Munich is the name of the city that's on the lips of hundreds of thousands of people at least once a year when the Oktoberfest takes place. Yes, Oktoberfest is a world-famous, two-week-long binge-fest of beer, bratwurst, and Bavarian music that everyone should attend at least once in their lifetime, but is it the best time to be in Munich? If you don't like large crowds, don't drink beer, and can't dance the polka, then probably not.
There are plenty of reasons to visit Munich in southern Germany when the famous Oktoberfest isn't taking place. The city also hosts several fantastic film festivals, then there's the massive Auer Dult market and funfair, which takes place three times a year, plus the enormous annual celebration of the city's founding. And that's without even mentioning Christmas. Events are happening almost nonstop in Munich, so if you're hoping for a quiet, uncrowded stay, you'll need to choose your visiting dates wisely.
Another factor that will certainly influence your decision on when to go to Munich is the weather. Munich can get pretty frigid from the end of September and often stays that way until the end of April. That's definitely not the weather for sitting outdoors in beer gardens. If you have an aversion to goosebumps and shivering in cold weather, you'll be limited to visiting Munich during the warmer months when there's pleasant weather unless you make a major investment in thermal clothing and some fleece-lined footwear.
Whichever time of the year you eventually decide to go to Munich, you may need to use temporary luggage storage. If you do, you'll find that a Bounce luggage storage facility in Munich is by far your best bet. They're easy to access as they're conveniently located in main transport hubs and in the city center.
When Is The Best Time To Go To Munich?
In this section, you'll find details of the climate in Munich throughout the four seasons of the year and what events are happening when so you can either attend or avoid them.
Summer In Munich
Is summer a peak season in Munich? Let's say it's one of the peak seasons, and Munich has more than a couple of those. It's also when the temperatures rise, finally, and you can hope to experience some pleasant weather. Visiting Munich in high summer is when you'll be struggling to get a table in the beer gardens. Drinking beer in the sunshine is one of the traditional outdoor activities for many tourists and many locals alike, and who can blame them?
Probably the quietest time out of the three summer months of June, July, and August is the first two weeks of June. Believe it, it's the lull before the storm.
The main event that happens in Munich takes over almost the entire city. On the 19th of June, the city wears its party hat in honor of its founding. A major transformation takes place in the city center, and the majority of local people don period or carnival-style costumes for the day.
As street festivals go, the city's birthday celebration is a big one and one where a special handicraft village is built alongside a castle enclosure for knights of olde. There are performances of live music in every square, vendors selling some of the best street food in Munich, and of course, the Bavarian beer is free-flowing.
The end of July and the first week of August is when the second of the tri-annual markets and funfair congregates in the Mariahilfplatz. At this famous event known as the Jakobidult, the modern version of a medieval market, hundreds of stalls offer everything from junky bric-a-brac to unique antiques and Bavarian hats. The carnival rides and the blaring music create the atmosphere, along with the temporary beer tents and street food stalls.
As well as being when there are lots of festivals, summer is the most popular time for picnics by the Isar River. The banks of the Isar River are often crowded with folks trying to catch a few rays or grilling their lunch in the special barbecue areas. There are a few spots where swimming and boating are permitted, so you can cool off or go kayaking if you're in the right place.
Why Not Go To Munich In Summer
Visit Munich in summer, and while it is the warmest time of the year, it's also humid, so the heat can feel sticky and unpleasant. It's also very busy when the festivals are happening, and the massive influx of visitors means public transport can be crowded and uncomfortable. Strangely, June and July are also when you're more likely to experience a rainy day in Munich, so be prepared to use your parasol as an umbrella.
Average High Temperatures in Summer In Munich
June– 72°F (22°C) July - 75°F (24°C) August - 75°F (24°C)
Average Low Temperatures in Summer In Munich
June– 52°F (11°C) July - 55°F (13°C) August - 55°F (13°C)
Fall In Munich
Early fall is a great time to visit Munich. You can still get fairly decent weather during September and October, so it's a good time for stepping out on some of the best hikes in Munich or exploring the city on foot. That all begins to change by the beginning of November as the temperatures drop and winter starts to make its imminent presence felt.
Come September, everyone in Munich is either waiting for the start of the Oktoberfest or planning on leaving the city to avoid it. Oktoberfest is one of Munich's most popular tourist attractions. The city is swamped by literally millions of visitors who flock to the Theresienwiese, a mega-sized outdoor event space, to guzzle beer, gorge on Bavarian food, and enjoy live music.
Oktoberfest usually starts around mid-September; in 2022, it commences on the 17th and continues for two whole weeks concluding in early October. There are massive parades, concerts, funfair amusements, and endless shenanigans from early in the morning until late at night. The simple fact the Oktoberfest crowds are so numerous makes this time of the year a peak season to visit Munich. The only time Oktoberfest hasn't been held was during World War II and for the two years of the Covid19 pandemic.
