Mairi Beautyman is a design journalist based in Berlin, Germany, who has written a number of features, reviews and guides for Time Out Germany. She is a contributing editor at Interior Design Magazine, and has contributed to Huffington Post, Wired, Country Living, Travel Berlin and many more.
The 12 best things to do in Munich
There’s no place like Munich. Take that literally, by the way. The best things to do in this city are a dizzying mix of elite museums, hearty food and tumultuous history. Munich is also of course one of Europe’s great beer cities, with the taverns and bars well worth tapping into – even if it’s out of Oktoberfest season. But there’s more to this place than a foaming stein of amber magic. Munich is a cultural powerhouse, both inside and out, and be sure to keep your eyes peeled while wandering the streets. You’ll spy plenty of grand buildings and elegant facades, the result of a carefully-executed reconstruction plan following the devastation of World War II, as well as hidden street art, impressive contemporary architecture and new spaces unlike anything you might expect from this Bavarian hub. RECOMMENDED:📍 Our guide to where to stay in Munich🍻 The best places to drink beer in Munich🍴 The best restaurants in Munich 🏠 The best Airbnbs in Munich This guide was recently updated by Kate Mann, a writer based in Munich. At Time Out, all of our travel guides are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our editorial guidelines.
The 9 best museums in Munich
Even if you’ve only got a few days in Munich, you need to crank its museums up to the top of your to-do list. There’s over 80 across the city, but we’re about quality, not quantity, so we’ve whittled it down to a list of nine that are really worth your time (and dough). But hey, don’t panic. There’s still a ton of variety. On our list you’ll find everything from royal history to expansive courtyards full of art, but we’ve also thrown in a museum all about Oktober fest (and yes, beer) for good measure. Whatever sets your heart alight, you’ll find it here. Read on for the best museums in Munich. RECOMMENDED:📍 Our guide to where to stay in Munich🍻 The best places to drink beer in Munich🍴 The best restaurants in Munich🏠 The best Airbnbs in Munich Mairi Beautyman is a writer based in Germany. At Time Out, all of our travel guides are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our editorial guidelines.
The 10 best things to do in Hamburg right now
Welcome to Germany’s second city, where the beer is flowin’ and the city is alive with culture. And it’s no surprise – Hamburg has long been a rock ‘n’ roll city; a ton of famous composers settled there over the years, and it was even home to some of The Beatles’ earliest and most notable concerts in the ‘60s. Now? It’s as cool as it ever was, and it’s seriously populated (1.9 million people live there, to be exact). And as the Gateway to the World, Hamburg is a place that has always evaded tradition, and its innovative food scene reflects this as much as its many, many museums, galleries and theatres. What is Hamburg? Well, it is Hamburg. It couldn’t be anything else. From gourmet cuisine to the sinful lights of the Reeperbahn, here are the best things to do in brilliant Hamburg. RECOMMENDED:🍲 The best restaurants in Hamburg🏛️ The best attractions in Hamburg🏨 The best hotels in Hamburg Planning your next trip? Check out our latest travel guides, written by local experts.
The 8 best Frankfurt bars
Frankfurt has a reputation for being quite a serious place (you know, the whole transport hub of Germany, financial capital of Europe thing). But make no mistake – the city’s inhabitants know how to party. And hey, they’ve got to let off steam somehow right? Frankfurt is actually home to a ton of great bars, and they cater to pretty much everyone. It’s no secret that the Germans are good at their beer, and Frankfurt is no different. Craft breweries and pub culture are in abundance here, so you can spend your days sampling innovative sours and malt lagers until it’s time to eat. But if you know where to look, you’ll find cosy basement cocktail bars, wacky old-school rock ones and of course, wine bars with achingly trendy small plates. All we’ll say is there’s no shortage of drinking opps here. Actually, you’re spoilt for choice. Here are the best bars in Frankfurt right now. RECOMMENDED:🍳 The best breakfast spots in Frankfurt🌭 The best restaurants in Frankfurt📍 The best things to do in Frankfurt🛌 The best Airbnbs in Frankfurt Planning your next trip? Check out our latest travel guides, written by local experts.
