A bike is hands-down the best way to experience this flat, pedal-friendly city. There are loads of bike lanes and paths that wind through its parks and along the Isar River. The rental shop will give you maps and tips, or you can get a map at any city tourist office.
Weather permitting, here is a route to try: Go through Isartor to the river and head north to the Englischer Garten. Ride around the park and have lunch at a beer garden. Exit the park and go across Leopoldstrasse into Schwabing, making your way back down toward the museum quarter via the adorable Elisabethmarkt. Check out one or two of the galleries then head back to town passing Königsplatz.
You can also take your bike on the S-bahns (except during rush hours from 6 am to 9 am and from 4 pm to 6 pm), which take you out to the many lakes and attractions outside town. Bicycles on public transportation cost either one strip on a multiple ticket or €2.50 for a day ticket.
Mike's Bike Tours. Mike's Bike Tours also rents bikes, which is around the corner from the rear entrance of the Hofbräuhaus. Day rental is €15 for the first day, €70 for a week. Return time is 8 pm May–August, earlier in other seasons. Bräuhausstr. 10, City Center, Munich, 80331. 089/2554–3987. www.mikesbiketours.com.
Radius Tours and Bikes. Based at the central station, Radius Tours and Bikes rents bikes. A three- to eight-gear bike costs €14.50 a day. A 24–27-gear bike costs €22. Hourly rates are €3 and €5, respectively. E-Bikes (regular bikes that also use electricity) are also available, from €29 a day. Opposite platform 32, Hauptbahnhof, Munich, 80335. 089/5434877730. www.radiustours.com.
Mike's Bike Tours. The oldest bike tour operation in Munich, Mike's tours last 4–7 hours, typically with an hour break at a beer garden, and cover upward of 6 km (4 miles). Tours start daily at the Altes Rathaus at the end of Marienplatz. A standard tour costs €25 (bike included) and starts at 11:30 and 4:30 (April 15–August 31) and 12:30 (September 1–November 10); November 11–March by appointment. Reserve to be sure, though you'll probably get a bike if you just show up. Bus Bavaria, part of the same company, also offers day trips by bus to Neuschwanstein castle, which costs €49. Bräuhausstr. 10, City Center, Munich, 80331. 089/2554–3987. www.mikesbiketours.com.