Rose Island

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Rose Island
Feldafing rose island
Rose Island of Feldafing
Waters starnberger Lake
Geographical location 47 ° 56 '30 "  N , 11 ° 18' 33"  E Coordinates: 47 ° 56 '30 "  N , 11 ° 18' 33"  E
Roseninsel (Bavaria)
Rose Island
length 233 m
width 176 m
surface 2.56 ha
Residents 2
78 inhabitants / km²
main place Wörth
Map of the Rose Island, Lenné, around 1850
Map of the Rose Island, Lenné , around 1850

The Roseninsel ( Wörth until the 19th century ) is the only island in Lake Starnberg .

The rose island is located 170 meters from the west bank of the lake in Feldafing Bay, at the level of the so-called Glockenstegs . The island is the municipality of Feldafing with the castle as part of the municipality of Wörth (Rose Island) , the property is owned by the Free State of Bavaria . The number of inhabitants is given as "2" (for the castellan and his partner who live on the island all year round ).


The shape and size of the island changes slowly but steadily due to landfills and siltation. At the beginning of the 19th century the area of ​​the island was 1.3 hectares, around 1850 1.7 hectares, today it measures 2.56 hectares.


Relics of former stilt houses on Rose Island

Underwater archaeological finds of a pile dwellings near the island at a depth of approx. 4 meters could be dendrochronologically (i.e. by dating based on the tree rings ) to approx. 3720 BC. To be dated; thus human settlement on the rose island has been proven since the Stone Age Münchshöfen culture . It is one of 111 prehistoric pile dwellings that were added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2011.

Other artifacts date from around 1700–1000 BC. BC (early Bronze and Urnfield Age ), at that time the island also served as a place of worship .

During construction work in the 19th century were discovered in the soil of the island on numerous human skeletons, which in the soil or in stone boxes were buried, also were found flint weapons , pottery from different periods and from the Roman period include coins, jewelry and appliances. In the 7th century, an early Romanesque ( Carolingian ) church made of tuff stone with a retracted choir was built on the island , of which only the west wall and the foundations are preserved today (integrated and overbuilt by the gardener's house from 1853). One can assume that this church also had a wooden predecessor.

In 1545 the island passed into the ownership of the Rosenbusch von Possenhofen as an inheritance from Duke Wilhelm IV. They kept this island when they sold the Hofmark Possenhofen in 1588 . In 1730 the last daughters of the Rosenbusch family divided the island among themselves. Half belonged to the Schattel family, the other half to the de Stock family. In 1758 Janson de Stock also acquired the Schattel half. Around 1762 Johann Kaspar Reichsgraf Basselet von La Rosée then acquired the entire island or what was then Hofmark Wörth together with the Hofmarking and Possenhofen brands, and thus owned the largest closed riverside area on the Würmsee (Starnberger See). His grandson, the former Hofrat Desiderius Joseph Imperial Count Basselet von La Rosée, who had mostly lived on the island, died childless in 1834, after which his heirs sold the entire property to Duke Maximilian in Bavaria , and King Ludwig I received the island of Wörth.

Casino south side

The poet Lorenz Westenrieder said about the romantic quality of the island as early as 1800: “... the island would be big enough to bury any grief in it, also big enough to accommodate two hearts that are now in the sweetest and happiest enthusiasm of their souls need nothing but oneself and want nothing but bushes to hide their happiness from the eyes of envy. "

Wood engraving 1871 (The Gazebo)
Roseninsel , wood engraving by Hans Wolf , 1876
View from the Glockensteg with the ferry to the Rose Island
Rose garden and casino
Casino seen from the lake
The glass column in the center of the rosarium

In the early 19th century, the island was still called Wörth and belonged to the Feldafing fishing family, Kugelmiller (now Kugelmüller), who ran an inn there. The future King Maximilian II of Bavaria had his eye on the island since 1840 . At first he planned to set up the seat of his Maximilianeum Studienstiftung there, but it was moved to Munich . In 1850 the king finally bought the island, now with the intention of creating a quiet summer residence there. The planning and execution of the gardens around the planned island mansion was first in the hands of the royal court garden manager Ludwig Carl Seitz, who initiated the first design measures. Then the king commissioned the Potsdam gardening director Peter Joseph Lenné with the design of the gardens and the architect Franz Jakob Kreuter with the construction of a royal villa, the Pompeian-Bavarian casino (meaning a seasonally used summer house) in the middle of a park with an oval rosarium as Center. The rose garden with hundreds of tall scented roses gave the island its current name. In the middle is a white-blue glass column about five meters high with the plastic of a girl with a parrot . The column and sculpture were a gift from the Prussian King Friedrich Wilhelm IV. To his cousin Marie of Prussia and her husband, the Bavarian King Maximilian II. The casino was completed in 1853, but by the architect Eduard Riedel , as it was in the meantime with Kreuter due to high costs had come to a rift.

Maximilian's son, Ludwig II. , Used the secluded place to receive state and other guests such as the Russian Tsarina Maria Alexandrovna , the Prussian Crown Prince and later 99-day Emperor Friedrich III. or Richard Wagner . Ludwig also valued the island as a secluded retreat and occasionally met Empress Elisabeth of Austria there.

The Empress knew the area well, she had spent a large part of her youth in the nearby Possenhofen Castle and later came to Feldafing for many years in the summer, where she used to reside in the "Hotel Strauch" (today "Hotel Kaiserin Elisabeth"). Elisabeth's fondness for the romantic island was probably the main reason why Ludwig had the place looked after so carefully after his own interest in the island had waned over time. A meeting of the two was re- enacted in 1972 by Luchino Visconti with Romy Schneider and Helmut Berger in the film Ludwig II on Rose Island.

