Western Districts, Munich
In the southwest of Munich, 1.5km/1 mile from the Stachus, lies the Theresienwiese (popularly known simply as the Wiesn), where the Oktoberfest, Munich's great annual festival is held. On the west side of the park a gigantic figure of "Bavaria" (by Schwanthanthaler, 1850) stands 30m/100ft high including the base (fine views). Beyond it is the Ruhmeshalle (Hall of Fame; by Klenze, 1843-53).
Westpark is a modern garden laid out for the fourth International Garden Show. Flowers, lawns, ponds, and playgrounds make this a very popular park.
The colossal 18m/60ft-high statue of Bavaria in Munich, a female figure in the old German style, was modeled by the Munich artist Ludwig Schwanthaler and cast in bronze by Ferdinand von Miller in 1844-50. Weighing 792kg/1560cwt it is the largest bronze figure ever cast.Bavaria stands clad in a long garment and a bearskin, her raised left hand holding a garland of oak leaves, her right hand a sword. Beside her sits a lion, the heraldic animal of Bavaria.A flight of 126 steps leads up inside the statue to the head, from which there is an extensive view over the city.
St Matthew's Church
Matthäuskirche (St Matthew's Church), a Protestant Evangelical cathedral, stands in a dominant position in Sendlinger-Tor-Platz in Munich. Built in 1953-55 to the design of G. Gsaenger, it is an unconventional structure on a curving plan, with a curved roof which has become irreverently known as "God's bath-tub". The plain square tower housing the sacristy and parish office is in sharp contrast to the church itself.The present Matthäuskirche replaces an earlier Neo-Classical building demolished in 1938 when construction of the U-Bahn was expected to begin.The interior, with its six tall columns supporting the roof, is of impressive effect. On the wall of the chancel is a marble mosaic by A. Gsaenger, symbolizing - in a fashion characteristic of post-war religious art - sorrow, guilt and death. The huge Crucifix over the altar is by R. Schwarzkopf.As one of the first modern churches to be built in Munich, Matthäuskirche served as a model, pointing the way forward for other new churches.
Church of the Holy Cross
This Late Gothic parish and pilgrimage church, built in the 15th C., was remodeled in Baroque style in the 17th and 18th C. (stucco-work of 1626 in nave, of 1749 in choir). The tower was given an octagonal superstructure in 1626 and a new onion dome in 1749. The church contains a valuable carved Crucifix (Romanesque, ca. 1180) from Seeon Monastery in the Chiemgau. The statues of Christ and the Mater Dolorosa on the pilasters along the wall were the work of A. Fassbinder (1708). Note also the magnificent tabernacle dating from about 1700.
This hunting lodge in the Fürstenried district was built by Joseph Effner in 1715-17 for the Elector Max Emanuel; from 1886 to 1916 it was the residence of King Otto of Bavaria, who was insane. Since 1925 it has been a house of retreat belonging to the archbishopric of Munich with Freising.Schloss Fürstenreid is strictly symmetrical in plan, comprising three cube-shaped blocks linked by galleries. The avenue of lime-trees in front of the castle is directly aligned with the towers of the Frauenkirche which can be seen in the distance.
Construction of the Sendlinger Tor, at the end of Sendlinger Platz, took place in the 14th C., which also saw the building of the Karlstor and the Isartor. Only the two flanking towers of the original gate survive.The fountain in the square in front of the gate was replaced in 1972.The west side of Sendlinger Torplatz is dominated by Matthäuskirche.
Map of Munich Attractions