The second main event that happens in Fall in Munich is the Kirchweihdult. That's the fall version of the Auer Dult market, which takes place from the 15th to the 23rd of October. It's a repeat of the summer event in the Mariahilfplatz, only the weather is a little cooler, so the beer tents are not quite so stuffy.
Once November appears on the calendar, Munich starts to quiet down and begin recovering from October's excesses. There's a noticeable chill in the air, so it's not the time to be contemplating sipping tankards of brew in beer gardens unless you've got a very strong bladder.
The rest period doesn't last long, and by the end of November, Munich is getting ready for another major annual festival, the Tollwood Winter Festival.
Why Not Go To Munich In Fall
Early October is the peak season for Munich because of the Oktoberfest and the November build-up to the month-long Tollwood Winter Festival. There's no respite from the crowds during this period; accommodation is expensive and in short supply.
Average High Temperatures in Fall In Munich
September– 66°F (19°C) October - 57°F (14°C) November - 46°F (8°C)
Average Low Temperatures in Fall In Munich
September– 50°F (10°C) October - 41°F (5°C) November - 34°F (1°C)
Winter In Munich
While the Tollwood Winter Festival may begin in the last week of November, it continues all the way through December and doesn't end until New Year's Eve.
The Tollwood Winter Festival is held on the Theresienwiese and is one of the biggest Christmas markets in the world. It's much more than hundreds of stalls selling handmade gifts, though, as there are endless music, dance, and theater performances. There are also environment-related lectures and workshops plus lots of special activities for the younger generation.
If you need a sprinkling of snow to get you in the Christmas spirit, then you'll love chilly Munich in December as it often resembles a scene from a Christmas card, but minus the sprinkling of glitter.
Winter is the time to revert to being a kid again. Get yourself a sled and head to one of the city's parks, the English Garden, for example; find a hill and have some slippery slidey fun. No, the beer gardens won't be open, but plenty of restaurants serve hearty Bavarian stodge that will up your calorie intake and keep you fully fueled up in the cold weather.
The good thing about visiting Munich in the winter months is the main attractions are not so busy; everybody is at the Christmas markets or hibernating somewhere with central heating. You won't need to line up in the cold to get into any of Munich’s best museums, which is a massive bonus.
Why Not Go To Munich In Winter
It can be extremely cold in Munich in winter. When the snow melts, the sidewalks can be a sludgy mess. You'll need a good pair of boots to be able to wade through. The beer gardens are closed for the season.
Average High Temperatures in Winter In Munich
December – 39°F (4°C) January - 37°F (3°C) February - 41°F (5°C)
Average Low Temperatures in Winter In Munich
December – 28°F (-2°C) January - 26°F (-3°C) February - 28°F (-2°C)
Spring In Munich
Winter likes to linger in Munich, so it seems like spring is a long time coming, and when it does start to warm up a little, it gets rainier.
That said, March and April are good months for taking a brisk stroll through the budding trees in the English Garden or even hiring a bicycle and riding around. You will likely get ruddy cheeks and frozen fingers if you don't wear gloves, but the chilly air can be invigorating.
By the time the end of April arrives, Munich is getting ready to shake off the winter blues in style and have some proper fun. From the 30th of April onwards, the Auer Dult is back on the Mariahilfplatz and stays there until the 8th of May. It'll definitely still be cold enough to indulge in a glass or two of mulled wine as you wander around the stalls and funfair, and let's face it, a hot grilled sausage tastes a lot better when it’s chilly than it does when the weather is hot.
May is the month when you'll be able to cast off thermal clothing, and while it might not be exactly t-shirt weather, it'll get noticeably warmer as the days go by. The countryside around Munich will be at its best, so it's a great time for making day trips out to see some of the nearby castles. It's also ideal for planning longer hikes to somewhere like the Tegernseer Hütte, where you can get a mountainside lunch with spectacular alpine views before making your way back.
Why Not Go To Munich In Spring
The best reason not to go to Munich in spring, especially in early May, is because you'll like it so much you really won't want to leave.
Average High Temperatures in Spring In Munich
March– 48°F (9°C) April - 57°F (14°C) May - 66°F (19°C)
Average Low Temperatures in Spring In Munich
March– 34°F (1°C) April - 39°F (4°C) May - 46°F (8°C)
There really isn't a bad time to visit Munich. Yes, the weather can be cold from late October onwards, but there's so much going on in the city, you can't let the weather influence you too much when deciding when to go. If you do, you'll miss out on some fantastic experiences which you won't be able to have anywhere else in Europe and nothing, not even the cold, is worth that.