Bayerische Motoren Werke

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW3Series-5332

Bayerische Motoren Werke, or BMW, was first founded in 1917 in Munich as a company producing airplane engines.  During the first World War, production shifted to motorcycles, and the company rode the motorcycle boom until towards the end of World War II.  During the dark times of the war, the company used prisoners from concentration camps during production of their motors.  After the war, production shifted to automobiles that are now that company’s staple.  The 3-series (shown above) was, and still is, the company’s most popular line.


There were two things on the to-do list today, as they were in the same part of the city.  The BMW Welt and Museum and Olympicaparck, home of the 1972 Olympics.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW-5314 BMW’s Office Tower Headquarters, just behind one of their factories.

A tram and metro ride later, we were standing in the middle of the BMW complex.  They have their museum, a factory, an office tower, and the BMW Welt all in a relatively small area.  We stopped into the museum first.  For a rather small entry fee of €6, we were able to learn about the company that started in Europe designing aircraft motors, then latching onto the motorcycle ‘wave’, and eventually it’s work in cars.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW3-5329One of their airplane engines from the 40’s

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW1-5322The motorcycle that started things off.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW2-5328A line of BMW Performance motors.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW4-5334The first BMW 3 series automobile.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW5-5336A cool display of all the tags of every 3 series model ever produced

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW6-5340Something interesting for me – the design process of a new vehicle.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW7-5341The interior of a prototype

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW9-5351BMW Vision Electric Concept Car

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW8-5349BMW Vision Electric Concept Car

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW10-5353BMW Gina, another concept car from 2001. The Exterior is actually a hydrophobic spandex fabric, allowing the exterior to change shape.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW11-5355There was also a small temporary Royles-Royce exhibit.

It was a great way to learn about a company that survived during the war and is now on the leading edge of the car industry.  The Welt allowed you to sit in cars and play around with a few simulators that are showing how much BMW is doing about emissions, etc.

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMWWelt-5392

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW12-5363The crazy architecture of the BMW Welt (Welt is world in German).

April 21, 2013-Munich3BMW12-5365There was plenty to do inside.

From the Welt, we walked over to Olympiapark.  The area was home to the 1972 Olympics, which was one of the most famous Olympics in history – for good and bad reason.  It was the first Olympics back in Germany since the WWII, so they were trying to ensure that the country would be portrayed in a positive light.  Unfortunately it was the site of the “Munich Massacre” where members of the Israeli team and their coaches were taken hostage and killed by Palestinian rebels.

April 21, 2013-Munich3Olympiapark-5368The original Olympic Stadium used for ceremonies.

In light of the bad things that occurred, the Olympics were rather successful, with US swimmer Mark Spitz setting the record for the most gold medals in an Olympics, at seven.

April 21, 2013-Munich3OlympiaparkPool-5369A (poor) shot of the pool Mark Spitz set records in.  I had to take this from the outside.

April 21, 2013-Munich3Olympiapark1-5370There were some kids playing in some Zorb balls in the small lake.

We walked around the Park and made our way up a small hill that allows visitors to see the entire park with a bird’s eye view.

April 21, 2013-Munich3Olympiapark2-5377From left to right: Olympic Hall (Olympia-Halle), Olympic Pool (Schwimmhalle), and (Olympiaturm) the tower.

April 21, 2013-Munich3OlympiaparkSoccerStadium-5378The Olympic Stadium

April 21, 2013-Munich3Olympiapark3-5384THe nice park we walked through to get to the top.

We had to move hostels (as our travel plans switched our original plans) to another hostel called Wombat Hostel.  This was actually a good thing, because the hostel was very nice and inviting.  They even had a common area/sunroom with hammocks and couches to sit and use the wifi.  The rooms also seemed relatively new.

April 22, 2013-Munich3Wombat-5484Wombat Hostel, located at Senefelderstraße 1, just next to the central train station.

For dinner, as per recommendation of our new German friend from the night before, we went to another beer hall called Augustiner Bräustuben.  Our server was somewhat excited to see a group of American students and joked around with us.  I had the recommendation of Haxenteller, which is half a pork knuckle in a beer gravy, with sauerkraut and a potato dumpling.  There was SO much food, but it was very good to say the least.  The interesting part about German food is how simply it seems like it’s seasoned.  It’s hard to give it a single distinction, but I’d probably just say salt… with lots of meat.

After we had our free drinks that the hostel offered us with the night, we decided to walk around the carnival area again to see the different booths and food, as Andrew didn’t get a chance the night before . While it wasn’t nearly as packed as the night before, there were still a good amount of people enjoying Frühlingsfest!

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  • Cyrus Davar December 29, 2014

    hey man how are you doing? my name is cyrus davar and i saw that your post said you were studying abroad at the time? i was wondering if you can give me some info on that cause i too am looking to study abroad as well any help would be helpful.
    thanks again
    Cyrus Davar

    • Cameron Piper May 3, 2015

      Hello Cyrus,

      Sorry for the delayed response – happy to answer any questions you might have. Feel free to shoot me an email at


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