New City – New Year – New Customs
December • 18th, 2018
by Constanze Sabathil
In western culture, right now is the time during which you start thinking about how to celebrate New Year’s Eve. In this edition, we want to tell you about German (Bavarian) customs and a couple of great spots in Munich to watch the fireworks on December 31.
One fun tradition for young and old is predicting what will happen in the new year with Bleigießen, which literally translates to “pouring lead,” although lead is not used anymore. Instead, small tin figurines are put on a spoon and heated over a candle. When they are molten, you pour them into a small bucket or pot with cold water. The tin solidifies and you can safely take it out. Now it is time for you to interpret the new shape: is it an animal, an object, a plant…? Use your imagination and look it up. When you buy a Bleigießen set, there will be a list with interpretations for your figurine – let it inspire you!
Have some Neujahrskrapfen for New Year's Day!
If you haven’t done so, you should definitely try this delicious “lucky” treat! Neujahrskrapfen are yummy fritters that come in amazing flavors with even better toppings. Eaten on Neujahr (New Year’s Day), this custom is said to be your good luck charm for the new year and prevent you from harm, sickness, and hunger. Sometimes, small pieces of it were given to farm animals to keep them safe as well, or put on the fields with the seedlings to ensure rich harvest. So share away with your loved ones and have yourself a happy and healthy new year!
Where to celebrate?
This is a tough one since there are so many great places to go to in Munich. We do, however, have two favorites: Olympiaberg and Olympiaturm. Located in the Olympiapark, you can go to the Olympiaberg and have a wonderful view over the city. Make sure to wear lots of layers, as it can get quite cold, and to be there early: Since it is such a great spot to watch the fireworks at midnight, it can get crowded.
If you want to be even higher, you can go up the Olympiaturm (“Olympic Tower”)! The open-air observation deck is open for New Year’s Eve and it gives you a 360’ view over our lovely city. Check out their homepage (in English) for more information.
We hope that you find something to your liking and enjoy your Munich New Year’s Eve! From all of us at Expat in the City an guadn Rutsch and Happy New Year!