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coat of arms Germany map
Coat of arms of the city of Rostock
Map of Germany, position of the city of Rostock highlighted

Coordinates: 54 ° 5 '  N , 12 ° 8'  E

Basic data
State : Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania
Height : 14 m above sea level NHN
Area : 181.26 km 2
Residents: 209,191 (Dec. 31, 2019)
Population density : 1154 inhabitants per km 2
Postcodes : 18055, 18057, 18059,
18106, 18107, 18109,
18146, 18147,
18181, 18182Template: Infobox municipality in Germany / maintenance / zip code contains text
Primaries : 0381, 038202, 038206
License plate : HRO
Community key : 13 0 03 000
City structure: 21 urban areas,
31 districts

City administration address :
Neuer Markt 1
18055 Rostock
Website :
Lord Mayor : Claus Ruhe Madsen ( independent )
Location of Rostock in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania
Polen Königreich Dänemark Schleswig-Holstein Niedersachsen Brandenburg Müritz Stettiner Haff Ostsee Schwerin Hansestadt Rostock Landkreis Mecklenburgische Seenplatte Landkreis Rostock Landkreis Vorpommern-Rügen Landkreis Nordwestmecklenburg Landkreis Vorpommern-Greifswald Landkreis Ludwigslust-Parchimmap
About this picture
Kröpeliner Straße , shopping street in the center of Rostock
Warnemünde with the beach and the landmark lighthouse and Teepott , Baltic seaside resort in the city of Rostock

Rostock ([ ʁɔstɔk ]) is a northern German kreisfreie case , university and Hanse city on the Baltic Sea . It is located in the Mecklenburg part of the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania . With 209,191 inhabitants, it is the most populous city in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and one of the four regional centers in the state. The city of Rostock is known as the Hanseatic and University City .

The urban area extends around 16 kilometers on both sides of the Warnow up to its confluence with the Baltic Sea in the Warnemünde district . The city center is on the left bank of the river. Rostock is characterized by its location by the sea, its harbor and the University of Rostock , which was founded in 1419. The port of Rostock, which is important for ferry traffic and cargo handling, and the largest German cruise port in Warnemünde are located in the city. The Hanse Sail , founded in 1991, has developed into one of the major maritime events in the Baltic Sea region.

Rostock on June 24, 1218 received the Lubeck city charter and was since 1283 member of the Hanseatic League . In the centuries that followed, the city flourished thanks to free trade . A number of brick Gothic buildings have survived from that time . Many other architectural monuments in Rostock testify to the historical development of the city. Due to the decline of the Hanseatic League, the Thirty Years War and the city ​​fire of 1677 , Rostock was set back and the population decreased to a third, of which the city was only able to fully recover with industrialization in the 19th century.

The city belonged to the Grand Duchy until 1918 and then to the Free State of Mecklenburg-Schwerin . As Mecklenburg's largest city, Rostock has always been the economic center of the state. In addition to the capital and residence city of Schwerin , Rostock and its university were also the center of culture and science in Mecklenburg.

With the establishment of the aircraft works Arado in 1921 and Heinkel in 1922, Rostock became an important technology location, which made the city a target of the air war in World War II in the 1940s . In the GDR -time Rostock was 1952-1990 district town and has been extended systematically by new urban areas until it grew to over 250,000 inhabitants. The maritime economy dominated for centuries. After 1990 the Rostock economy changed considerably. The importance of the shipbuilding industry declined sharply. Many new jobs were created in tourism and in the service sector. The city's largest employer is the university with its university medicine .



Satellite image of Rostock
Source: World Wind

Rostock is located roughly in the northern center of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The urban area extends on both sides of the lower reaches of the Warnow . The river runs predominantly in north-south direction, only in the area of ​​downtown Rostock in east-west direction. Near the Rostock city center, the course of the river widens to the Unterwarnow , which explains the name of the city ("river broadening"). Before it flows into the Baltic Sea at the Warnemünde district , the Unterwarnow widens towards the east towards the Breitling . To the south of it is the Rostock seaport .

The largest built-up part of Rostock is on the left bank of the Warnow. These include the city center, the residential areas Kröpeliner-Tor-Vorstadt and Hansaviertel , which were built in the 19th and first third of the 20th century, and the Südstadt residential areas south of the city center, Reutershagen , Evershagen , Lütten Klein , Groß Klein , Schmarl and Lichtenhagen, which were built from 1960 between the city center and Warnemünde. The part of the city to the right of the Warnow is characterized by the overseas port, commercial sites and the approx. 6000 hectare coastal forest of Rostocker Heide . In addition, there are settlement areas in Dierkow and Brinckmansdorf from the time between the world wars, large settlements from the 1980s in Dierkow and Toitenwinkel and some rural districts.

Rostock's largest extension from north to south is 21.6 km and from east to west 19.4 km. The length of the city limits (excluding the coast) is 97.9 km. Rostock's coast itself is 18.5 km long. The Warnow in the urban area extends over 16 km.

The geography of the old town, but also that of the area around Warnemünde, have changed over time. Where a main road runs along the beach today , it actually used to be a beach, and long bridges led into the navigable water. For a long time, a moat ran around the city for protection, which - now useless - was corrected in the course of the demolition and expansion of the city ​​harbor . The bridges in front of the Petritor and the Kröpeliner Tor, which no longer exist today, can still be seen in old photos and illustrations . In addition to the fishing port, the Haedge port with the coal quay - today "Haedge Peninsula" - was built. In addition, the flow of the Warnow in Warnemünde has been changed. If it used to be the old electricity , today it is the new electricity , which has also been significantly expanded. The Breitling was also changed with the addition of large docks.

