Located at the western entrance to the exquisite Hofgarten gardens, the Odeonsplatz is one of central Munich’s largest public squares, notable for its distinct Italian-style architecture. Taking its name from the 19th century Odeon Concert Hall that once stood at the head of the square (the remains of the building now form part of a government office block), the space still retains its creative streak, hosting a number of annual concerts, parades and city celebrations. At the top of the list is the Odeonsplatz Classical Evening, a grand open-air event held each July and drawing crowds of over 16,000 to watch performances by the prestigious Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra and other world renowned classical acts.
Even if you don’t catch the square at its most atmospheric, the Odeonsplatz still offers a dramatic starting point to city walking tours, with the resplendent Residenz Palace to the east and the monumental Ludwigstrasse running north to the triumphal arch of Siegestor. Also on the square is the Feldherrnhalle, or Field Marshal's hall, an arched fronted hall designed in 1841 by Friedrich von Gärtner, and the 17th century Theatinerkirche, an Italian-baroque style church, topped with a 71-meter copper dome.