I love strolling through a beautiful park in Europe. So the English Garden in Munich was my absolute must-do activity while in town for the weekend. What I love about a park stroll is the peace and quiet you find even though you may be smack dab in the middle of a busy city and the fresh air, greenery, and exercise is just plain good for the soul.
After I walked around the Viktualien Market in the morning and had lunch, I was able to walk from the market to the start of the English Garden, or what I thought was the English Garden. It wasn’t clear on my map but I actually arrived to the Hofgarten first, or the Court Garden. While the Italian Renaissance style grounds were beautiful with the perfectly groomed flowers all in a row and the guitar player strumming songs in the pavilion, I knew the area was too small to be the English Garden.
According to my research the English Garden is one of the largest parks in Europe and is even bigger than Central Park in New York. I was looking for something more massive. It took me walking around in circles for a half hour to finally find the path that led to the English Garden which starts in the city center and runs to the north eastern part of Munich.
Since the English Garden is so huge, it took me a couple hours to walk just half of it. If I had brought the proper shoes I probably would have walked the whole thing. There are so many paths within the park for running, jogging, biking, or a leisurely walk like I was doing along with so many other people out and about. From the paths to the rivers to the large open spaces, I couldn’t believe how clean and pristine everything was and it was all so quiet.
There is more to do in the park than just get a workout with multiple beer gardens including the above one at the Chinese Pagoda. There is also a Japanese Tea Garden and surfer dudes can catch some waves. Yes, that’s right. There are fake waves set up where people can watch some surfers ride. I found out about the waves while collecting trip ideas using Afar.com’s website (I highly recommend this because you can gather recommendations from other travelers about things to eat, see, and do in any city around the world – I use their guides for all of my trips now). I was bummed though that I couldn’t find the area during my walk or on any of the maps around the park.
Anyways, after all the walking I did I treated myself to a dessert at Cafe Luitpold, another gem I found on Afar’s site. Whether I’m traveling abroad or staying close to home, I always make it a point to find the best desserts. My sweet tooth can’t resist!
Instead of walking all the way back to the city center, I took the metro back to Odeonsplatz station which is right down the street from the cafe. The place was packed for the afternoon but luckily I was able to snag a seat at the bar. I ordered a latte and the cafe’s signature Luitpoldtorte which is their version of Vienna’s famous sachertorte. The torte consisted of sponge cake, buttercream, marzipan, and a chocolate layer on top and it was perfection combined with my coffee. There is nothing I love more than dessert and coffee, especially after a day of walking.
I made sure to browse the other desserts in the display windows before I left and they were all so enticing and gorgeous. I noticed there were a lot of sweets boxed or packaged that would make great gifts for friends and family back home and the cafe also offers actual food too if you need to balance out the sugar. Cafe Luitpold is definitely the place to go to taste some of the best sweets Munich has to offer and I would recommend the place to anyone.
What’s your favorite park to visit? Or do you know of any dessert places I should try? Leave a comment because I’d love to know.