Rostock is surrounded by the Rostock district , which forms the Rostock regiopole region . Immediate neighboring communities in the northeast are the non-governmental municipality Graal-Müritz , in the east the Rostocker Heide district (with the communities Gelbensande , Rövershagen , Mönchhagen and Bentwisch ), in the southeast the district Carbäk (with Broderstorf and Roggentin ), in the south the non-governmental community Dummerstorf . In the south to the northwest, Rostock borders the Warnow-West department (with the municipalities of Papendorf , Kritzmow , Lambrechtshagen , and Elmenhorst / Lichtenhagen ), interrupted only by a short border to the Bad Doberan-Land department with the Admannshagen-Bargeshagen municipality . The Rostock agglomeration has around 243,000 inhabitants. The closest metropolitan areas are Hamburg in the west, Stettin in the east, Copenhagen-Malmö in the north and Berlin in the southeast.

City structure


The city of Rostock is divided into 31 districts. For statistical purposes these are grouped into 21 urban areas (A to U). Furthermore, the districts are distributed over five local office areas, for each of which a local office is responsible. Resident issues (e.g. reports) are processed here.

Local offices and districts

The 5 local office areas with their associated districts
Local office Districts
center Kröpeliner-Tor-Vorstadt (Bramow), Südstadt , Biestow , Stadtmitte ( Steintor-Vorstadt , Northern Old Town , Eastern Old Town ), Brinckmansdorf (Alt Bartelsdorf, Riekdahl, Osthafen, Weißes Kreuz, Waldeslust, Kassebohm)
Northwest 1 Seaside resort Warnemünde , Diedrichshagen , Markgrafenheide (forest settlement), Hohe Düne (An der See, marina), Hinrichshagen (Erich-Weinert-Siedlung, Wallensteinslager), Wiethagen (Meyer's house), Torfbrücke , Groß Klein (Lütten Klein-Dorf, Dänenberg, Groß Klein-Dorf), Schmarl ( Marienehe , Schmarl-Dorf)
Northwest 2 Lichtenhagen (Klein Lichtenhagen, Ostseewelle, Möhlenkamp, ​​settlement Grabower Str.), Lütten Klein , Evershagen (Evershagen-Süd, Evershagen-Dorf, orchard, Schutow)
east Dierkow -Neu (Dierkower Höhe), Dierkow -Ost, Dierkow -West, Toitenwinkel , Gehlsdorf (Langenort), Hinrichsdorf , Krummendorf (Oldendorf, Warnowrande), Nienhagen , Peez , Stuthof , Jürgeshof
west Reutershagen (Reutershagen I, Reutershagen II, composers' quarter, Vorweden, Schutow), Hansaviertel , garden city


After the founding of the city and the unification of the city districts, Rostock acquired the large Rostocker Heide as well as some nearby villages and estates (Bartelsdorf, Bentwisch, Broderstorf, Kassebohm, Kessin, Rövershagen, Riekdahl, Stuthof, Willershagen and Gragetopshof) in the 13th century .

Most of these places, however, were later run as independent municipalities and not or only in the 20th century rejoined the city of Rostock. In the 14th century the city acquired the village of Warnemünde and thus gained access to the sea. Warnemünde was an exclave in Rostock until well into the 20th century . A closed urban area has existed since 1934.

There are three stages in urban development: the first in the 13th and 14th centuries, the second after industrialization , i.e. in the first half of the 20th century, and the third after the Second World War . By the way, monastery complexes did not belong to the actual city area for a long time, even if they were within the city ​​walls . The monastery of the Holy Cross, for example - which incidentally had considerable property in Rostock and Mecklenburg, like the village of Schmarl with the Hundsburg - could only be dissolved by the constitution of the Free State of Mecklenburg-Schwerin in 1920.

There are also minor changes to the total area of ​​the urban area. In the 1970s the Berlin – Rostock autobahn was built and in this context, for example, areas were assigned to the city that today belong to Alt Bartelsdorf and Riekdahl (approx. 2 km²). In 1980 part of the Rostock Heath went to Graal-Müritz (approx. 1 km²), a year later a part of the Sievershagen district went to Rostock (also approx. 1 km²). The most recent changes in area were made due to the incommunalisation of areas in the Baltic Sea. The newly built yacht harbor Hohe Düne has an area of ​​about 0.3 km². In 2009, the first adjustment of the regional border to the Baltic coast since the beginning of the 20th century took place. Small changes were made to the land reorganization process at the district boundary to Elmenhorst / Lichtenhagen.

Regardless of incorporations and the change in the assignment of parcels, the total area of ​​the city changes, resulting from current measurements made with more accurate methods that correct errors in historical measurements. The most recent measurements show the city a total area of ​​181.275 km².

Stages of development
The stages of the incorporation of places into the Hanseatic City of Rostock
date places
March 25, 1252 Rostock Heath
1323 Warnemünde 1
January 1, 1913 Dierkow
July 14, 1919 Barnstorf, Bartelsdorf, Bramow, Brinckmansdorf , Dalwitzhof, Damerow, Kassebohm, Riekdahl
December 9, 1924 Hinrichshagen , Markgrafenheide , Meyers Hausstelle, Schnatermann , Torfbrücke, Waldhaus, Wiethagen
April 1, 1930 Holy Cross Monastery
March 8, 1934 Diedrichshagen, Gehlsdorf , Groß Klein , Lütten Klein , Marienehe , Schmarl , Schutow
July 1, 1950 Biestow , Evershagen , Krummendorf, Peez , Petersdorf via Rostock, Stuthof , Toitenwinkel
January 1, 1960 Hinrichsdorf, Nienhagen
September 10, 1978 Juergeshof

1 As early as 1264, a “Rostock Warnemünde”, a seaport near today's Hohe Düne, was subject to municipal law.


The average air temperature is 8.4 ° C, with an annual mean precipitation of 591 mm.

