August 1 – 3, 2014
We had a long way to go in order to get to BMW Welt and we sat at our lunch table discussing the likelihood of a U-Bahn station being nearby and if so, in which direction. As we stood up to leave Dan noticed a familiar blue sign on the next corner: a U-Bahn station. Perfect! We sauntered down the steps and studied the map to make sure that we got on the right train. Easy-peasey, we bought our tickets and hopped on the next train. BMW Welt, here we come!
Once again, I wish that we’d had a map. We got off the U-Bahn and found BMW Welt ok, but what we wanted to do first was to see the BMW motorcycle shop that was supposedly in the area. Dan had scoped it out briefly on GoogleMaps and therefore had a general idea of which direction we should go. The direction we took turned out to be wrong and our mistake led us to the Olympic Village from 1972. As interesting as the village might have been, it wasn’t the reason we were here so we turned around to try a different direction. But then we figured “hey, here we are at the front door of BMW Welt – let’s just go inside and cool off while we look around”. So we did.
BMW Welt and Offices
To be fair, it was nothing but a showroom; but it was the biggest showroom I’d ever seen. On the main floor, half a dozen BMW cars were staged in a racing line-up type of display. In the middle of the building was a Mini showroom and right next to that was a shop that sold BMW branded luggage, clothing and miscellaneous stuff. Upstairs were a dozen or so motorcycles that were available for butt-testing as well as a “Bikers Café” which looked more like it catered to the Harley Crowd than the BMW Crowd. I think that they would have been better off going for Starbucks rather than Route 66. In the middle of the second floor was the “new car pick up” area: a wide open space with a car elevator to bring your new vehicle up from the factory (which is conveniently located across the street).
BMW cars on display
Bikes on display
New car pick up area
The new hybrid i8
We decided to cross the street and visit the museum, since we were so close. It was still warm out, but that didn’t keep the kids from jumping onto the additional display bikes set up outside. Those poor bikes…
Another look at the showroom
There are a LOT of photos from the museum, so I’ve posted them here. Come on back when you’re done looking and you can follow me home!
After the museum we made one last attempt for the BMW motorcycle shop. Unfortunately Dan still didn’t remember exactly where it was so we started off in the general assumed direction. By now it felt as though my heels should be bleeding through my socks and I was not enjoying the trek. I enjoyed it even less when Dan finally pulled out his phone to check GoogleMaps and found that we still had quite a few blocks to go. But we trudged on, arriving promptly at 5 pm. The sky was darkening with the threat of rain but I was looking forward to taking shelter inside – except that the store closed at 3 pm. We turned around and hopped onto the nearest U-Bahn and headed for our room. We arrived just as it began to rain hard so we took a quick nap while the thunder boomed outside. Eventually we woke up and went out for dinner. We tried another one of Chris’ recommendations: Blu Mediteraneo, directly across the street from the French bakery. The service was good and Dan ordered a meal with many courses, so we were there for almost two hours. By the time dessert was served (creme brulee!) we were ready to go back to our room. We walked back to Pension Isabelle and immediately fell asleep. It had been a very busy day.
The next morning we were going to walk to the English Gardens, but a headache and blistered heels kept us in bed later than we expected. Instead we had a leisurely morning, with another trip to the boulangerie, and packed up the bikes under a fresh blue sky. It was an easy ride out of München and not long before we were on the motorway heading home.
Wide open Autobahn
New bridge construction (wildlife bridge, I think)
I had expected rain all day on Sunday so the blue skies were a welcome surprise. I had determined to make a much better try at getting home on interesting roads and while that meant the first couple of hours on the motorway, I knew that the rest of the ride home would more than make up for it. The sunshine would help, too.
Finally off the Autobahn
It was lunch time already and now that we were on the more sedate back roads it was easier to find somewhere to stop. The town of Weißenhorn presented itself at just the right time, offering up outdoor seating in front of the city’s historic gate.
Weißenhorn’s city gate
The church bells rang in the lunch hour
I thought this was adorable
A group of women had seated themselves the table next to us and were quite friendly, verbally admiring our meals as the waitress brought them to us. It was only after Dan and I had stood up to return to the bikes did the women realize that I was a motorcyclist. I had already passed by their table so I missed their surprised reaction, but Dan said that it was amusing to watch them.
I had studied the GPS while waiting for lunch and planned what I hoped would be a pleasant route home. A couple of detours kept me from following the route exactly, but I must say that there are some delightful roads in southern Germany. The weather was threatening to the north but we managed to avoid most of the precipitation.
You never know what you’ll find on the roads
Clouds to the north
The threat of rain becomes more threatening
Trestle high over a village
Still some clouds to ride under
GPS showing a pigtail rail line nearby
Much to my surprise, the border crossing into Switzerland was surprisingly quick. I credit that to my determination to cross at one of the “less popular” crossings, which turned out to be a good idea. The rest of the ride home was clear and the storm that had been predicted hit Basel hit about an hour after we were safely back in our apartment.
I really enjoyed München but feel like I didn’t have a chance to see much of it. I definitely want to go back and explore – this time with more comfortable shoes.