9 easy hikes perfect for a day trip from Munich to the Alps

If you are visiting Munich and really want to get a feel for the city, you have to leave it for a trip to the Alps. Practically everyone in Munich owns a pair of hiking boots and going hiking in the nearby Alps is part and parcel of what it means to live in Munich. So strap on your hiking shoes (trainers will do for these trips 😉 ) and start exploring with these nine hiking trips fit for everyone.

In order of difficulty from super easy to easy:

1. Spitzingsee loop and Albert-Link-HĂŒtte

Spitzingsee like Tegernsee and Garmisch-Partenkirchen (see below) is one of the destinations in the Bavarian Prealps to go to. This is a very easy hike around a lake that will give you a glimpse of the mountains and an Alpine hut experience without the need to break sweat. I did it with a five month old baby.

  • Start of the hike: Spitzingsee bus stop
  • Travel from Munich: train from Munich main train station roughly every hour (80 mins), or by car (60 mins via A8 without traffic)
  • Difficulty: super easy
  • Walking time: 1hr 15 mins
  • Elevation difference: < 100m
  • Refreshments: Albert Link HĂŒtte

More details: Hiking with a baby at Spitzingsee

2. Along the Leitzach

Hiking along rivers is usually enjoyable and so is this hike. There is hardly any elevation difference to muster, a lot of Bavarian countryside to enjoy with the Alps peeping through at the end of the valley and a lovely Alm with great food. What is not to like about this hike?

  • Start of the hike: Elbach
  • Travel from Munich: 1 hr by car
  • Difficulty: very easy
  • Walking time: 3 hrs 45 mins
  • Elevation difference: +/- 180m
  • Refreshments: Schweigeralm

 

More details: Along the Leitzach

3. Above the Tegernsee

Another classic destination for outings from Munich is the Tegernsee. This hike above Bad Wiessee is a slightly less run-of-the-mill route than hikes on the opposite side of the lake. There is some elevation difference to cover, but it’s very manageable (even with a baby in a pram). It is ideal, if you want to enjoy both views across the lake and take a dip in it.

  • Start of the hike: Am Sonnenbichl, Bad Wiessee
  • Travel from Munich: 1hr drive with no traffic, can easily turn into 2 on busy weekends. Google knows good shortcuts though.
  • Difficulty: very easy
  • Walking time: 1hr 50mins
  • Elevation difference: +/- 150m
  • Refreshments: Am Sonnenbichl

 

More details: Hiking with a baby and a pram at the Tegernsee

4. Hintere LĂ€ngentalalm

This is a slightly obscure hike, but the Hintere LĂ€ngentalalm fully makes up for it with its tranquil atmosphere. This old farmhouse nestled at the head of the LĂ€ngental is a heaven of calm and bucolic charm at the foot of fairly prominent peaks.

  • Start of the hike: Untermberg, Arzbach
  • Travel from Munich: 1hr drive with no traffic, on busy weekends the drive should be less traffic heavy than the usual destinations around the lakes South of Munich
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 3hrs
  • Elevation difference: +/- 350m
  • Refreshments: drinks and cakes at the Hintere LĂ€ngentalalm

More details: An autumn hike between Bad Tölz and Lenggries

5. Maisalm

This hike will take you up the flank of one of Bavaria’s favourite mountains, the Kampenwand. After a short, but steep ascent you arrive at yet another traditional Alpine farmhouse. They serve a tasty selection of traditional Bavarian dishes, perfect for a quick lunch in the Alps. If you take the train to Aschau, where this hike starts, you’ll avoid traffic on the motorway and still have time to enjoy the afternoon back in town.

