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Boutique Projekt 3

This Schwabing shop carries a cool mix of trendy fashion and is fun to browse.

munich christmas market at night with snow

Christmas Markets

Munich has some of Germany’s most beautiful and memorable Christmas markets, which generally go up in late November and stay up until December 23. The three most memorable ones are:

  • Residenz: Set in the courtyard of the Residenz, this traditional market has live music performances and an old-world ambience. The stands offer lovely handcrafted wares. Entrance: Odeonsplatz.
  • Medieval: With its stands that mimic medieval times and actors and salespeople in olden fashion, this market is a fabulous option with children. Also, the food stands here, with delicious homemade fare, are unmatched. Entrance: Wittelsbacherplatz.
  • Chinesischer Turm: This market has a lovely setting in the Englischer Garten.
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Merchandise at Dallmayr, Munich, Germany


You have to feel for the white-gloved staff of this luxe delicatessen and Munich institution. Thanks to the store’s over-the-top, deliciously beautiful displays of everything from coffee to caviar, the multi-room shop has become a tourist sight, and hordes shuffle through the narrow displays daily (reportedly Dallmayr gets more visitors than Neuschwanstein Castle annually). It’s still worth having a look and perhaps compiling a picnic to take into the Englischer Garten. The cheese and charcuterie counters alone are a sight to behold. Many of the treats, including the handcrafted chocolates, are made on the premises.

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Fünf Hoefe

Five courtyards were joined together by Swiss design duo Herzog & de Meuron to create Munich’s most famous shopping enclave. The stores are mostly well-known labels (Armani, MaxMara, Massimo Dutti), but there are some local gems (Magazin, Meisterwerk Chocolaterie) scattered throughout. After a shopping spree, fight for a seat at hot spot Schumann’s Tagesbar (Maffaistr. 6).

Interior View -  Hugendubel, Munich, Germany


Hugendubel is one of two major book retailers in Germany and remains family owned (it’s headed today by the founder’s two energetic great-grandchildren). To my parent’s generation it’s known as the visionary storefront where you could take your kids, grab a pile of books, pick a corner and read to them (without buying), which back in the 1970s was very forward-thinking Barnes & Nobel of the Munich flagship. It’s still a wonderful place to browse (there’s a large section on Munich, including English language books), and the constant crowds give hope that print publishing is not yet dead.

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Loden Frey

This Munich institution, founded in 1842, is where locals and visitors go for high-quality fashion made with loden, the sturdy wool that’s turned into the typical Bavarian coats, jackets, and hats. They also carry beautifully crafted lederhosen and embroidered dirndls. Travelers with kids will also love the fact that the top-floor children's' department is connected to the next floor via a long wooden slide, at the bottom of which sits a small espresso bar for tired parents.

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Interior View  -  Manufactum, Munich, Germany


Design and cooking fans should not miss Manufactuum, one of the world’s best shops for kitchen and home decor, including a long line-up of objects created by young and up-and-coming designers. The bakery Brot & Butter in the front of the shop makes some of Munich’s best bread and is a good spot for a cappuccino.

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Merchandise at Nia, Munich, Germany


This Schwabing shop sells lovely fashion, accessories and gift items; many of the labels are French and Scandinavian, making Nia a wonderful spot for unique finds.

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Nymphenburg Store

The exquisite porcelain produced at the Nymphenburg Manufactory is on sale at this centrally located boutique. Look for the nature-inspired creations designed by American jeweler Ted Muehling who collaborated with Nymphenburg in 1999, and whose delicate vases, bowls and plates remain extraordinary in their beauty and craftsmanship.

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Interior View - Obacht, Munich, Germany


Tucked into a side street close to the Hofbäuhaus and the Mandarin Oriental hotel, this is a cute shop for classic Munich gifts with a designer twist. The selection includes everything from baby onesies with Bavarian expressions and blue-and-white checkered tea towels to cozy felt slippers perfect for an Alpine hut and whimsical beer steins. The boutique is airy, light and modern – a far cry from the other touristy boutiques crowded in this area. It's a great one-stop shop for gifts and mementos that pack well.

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Servus Heimat

This hipster store carries kitschy-cool Bavaria mementos, from Lederhosen-wearing rubber duckies to fuchsia cuckoo clocks. The entrance to the shop is on Radlsteg.

Shops at Viktualienmarkt , Munich, Germany


Munich’s most beautiful open-air market reminds of Vienna’s Naschmarkt or Paris’ Rue Mouffetard, but it has arguably an even prettier setting on a historic piazza surrounded by fountains and Art Nouveau houses. You can get everything from fresh-baked bread to massive floral bouquets, and there’s also an assortment of small restaurants sprinkled throughout that offer tasty nibbles. If the weather is not nice enough for lengthy outdoor exploration, head to the nearby Schrannenhalle, a culinary wonderland that reminds of New York’s Eataly.

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