Munich

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Munich

Munich on the Map

GPS N48.139126°,E11.580186°
Munich is the third largest city in Germany. It is the capital of Bavaria (one of the Federal States in Germany). The city is located in the south of Germany, on the River Isar north of the Bavarian Alps, at an altitude of about 520m. The area of the city is 310,43 square kilometres.

Present Munich was founded in 1158 by the Welf Henry the Lion, Duke of Saxony and Bavaria, next to a settlement of Benedictine monks, called Munichen. However the city status was officially granted in 1175, almost two decades later. Since 1506 (the unification of Bavaria) Munich has been its capital and in 1806, it became the capital of the new Kingdom of Bavaria. After World War I, the city was at the center of much political unrest. It became a Nazi stronghold when they took power in Germany in 1933. The city was very heavily damaged by allied bombing during World War II. After American occupation in 1945, Munich was completely rebuilt. In 1972 Munich was the site of the Summer Olympics, during which Israeli athletes were assassinated by Palestinian terrorists (Munich massacre).

There are more than 1 300 000 inhabitants living in present Munich. The population density is 4205 inhabitants per square kilometre. Munich is divided into 25 districts (Bezirke). Being the capital of Bavaria, Munich is an important political center in Germany and the seat of the Bavarian Landtag (the state parliament), the Staatskanzlei (the state chancellery) and of all state departments. There are also several national and international authorities located in Munich, for example Bundesfinanzhof (the highest German tax court) and the European Patent Office.

The city is widely visited by tourists. To the most famous sights belong the centre of the city – Marienplatz, with Marien Column in the middle and Old and New Town Hall with Rathaus-Glockenspiel (an ornate clock with almost life-sized moving figures showing scenes from a medieval jousting tournament and a performance of the famous "Schäfflertanz" – roughly translated "Barrel-makers' dance"); the Peterskirche (St. Peter’s church) or Frauenkirche (Cathedral of Our Lady) or Nationaltheater (National theatre). One can find also a lot of museum and art galleries here (e.g. Deutches Museum or Bavarial National Museum). There are also two worldwide known sport complexes – The Olympic Park and football stadium – Allianz Arena.

Probably the most famous Munich attraction is Oktoberfest – a two-week-long fair, which offers a wide selection of rollercoasters and several large beer tents ("Bierzelte"). Despite its name, most of Oktoberfest occurs in September. It always finishes on the first Sunday in October unless the German national holiday on 3 October ("Tag der deutschen Einheit" - Day of German Unity) is a Monday or Tuesday - then the Oktoberfest still opens for these days.

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