Climate diagram
J F. M. A. M. J J A. S. O N D.
Temperature in ° Cprecipitation in mm
Average monthly temperatures and precipitation for Rostock
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature ( ° C ) 3.0 3.6 6.8 10.6 16.0 18.7 21.0 21.3 17.4 12.7 7.4 4.5 O 12
Min. Temperature (° C) −1.1 −0.8 1.3 4.1 8.3 11.9 14.1 14.2 11.1 7.3 3.2 0.6 O 6.2
Precipitation ( mm ) 46.8 29.7 42.3 35.8 47.9 65.8 64.5 57.3 56.3 44.2 46.4 50.5 Σ 587.5
Rainy days ( d ) 10.0 7.9 9.2 7.8 7.8 9.8 8.8 8.5 9.6 9.4 10.5 10.3 Σ 109.6
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec


Name story

The Slavic Kyzziner from the Wilzen tribal association had settlements there around 600. They called the flowing apart of the Warnow rastokŭ . This old Polish name can be translated into apart for roz and river for tok .

The name has changed only slightly over the centuries; Rozstoc was first mentioned around 1165 . The castle was named Urbs Rozstoc in 1171 and the Castrum in 1182 Rostoch . Other variants: 1189: Rotstoc and Rotstoch , 1218 Rozstoc , 1219 Roztoc , 1240 Rostok and around 1366 finally Rostock . Where the Warnow, formerly Varnowa, flows into the Baltic Sea , there is consequently Warnemünde . Varna or varn means crow or raven .

Historically, Rostock was also mentioned by its Latinized name: Rhodopolis or Rostochium .

Since 1990 the city has had the addition of the name Hanseatic City . On March 18, 2016, the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Ministry of the Interior approved the addition of the Hanseatic and University City to the name . According to the decision of the city council, Rostock will have this name extension from January 1, 2018.

middle Ages

Petrikirche , Alter Markt on the Unterwarnow , the nucleus of the city of Rostock
The Kröpeliner Tor at the western exit of the city

On the right of the Warnow, between today's Dierkow and Gehlsdorf , Slavic craftsmen and trading centers have been archaeologically documented since the 8th century . By the 12th century at the latest, there was a princely castle belonging to the Liutizen tribe of the Kessiner family with an early-town market settlement. This was destroyed in 1161 by the Danish King Waldemar I , who was allied with the Saxons , after the Abodrite prince Niklot had fallen in a defensive battle against the Saxon Duke Heinrich the Lion south of Rostock near Werle Castle in 1160. 1167 is Niklot son submitted Pribislaw Henry the Lion and was then from him with a large part of West Mecklenburg invested . Around 1170 he built several new castles, including Rostock, which, along with the nearby Kessin Castle, gradually developed into a second focus of the state of Mecklenburg .

In the 12th century, craftsmen and merchants also settled on the high left bank of the Warnow, including Holstein, Saxons, Westphalia, Danes and Slavs. This settlement on the hill around the later Petrikirche and the old market formed the starting point for the development of Rostock. Rostock was first mentioned in a document in 1189, when Nikolaus granted the monks of the Doberan Monastery, founded in 1186, duty-free on the Rostock market. The mention of a Clemens church with a German priest indicates the Christianization of the settlement. After confirming the Lubeck town charter by Henry I. Borwin from 24 June 1218 was followed by an extension of the settlement to the south with the Nikolai Church at its center. In 1232 the Marienkirche was mentioned for the first time as a parish church of an independent settlement, which was connected to the older town to the west, beyond a Warnow tributary (" Grube ") and had its own market and town hall. After a recent expansion towards the west over the " Faule Grube " as a further natural boundary, the Neustadt was created around 1252 as a fourth independent settlement, the center of which was the Jakobikirche . In the years 1262 to 1265 the settlements finally united. The middle core of the settlement became the administrative center of the city, in which the city council and the court had their seat and the town hall was built based on the Lübeck model .

While the "Wendische Wyk" on the right of the Warnow experienced its decline and Prince Nikolaus the child sold his property there to the city in 1286, the urban area on the left side of the Warnow grew rapidly until the middle of the 13th century. Two city fires in 1250 and 1265 could not slow this upswing either. Rostock's position was strengthened by the acquisition of rights such as fishing rights on the Unterwarnow and the purchase of the huge urban forest of Rostocker Heide . At the same time, the city developed into the center of Rostock rule . With the acquisition of the seaport near Warnemünde ( Hohe Düne ) in 1264 and the Hundsburg near Schmarl in 1278, Rostock gained the desired free access to the Baltic Sea, twelve kilometers away . As early as 1251, Rostock had received the same trading privileges from the Danish King Abel as Lübeck had previously received.

The rapid rise of Rostock to the most important city in Mecklenburg went hand in hand with the decline of the state and city rule of the Lords of Rostock, while at the same time in the German Empire the power of the king at the time of the interregnum 1254–1273 had reached a low point. The Vogt increasingly lost its influence over the city council, which was formed from an exclusive group of wealthy merchants who were able to advise. While the ramparts of the lordly castles in and around Rostock were being demolished, Rostock built a stone city wall that enclosed an area of ​​around 1 km². Since the end of the 13th century, the social differentiation of the city led to crises and power struggles between the patrician families and the rest of the city's population. Between the 14th and 16th centuries there were repeated unrest and revolts against the city council.

