Bavaria’s culture is diverse and ripe for discovery. The State’s eventful past can be discovered first hand on a walk through the medieval old towns of Neurenberg or Augsburg – here it is the numerous historical buildings and memorials that really stand out. As far as the culture of the present is concerned, visitors can head to the contemporary museums, such as the new Museum of Egyptian Art in Munich, as well as the multitude of festivals that take place across Bavaria.
Unique and worth protecting: UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Some sites in Bavaria boast a particular draw for tourists and have been crowned as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. These include the prehistoric Pile dwellings which date back millennia and can be visited at three sites in Bavaria, as well as the Limes Roman frontier, which runs through what is now Franconia. The picturesque old towns of Bamberg and Regensburg have also been awarded the prestigious title. The latter is the only city in Germany to have a medieval centre that has been fully retained to this day. Magnificent memorials include the baroque Residence in Würzburg and the Wies church in Pfaffenwinkel, which is fitted out in the finest rococo. The latest addition to the honourable group is the Margravial Opera House in Bayreuth. This attraction became the seventh World Heritage Site in Bavaria in 2012.
Opulent memorials: Bavaria’s castles, palaces and museums
The 45 palaces, castles and residences in Bavaria that are open to the public combine masterful architecture with fascinating history. The largest crowd pullers are the magnificent buildings created by King Ludwig II, whose fairytale opulence cannot be rivalled anywhere in the world. They include Linderhof Palace, Herrenchiemsee and the probably most famous castle in the world: Neuschwanstein. There are other sites in Bavaria that are also worth a visit, however: the medieval castle in Nuremberg; the longest castle in Europe, which is found in Burghausen; or jewels such as Schönbusch Palace in Aschaffenburg, the Befreiungshalle or “Hall of Liberation” in Kehlheim, or Prunn Castle in Altmühltal.
Besides the romantic castles and palaces, the Bavarian cultural landscape is also home to twelve large state-run art galleries and cultural museums, including the following highlights, which are known far beyond Bavaria’s borders. The Neue and Alte Pinakothek, the Pinakothek der Moderne, the Bavarian National Museum, the German Museum, the Museum Brandhorst and the Lenbachhaus Gallery, all stand as some of the most important museums in the world.
Gentle strolls and quiet sojourns
The holiday routes across Bavaria invite visitors to discover the region whilst enjoying a gentle stroll. The routes run along historic paths, for example the “Romantic Road”, which runs from Füssen to Würzburg, and incorporates the picturesque town of Rothenburg ob der Tauber and the Fugger town of Augsburg; or the “Via Claudia Augusta Roman Road”, which features magnificent panoramas that are best discovered on foot, just like the Romans did all those years ago.
Meanwhile, the parties and festivals with international levels of charisma that take place throughout the year in Bavaria represent real cultural highlights. The most important festivals include the International Jazz Week in Burghausen, Rock im Park in Nuremberg, the Mozart Festival in Augsburg and the famous Richard Wagner Festspiele in Bayreuth.
Source and photo © Bavaria