The 14 best things to do in Frankfurt right now
Frankfurt has been known to get overshadowed by the likes of Berlin and Munich, but don’t be fooled. This city is the centre of it all. Pretty much all roads lead to Frankfurt in Germany (and we mean literally, by the way). Frankfurt is home to the country’s biggest airport, biggest Autobahn interchange and busiest train station. It gets all of the action, all of the time. So many different people pass through Frankfurt every single day, it’s alive here. All of the time. And the energy is reflected in every part of the city; its things to do range from mesmerising museums to enchanting forests, and from food markets to café culture. Frankfurt is a diverse, thriving city, you just have to give it a go. Here are the best things to do in Frankfurt right now. RECOMMENDED:🍳 The best breakfast spots in Frankfurt 🌭 The best restaurants in Frankfurt🍻 The best bars in Frankfurt🛌 The best Airbnbs in Frankfurt Planning your next trip? Check out our latest travel guides, written by local experts.
The best hotels in Frankfurt
Frankfurt is not a city short on hotels; Germany’s financial capital annually holds some of the world’s most important trade fairs and attracts some 500,000 visitors a month, and hoteliers have met the demand. However, until recently many of these hotels were all business, no pleasure—and rather stiff as a result. In part due to a hospitality trend turning towards a more holistic lifestyle approach, times are changing. From a boutique hotel built on the narrative of a well-travelled fictional character or a popular chain hotel branch that is a homage to Levis jeans to a design hotel dedicated to the friends and lovers of German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, here are the ten best hotels in Frankfurt. Luckily for visitors, most of these are within walking distance of the city's top attractions and tastiest restaurants, so no matter which you choose, you can sightsee in style. RECOMMENDED:🛌 The best Airbnbs in Frankfurt
Where to stay in Frankfurt: your essential guide
As Germany’s financial capital, Frankfurt may have its fair share of high-rise monoliths, but the rest of the cityscape is diverse. From the conservative Westend, which caters to the banking set, to slowly gentrifying Bahnhofsviertel, once rife with prostitution, Frankfurt’s most happening neighbourhoods range from glam to seedy, prohibitively expensive to cheap-as-schnitzel. Does a villa with a moat float your boat? How about the district known for its dedication to local Apfelwein (apple wine)? Or maybe it’s a central location you’re after? To help you choose where to stay in Frankfurt, here’s our guide to five of the city’s major neighbourhoods, with insider tips on the best bars, restaurants and hotels in each. RECOMMENDED: 📍 The best things to do in Frankfurt🏛 The most unmissable attractions in Frankfurt🌭 The best restaurants in Frankfurt🍻 The best bars in Frankfurt
Your guide to public transport in Frankfurt
Germany is known for the efficiency, speed, and reliability of its transport systems, and Frankfurt is no exception. Navigating the metro, tram and bus lines that make up the Rhine-Main Transport Association (RMV) transportation network is straightforward and likely faster than a car (a luxury most locals do not have). Touch-screen ticket machines in stations usually have an English option. One ticket will gain you access to metro, tram and bus lines, and as the tickets are time-stamped, they doesn’t need to be validated. While there are no turnstiles, plainclothes controllers may check your ticket at any time–getting caught schwarzfahren (‘riding black’) or even with the incorrect ticket means a €60 dent to your wallet. Don’t expect sympathy for being an out-of-towner—the penalty is strictly enforced. For a day trip, the country’s state-run rail network Deutsche Bahn is well-connected to Frankfurt via several long-distance rail stations, in addition to its main station, Frankfurt (Main) Hauptbahnhof (more familiarly known as Frankfurt HBF). RECOMMENDED: 🏛 Your essential Frankfurt travel guide🏃♂️ The 14 best things to do in Frankfurt
Nove experiências obrigatórias em Munique
Se Berlim é conhecida pela sua vida animada, Munique é muitas vezes deixada de fora dos elogios à Alemanha. No entanto, nos últimos anos, a cidade tem conseguido reinventar-se. Do ponto de vista arquitectónico, os edifícios históricos, marcados pela guerra, ganham agora uma nova vida como parte de um plano de recuperação levado a cabo pela cidade. Acrescente-se uma economia em crescimento, impulsionada por grandes empresas como a BMW, grandes centros culturais e uma cultura gastronómica apaixonada – além da cerveja, cerveja e mais cerveja. Munique continua no topo das listas das melhores cidades para viver no mundo. Eis, as melhores coisas para fazer em Munique.
