Nymphenburg Palace is one of the most popular destinations in the whole of Munich, as it is known worldwide and is one of the most beautiful castles. So there is always a lot going on here, as tourists from all over the world want to take a photo of the famous castle scenery. But what I always notice about very famous sights like Nymphenburg Palace is that most tourists often only visit the well-known Instagram hotspots and then quickly leave again. In the process, they often miss the undiscovered highlights of a sight. This phenomenon can also be observed at Nymphenburg Palace. Sometimes I even catch myself doing it, as I did with Nymphenburg Park. I neglected this place for a long time until I had the idea to explore the park more closely.
If you’re right next to the palace, you won’t find a quiet corner and there’s something going on everywhere. But if you look into the extensive park along the canal, you will immediately notice that there are hardly any people to be seen further back. Nymphenburg Palace Park has a lot to offer and is beautifully designed, so you should use this place to slow down and take a walk here, ideally in good weather.
In this respect, this blog post is not about the famous Nymphenburg Palace and its highlights, but rather about Nymphenburg Park.
Tour Highlights at Nymphenburg Palace
- Very extensive palace park for a long walk that is not overcrowded.
- There is only one very touristy beer garden in the entire palace park. A recommendation for a beer garden can be found below.
- In the palace garden canal you can take a romantic gondola ride in a real Venetian gondola in summer.
- The palace park is generally suitable for prams and wheelchairs, as there are no heights to negotiate.
Nymphenburg Park at Nymphenburg Palace
The Nymphenburg Palace Park is divided into two parts (North & South) and is separated in the middle by the Palace Garden Canal. Both parts are equally recommendable, but be prepared to take a longer walk through Nymphenburg Park if you want to visit both parts (up to 3-4 hours depending on which path you choose). As there are several sights in the southern part, I recommend you mainly take a walk through the southern part of the park. If you have enough time, you can of course visit both parts in their entirety.
Southern part of Nymphenburg Palace Park
As always, you can find my tour suggestion in my komoot profile. Of course, you can also use other routes. This tour serves as an orientation so that you don’t miss the best highlights in Nymphenburg Park. The tour concentrates mainly on the highlights next to the castle.
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To escape the hustle and bustle in front of the castle, ideally take the path to the left in a southerly direction immediately after crossing the castle portal. You will find yourself directly in the shady forest and can easily take your walk through Nymphenburg Park along the many countless paths.
Amalienburg hunting lodge in the park
After a relatively short time you will find the first highlight of the palace park, the Amalienburg, which served as a hunting lodge at the time and was built in the Rococo style. The Amalienburg, as well as all the other park castles, are open to visitors daily from April to mid-October from 9 am to 6 pm. However, I recommend buying a ticket in advance, as the castles can only be visited with a paid ticket. You can read more about this in the article below.
Historic well houses in the village
Continue along the path in a southerly direction. Directly behind the small bridge on the south canal is the so-called hamlet with its well houses and historic water pumps in the middle of the forest. You can visit them free of charge between 10 am and 4 pm from April to mid-October. Continue past the overgrown trees along the pleasant forest path in a westerly direction along the South Canal.
Badenburg Castle on Badenburg Lake
After a while, the view of Lake Badenburg opens up with Badenburg Castle on the left. Like the other castles, you can also visit this one at the same times with a ticket. Like the other park castles, this one is splendidly and artistically designed. As the name suggests, the castle was once used as a bathing establishment, so there is a bathing hall on the lower floor.
Of course, the Badenburg Lake also invites you to linger, as there are several benches along the lake and, together with the Badenburg Castle, provides a beautiful photo backdrop. Our tour takes us along the southern shore towards the west, where you will find several places to sit.
South of the Badenburg is a small wooded area that is popular with locals for jogging and walking. Here I even encountered a beaver for the first time in my life, which roamed through the forest not quite silently and at first I wondered what was out and about in the forest. I would have expected to encounter a beaver anywhere at some point, but certainly not in a big city like Munich. In the photo, however, you can only see it relatively blurred, because it was moving in the undergrowth and I didn’t want to get closer to the animal so as not to startle it.
In general, there are many sections of woodland throughout Nymphenburg Palace Park. So the park is also perfect for an extended walk in the woods.
Large cascade in Nymphenburg Park
The next destination on our short tour through Nymphenburg Park is the large cascade on the middle canal. After a while, cross the small bridge on the lakeside and continue walking northwards. Along the meadows you will repeatedly come across groups of geese peacefully looking for food in the grass.
