Anyone who comes to Munich learns quickly: sport has a firm place in the lives of the people of this city. Cycling to work is a matter of course for many, as is the evening jogging in the Isar floodplains or the yoga class in the park. Munich has a variety of inviting sports activities that you can join in easily at any time.
Sport is about so much more than health and fitness. Sport brings people together. And just as Munich loves to host major sporting events, the locals enjoy meeting new people through exercise, such as bouldering, golf, dancing in the Hofgartentempel and the funny “Wiesn-Wadl” workout.
Activities like yoga and qi gong are types of “slow sport”, a form of strength training using your own body weight. Slow sport isn’t about bulking up in the short term; it’s about sustainably improving your body strength.
"Fit im Park": If you’d like to do some slow sport in Munich, you won’t have to sign up at a gym or studio. You can participate in various events without registering. Every year until the end of September, the City of Munich organises lots of great outdoor events as part of its “Fit im Park” programme, including activities like qi gong, gymnastics, Pilates and yoga. The courses are held in different parks depending on the day of the week (Luitpoldpark, Westpark, Riemer Park or Ostpark). It’s free to get involved and you don’t need to sign up. The only thing you need is your own towel or exercise mat.
Dates and further information: www.muenchen.de
Long Night of Yoga: The “LANGENACHTDESYOOOGA” is held every year in Munich. It’s organised by Yoga für alle e.V. You can do yoga until late at night – all you need is a cheap yoga band (June 20, 2020).
Dates and further information: www.yoganacht.de
Indoor sports: If you’d rather exercise indoors, you’ll find a wide range of suitable activities in the city – you can enjoy qi gong, Pilates and yoga for around 3 Euro / hour. The activities are even free for people under the age of 21.
Dates and further information: www.muenchenticket.de
Pilates and charity work: Our slow sport professionals hold outdoor Pilates classes and lots more for a good cause. One of the sponsored charities is KlinikClowns – laughing is good for you!
Dates and further information: www.anjaflessa.de
Pop-up yoga in Munich: Gina and Terry always post their latest yoga tricks on their Facebook page and in a newsletter. They’ve done it all: yoga on a rooftop terrace, yoga in the foyer of the Münchner Stadtmuseum, yoga in a sea of flowers in the Rosengarten (park). Their sessions are rounded off with a “clean-up”, where they pick up litter around their yoga mats.
Dates and further information: www.yoga-mit-gina.de
Yoga Nomads: A similar concept is offered by the “Yoganomaden”, an initiative founded by Samira Ben Hamouda. She organises weekly yoga sessions around unusual places like art galleries, the Friedensengel (monument), the clubhouse of the German Alpine Association and lots more interesting venues. The time and location of the classes are announced on her Facebook page.
The summer months are the perfect time to put on your dancing shoes and head outdoors. Warm nights, captivating music, swinging skirts and polished shoes … You won’t be tapping your toes on the sidelines for very long. The city also has enough venues for you to whip out your saucy moves indoors.
Court Garden Temple: The Hofgartentempel (pavilion) is a popular meeting place for passionate dancers. Fridays are for tango, Wednesdays are all about salsa, and Sundays put you in the mood for some swing. Hofgartenstrasse May to September. Starts between 5 pm and 8 pm. Only in good weather. Free entry.
Kizomba Bachata Parties: Outdoor dancers meet outside the Pinakothek der Moderne (art gallery) for Kizomba Bachata parties. From the beginning of May until the beginning of September, the parties will take place on various days starting at 6.30 pm. More information available on Facebook „outdoor kizomba batchata parties munich“
Tanz den Gasteig: On the first Saturday after Whitsun (June 6, 2020), the Gasteig cultural centre is transformed into one big dance floor, featuring a wide range of international styles like tango, waltz, techno and Bollywood. And everyone can get involved! The Philharmonie concert hall is turned into a nightclub later in the evening.
Further information: www.gasteig.de
Folk dancing in the Hofbräuhaus: If you like Bavarian folk dancing, this is the place for you. Professional dancers are accompanied by live music as they teach traditional round and figure dances. You don’t need any prior knowledge to take part. Dates in 2020: January 24, April 24, June 26, October 9 Start: 7:30 pm; Doors open at 6:30 pm
Further information: www.muenchen.de
Early, earlier, Kocherlball: Kocherlball the name reflects the origins of this Munich tradition. In the 19th century, servants (“Kocherl” in the local dialect) would get together in the early morning to dance before they started work. It‘s easier today: the celebrations can also be enjoyed in the morning sun at the Chinesischer Turm (Chinese Tower). But it‘s great to be up and and on the dance floor for 6 am to have a go at the Landler, Two Step or Polka. July 19, 2020, 6 am - 10 am, meeting point Chinesischer Turm.