  • Start of the hike: Aschau in Chiemgau, train station
  • Travel from Munich: train from Haupt- or Ostbahnhof with a change at Priem (1hr 15mins), car 1hr along A8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 2hrs
  • Elevation difference: +/-300m
  • Refreshments: Maisalm

More details: A short hike to Maisalm

6. HöllentalangerhĂŒtte

Narrow path through the Höllentalklamm

Finally a hike in Garmisch-Partenkirchen! This one is right at the foot of the Zugspitze, Germany’s highest mountain, which provided the weather is good you will have a great view of once you arrive at this modern Alpine hut in a very traditional Alpine destination. Before then, you’ll pass through a spectacular gorge and yet again you can enjoy traditional Bavarian cuisine once you arrive at the hut. Of the hikes listed here, this one probably has the most Alpine flare.

  • Start of the hike: Obergrainau
  • Travel from Munich: Train to Garmisch and then the “Zugspitzbahn” to Hammersbach (1.5 hrs) ; Car (1hr 15 mins)
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 4hrs
  • Elevation difference: +/- 700m
  • Refreshments: HöllentalangerhĂŒtte

More details: Through Hobbit Land and the Misty Mountains to the HöllentalangerhĂŒtte

7. Hirschberg

The summit of Hirschberg and Tegernsee

Back at Tegernsee, the Hirschberg is one of Munich’s classic summit destinations. The ascent isn’t too long or too steep, if you consider that you will have bagged an Alpine summit. The views over the lake as well as on to the mountains behind the Hirschberg are stunning and there is a hut on the way to refuel after your summit bagging adventure.

  • Start of the hike: Bus stop Kreuth, Rathaus
  • Travel from Munich: Train to Tegernsee, then bus to Kreuth (1 hr 40 mins) or by car via A8, A318 and A307 (1 hr)
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 3.5 hrs
  • Elevation difference: 900 m
  • Refreshments: Hirschberghaus

More details: Hirschberg: the art of perfect timing

8. Wank

Karwendel in the distance

… yes this is a mountain. You will find it in Garmisch-Partenkirchen facing the Zugspitze and providing great views of the whole range. The hike is fairly long for an easy hike, but you can make it a lot easier, if you take the cable car up and then just descend.

  • Start of the hike: Garmisch-Partenkirchen
  • Travel from Munich: direct trains to Garmisch (1hr, 20 mins), car via A95 (1 hr) parking at the train station
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 6 hrs / 3 hrs if you take the cable car up
  • Elevation difference: +/-1, 050 m
  • Refreshments: Wankhaus (at the summit)

More details: The hiking season has started!

9. Kampenwand without Kampenwand

Hiking in a forest in autumn

Here we are starting to push the definition of easy, but again there is a way of making this hike a lot easier 😉 If you push pass Maisalm (hike no. 5) you can continue up Kampenwand’s flank all the way to Steinlingalm. From here you’ll enjoy spectacular views over Chiemsee.

To simplify the hike, walk it in the opposite direction to how I hiked it and instead of ascending on foot take the cable car to Sonnalm. From there you can hike to Steinlingalm and then descend along Maisalm to Aschau.

If on the other hand you were hoping to do a challenging hike while in Munich, go for the summit. The last section requires scrambling and has a short exposed section secured with an iron rope (not a via ferrata though).

  • Start of the hike: Aschau in Chiemgau, Kohlstatt parking lot
  • Travel from Munich: train from Haupt- or Ostbahnhof with a change at Priem (1hr 15mins), car 1hr along A8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Walking time: 6 hrs (incl. the summit) / 5 hrs without the summit / 3 hrs if you take the cable car
  • Elevation difference: +/-1,060m (incl. the summit) / – 860 if you take the cable car
  • Refreshments: Steinlingalm

More details: First day of winter on the Kampenwand

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2 comments

  1. Great tips here. I will be sure to pack my hiking boots when I return to Germany one day. Thanks, Mel

  2. Lovely post! Will definitely try one of these hikes out during our next trip to Munich! We often drive by in the ski season which might make it a bit of a challenge when there is snow but I am curious to check it out in another season as well! Thanks for this post 🙂

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