The large cascade cannot be missed, as it stands directly on the middle canal. At this point you have a wonderful view of Nymphenburg Palace, even though it is barely visible in the distance. It’s at this point that you first realise how big this park is – really impressive.
Apollo Temple on Badenburg Lake
On the northern shore of Lake Badenburg there is another sight, the Temple of Apollo. The Apollo Temple has similarities to the Monopteros in the English Garden. On the north shore you have a great view of the Badenburg and you can take beautiful pictures of the Badenburg here.
Nymphenburg Palace Park North
After we have also seen this sight, we continue to the northern part of the Nymphenburg Palace Park. There is a crossing at the central canal, which again offers a great view of Nymphenburg Palace in the distance and is perfect for taking pictures.
Pagodenburg Lake & Pagodenburg Castle
In the northern part of Nymphenburg Park there is also a small lake, the Pagodenburg Lake, and another park castle, the so called Pagodenburg. To get to the Pagoda Castle, we walk around the lake on the left-hand side. As with the other castles, you have the same opening hours here. Each castle is worth a visit, as they are similar, but each one is unique.
Let’s move on to the last little highlight on this tour, the Magdalenenklause. Quite hidden in the north-east behind the castle café, you will find the small church, which is really uniquely designed. The ceiling and walls of the small chapel are more reminiscent of a grotto and the contrast to the rooms of the hermitage is also very unusual, as they are luxuriously furnished.
Another highlight in Nymphenburg Palace Park: Venetian gondola ride
No need to travel to Venezia to ride a real venetian gondola! From Easter to mid-October, you have the opportunity to take a gondola ride in a genuine Venetian gondola at the large middle canal in Nymphenburg Park. A ride costs €15 per person and takes about half an hour. You can also book the gondola for yourself. This costs €65, but is a nice idea for a gift. You can buy one of these vouchers in advance on the Gondola Nymphenburg website. Otherwise, no reservation is necessary.
Nymphenburg Palace Parking & Arrival
What is the best way to get to Nymphenburg Palace? Many tourists ask themselves this question, as Nymphenburg Palace is not as centrally located as other sights in Munich. In my opinion, the easiest way to get there is by tram, as the tram stop on line 17 is not far from the palace. Tram line 17 starts at Sendlinger Tor and goes past Stachus and the main railway station to the Schloss Nymphenburg stop, so you can easily get there from the city centre without changing trams. From the stop, the palace is about 5-10 minutes away on foot. You can’t miss it, as the castle’s size makes it visible from afar. Alternatively, you can also visit the castle by car. There are parking spaces directly in front of the castle on both sides (north and south). At weekends, however, the car parks are always full, so you can visit the castle either early or late. In my opinion, taking the tram is always the best choice.
Nymphenburg Palace Park Opening Hours & Prices
The palace park has the following opening hours at the main gate (as of 2022):
- January to March, November & December from 6am – 6pm
- April & October 6am – 8pm
- May to September 6am – 9:30pm
Be sure to note that some gates may close in advance and allow a time buffer for this.
If you would like to see the beauty of the fountains, please note that the fountains are only in operation from Easter to mid-October between 10 am – 12 pm and 2 pm – 4 pm.
Admission to the park castles
The park castles and the main castle can only be visited with a paid ticket, which you can easily purchase online in advance. The ticket for the park castles entitles you to visit all the park castles and costs (as of 2022) €5 for adults. You can purchase online tickets for Nymphenburg Palace on this page.
Nymphenburg Palace Park Essen
There is only one café in Schlosspark Nymphenburg, which is quite close to the palace, so it is always very busy and the prices are not the cheapest due to the location.
Personal recommendation: Directly at the stop of tram line 17 there is the restaurant Metzgerwirt with a small beer garden. Since the restaurant is directly on the street, it is not so quiet here. But the food was excellent, the service very friendly and the prices moderate. If you have a little time and are looking for a real beer garden, I recommend the Hirschgarten south of the castle. You can take line 17 part of the way back and then get off at the stop “Romanplatz” or “Kriemhildenstraße”. From here you can reach the beer garden on foot in 6 minutes. In the Hirschgarten you will also find numerous playgrounds and, as the name suggests, an enclosure with deer. There is definitely a lot going on here, especially in summer.
And by the way: The Hirschgarten is much more authentic than the beer garden in the English Garden. You will find much more locals here.
Further highlights near Nymphenburg Palace Park
- Botanical Garden Munich-Nymphenburg
- Deer Garden (Hirschgarten)