Upper Bavaria

Upper Bavaria (Oberbayern) is the Bavarian heartland. It's a place of deep forests, beautiful meadows, winding roads and jagged peaks. Upper Bavariais full of festivities. Every few weeks there is another annual fest or event in some town or city. The best time to visit would be August and September when the weather is most predictable and the beer gardens are in full swing. The folks in this region have a good balance of hard work, socializing, playing and just relaxing. But don't expect to notice this all in a quick visit, you need to stay for a while to really understand.



Other destinations

Eichstätt: market place


Upper Bavaria ( Oberbayern in German ) is the southernmost district in Bavaria and includes the state capital of Munich. With 4.3 million residents, this is also the largest district in Bavaria. The largest cities are Munich (1.3 million residents), Ingolstadt (123,000 residents) and Rosenheim (61,000 residents).

It covers an areas of around 17,000 km², with the mountain ranges of Kalkalpen, Ammergebirge, Wetterstein, Karwendel and the Chiemgauer Alps along the southern border. To the north the district reaches the Danube river. 4.5% of Upper Bavaria is designated as protected, with 131 natural protection areas. The highest point is the summit of Germany's highest mountain, the Zugsptize (2,962 metres).


People from this region of Germany often speak a dialect known as 'Bavarian' or 'Boarisch'. Even if you have a good understanding of standard German, the pronunciation may be very difficult to understand. The exception is Upper Bavaria's capital city Munich, where many people come from other areas in Germany and the world, and standard German is widely spoken.

'Boarisch' has similarities to the Austrian dialect of German.

How the Bavarian dialect differs

  • English: Hello, I'm Peter and I come from Munich.
  • Standard German: Hallo, ich heiße Peter und ich komme aus München.
  • Bavarian: Griaß God, i bin da Bäda und kimm vo Minga.

Get in

By air

The international Munich Airport is based in this region, although you can consider Salzburg, which is just over the Austrian border, as an alternative.

Get around

The major towns are connected with the excellent German rail network. A public bus network is available throughout the region, although visiting remote areas will be difficult. To visit the mountains and lakes a car would be ideal.

Cycling is a popular activity, and a good way to see the quiet side of life along minor roads in the region.




White asparagus is a popular delicacy in Germany and Switzerland.

The largest Bavarian asparagus (Spargel in German) growing area is around Schrobenhausen. In springtime you can buy white asparagus directly from the farmers, and local restaurants offer special asparagus dishes.

During the winter, go skiing in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

In Marienplatz in downtown Munich, see the Christmas decorations and do some shopping in the Kristkindelmarkt, which runs from the end of November through Christmas Eve.


The region occasionally experiences a phenomenon called the Föhn (pronounced fern), which has no direct English translation and means a downward sloping warm wind. (This is sometimes known as Chinook wind in North America.) It occurs as a consequence of bad weather in Italy, when damp warm air from the south gets pushed over the alps and comes down suddenly onto the region. It occurs mostly during Spring and Autumn and results in thunder and lightning. Many people blame feeling sleepy and experiencing headaches on this weather.

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