The Rostock Landfrieden 1283 marked the beginning of the Wendish quarter within the Hanseatic League . Up until the last Hanseatic League in 1669, Rostock played a leading role in the city alliance and competed with Stralsund for the role of the most important city behind Lübeck . Rostock played a decisive role in all of the important Hanseatic ventures, such as the first and second wars with Denmark . Occasionally, however, the city also acted against the politics of the Hanseatic League, for example when, after 1376, out of allegiance to the Mecklenburg ducal house, together with Wismar, it supported the Vitalien Brothers in the pirate war against Denmark. Of considerable importance for the Hanseatic trade Rostock were Riga driver and the herring trade of Schonenfahrer on the Scanian fair on the peninsula Skanör-Falsterbo in Skåne , where Rostock own Vitte entertained. With regard to trade with Norway, the Rostock Wieck drivers concentrated on controlling the branches ( factories ) in Oslo and Tønsberg . The Gotland trip to Visby was also of great importance in the beginning . The only own product that Rostock exported to a considerable extent was beer .

In 1323 efforts to acquire the entire town of Warnemünde were successful. In 1325, the city received the right to mint coins from Heinrich II and in 1358 gained full jurisdiction . The Hanseatic city had thus reached the peak of its autonomy and its economic and cultural boom. With around 14,000 inhabitants around 1410, Rostock was one of the largest cities in northern Germany.

A visible sign of the importance of Rostock was the founding of the university in 1419 - the oldest university in Northern Europe . After the ban and interdict had been imposed on the city, the university left Rostock from 1437 to 1443 in the direction of Greifswald , where its own university was officially founded in 1456 . Later tensions between the city and / or sovereigns and the university resulted in two further moves in 1487 to Wismar and Lübeck and in 1760 to Bützow .

As a church in the middle town, St. Marien developed into the main and council church of Rostock, whose church patronage, however, lay with the sovereign. The bishop responsible for Rostock had his seat in Schwerin . In addition to the four parish churches of Marien, Jakobi- , Petri- and Nikolaikirche , there was also the St. Catherine's Monastery of the Franciscans , the St. John 's Monastery of the Dominicans and the Cistercian Monastery of the Holy Cross within the city fortifications . In addition, the Heilig-Geist- and St.-Georg-Hospitals were founded as foundations. Both the monasteries and the hospitals, as a powerful manorial rule, had numerous villages in the surrounding area. In the 14th and 15th centuries, the so-called Michaelis monastery of the brothers from living together , the Carthusian monastery Marienehe outside the city, the Gertrudenhospital in front of the Kröpeliner Tor and several other foundations were added.

Early modern age

The Reformation started in Rostock from the Petrikirche in the poor eastern old town, where Joachim Slüter worked as a chaplain from 1523. The council surprisingly gave up its resistance in April 1531 and declared the teachings of Martin Luther to be binding in all four main parish churches. The university as well as the monasteries of the Holy Cross, St. Johannis and the Charterhouse in Marienehe , however, remained true to the old teaching. The city council published a decree on January 3, 1531, with which it expressly permitted evangelical preachers to preach and criticized abuses in the Catholic clergy . The Catholic clergy were invited to work on a new church order, but reacted only hesitantly and inadequately, so that at Easter in early April 1531 the celebration of Holy Mass was forbidden in all of Rostock , but tolerated for another five months. A council resolution of April 29, 1531 forbade all religious from wearing the habit outside the monastery. From September 1531 the mendicant churches in the city were closed, the monasteries were inventoried and were under strict control of the city council.

It was not until June 1549 that Johann Albrecht I enforced the Lutheran faith in the Sternberg state parliament and dissolved almost all of the Mecklenburg monasteries in 1552. In Rostock, the nunnery on the Holy Cross resisted the Reformation for a long time until it was converted into a women's monastery for the upper class of the city. The Charterhouse of Marienehe was forcibly abolished in 1552. The school of the Brothers of Common Life in Michaeliskloster, which was dissolved by the council in 1534, was allowed again a year later on the basis of the Lutheran faith. In 1580 the large city school was set up in the rooms of the Johanniskloster .

In 1523 the estates united and confronted the sovereigns with self-confidence. During the feud of counts in 1534, there were renewed unrest and the city council had to recognize a citizens' council composed of 64 merchants and craftsmen. When the war ended in a defeat against Denmark in 1535, the old conditions were restored without any resistance worth mentioning, but in future the council should face citizens' committees in all disputed cases. From 1562 to 1565, a sixties council was placed on an equal footing with the city council and again defied a citizen's letter. After the city refused to give him the formal oath of homage , Johann Albrecht I , who was allied with the council, entered Rostock with armed forces, dissolved the sixties and destroyed the citizenship letter. At the beginning of 1566 the stone gate and the southern city wall were torn down and a fortress was built in front of the city. The smoldering conflict between the city and the sovereign was only resolved with the Rostock inheritance contracts of 1573 ( first Rostock inheritance contract ) and 1584. Rostock recognized the sovereign sovereignty of the duke, particularly with regard to jurisdiction and tax payments. Rostock's efforts to achieve imperial immediacy had ultimately failed, but the stone gate could be rebuilt and the ducal fortress razed. In 1583/84 a new citizens' committee was set up in addition to the patricians who were still able to advise them , the Hundred Men College , which consisted of 40 brewers, 20 other merchants and 40 craftsmen. After several centuries of unrest, this was the first long-term internal pacification of the city. In contrast to previous citizens' committees, the sovereigns hardly succeeded in playing off the council and the colleges against each other, even though the cooperation between the two bodies was not always free of tension.

Around 14,000 residents, a good 800 gabled houses and around 250 to 300 breweries at the end of the 16th century were an expression of a prosperity that exceeded even the heyday of the Middle Ages. The economy was entirely determined by maritime trade and brewing.

