A definitive guide to find accommodation, as told by locals
Last updated: August 2017
How to rent a place in Munich
Amongst all the German cities, Munich is considered the city where it’s nearly impossible to find a room or an apartment. If you’re an international student you run the risk of not finding a place on time if you don’t start your search early. But, there’s no need to freak out, because if there is a problem, there will always be a solution as well. We from Housing Anywhere are trying to offer affordable and suitable rooms combined with a secure service in order to make the process of finding an accommodation as convenient as possible. You’re welcome to check out our housing platform or read our tips on how to find a suitable place to stay.
Hello there! My name is Daniel and here I would like to introduce you to Munich, an amazing place in Germany. I'm German, but I have lived in Australia and New Zealand. I always loved traveling and meeting new cultures so I know how is it to move abroad. That's why I wrote these articles where you can read the best advice on where to live and how to spend your time in Munich in order to have a great time! Simply embrace the opportunity and enjoy what this great city can offer.
Living in Munich and its neighbourhoods
Vivid, diverse and full of surprises
Munich is one of the biggest cities in Germany, but it is seen as the beer capital of the world and is home to the Oktoberfest, a traditional beer festival which attracts millions of people each year. Basically everyone wears traditional clothing and enjoys spending time together while having a beer. With its well-known universities, a lot of historical museums, the famous English garden, it has a lot more to offer than just beer. The Marienplatz, a place right in the middle of Munich, is where the so-called Bavarians, the people who live in Munich, enjoy a night-out, go shopping or even celebrate the success of their world-famous soccer club FC Bayern München. It is a vivid city with great opportunities, many things to discover and open-minded people to meet. To put it this way, it is simply a perfect city for students.
It cannot get any easier
In case you have ever encountered the problem of not being sure if you have enough time to go out at night or if you should go on weekend trips or not; Munich is the best solution. It has the S-Bahn, the metro, the tram, buses and the “Mittlerer Ring”, which is a road ring that covers the whole city. Meaning that the traffic on the streets is arranged in a pretty intelligent way that avoids traffic jams, so not being on time will not be a problem anymore. The “Semesterticket”, which can be purchased at all universities, is a ticket that allows you to use every type of public transport throughout the city. Top-ups are not needed, you simply pay a one-time fee to the university; it is valid for one semester which equals 6 months. Public transport is mostly running 24/7 and all the parts of the city are well-connected. You can also ride your bike, which is even more convenient, since everything is reachable by bike. Moreover, Munich has a nearby airport that allows you to quickly fly to any destination in Europe within a short period of time. In addition to that, all the nearby lakes make the city even more attractive, like the Chiemsee or Lake Starnberg, which are perfect for a one-day trip. But that is not all: even mountains, where you can go skiing, are reachable within 1 hour by train.
Quality of life
Munich is among the top 5 cities in the world with the highest living standard
Munich is a quite vibrant and modern city. It is big but not overwhelming, it is rather well-structured. Meaning that, once you arrive, it will not take that much time to get familiar with everything. Special features of Munich, that enhance living standards and everyday life, are its many gardens, parks, museums and recreational areas. The city’s main focus lies on making life as enjoyable and convenient as possible. It is also home to well-accredited universities like the TU Munich or LMU Munich. The latter, for instance, is located right next to the English garden, which provides students and other people a large-scaled and beautiful park for all kinds of activities like having a barbeque, going for a walk or playing soccer. There is also the Isar, a river which goes all the way through the city, where you can go swimming, ride a bike or even enjoy a meal or a drink at one of the many restaurants or bars close to it. If you move to Germany, however, you are required to take out healthcare insurance, which is very affordable since you can even get student discounts.
Things to do
Munich - tick it off your bucket list!
The most important things you should do, when going to Munich is going to one of the city’s several beer gardens, going for a swim in the Isar, a freezing cold river, having a picnic in the English garden and visiting the “Olympiapark”, a park where you can visit the old stadium of Munich’s world famous soccer club. Actually, the bucket list is endless - there are so many places worth visiting. However, what I can highly recommend is taking any kind of public transport to go to the city center and then just go for a walk without checking the directions all the time. There’s hidden beauty behind every corner. Small side streets are sometimes reveal even more secrets than the main sights where the crowd just gathers around all the time. I say that because Munich has a special atmosphere, one that fascinates you, and I feel certain that it will not take up much time until you reach the point of calling Munich your home. Just give it a shot and see it yourself!
Centrum, Altstadt & Lehel
Munich’s most visited area
Munich’s city center is truly beautiful. There are many attractions, including the famous Marienplatz, which is Munich’s heart. From there, several shopping streets (either small, cheap or luxury shops) are leading to, for instance, the Karlsplatz, the Sendlinger gate or to the “Deutsches Museum”, which is the world’s largest museum of science and technology. And, believe me, even if you do not like science, going there is so much fun, since you can see live experiments. Worth visiting is also the “Hofbräuhaus”, a huge beer hall, where you should definitely enjoy a beer at some point. Other than that, you will also find the “Viktualienmarkt”, a daily food market, where you can buy vegetables, meat and gourmet, while bargaining for the price. However, this area has the highest rental prices, meaning that it could strain your budget too much.
Diverse and vibrant
Located close to the centre, Maxvorstadt can be considered as one of the most interesting boroughs in Munich, since it combines many of the city's best features. For instance, the TU Munich and the LMU Munich, which are both located in Maxvorstadt, make this neighbourhood an active hub and culturally diverse. Even better, you can find the Munich museums quarter there, which includes the “Pinakothek der Moderne”, a modern art museum that consists of two parts, the “Neue Pinakothek”, as well as the “Alte Pinakothek”. Due to its huge amount of students and tourists, who are making this district so vibrant, you can find many bars, restaurants, art galleries as well as the English garden, where you can easily enjoy the simple pleasures of life. And in terms of living expenses, rental prices are kind of high, however, I would recommend anyone to live in this area. I have no doubt that you would like it.
One of Munich’s busiest areas
Overall Sendling feels quite hectic and has sprawling residential areas as well as historic churches and the “Großmarkthalle”, one of the biggest trading places for flowers and vegetables in Europe. If you are considering stopping by for some fresh products you will be disappointed though: it is only open to commercial enterprises, not private citizens.
To get away from the daily hustle, locals like to enjoy a nice afternoon at the “Flaucher”, a green oasis in the city that invites residents to have a barbecue next to the Isar. The main tourist attractions of Sendling are the historical churches, like the old and new St. Margaret. Living close to nature and close to the city center of Germany’s third biggest city has its cost: rental prices are slightly above average.
Perfect for relaxing
Schwabing is located north of the city center. Its main attraction is the “Englischer Garten” (“English Garden”), one of Europe’s largest urban public parks. The whole park spans an area of 3.7 km², making it larger than Central Park in New York. Its northern part offers a nice break from the busy, stressful life of the city, while the southern part is usually populated by many tourists and locals enjoying the sun on one of the many lawns. The park offers a whole plethora of activities: from going for a surf on the “Eisbachwelle” (yes, you heard it right: actual wave surfing in the heart of Munich) to enjoying a nice cold beer in one of the beer gardens while listening to some traditional bavarian brass band live music.
But there are other benefits to life in Schwabing: while the neighbourhood is slowly losing its former reputation as the bohemian, hip part of town you can still find a lot of bars to enjoy student life. Rental prices are about average for Munich, which makes this borough one of the most attractive ones for students.
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