From international designer brands and trendy local designers, to traditional Bavarian handicrafts and wares, shopaholics can enjoy plenty of variety in Munich. Typical Bavarian gifts include trachten (traditional clothing) such as Lederhosen, while the most popular souvenirs are still bierkrug (beer steins) and pewter-ware.
The two main shopping districts are Neuhauserstrasse and Kaufingerstrasse in Munich's historic city centre. Department and chain stores abound in this pedestrian-only shopping area where everything from clothing and accessories to electrical goods and sports equipment can be found. Head to Maximilianstrasse, Theatinerstrasse, or Leopoldstrasse in Schwabing for independent shops and trendy boutiques selling all the latest local designer clothing. Second-hand stores can also be found in Schwabing and some real gems can be found in these places if shoppers are willing to spend time looking through the wares.
The modern Fünf Höfe shopping mall is a great place to find everything under one roof, while the Sunday flea market at Kunstpark Ost provides more alternative buys with second-hand goods, antiques and old bric-a-brac lining the stall fronts. For great food markets, the vibrant Viktualienmarkt behind the Marienplatz sells everything from cheese and spices to poultry and game. Browse through the stalls and let your senses come alive to the fragrances of spices and aromas of delicious fresh foods. The market is open Monday to Friday and even features a Biergarten where weary shoppers can take a load off, rest their legs and enjoy an ice-cold refreshment.
Most stores are open from Monday to Friday, from 9am to 8pm, and on Saturday until 4pm. VAT is 19 percent and almost always included in the price of goods. Non-EU visitors can claim this back by shopping in stores displaying the Tax Free Shopping logo. Munich is an expensive city but a rewarding one for shoppers.
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