View of Nymphenburg Palace and Park, Munich, Bavaria, Germany

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Palace Grounds


The sprawling park behind Schloss Nymphenburg is a favourite spot with Münchners and visitors for strolling, jogging or whiling away a lazy afternoon. It's laid out in grand English style and accented with water features, including a large lake, a cascade and a canal popular for feeding swans and for ice-skating and ice-curling when it freezes over in winter.

The park is at its most magical without the masses, ie early in the morning and an hour before closing. But even in the daytime, you can usually commune in solitude with water lilies and singing frogs at the Kugelweiher pond in the far northern corner.

The park's chief folly – and quite frilly to boot – the Amalienburg is a small hunting lodge dripping with crystal and gilt decoration; don't miss the amazing Spiegelsaal (hall or mirrors). The two-storey Pagodenburg was built in the early 18th century as a Chinese teahouse and is swathed in ceramic tiles depicting landscapes, figures and floral ornamentation. The Badenburg is a sauna and bathing house that still has its original heating system. Finally, the Magdalenenklause was built as a mock hermitage in faux-ruined style.