The 10 most-Instagrammable places in Hamburg
A salty seafaring life is deeply embedded into the cultural web of Germany’s second largest city. With more bridges than Venice and Amsterdam combined, Hamburg is shaped by its bodies of water—something the city’s 1.7 million inhabitants take full advantage of. Celebrated as a music metropolis, the city is also home to numerous photo-inducing cultural centers and museums, mixed in with historic (some reconstructed) and contemporary landmarks. From a miniature journey through countries around the world or the wave-like roof and sculptural glass facade of the city’s new concert hall, to a landmark tunnel that runs through the depths of the earth, find the most Instagrammable places in Hamburg here. Miniatur Wunderland A post shared by Mairi Beautyman (@i_scribe_design) on Nov 18, 2017 at 9:09am PST On a beach you’ll never swim at, a lean man in Speedo-like swim trunks towels off his hair while his family looks on–just one tiny scene at Miniatur Wunderland. Located in Hamburg’s historic Speicherstadt district, this exhibit of a miniature world spread out over 1,350 square feet draws 1.3 million visitors a year, with the world’s largest model train display (50,000 feet) and an international journey that goes from America to Germany, Scandinavia, Austria and Italy. From snow-glazed alpine panoramas to cityscape shots of Hamburg (the biggest city in Minatur Wunderland) to the realistic air traffic flying into Knuffingen Airport, the photo ops are overwhelming. One uniqu
The 10 most Instagrammable places in Frankfurt
There are few cities in the world where you can snap both neck-wrenching skyscrapers and stunning historical buildings just a few minutes apart. When it comes to diversity, Frankfurt is a photographer’s dream. If it’s the urban landscape you’re after, Germany’s financial capital has it in spades—this is one of the few European cities with a large cluster of high rise buildings in its downtown area. While much of the city’s historical architecture was destroyed during World War II, billions of euros have been sunk into rebuilding efforts. Most recently, 15 historical replicas were returned to the city. Then there’s the scenic River Main, connecting old and new by almost a dozen bridges. From a museum with a verdant green lawn punctuated with porthole skylights to a building dating to the middle ages with a distinctive tiered gabled roof, these are the most Instagrammable places in Frankfurt. Städel Museum A post shared by Saskia (@strassen_ninja) on Apr 2, 2018 at 7:39am PDT A verdant green lawn punctuated with porthole skylights draws light into a subterranean extension at the Staedelmuesum, Frankfurt’s citizen’s museum. Completed by architecture firm Schneider + Schumacher in 2012, the extension doubled the museum in size, adding 3,000 square meters of light-flooded exhibition space for a collection of European art history spanning 700 years, from the early fourteenth century to the present. On Thursday and Friday, the museum is open until 9pm, allowing the opport
The 10 most beautiful buildings in Frankfurt
There is only one place in the world where half-timbered buildings seeped in old world charm are an eight-minute walk from Germany’s highest tower: Frankfurt. The architecture in Germany’s financial capital is as varied as it comes—it’s undeniable that two world wars had an impact. However, a careful reconstruction effort combined with rich creativity tapped from a pool of talented architects mean a cityscape as strikingly diverse as its populous—a quarter of which have foreign citizenship. From a greenhouse formed as a cluster of flowers to a contemporary mall that sucks visitors in through a vortex, as well as one of the oldest churches in Germany, here are the ten most beautiful buildings in Frankfurt.
Listings and reviews (25)
An interior by German artist Stefan Strumbel celebrates the color white at this small boutique design hotel, where you’ll be greeted with a welcome drink. The soothing minimalistic design is distinguished by Thassos marble and light gray floors in the lobby and white leather headboards in rooms, each a compact 190 to 260 square feet offset by high ceilings. The gym and the spa—where you’ll find a sauna and steam room—are open 24 hours. Other thoughtful touches include breakfast served until 1pm, a 4pm extended checkout free of charge on Sundays and bean bags on the patio, which is candle-lit on summer evenings. Time Out tip: While the hotel does not serve food after 1pm, orders can be placed from nearby restaurants.
