Of all the concentration camps established by the Nazis during World War II, Dachau was the first, and it opened nearly 7 years before the official declaration of war by Germany.
The camp is located just a few kilometers from Munich in the German state of Bavaria, and due to its proximity, most tours of Dachau begin in Munich, so if you’d like to see the camp and spend more than a few days in the area, that’s probably where you’ll stay.
Dachau was liberated by the Allied Forces in April 1945, and according to documents there were more than 30,000 deaths that had taken place in the camp over the years.
Below is a list of 12 of the best tours of Dachau.
1. Munich and Nazi History Combo Day-Tour
This Munich – Dachau combo tour kicks off at the famous Marienplatz central square in downtown Munich.
From there, tour guests, along with their guide, will utilize the public transportation system to get to Dachau, where they’ll get a thorough historic narration as they visit every corner of the camp that was the macabre home to hundreds of thousands of Jews during its 12 year existence.
You’ll have time to strike out on your own too and take extra time at specific areas or exhibits that you find particularly poignant or interesting.
Upon return to Marienplatz at 3:00 PM you and your companions will set off on a walking tour through Munich, where you’ll visit historically significant areas.
2. Dachau Full-Day Tour in English
Though Dachau is just one of many similar camps that were spread over Europe during World War II, it’s one of the most well-known, and was the first of its kind when it opened in early 1933.
This tour includes the services of a local, official guide who’ll be able to answer your questions and add a lot of value to this already amazing site.
You’ll learn why the camp was opened, what the official plans were for those who were forced to live and work here, and what life was like for the soldiers and guards that were stationed here as well.
You’ll get access to the amazing first-hand stories of people who lived and died here, and some from those who were lucky enough to make it out with their lives as well.
3. Private Tour of Dachau Concentration Camp
Curt’s tours are considered some of the most enlightening and heart-wrenching of all the tours that are available at Dachau.
Though the site itself is a real eye-opener, for those interested in knowing everything there is to know, the service of a professional guide is invaluable.
The tour includes all the areas inside the camp, including admittance and orientation, living, eating, and working areas, and of course the facilities built specifically to extinguish the most amount of lives in as an efficient and inexpensive manner as possible.
Your tour guide Curt is an American, who is licensed as a guide and has been giving tours of the site to visitors for more than 10 years.
4. Dachau Memorial Site and Shooting Range Tour
This Munich-based tour of the Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial site also includes a visit to the nearby SS shooting range.
The tour, which lasts approximately 6 ½ hours, includes entry into the museum and a short documentary film that’s a great introduction for first-time visitors.
Visitors will hear the horrific stories of the sadistic experiments that were carried out here, and after seeing all the area’s highlights, guests will have a little free time to process all the things they’ve just seen.
It’s really a once in a life time opportunity, and this tour gives guests plenty of time to take it all in.
Everything is included except food, drink, and gratuities.
5. Dachau Concentration Camp Tour by Train
This 5-hour tour of the Holocaust Memorial Site at Dachau begins in Munich and includes transportation to and from the city to the memorial site.
The tour includes stops at all the important areas of the camp like the prisoner and guard barracks, as well as the medical facilities and the extermination chambers.
Though not all of the site’s structures are original, they’ve been restored to return them to near-original shape, so that guests can get a true feeling of how it must have felt to be an unwilling occupant here.
Many visitors are surprised to learn that in addition to Jews, Poles, homosexuals, and clergy members were also sent here.
6. Dachau Small Group Tour from Munich via Train
For those who’ve got the time to dedicate a full-day to visiting this unique historical site, this tour from Munich would be a great choice.
Your guide will not only explain the sights you’re seeing at the memorial, but you’ll also learn about the conditions that existed in Germany that led to the rise of Adolf Hitler and The Third Reich.
It’s a fascinating tale and is really world history, as opposed to just German history.
The global war that ensued as a direct result killed millions and changed the world as we know it.
You’ll have time for a bit of self-guided exploration as well.
7. Walking Tour of Dachau from Munich via Train
Taking the train from Munich is a great way to see the outskirts of the city before entering the concentration camp.
For much of the Nazi’s rise to power, Munich was a city that was central to the aims of The Third Reich, and as such is one of the most historically-relevant cities of the Second World War.
Visitors will get up close and personal with the camp’s barracks, transportation system, cells, and where the inmates were taken for extermination.
The gas chambers are probably the most lurid of all the camp’s areas, and it’s almost unfathomable to put yourself in the shoes of an inmate marching to their certain death.
This tour requires a fair amount of walking and lasts about 5 hours.
Transportation via train to and from the site are included in the tour’s cost.
8. Dachau Concentration Camp Private Tour from Munich
For many visitors to Dachau, a half-day tour is the right amount of time to see all the camp has to offer without overdoing it.
Not surprisingly, Dachau can be an emotionally overwhelming place, so before booking a tour carefully consider how much time you’d like to spend onsite.
Guests will walk through the camp’s eerie gate which claims that, ‘work will set you free.’
Obviously, freedom wasn’t an option for the majority of the inmates sent here, though some lucky souls did make it out alive.
This tour hits all the camps most important areas and give guests a well-rounded overview of the camp’s history in a relatively short amount of time.
9. Frankfurt to Munich City, Dachau Concentration Camp Day Trip
This full-day tour begins in Frankfurt and includes stops at Munich and Dachau as well.
All portions of the tour are guided, and the tour’s first stop is the Dachau Memorial, and includes the barracks, work areas, and gas chambers to name a few highlights.
Following the tour of Dachau, you’ll proceed to historic Munich for another guided tour.
Sights to be seen in Munich include the Old Town Hall, Marienplatz, the Cathedral of our Blessed Lady, and a few of the beer halls made famous as meeting places for Nazi organizers and sympathizers leading up to them taking control of the German government.
Though this tour makes for a long day, it’s perhaps the most well-rounded and value packed of all Dachau tours.
10. Private Round Trip to Dachau Camp from Munich Hotels
If you’d prefer to have someone else worry about the tedious details when traveling, this hassle-free tour of Dachau is a great choice.
Transportation to and from your Munich hotel is included, and once at the camp site you’ll have ample time to give yourself a self-guided tour.
The grounds and museum are laid out well to facilitate guests in seeing all the site has to offer in an efficient way.
Once you’ve had your fill of this unique spot, you’ll meet your driver who’ll zip you and your travel companions back to your Munich hotel.
It’s just a short drive, but it will give you a little time to reflect on the magnitude of what you’ve just seen.
11. Munich World War II Sites: Dachau and Third Reich Walking Tour
This walking tour of Dachau and other sites related to The Third Reich will give guests plenty of access to camp grounds while stretching their legs and getting plenty of fresh air as well.
Guests will enjoy a guided tour of the camp that’ll hit all its most important areas and includes plenty of history leading up to the war as well.
The second portion of the tour includes a walk to some of Munich’s most historic sites, and you’ll learn about their significance and the parts they played in the historical saga that played out in Germany in the ‘30s and ‘40s.
This tour includes transportation from Munich to the site and back but doesn’t include hotel pickup and drop-off.
12. Munich to Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial, Private Tour
For World War II history buffs, there may be no better place to visit than the concentration camp grounds at Dachau.
It’s been turned into a permanent memorial to remember those who walked through its gates, in the hope that education will prevent such a catastrophe from ever happening again.
On this private guided-tour, guests will get a poignant overview of the camp’s layout, and how it was used in the wholesale extermination of Jews, and anybody else who attempted to stand up to the Nazi State.
Multiple start times are available, and hotel pickup and drop-off is included if they’re requested at the time of booking.