The Thirty Years' War (1618–1648) irrevocably brought about the end of the Hanseatic League. At first Mecklenburg was hardly affected by the war, but when Denmark entered the war the war spread to Northern Germany and the acts of war reached Mecklenburg in 1627. Wallenstein occupied the city with an army of 1000 men and expanded it into a garrison town . In Warnemünde a jump was built to maintain the port. In 1631 the imperial occupation of Rostock ended and the "Swedish Era" began. This change of power had no major consequences for Rostock, for example the university flourished despite the troubled times. If the country and the villages of Mecklenburg were exposed to violence and looting by the Soldateska, the Rostock city walls offered protection to many refugees. Rostock's sea trade, however, fell drastically. The city was hit hardest by a customs duty in front of Warnemünde that was granted to the Swedes by the dukes of Mecklenburg.

Rostock city fire in 1677
(copper engraving 1678)

The devastating city fire of 1677 fell in a phase of stagnation after the Thirty Years' War . Almost the entire old town and a considerable part of the northern central city fell victim to the flames. In total, a third of all buildings in the city had been destroyed - around 700 houses and stalls . It weighed particularly heavily that the center of Rostock's brewing industry in the streets leading to the port had been destroyed. The number of breweries fell from almost 200 to less than 100, and the number of inhabitants, which had been 14,000 at the end of the 16th century, fell to 5,000.

The Great Northern War 1700–1721 brought about a further deterioration in trade connections and led to looting by Danish and Swedish troops. The Seven Years' War also marked the city, which was occupied by Brandenburg from 1758 to 1762 . In addition, the absolutist princes took advantage of Rostock's weakness and during this time secured their power over the long term with the sovereign inheritance agreements of 1755 and 1788. From 1702 temporarily residence of the dukes, Rostock had finally become a Mecklenburg country town. The university sank into insignificance in the 18th century and also had to compete with a ducal university in neighboring Bützow that existed from 1760 to 1789 . Rostock did not begin to rise again until the end of the 18th century.

Vicke Schorler : Real abcontrafactur of the highly lavish and well-known old sea and Hensestadt Rostock - capital in the state of Meckelnburgk (1578–1586)

19th century

Chemical factory of Fr. Witte in Bramow near Rostock (approx. 1890)

During the coalition wars, Rostock was occupied by French troops from 1806 to 1808 and 1810 to 1813. The sea-trading city was particularly hard hit by the continental blockade against England.

The Mecklenburg bourgeois-liberal opposition to the March Revolution against the corporate state , which was politically dominated by aristocratic landowners, gathered around the Rostock editorial staff of the Mecklenburg papers in 1847/48 . In addition, the Rostocker Zeitung , founded in 1711, was the mouthpiece of the liberals. In the lowest strata of society, impoverishment, unemployment and bad harvests led to a restless mood in Rostock, which - unlike in other German cities - was not radicalized by the workers' association founded in November 1848 . The old council system was democratically reformed in 1848 under pressure from the revolutionary forces. After 30 months, however, the Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin reinstated the old hundred-man committee.

Rostock harbor and Jakobikirche around 1900. After the war hit in 1942, the rebuildable church ruins were completely demolished by 1960.

Rostock's sea trade grew steadily in the 19th century and remained the economic driving force of the city. In the middle of the 19th century, Rostock had the largest merchant fleet in the Baltic Sea region, the ships of which were mostly built in local shipyards. Rostock was connected to the German railway network in 1850.

The North German law on freedom of movement of November 1, 1867 gave freedom of establishment in the entire federal territory from January 1, 1868 , and Rostock's ban on Jews, which had been in place since 1350, to seek settlement and employment in the soft area of ​​the city also fell. It was not until the second half of the 19th century that the city gained new wealth with freedom of trade and extensive industrialization . In 1890, the Actien-Gesellschaft "Neptun" shipyard and machine factory in Rostock , today's Neptun shipyard , was the first large industrial enterprise in Mecklenburg . Other growing industries were the chemical industry, agricultural machinery, construction and service companies. Warnemünde developed into one of the most important seaside resorts in Germany in the first decades of the 19th century . With the establishment of the empire in 1871, the dynamic development process of the early days began in Rostock , but Rostock lagged behind most German cities of comparable size in terms of development.

In 1830, Rostock began to outgrow the area of ​​the medieval city wall for the first time. Many city gates were dismantled in the course of the city's defenses in the 19th century. The Zwinger , which stood as a defense tower in front of the stone gate, was blown up by Prussian pioneers in 1849 because it was supposed to be in disrepair.

On August 10, Wilhelm II visited the regiment that bears his name, Grand Ducal Mecklenburg Fusilier Regiment “Kaiser Wilhelm” No. 90 , on its 125th birthday for the last time in the walls of the Rostock garrison. He visited the town hall , the Marienkirche and the university .

First to Second World War

The plight of the First World War resulted in civil unrest and strikes. Three days after the Kiel sailors 'uprising , 1,500 sailors, infantrymen and landsturmmen founded a soldiers' council on November 6, 1918 . The workers of the Neptune shipyard, the Dolberg ammunition factory and other companies expressed their solidarity and formed a workers' council a day later .

In Rostock, too, the Weimar Republic was marked by economic crises, mass unemployment, inflation and the fragmentation of political parties, demonstrations and strikes were the order of the day. Above all, aircraft construction in Warnemünde with the two companies Heinkel and Arado , founded in the early 1920s, provided impetus for the economy . The most important industrial company remained the Neptun shipyard.

