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Starnberg is a popular local resort on Lake Starnberg in Upper Bavaria. The town is 30 km (19 mi) southwest of Munich, at the north end of Lake Starnberg. It is in the heart of the "Five Lakes Country", and is the capital of the district of Starnberg. In 2018, it was home to 23,000 people.



Starnberg Castle

The first mention of Starnberg is from 1226. The castle has been occupied since 1244 as "Starnberch Castrum" by the noble family of the Counts of Andechs-Meran and was conquered in 1246 by the opposing Wittelsbach family.

The village developed from two settlement centres: the farming and fishing village of Aheim is on the lake and is today's Achheim district. The village of Niederstarnberg around today's Tutzinger-Hof square is a little further away from the lake.

Starnberg gained importance due to the summer festivals organized by the Wittelsbach family from the 16th century onwards. The famous "Bucentaur", a large pleasure frigate named after the coronation ship of the Venetian Doges, was built in 1663: the all-blue, partly gilded splendor ship is considered the largest and most beautiful rowing ship that has ever sailed on German inland water.

From the 19th century onwards Starnberg and the lake attracted the attention of Munich citizens and excursion traffic began. Mass tourism began with the start of steam shipping on the lake in 1851 and the opening of the direct Munich—Starnberg railway in 1854. The name "Starnberg Station" still exists as the name for a side wing of Munich Central Station. At that time, the most prominent summer vacationer was Maximilian II Joseph, King of Bavaria.

The time around 1900 was Starnberg's great time as a sophisticated, noble and also expensive seaside resort. Famous names are the Hotel Bayrischer Hof, Hotel Bellevue and Hotel Seehof. In 1905 the Undosa was opened as the first German wave pool, with a wave machine powered by steam. The Undosa was in operation until 1960 and was torn down in 1983; the name lives on as the name of the lakeside restaurant.

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

  • 1 Starnberg station. served by  S6  and RB trains
  • 2 Starnberg Nord. served by  S6  of the Munich S-Bahn.

By boat[edit]

Bayrische Seeschifffahrt serves the town with a bunch of boats.

Get around[edit]

Map of Starnberg


Starnberg is famous for its location on the lake, and not so much for the town. The somewhat haphazard appearance of the town was sometimes described as "disfigured" by a German newspaper. In addition, the city is not traffic-calmed, and the through traffic from the end of the highway has to wind it's way from the eastern outskirts of the city. The real sights can be counted on the fingers. But if you happen to get into the right side street, you will quickly find confirmation from the car brands parked in front of the villas that the Starnberg region has one of the highest density of millionaires in all of Germany.

St. Joseph Church
  • 1 Catholic Church of St. Joseph. 1765/66 by Maximilian III built in the late rococo style. The most significant attraction inside is the high altar by Ignaz Günther; the artist is considered the most important Bavarian rococo sculptor. St. Josef (Starnberg) (Q17606309) on Wikidata
  • 2 Schloss Starnberg (Starnberg Castle). Fittingly the seat of the local Finanzamt (tax authority) today. Developed in a strategically favourable location on a steeply sloping moraine hill above the lake and as an outpost for the counts of Andechs, who were powerful in the early Middle Ages, against the then aspiring and less powerful Wittels. The castle was conquered and expanded by the Wittelsbach family as early as 1246, but was probably converted into a castle in the 15th century and used for the summer fun of the Wittelsbach family. Schloss Starnberg (Q1550088) on Wikidata
  • 3 Museum Starnberger See, Possenhofener Str. 5, +49 8151 447757-0. Tu-Su 10:00-17:00. Permanent exhibition on courtly shipping on Lake Starnberg; Development of Starnberg and the whole lake with its communities from the middle of the 19th century to the beginning of today's mass tourism; The most important exhibit is the pleasure ship Delfin, the only surviving splendor ship from the Wittelsbacher fleet. Museum Lake Starnberg (Q1670280) on Wikidata
  • Tutzinger Hofplatz (on the main street). The area around the former settlement centre of Niederstarnberg is a small pedestrian zone with shops, cafes and restaurants.
  • Lake promenade: strolling, cafes and restaurants.


  • 1 Starnberg water park, Strandbadstraße 5 (on Lake Starnberg), +49 8151 12666. Swimming pool, indoor pool, lido, wellness. Adult €4.






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