An Eco-Friendly Layover in Munich
Arriving in Munich’s international airport was much like flying into any other airport—large terminals, multiple languages, and plenty of shopping opportunities. With only 21 hours to spare in the Bavarian capital, it was tempting to jump into the city and visit some of the popular tourist attractions. But with more than eight hours left in the next day’s journey and two children in tow, a filling meal and a good night’s rest took priority. We could’ve arranged for taxis or private cars to zip us all over town, but we opted for a more eco-friendly approach instead.
With bus and train options directly connected to Franz Josef Strauss Munich Airport, using public transportation was easy. We took the 512 bus to Erding, a quiet suburb not too far from the airport. Weaving through fairly narrow roads, we saw living roofs, solar panels, and whole families peddling along on the quiet Saturday afternoon. The distinctively green feel of the city had the perfect landscape of endless corn and wheat fields hugging the town. It was a relief to be away from a densely urban environ.
After reaching the Altenerding station, we walked about 15 minutes to reach Motel Einstein. Located on Albert Einstein Street and named after the famous physicist, we knew that following VeggieHotel’s recommendation was a smart choice. The newly opened accommodation is exclusively vegetarian with a fresh and cheery aesthetic. Each of the 26 rooms are efficiently functional without excess furniture, decorations, or fluff. Most visitors are drawn to this property because of its close proximity to the airport and Therme Erding spa, as well as the self check-in and check-out kiosk that gives guests the freedom to come and go as they please.
Though not green-certified, Motel Einstein compensates by utilizing a cogeneration unit for electricity and heating, having an electric vehicle charging station, and serving a generous vegan and vegetarian breakfast spread.
We were floored by the abundance of dining options like non-dairy yogurts and dips, fresh fruits, gluten-free breads, vegan cheeses and deli slices, and soy milk options for coffee and cereal. The owners’ personal commitment to veganism is not only evident by the food, but also the vegan literature compassionately placed in each room.
For dinner, we took a 20-minute stroll to VanDo, a Vietnamese and Sushi Restaurant. Their vegetarian section included several tofu and vegetable dishes that were easily made vegan. The rich coconut based sauces and fresh flavors of lemongrass and cilantro were a far cry from typical German cuisine.
After clearing our plates, the staff members were kind enough to share fortune cookies and candies with our kids. They even called a taxi for us, which we happily took to return to our accommodation. Exhausted, we quickly fell asleep and slept cozily to recharge before jetsetting once again.
With many thanks to Motel Einstein for hosting my visit. All opinions are my own.