With the DC circuit of the countries all KPD mandates were lifted and the city council on the basis of no more than free choice freely applicable Reichstag election of March 1933 re-assembled, in which the NSDAP had become in Rostock with 35.5% the strongest party. Since some bourgeois parties boycotted the election staging over the occupation of the assigned mandates and the DVP and the Christian Social People's Service transferred their mandates to the NSDAP, the new city council consisted of 15 members of the NSDAP, 12 of the SPD and 8 of the black and white fighting front -Red together. Immediately after the Enabling Act of March 24, 1933 and the nationwide ban on the SPD on June 22, 1933, the city council consisted exclusively of National Socialists. Due to the law to restore the civil service , 31 offices were filled with “politically reliable” people, and sympathizers of the SPD or KPD were removed from service. Since the NSDAP lacked suitable administrative experts, the conservative Lord Mayor Robert Grabow DNVP could not initially be replaced until Walter Volgmann (NSDAP) took over his office in April 1935. At the same time, the city council was created by the German municipal code.

Fire in the Rostock synagogue in 1938

The start of the boycott of Jews in Rostock took place on March 30, 1933 with the posting of SA people in front of Jewish shops and continued on the following day with a large rally on the Reiferbahn. In 1938 the persecution of Jews reached a new dimension and in mid-1939 the displacement of Jewish companies came to an end. A total of 37 Jews were deported to Poland on October 28, 1938 as part of the Poland Action . The synagogue burned down during the November pogrom in 1938 . 64 Jews arrested by the Gestapo were sent to Altstrelitz prison under difficult conditions. Of the 70 Jews still living in Rostock at the beginning of the war, only 14 survived. Most were deported to the Auschwitz and Theresienstadt concentration camps in 1942 and 1943 and murdered there. Memorial stones embedded in the ground remind of some of the victims today (see also: List of memorial and stumbling blocks in Rostock ).

The completely destroyed old town quarter around Krämerstrasse (1942)

The armament of the Wehrmacht brought Rostock and Warnemünde, as important locations for the armaments industry, a significant economic boom. In 1935 Rostock had 100,000 inhabitants for the first time, in 1939 the number of inhabitants was already 121,192. During the Second World War , the shortage of personnel in the armaments factories caused by recruitment was compensated for by service obligations of the local population, foreign forced laborers and prisoners of war as well as inmates from the Ravensbrück concentration camp .

As the center of the armaments industry of the Third Reich , Rostock was a target of air raids by the Royal Air Force as early as 1940 . The city was hit by particularly heavy area bombings on the nights of April 23rd to 24th and April 26th to 27th, 1942 (“four-day bombing”), in which both the armaments factories and the city center were the target. At that time, Rostock was the most severely damaged city in Germany. The historic city center was particularly hard hit. Air raids followed in May and October 1942, in April 1943 and April 1944. At the end of the war, 2,611 of the 10,535 houses here were completely destroyed and another 6,735 were damaged. That was 47.7% of the apartments and 42.2% of the commercially used buildings. British Bomber Command and the American 8th Air Force had dropped a total of 2,940 tons of bombs on Rostock.

On May 1, 1945, Rostock was occupied almost without a fight by the Red Army , which moved in over the unbroken Petri Bridge. Only at the Mühlendamm Bridge did a detonation occur, which killed a Soviet T-34 tank and its crew. The mayor and his family and the mayor took their own lives. There was looting, theft and rape.

1945 to 1990

In August 1945, typhus and diphtheria broke out in the city , followed by typhus in November . The epidemics were favored by the concentration of displaced persons from the eastern regions and returnees in mass accommodation and by the malnutrition of the population. At the end of the war, only 69,000 people remained in the city of Rostock, which was suffering from extreme housing shortages. However, as a result of war returnees and the influx of displaced persons, of whom Rostock took in 33,000 in the first years after the war, the population rose again to the pre-war level by 1950.

Not only large companies (Heinkel, Arado, Kröger shipyard) were subject to dismantling by the occupying forces, but also numerous medium-sized companies.

In the first free election in the Soviet occupation zone , the local election on September 15, 1946, the SED received 48.87%, the LDPD 27.7%, the CDU 20.5% and the Women's Committee 1.98% of the votes. The arrest of Mayor Albert Schulz , (SED, previously SPD), who criticized the forced union with the KPD , shows how little local self-government was possible in relation to the dominant position of the Soviet military administration . Ideological and economic repression, such as the Aktion Rose, which was particularly striking in Warnemünde, as well as the massive flight to the West led to dissatisfaction, which also culminated in strikes and workers' demonstrations in Rostock on June 17, 1953 .

New large housing estate in Schmarl (1981)

In 1952 Rostock had become a district town through the administrative reform . The city was systematically upgraded, for example with the Baltic Sea Week , which began in 1955 and became the most important major event in the GDR with an international focus after the Leipzig trade fair . In the following years the city developed into the shipbuilding and shipping center of the GDR . In addition to the shipyards, the diesel engine plant (DMR) was established in 1949 , the later Fischkombinat in 1950 and the German shipping company Rostock (DSR) in 1952 . The Rostock overseas port was built between 1957 and 1960 .

In 1949, the reconstruction of the almost completely destroyed urban area between Marienkirche and Grubenstrasse began, whereby the historic streets were only partially reconstructed. In 1948 the western city wall between the Kröpeliner Tor and the Fischerbastion was torn down to make way for a parade ground that was never realized. The first prestige reconstruction projects were tackled from 1953 with the Langen Strasse in the city center and a new building area in Reutershagen in the style of socialist classicism . The attempts to develop Rostock into a socialist city left some wounds in the cityscape. In 1960 the war-damaged Jakobikirche and Petritor, also damaged by bombs, were completely demolished along with parts of the eastern city wall. The Rostock City Theater (1895–1942) at the Steintor, which was only partially destroyed during the war , was also torn down.

