Café Gans am Wasser in Munich.

Sendling

From Westpark to Harras

The district of Sendling is divided into the areas of Untersendling, Mittersendling and Obersendling, with each area offering its own charm and special highlights. The most beautiful spots between Westpark and Harras.

Sendling is a place that cannot really be pigeonholed: it’s made up of several diverse areas, and the atmosphere and architecture of the district is no less varied. For example, the historic area of Untersendling retains a certain rustic village charm, and you can still discover Stemmerhof there – Munich’s last surviving farmhouse, nestled among exquisite old houses. Obersendling, on the other hand, embodies a more industrial side of the district, evident all around from the Siemens factories and industrial estate to the workers’ housing areas and high-rise buildings. And between the two is Mittersendling, where visitors flock to spend their leisure time, making the most of such attractions as the Flaucher river bank area, Sendlinger Park and the DAV climbing and bouldering centre. The district has also gained a new attraction in 2021, as the Gasteig cultural centre has relocated to Sendling for the duration of its renovation works.

 

Sendling history and origins

Evidence of people living in the Munich area now known as Sendling dates back a long way, with researchers discovering remains of settlements from the late Bronze age, in the 12th century BC. Earliest known records of a name for the settlement are rather more recent, with a reference to the name “Sendilo” dating from the sixth century AD and the first written instance of “Sentilinga” traceable to the seventh century. 

The village of Sendling grew to sufficient importance over the next few centuries that it was served by a southward-facing gate in the 1320 construction of Munich’s second city wall – namely Sendlinger Tor. Lindwurmstrasse led into the district, as it still does today. The village started to take on more of a suburban character from the 18th century onwards: Sendling expanded as industrialisation took hold and many companies built factories in the area, including Siemens and various tobacco producers. Housing developments for workers were also built during this time. The district was officially incorporated into Munich in 1877.

Evidence of people living in the Munich area now known as Sendling dates back a long way, with researchers discovering remains of settlements from the late Bronze age, in the 12th century BC.

Even now the history of Sendling can be read by way of the distinctive architectural styles found in the district – the stately old buildings which are more prevalent towards Grünwald, and the blocky workers’ residences at the heart of things. Although relatively few buildings around here were destroyed during the Second World War compared to Munich’s city centre and other city districts, worst-hit among them was the Grossmarkthalle which had opened in 1912. The damage meant that food had to be sold outside the structure until the end of the war, when the halls were rebuilt – only Hall I has survived in its original condition.

 

The Grossmarkt: important for the district and the economy

The Grossmarkt wholesale market is a daily port of call for many neighbouring areas and restaurateurs seeking local vegetables, exotic fruit and unusual plants. People know each other here – no surprise given that the city has been convening here for early-morning bargaining and chat for more than a hundred years. These days only Munich residents who have trading licenses are permitted to purchase goods here, so it’s exclusive to restaurant owners and retailers. Everyone else can choose their fresh fare in the Frischeparadies fine foods emporium in adjacent Schlachthofviertel or the restaurants on the premises – not to mention the Gaststätte Großmarkthalle traditional pub.

What many people don’t realise is that Munich’s Grossmarkthalle wholesale market is the third-largest food trading centre in Europe, and supplies around five million people in total, including customers far beyond Munich’s borders. More than 600,000 tonnes of food are sold on the premises’ 310,000 square metres every year. If this has whetted your appetite to experience the historic market halls, you can book one of the popular guided tours of the Grossmarkthalle for yourself.

 

Green Sendling – between Westpark and the Flaucher

It may not be quite as green as the neighbouring district of Giesing, but Sendling still boasts a generous serving of natural delights. The Westpark is becoming increasingly popular for its versatility, among other things: in winter it offers ice skating on frozen lakes, while in summer you can enjoy a barbecue at one of its many barbecue areas. Or you can treat yourself to a film at the Kino, Mond und Sterne open-air cinema, which is hosted on the lake stage every year. The most popular spots in the park include the Asian gardens and Café Gans am Wasser – a trailer café with an alternative edge, where you can enjoy delicious French fries and cold drinks, right on the shores of Mollsee lake.

The main reasons the Flaucher is such a popular summer hotspot for locals and visitors alike are that barbecues are permitted and swimming is easy. If you’re lucky, you might even find a sandy cove to enjoy.

And of course the Flaucher – the most popular stretch of the Isar river – is also found in Sendling. This area was named after the “Zum Flaucher” restaurant which opened in 1870, and still operates as a beer garden in a beautiful setting on the meadows around the Isar. Thanks to its special location, the Flaucher is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna, from kingfishers to crayfish – there are even orchids growing in the forests. The main reasons the Flaucher is such a popular summer hotspot for locals and visitors alike are that barbecues are permitted and swimming is easy. If you’re lucky, you might even find a sandy cove to enjoy.

In and around Harras: Stemmerhof and pretty streets

The historic Stemmerhof farmhouse can be found in the middle of Untersendling. First documented in 1382, it continued as Munich’s last working farm until the early nineties. Today some 25 businesses are housed under its roof, from the Hoftheater to the Hofladen, which sells high-quality, sustainable local products. Visitors can enjoy the rustic atmosphere as they shop, grab a bite to eat and immerse themselves in culture. Idyllic Stemmerwiese meadow behind Stemmerhof presents the perfect spot to relax, have a picnic or soak up some sun.

Don’t be fooled by the peace and quiet though, as the most important transport hub in Sendling is just around the corner. Harras is a point of intersection not just for bus and U-Bahn underground rail services, but also for S-Bahn local trains and other regional trains. With its shops, doctors’ offices and café terraces, the square resembles a small town centre. A stroll along Aberlestrasse or Valleystrasse offers views of innumerable beautiful old buildings and great restaurants. With its green sports facilities and popular Südbad swimming pool, Harras is an up-and-coming area.

 

 

Text: Anja Schauberger; Photos: Frank Stolle

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