After Ludwig's death, the Wittelsbach family's interest in the island waned, and the casino and rose garden remained neglected and decayed for decades.

In 1970 the Free State of Bavaria acquired the neglected Rose Island for 800,000 DM from the Wittelsbach Compensation Fund and made it accessible to the public again. In 1997, after intensive planning, the restoration of the island began. Today the casino and the rose garden have largely been restored or restored true to the original. The casino can be visited as a museum from May to mid-October.


The Roseninsel, which is under monument and landscape protection, is the destination of up to 4,000 tourists a month and is often chosen as a destination for day-trippers who come to the lake from Munich and the surrounding areas on beautiful summer days. From May 1st to October 15th, a ferry boat crosses over to the island from the Glockensteg belonging to Park Feldafing . The speed of the ferry is adjusted to the number of visitors, the crossing takes about five minutes. If the number of people is low, the ferryman must be called by means of a bell attached to the pier.

Due to its quiet, road-free location in the lake and the relatively flat and well-maintained network of trails, the Rose Island is also popular with older people, and it is also easily accessible for wheelchair users and people with prams.

Bringing dogs and bicycles onto the island is not permitted. There are no restaurants or overnight accommodations on the island. Camping, lighting fires, sunbathing, picnicking, spending the night and playing equipment or ball sports are prohibited.

The prehistoric pile dwellings around the Rose Island are designated as a “UNESCO World Heritage Pile Dwelling Zone”. The protected area is marked by buoys and information boards. In order to preserve these valuable monuments, the protected area, to which the shore of the Rose Island belongs, should neither be driven through nor swum through nor entered.

In the summer months, civil marriages take place regularly in the casino.

The best way to get to the island by public transport is a 30-minute walk from the S-Bahn station Possenhofen or Feldafing (S6).


In addition to Empress Elisabeth, the writer Karl Zettel also wrote poems about Rose Island around 1890:

Flooded by the dark blue lake, it is
an island, quiet and small,
where deeper every rose glows
in golden sunshine.

There the king rests
lonely under roses from grave worries
when gentle breezes caress
his much-loved quiet house.

And the love of the people gladly blesses
with a loyal hand and true word of
the king's rest, his stars
and his rose island hoard.

Movie and TV

In 1972 the Italian director Luchino Visconti filmed the biography of King Ludwig II and chose the Rose Island with the casino as the location for four film sequences. The island can be seen in the landscape pictures between the scenes of the ARD telenovela Sturm der Liebe . In the movie I am the other , the protagonist's house is on Lake Starnberg across from the Rose Island. Scenes for the television thriller The Rich Corpses were filmed on the island.


  • Elmar D. Schmid, Martinus Fesq-Martin, Amei Lang, Joachim Zeune, Manfred Stephan: The rose island in Lake Starnberg. Official leader. Bavarian administration d. State castles, gardens, etc. Seen, Munich 2003, ISBN 3-932982-49-5 .
  • Christoph Hölz ​​(Ed.): Royal dreams. Casino and park on Roseninsel in Lake Starnberg. HypoVereinsbank, Munich 2001, ISBN 3-930184-27-3 .
  • Rudolf Reiser: The casino of the rose island and their kings , Münchenverlag, 2000. ISBN 3-934036-32-5 .
  • Herbert Paulus : The Rose Island in Lake Starnberg. German Institute for Merovingian-Carolingian Art Research, Erlangen 1953.
  • Martha Schad: Romances on Rose Island. , Rosenheimer Verlagshaus, Rosenheim 2005, ISBN 3-475-53651-X .

Web links

Commons : Roseninsel  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Since the lake was called "Würmsee" before 1962 and "Wirmsee" before that, today's Roseninsel was then called "Wörth im Würmsee" etc.
  2. ^ Feldafing community, residents' registration office
  3. Die Roseninsel ,, accessed on December 28, 2017
  4. a b Life on stakes in Süddeutsche Zeitung from June 20, 2012
  5. Dieter Albrecht: Historical Atlas of Bavaria, Altbayern Issue 3: The Starnberg District Court. Munich 1951, p. 19
  6. Homepage of the ferry operator: Foreword.
  7. ^ Gerhard Hojer (ed.): Bavarian locksmiths: Preserving and exploring . tape V . Bavarian Administration of State Palaces, Gardens and Lakes, Munich 1906, ISBN 978-3-9805250-0-8 , p. 333 .
  8. Otto Krätz: On the shine of bygone days - The story of a statue on Starnberg's Rose Island. In: Culture & Technology. Magazine of the Deutsches Museum, 4/2010, pp. 36–41
  9. Fesq-Martin, Martinus., Schatz, Uwe G., Jung, Kathrin ,, Bavaria. Administration of the State Palaces, Gardens and Lakes: Rose Island in Lake Starnberg, official guide; [German] . 3rd updated edition. Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung, Munich 2011, ISBN 978-3-941637-12-2 .
  10. Upper Bavaria: Holiday idyll ready for film in Stern from September 29, 2009
  12. Fährverbindungen until December 31, 2015
  14.,+82340+Feldafing/@47.9448772,11.305118,17z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x479dcee0e714bea3:0xee8e659f6ba2d70f Fährstelle
  15. Roseninsel plant regulations