With previous lives as a manor house, flour mill and tannery dating as far back as the 14th century, the Gerbermühle was razed during World War II and not rebuilt until the 1970s. Today, the design hotel is dedicated to the friends and lovers of German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who once lived there for a year. The 19 rooms, filled with thoughtful details like antique side tables and upholstered armchairs, range from 260-960 square feet and benefit from a prime location directly on the River Main, and some historic elements such as stone walls remain. Attracting travelers and locals alike, the bar serves up excellent cocktails; try the Lemongrass Sour 10, a fusion of lemongrass infused gin, maraschino, lime juice, simple syrup and egg white. Time Out tip: A restaurant and self-service beer garden make the terrace one of the best places in the city to enjoy a warm summer evening.
Grandhotel Hessischer Hof - Hotel Frankfurt
For five-star luxury with a taste of the Hesse region’s royal history, there’s the Grandhotel Hessischer Hof in the Westend district, a 13-minute walk from the Frankfurt Messe exhibition center. Owned by the Landgrave and Prince of Hesse family foundations, this luxury hotel was once the city residence of Prince Wolfgang of Hesse, and the 35 rooms and suites are packed full of royal antiques, with noble fabrics and carpets and historic art. The 29 executive junior suites, designed by a German Countess, are nearly 600 square feet and have luxurious accents such as marble bathrooms and dark granite countertops. If that’s not big enough for you, there’s always the Presidential Suite–it sits at nearly 2,000 square feet. The royal treatment continues in the spa, where you’ll find a steam room and sauna, Ayurvedic-style massages and medical treatments such as osteopathy or chiropractic services. Time Out tip: You’ll find live piano music until 3am in the hotel’s cocktail bar, Jimmy’s Bar.
A short walk from Frankfurt Central station, this boutique hotel chain (with two other locations in Germany) channels the sensual undertone of the burlesque world in both rooms and public areas (which include a bar, restaurant and spa). All 116 rooms and suites are unique, and details such as dark natural stone, upholstered headboards, sound systems and ambiance lighting (which may be too dim for some) evoke a sultry elegance. For a selection of “tease” goods, chocolate-covered fruit, champagne and a room covered in rose petals and lit candles, packages include the not-so-subtly named “Make Love.” Private bathrooms and ‘quiet’ rooms are available on request. Time Out tip: Sink into a tub filled to the brim with glass beads in the spa for a unique relaxation experience.
Capri by Fraser, Frankfurt
Design-conscious travelers will delight in the boutique hotel style interior of Capri By Fraser Frankfurt, where just about everything in the 153 studio- and one-bedroom apartments falls into a palette of grey, white, lemon-yellow or turquoise-blue. In the spacious rooms—all with fully-equipped kitchens—sculptural vases and glassware, cactuses, tattoo art books and candle sticks are thoughtful design accents in bookcases. Walls displaying contemporary art throughout add to the homey feel. Both the gym and the business center–where iMacs are on hand–are open 24 hours. Meal options are available from both a grab-and-go snack bar and a full-service restaurant brasserie serving international cuisine and authentic Asian dishes. Time Out tip: The Messeturm, once Europe’s highest building, is a 10 minute walk away and visible from north-facing rooms.
Villa Kennedy, a Rocco Forte Hotel
A visit by John F. Kennedy in 1963 left such an impression at this luxury hotel in the Sachsenhausen neighborhood that the proprietors changed its name to Villa Kennedy. Now black-and-white photos of the U.S. president adorn walls of the carefully restored historic grand villa, once home to an influential banking family. The villa and its three new wings are all centered around a garden terrace. Timber floors, soft tones and natural fabrics fill rooms–nab one with a French balcony. A 50-foot lap pool is among the amenities in the four-level, 11,000-square-foot spa, and the hotel’s Italian restaurant, Gusto, boasts a Michelin star. In part due to the large number of privately-accessible suites (36 out of 163 rooms), this hotel draws the city’s most VIP visitors, among them the German Soccer National Team. Time Out tip: Check the hotel’s website for live music events in the JFK bar.
