BMW Welt? What was your favorite part?
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