By 1988 the city had grown to over 250,000 residents. From the mid-1960s, new urban districts were built using industrial prefabricated panels with a total of 54,000 apartments, in which more than half of all Rostock residents then lived. Many old buildings in the city center, on the other hand, were left to decay. The northern old town, where the war damage had only been poorly repaired, was almost completely demolished in the early 1980s and replaced by prefabricated buildings a few years later.

From 1989/1990

During the time of upheaval in 1989 , the Rostock churches were contact points for oppositional forces who gathered in the Marienkirche for reminder services under the direction of Pastor Joachim Gauck . The first Thursday demonstration took place on October 19th. At the end of November a round table was set up in Rostock to actively help shape the political upheaval.

After the German reunification in 1990, the city had to struggle with enormous economic problems and experienced a strong population decline of around 50,000 inhabitants, which only came to a standstill after 2000. The xenophobic riots in Lichtenhagen in August 1992, in which several hundred partly extremist rioters and up to 3,000 applauding spectators took part, and which are considered to be the most massive racially motivated attacks in German post-war history, must be regarded as a low point of this time . As a result, many campaigns and initiatives were established in the former eastern part and throughout Germany to promote education in areas such as democratic culture, social interaction and cosmopolitanism.

Rostock hosted the International Garden Show (IGA) in 2003 and since then has maintained a congress and exhibition hall on the site. A joint application with Leipzig to host the 2012 Summer Olympics failed in 2004 in the international preselection by the IOC . In June 2007 , the G8 summit in Heiligendamm took place in the seaside resort of Heiligendamm to the west . A large part of the accompanying events took place in Rostock, such as the alternative summit and numerous demonstrations. In September 2012, the Darwineum, an evolutionary exhibition, was opened in Rostock Zoo . In 2018 the city celebrated the double anniversary of 800 years of Rostock and 600 years of the university with many events, including the MV day . On the occasion of this anniversary, Deutsche Post AG issued a special stamp with a face value of 70 euro cents (based on a design by graphic artist Matthias Wittig from Berlin).

Population development

Population development from 1871 to 2018

Since Rostock did not grow beyond its limits for a long time, the population remained constant from the Middle Ages until the 19th century at a maximum of 11,000 to 14,000 people. It only began to grow rapidly with industrialization and in 1935 exceeded the limit of 100,000, making Rostock a major city . By 1940 the population rose to 129,500. Due to the Second World War , this fell by around half to 68,928 by May 1945, but then increased rapidly with the immigration of German expellees from the eastern provinces.

In 1971 the number of 200,000 inhabitants was exceeded. In 1988 the city's population peaked at around 254,000. After the reunification in the GDR, the city lost 22 percent of its residents due to high unemployment, the relocation of many residents to the surrounding area and the decline in the birth rate of 55,000 people. In 2007 the population of Rostock rose again to over 200,000 people, at the end of the year 200,413 people lived in the city. By mid-2012 the population had risen to 204,320 residents with their main residence in Rostock. In the course of the population growth, the importance of the real estate market and in particular the housing market in Rostock and its regiopole region is increasing; rental and property prices are rising constantly in attractive residential areas such as in urban block fringes and villa colonies. In addition, new districts are being built in many places in the city.



Since the 13th century, the city was headed by the council with initially 10 and later 24 councilors. The proconsules or mayor held the chair . In the 19th century there were even three mayors. From 1925, the mayor has the title of Lord Mayor . This was elected by the city council for centuries. Since 2002 he has been elected directly by the people. The term of office is currently seven years.

Roland Methling (independent) was elected Lord Mayor of the Hanseatic City of Rostock on February 27, 2005 in the first ballot with an absolute majority; in the election on February 5, 2012, he was re-elected in the first ballot.

The next mayoral election in Rostock took place on May 26, 2019. The previous mayor Roland Methling did not run again for reasons of age. The non-party candidate Claus Ruhe Madsen (34.6%), supported by the FDP and CDU, received the most votes , followed by Steffen Bockhahn ( left , 18.9%) and Chris Müller-von Wrycz Rekowski ( SPD , 13.2%).

The winner of the runoff election between Madsen and Bockhahn on June 16, 2019 was Claus Ruhe Madsen with 57.1%. He was sworn in on August 28, 2019 and took office on September 1, 2019.


Distribution of seats in the citizenry
(53 seats)
fraction Seats
Left / Party

As a representative of the citizens there is a city ​​council , which in Rostock is called citizenship . The members of the citizenship are elected by the citizens of the city for 5 years. Since 1994 the citizenry has consisted of 53 members. At the first free election of the citizens after the political change in 1989/90, 130 seats were still to be filled. After the five percent hurdle for local elections was dropped on June 13, 2004, several new groups moved into the citizenship.

Since the local elections in 2019 represents the Left 11, Alliance 90 / The Greens 10, the CDU and the SPD of 8, the UFR 4, the Rostock Federal Government and the FDP 2 each and breaking 09, the party and the Free Voters are each a member of the Citizenship. After a member of the AfD switched to the RB / FW faction, the AfD faction had to be dissolved. The mayor, Roland Methling , who was elected to the city council for the UFR , announced even before the constituent meeting that he would not fulfill his mandate. The party and the left formed a parliamentary group, as did the CDU and three members of the UFR electoral alliance. The election for citizenship took place on May 26, 2019, parallel to the election of the mayor and as part of the 2019 municipal elections .

