This winter is finally being a white one here in Munich following many brown ones. To seize the opportunity, I grabbed my camera on a cold and white Sunday back in January and went for a stroll through the Hofgarten (“Courtyard Garden”) – one of my favorite spots in Munich.
The Hofgarten, a relatively small garden according to Italian gardening principles, is one of the most beautiful parks in the center of Munich, situated right behind the Residenz complex. Every inch of the Hofgarten is extremely manicured, with the plants grown in a precise geometrical pattern. This tidiness, contrasted with the cosy roughness of the nearby Englischer Garten, leaves the impression of a luxurious and aristocratic life prior to World War I. This might also be the most plausible explanation for why elegantly dressed elderly people dominate the audience here and seem to enjoy themselves to the fullest.
Nevertheless, for a quick rest after a busy time in the city center for sightseeing and/or shopping, there’s no better place than the Hofgarten. Between lawns, flowerbeds, shady trees, bubbling fountains, arcades, everyone can find a quiet place to relax with a majestic atmosphere -at any time of the year. Especially in summer you can find a shady spot and read a book or just watch the boules players. A small pavilion in the middle of the courtyard provides a picturesque backdrop, and there are often bands playing in summer time.
Even though it will be a much more pleasant walk during the warmer months, I walked here for some hours on such a cold winter day that the few people around covered with heavy jackets were trying just to pass through. But the garden and surroundings are worth a closer look. Wouldn’t you agree?