27 Dec Munich: Dachau Concentration Camp Tour
There’s no easy way to write about visiting a Concentration Camp. But I think it’s important that you visit, if you have an opportunity. I’m not going to write much about it because it seems like everyone will have a similar-but-different, powerful experience. I certainly did.
It’s horrifying and astounding to realize the scale of Dachau, and how it compares to other camps and other atrocities during the war: the 41,000+ who were murdered at Dachau are a fraction of the millions at other camps.
It’s redeeming to realize that Germany today has a very deep respect, reverence, or even shame, for what happened. You don’t make jokes about the Holocaust here. A Nazi salute — even in jest — is punishable with jail time.
And there’s hope in realizing that we can say “Never Again” and mean it.
I went to Dachau with a tour, which I would highly recommend. Our trip today was actually the second time my husband toured Dachau; he was here in 2007 on his own and did the self-guided, read-the-placards method. He mentioned a couple times that he preferred the guided since our guide provided a lot of context for what the signs within the memorial and museum describe. Guides also have answers to your random questions. A four-hour tour only covered the very basics of Dachau; with a guide you can ask more in-depth questions between group stops. We used Sandemans New Munich Tours, but there are plenty of tour groups to choose from.
Travel pro-tip: we bought sandwiches at the train station before heading out. Our tour started at 9:30 and finished at Dachau around 2:30/3:00, so I was quite thankful that the family had the forethought to grab some sandwiches to eat on the S-bahn home. (No food allowed within the memorial.)
DIY Travel: Getting to and from Dachau would be very easy. Take the S2 S-bahn toward Petershausen; get off at Dachau Bahnhof. Exit the station and walk to the bus stop, which is right outside. Then, take bus 726 to Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site. If you have a metro pass for the entire network, your travel costs are already covered. The bus waited for a long time at either terminus, so it’s very easy to navigate. (Most tours include travel costs in the price if you don’t have a travel pass.)