Munich was not really part of our plans, a quick stop just outside of Munich was, but not staying there. Oddly, our quick day and night in Munich turned out to be one of our favorite parts of our trip! Out of all of the things on our list of wants to do while we were in Germany, visiting one of the Concentration Camps was number one on my list. It has been on my bucket list to stand there and take in all of it as long as I can remember. So, after a series of unfortunate events (Toiny’s broken leg, traffic, weather, stupid trains….) ended up changing our plans on the day we were supposed to go to Dachau, we had to find a way to get back to Munich so I could go there.
After some effort, we found a hotel, made a list of a few other things to do while we were there, and hopped on a train. After dropping our bags at the hotel, we went straight to Dachau. I can’t really describe how that felt. I have read so many stories of those captured during the Holocaust, I had pictures in my head of what it must have looked like, been like. I had imagined what the rooms were like, the beds, the everything – but standing there, it was right there in front of me. That’s what made it all real. These weren’t stories that I had read, these were actual people who were actually in these rooms that were much smaller than I thought. In these beds that were much smaller than I thought. It was very powerful to walk around and feel the history beneath my feet.
After our experience at Dachau, we went on to explore the rest of Munich. Like I mentioned, this wasn’t originally on our itinerary and if we hadn’t added it in last minute, we would have missed out on drinking a beer the size of our heads at the Hofbräuhaus! This brewery was founded in the 1500’s! The inside is gorgeous and so many historical figures have sat in this place enjoying a beer just like we did! The best part, while we were enjoying our beer, a man joined us, his name was Harry and he was a local. He shared stories with us, wanted to hear all about Minnesota and ‘prost’ed us and everyone around. He had a light about him and it was so fun to get to hear his stories. He directed us to hurry to St. Peter’s Church before they closed to climb the stairs for the view. So we did. It was 299 steps to the top – but so worth the views!
The last part of Munich was seeing the Rathaus-Glockenspiel (that beautiful building pictured above). It actually surprised us as we came around the corner, so much larger and more intricate than I ever imagined. We wandered the inside and took in the stained glass and beautiful architecture. The buildings we saw throughout our trip will amaze me forever. After a delicious dinner, we took in one last view of the Glockenspiel and headed back to our hotel, where we slept in the most odd ‘queen’ room I have ever been in! The next morning we woke up and hopped on the train to Paris….