The feast has developed into the world’s largest beer-drinking party. Held on the last two weeks in September , it attracts around 6 million visitors each year. Huge tents are put up by Bavarian breweries where beer is served and traditional Bavarian bands play. There are also fun parks and stalls selling German food.
The first Oktoberfest was held on October 12, 1810 as a celebration of the marriage between Prince Ludwig of Bavaria and Princess Therese of Sachsen-Hildburghausen. All citizens of Munich were invited.
Marienplatz is the heart of the city, surrounded by impressive historic buildings. The most imposing is the Neo-Gothic Town Hall dating from the 19th century. The tower features the famous Glockenspiel with 43 bells that chime at 11:00 am, 12:00 am, 5:00 pm and 9:00 pm, accompanied by figures dancing a medieval dance and depicting historical scenes from Munich's past.
In the middle of the square stands Mariensäule – a statue of the Virgin Mary after which the square was named. Other points of interest on the square include the Frauenkirche – Munich 15th century cathedral and the Toy Museum in the Old Town Hall.
The square was once a vibrant market selling salt and grain, today it is a favourite tourist spot.
Located about 8 km from the city center the palace was a summer residence of the Wittelsbachs, the Munich aristocracy. It was built from 1664 onwards in several phases. Altered several times according to the taste and wishes of its different owners, it is now the biggest Baroque castle in Germany.
The interior has interesting frescoes in the main hall. The famous 'Schönheitengalerie' or Gallery of the Beauties should not be missed. It contains 36 provocative portraits commissioned by Ludwig I, depicting the most beautiful women of his time.
The park surrounding the palace is a pleasant place to visit, especially in summer. It is a fusion of French and English landscaping techniques. There are pavilions, a porcelain museum, a collection of Ludwig’s fancy coaches, and modern Europe’s first swimming pool.