Hyatt Place Frankfurt Airport
As a major international hub, Frankfurt Airport is home to its fair share of brutal layovers and early flights. The brand-new Hyatt Place Frankfurt Airport has all the fixings for making these travel itineraries as stress-free as possible. Opened in January 2017, this hotel is the first Hyatt Place-branded hotel in Germany, and a mere seven-minute shuttle bus from Frankfurt Airport Terminal One. Despite a chain hotel construct, the 312 rooms have a residential feel, and two of the four room types have ‘cozy corners’–meaning you can relax on a sofa bed or a chaise lounge. In-room coffee and tea, a 24-hour gym and kitchen and grab-and-go meals available for purchase bring home the dedication to convenience. Time Out tip: Print out your boarding pass by connecting with your cellphone directly to a remote printer.
Adina Apartment Hotel Frankfurt Neue Oper
The comforts of apartment-style living combined with a prime location on the River Main keep guests returning to the Adina Apartment Hotel Frankfurt Neue Oper, situated a five-minute walk from the financial and Old Town districts. Prices for the 134 rooms run from budget to luxe; however, all come with a fully-equipped kitchen, mini bar, iPod docking stations and stereo systems. Communal areas also include laundry rooms and a gym with indoor pool and sauna. For those with no time or energy for cooking, a large hot and cold breakfast buffet kicks each morning off and room service runs 16 hours a day. Time Out tip: The Goethe House, where German writer Johann Wolfgang Goethe was born, is a nine-minute walk away.
The stylish home of a well-traveled fictional character, Libertine Lindenberg in the Alt-Sachsenhausen-neighborhood is not your traditional hotel experience. Among the more unique amenities in the five-story boutique hotel are film and concert nights, a recording studio, cooking classes and a punching bag in the basement gym. The slim silhouettes of Mid-Century-Modern-style furnishings fill the ground-floor cafe and lounge area, and nearly all furnishings throughout are handmade or custom-designed. The one-to-three bedroom suites are available by night or month and can include kitchenettes. Soak in the city skyline on the top floor in the 24-hour fully-stocked kitchen, where ingredients for various meal options are available on an honor system. Time Out tip: Bikes are free to guests, but perhaps you’d like to zip around on the Libertine’s über stylish yellow Vespa ($39 a day).
25hours Hotel by Levi’s
Steps away from the main train station, and part of the popular 25hours hotel chain, the 76-room Frankfurt by Levi’s is a tribute to Levi’s jeans. Appropriately, blue is the dominant color in the creative interior design. Each of the single, bunkbed (with two beds) and suite rooms, ranging from 183 square feet to 377 square feet, come with Bluetooth speakers. In summer, you’ll find open-air cinema, concerts and barbecues on the rooftop terrace. Bike tours and rentals are offered for a fee on Schindelhauer bikes, however you can always drive off in a Mini car free-of-charge, depending on availability. While the hotel does not have a fitness center, a collaboration with a nearby Fitness First means you can take advantage of facilities including a sauna for under 10 euros a day. Time Out tip: Some of the rooms have more privacy than others due to glass bathroom doors; ask when you book if you have a preference.
A green-tinted muddle of basil, gin, lemon juice and sugar, the Gin Basil Smash is a fresh summery drink making the bar circuits worldwide these days. Le Lion makes the case that they invented it—and this claim is boldly stated on the sign outside the speakeasy-style cocktail bar which you’ll find brimming with lion accents. True or not, Le Lion is the place to find a very good cocktail in a sultry locale. Head to one of the upholstered bar stools on the second level, and you’ll have a good gazing point from which to watch the well-heeled crowd. Small plates of food are also on hand, mostly salami and cheeses. Reservations are recommended; ring the bell to enter.
Housed in a neoclassical 1839 villa, the Literatur House is a cultural institution seeped in old school charm. Before it was left derelict for several years, the villa in the Uhlenhorst district north of the city center served as a dance school and a home for girls. In 1985, the historic building was painstakingly restored with help from an unnamed donor; now, chandeliers drop over crisp white table cloths and elaborate stucco decorative elements on walls and ceilings are back to their original glory. From a menu focusing on what’s seasonal and regional, try a sweet taste of Germany with the Pflaumen Knödel, soft dumplings filled with plum and cognac swimming in a vanilla cream sauce.