Plop, plop, plop … The sound of balls flying around the court is music to the ears of every tennis fan. Tennis is a sport that connects generations: Grandparents play with their grandchildren, teenagers challenge their parents, and old friends have their weekly meet-ups on the tennis court.
Tennis Hirschau: Located in the middle of the English Garden with a beer garden just around the corner, you’ll struggle to find a nicer place to play tennis in Munich. Would you rather play beach volleyball? No problem! The season starts at the end of March.
Further information: www.tennis-hirschau.de
University of Munich – Beach Volleyball and Tennis Facilities: Considering the location of the facilities, tennis fans can hope to put in a performance inspired by the Olympic spirit. There are also beach volley ball courts. Afterwards, you can chill out on Hollywood swings at the retro Café BOB im Park, where you can enjoy a lovely view of the Olympic Tower. The season starts in early April and ends in late September.
Further information: www.zhs-muenchen.de
World Club Tennis – Urban Tennis Events: Even more eccentric ideas can be found at Munich’s “White Club Tennis”, an association of players who organise urban tennis events. They set up a tennis net and play at various wacky places in the city, such as on Großhesseloher Brücke, on the Zugspitze and during street festivals.
Dates and further information: www.worldclub-tennis.com
Alexx Tennis: The cold weather isn’t enough to stop tennis lovers playing on clay at the winter hall. The air-inflated arena by the “TSV Cosima” tennis club in Oberföhring houses two clay courts that go easy on the joints.
Further information: www.muenchen.alexx-tennis.de
SportScheck: There are 29 tennis courts at the all-weather facilities in Unterföhring: 16 outdoor courts with a classic red clay surface and 13 indoor courts with four different surfaces – rebound ace, carpet, tennis force and clay. If you’re looking for a doubles partner, you can use the doubles matchmaking service.
Further information: www.allwetteranlage.de
BMW Open by FWU: World-class tennis stars will return to Munich for the 2020 BMW Open. This is considered one of the hardest clay-court tournaments in the world. Triumph and disaster will be experienced by the players on the court and the fans in the stands. April 25 to May 3, 2020 – Venue: MTTC Iphitos
Dates and further information: www.bmwopenbyfwu.de
Munich has a strong connection to golf, and not least because of the BMW International Open, which has been held at Eichenried Golf Club since 1989, attracting 60,000 spectators as one of the biggest competitions in Germany. Most golf courses in Bavaria are located in and around Munich. You’ll need a licence to play on most of them, but introductory lessons are offered at almost every golf course!
Münchener Golf Club e.V. – Thalkirchen: The 9-hole urban course in Thalkirchen is located right by the Isar and the Maria Einsiedel (outdoor swimming pool) – quite an interesting idea if you’d like to freshen yourself up in the water after a round of golf. Guests are also welcome to play here.
Dates and further information: www.mgc-golf.de
GREEN HILL – Golf & Event Park in East Munich: This 9-hole golf course is located right at the gates of Munich, offering a view of the Alps and the city’s skyline. Guests are welcome.
Dates and further information: www.greenhill-golf.de
Münchner Golf Eschenried – Eschenhof Golf Course: This public 18-hole golf course on the outskirts of Munich is a high-class facility for golfers who don’t belong to a club. The soft, peaty soil remains lush and green – even in the middle of summer.
Dates and further information: www.muenchner-golf-eschenried.de
GolfRange München-Brunnthal: Golf fans won’t have to travel far outside the city centre to find two 9-hole courses with the very latest golfing technology and the largest driving range in Munich. You can book your tee-off time online. Dates and further information: www.muenchen-brunnthal.golfrange.de
BWM International Open: Families have been able to experience world-class golf and exciting side events in Munich for over 30 years. The BMW International Open has long been an important fixture on the European Tour (June 24 to 28, 2020). Dates and further information: www.bmw-golfsport.com
Note: An overview of upcoming golf tournaments or golf clubs can be found at www.muenchen-spielt-golf.de
Almost one third of the members of Munich’s Alpine Association are active climbers. If you don’t want to leave the city, you’ll find lots of places for climbing and bouldering in and around Munich. Most climbing centres also have extensive outdoor facilities. If you’re planning a city break to Munich and don’t want to miss out on your favourite sport, you’re more than welcome to come along! Equipment can easily be hired on site.
DAV Climbing and Bouldering Centre in South Munich: Who’s up for an inner-city alpine challenge? The climbing and bouldering centre run by the German Alpine Association in Munich-Thalkirchen has 7,800 square metres of climbing walls, making it the largest climb ing facility in the world. The artificial cliff faces tower over the climbers at 18 metres. The climbing centre is regularly used as a venue for national and international championships.
Further information: www.kbthalkirchen.de
DAV Climbing and Bouldering Centre in North Munich: If you’re a keen climber, you should check out this 1,900 square metres indoor climbing centre, where you can conquer the 15-metre-high indoor walls. When the weather’s nice, you can even enjoy the 200 m2 outdoor climbing area, which was only opened in autumn 2019.
Further information: www.kbfreimann.de
Boulderwelt München Ost: Bouldering on three storeys above the city’s rooftops: With 3,000 square metres of bouldering space, the new Boulderwelt München Ost 2.0 is one of the largest and most modern bouldering centres in the world.
Further information: www.boulderwelt-muenchen-ost.de
Boulderwelt München West: Boulderwelt München West is housed in a listed brick building, featuring numerous bouldering walls across a 2,500 m2 obstacle course, a large competition wall and an extensive outdoor area.
Dates and further information: www.boulderwelt-muenchen-west.de
Bouldering World Cup: Thanks to its solid infrastructure, Munich has become an established venue for regional, national and international climbing and bouldering championships. The real highlight of the climbing calendar is the annual Bouldering World Cup held at the Olympiahalle, featuring over 220 athletes from 37 nations. May 23 to 24, 2020 at the Olympiahalle.
Further information: www.alpenverein.de
The Eisbachwelle has become one of Munich’s most iconic symbols and attracts just as many tourists as the Neues Rathaus (town hall) and Schloss Nymphenburg. Professional surfers from Munich and the rest of the world ride the artificial waves in the Englischer Garten from the early morning to late at night – even in winter!
The best way to watch the surfers is from the bridge above the Eisbach river, which is located right by the Haus der Kunst. You can find out more about the history of river surfing and the “Eisbach lifestyle” – for anyone who wants to get in the mood. The best way to get to the Eisbachwelle is to take Tram 16 to “Nationalmuseum” or the U-Bahn (subway) to Odeonsplatz with a little walk.
Indoor surfing at the Jochen Schweizer Arena: Even if you’re not a pro surfer, you’ll be in good hands at the Jochen Schweizer Arena in Taufkirchen, where you can set your own wave height and speed. You can also try out other sports like body flight and climbing. Take the U5 to Neuperlach, then catch Bus 210 to “Willy-Messerschmitt-Straße”, or take the S3 to Taufkirchen and catch Bus 241 to “Ikea”
E2 – the “smaller wave”: In addition to the famous Eisbachwelle, which is also known as the “big wave”, there is another smaller wave known as “E2”, which is located just 500 metres away in the Englischer Garten. This wave isn’t as busy – it’s used as a surfing practice area.
Raft landing area: The Flosslände (raft landing area) near Thalkirchen is another quiet spot, even though it was the first ever river wave to attract surfers in 1972 – well before the Eisbachwelle. There’s a similar scene here: Professionals surf on the artificial wave, while spectators can watch from the bridge. Open daily from May to September (around 2 pm to 7 pm). The best way to get there is by taking Bus 135 and getting off at “Flosslände”
Waves by the Wittelsbach Bridge: Surfers can often be seen on the Isar, where they love to ride the wave that forms at high tide by the Wittelsbacherbrücke (bridge). As the body of the water is much wider than the Eisbach, the exits are further away and the current is stronger, which means surfing here is only recommended for true pros. Take the U1/U2 to “Kolumbusplatz” or Bus 68 to “Baldeplatz”
Inline skaters or skateboarders all know what it’s like to soar through the air and feel the adrenaline pump through their veins. Munich has the perfect places for cruising and jumping.
Olympiapark: Riding through the Olympiapark will take you uphill and downhill – but always on paved roads. Good braking technique is essential – pedestrians are also out and about.
Olympic rowing track: The area around the rowing track is perfect for beginners and high-speed pros alike – five kilometres along the water with excellent surfaces and no uphill climbs. You can then cool off at the Regattaparksee.
Schleissheim Airfield: After visiting Schloss Schleissheim (Schleissheim Palace), you can get your skates on and cruise around Schleissheim Airfield. The course has a very good surface, which makes it suitable for novices.
Blade Night: It’s almost 9 pm and the forecourt of the Verkehrszentrum of the Deutsches Museum is slowly filling up with people on their inline skates. And that’s when Blade Night begins, when the city’s skaters are free to weave in and out of the car-free streets of Munich. Every Monday from mid-May to mid-September. Blade Night will be cancelled in the event of rain. Skates and other equipment can be hired for free.
Further information: www.k2bladenight.de
Theresienwiese: The 1,200 square metres of open space on Theresienwiese offer lots of room for newbies and pros to practise their tricks without riding into one another.
Hirschgarten: Another real highlight is the skatepark in the Hirschgarten, featuring a full pipe with a diameter of around six metres and a key-shaped bowl.
Stonepark: The Stonepark in the Olympiapark is one of the oldest skateparks in Germany. This is where Munich’s pros are born. The facilities were reopened in July 2019.