The chairman is the president of the citizenry . This additional representative office in the city was introduced in 1990 in addition to the office of the mayor through the “Law on the Self-Administration of the Municipalities and Districts in the GDR” by the then People's Chamber of the GDR . It was initially taken full-time. Since the municipal constitution was changed in 1994, it has only been carried out on a voluntary basis. The president of the citizenship chairs the meetings, prepares them and represents the citizenship externally. Together with the Lord Mayor, he represents the city. Regine Lück (Die Linke) has been President of the Citizenship since July 3, 2019 .


Along with Schwerin, Rostock is one of two independent cities in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. As such, in addition to the tasks of a municipality , Rostock also performs those of a district .

The administration is divided into the area of ​​the Lord Mayor and three Senate areas. The mayor is responsible for the future, economy and principle, while three senators deal with finance, administration and order, construction and the environment, as well as youth and social affairs, health, school and sport.

The districts of the city are combined into a total of 19 district representatives. These committees are called local councils and are redefined by the citizens of Rostock after each local election. The number of members fluctuates between 9 and 13 depending on the size of their area of ​​responsibility. The local advisory councils can be heard on important matters in their districts and are primarily active in an advisory capacity. However, only the citizens of the city as a whole have final decision-making authority.

function Official Party / group of voters image
Mayor President Regine Lück The left Regine Lück by Ralf Roletschek 08.JPG
Senate area Official Party / group of voters image
Future, economy, principle
Lord Mayor
Claus rest Madsen independent
Finances, administration, order
First representative of the Lord Mayor
Chris Müller-von Wrycz Rekowski SPD Chris Müller-von Wrycz Rekowski.jpg
Construction and Environment
Second Deputy Mayor
Holger Matthäus Alliance 90 / The Greens
Youth and Social Affairs, Health and Schools
Second Deputy Mayor
Steffen Bockhahn The left Steffen Bockhahn.jpg

Town twinning

Rostock has been twinned with Bremen since 1987 and within the European Union with Stettin in Poland since 1957, Turku in Finland since 1959, Dunkirk in France since 1960, Riga in Latvia since 1961, Antwerp in Belgium since 1963, Aarhus in Denmark since 1964, Gothenburg in Sweden since 1965, Rijeka in Croatia and Varna in Bulgaria since 1966. In 2014, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the opening of the Wall, a town partnership was signed with the Danish town of Guldborgsund .

Outside the European Union, town twinning has existed with Bergen in Norway since 1965, Dalian in the People's Republic of China since 1988 and Raleigh (North Carolina) in the USA since 2001.

Rostock is part of the international city community Neue Hanse and a member of the mayors' convention .

badges and flags

City arms

The Hanseatic city of Rostock had three different coats of arms in its history . The so-called sigillum had been Rostock's city seal since 1257 and shows a crowned bull's head , which later became the Mecklenburg coat of arms . The coat of arms, known as Secretum due to its secure storage , which only shows a griffin , was first documented in 1307. The griffin is the lordly symbol of the Rostock princes. The coat of arms that is valid today, the Signum , was created in 1367 as a seal stamp.

In its current form, however, the coat of arms was not clearly established by Grand Duke Friedrich Franz II until April 10, 1858 . Until then, different coats of arms, which had been borrowed from the seals, had competed with each other for a long time. The coat of arms was redrawn in 1939 by Prof. Hans Schweitzer from Berlin .

The blazon of the official coat of arms can be found in the main statute of the Hanseatic city of Rostock: “The city coat of arms is a divided shield; above, in blue, a striding golden griffin with an upturned tail and a knocked out red tongue; divided below by silver over red “Silver and red are the colors of the Hanseatic League .

In 1993, a logo was developed from the city arms as part of a competition .


Flag of Rostock

The city ​​flag has changed several times throughout history . A Rostock Hanse flag was first documented in 1418. In its current form, it was last established by the city council in the main statute of 1991.

The city flag consists of three horizontal stripes. The upper stripe shows the color blue. It occupies half the height of the flag and is covered with a striding golden (yellow) griffin with a raised tail and a knocked out red tongue, turned to the leech. The middle stripe shows the color silver (white), the lower stripe the color red. The two lower stripes each take up a quarter of the height. The relation of the height of the flag cloth to the length is like 3: 5.

Culture and sights

Cityscape, monuments and landmarks

Petrikirche and parts of the city ​​wall in the eastern old town
IGA Park in Rostock-Schmarl
" Teepott " and lighthouse in Warnemünde

Despite all the destruction caused primarily by the city ​​fire of 1677 and the bombing of the Second World War, but also by urban planning as a result of growth in the 19th century and the time of the GDR, Rostock has a rich stock of old buildings and a relatively closed historical city center . Particularly noteworthy are buildings in the style of the brick Gothic from the time of the Hanseatic League .

The largest church is St. Marien in the city center, a major work of North German brick Gothic , characterized by a mighty west building with a massive tower. The construction of the three-aisled basilica , which has the character of a central building , began around 1290 and was completed around the middle of the 15th century. St. Marien has a particularly rich interior. An early Gothic predecessor church was first mentioned in a document in 1232. In the eastern old town are the St. Petri Church on the Alter Markt , the area around which is the nucleus of Rostock, as well as the early Gothic Nikolaikirche . The church of the Monastery of the Holy Cross in the western city center is also worth mentioning. Outside the city walls are the Holy Spirit Church in the Kröpeliner-Tor-Vorstadt and the Warnemünde Church , both of which were built in the neo-Gothic style of the 19th and early 20th centuries.

A Baroque facade was added to the Gothic town hall from the 13th and 14th centuries in 1727 . Examples of splendid Gothic merchant houses are the Hausbaumhaus , the Kerkhoffhaus , the Ratschow-Haus or the Krahnstöverhaus in the Große Wasserstraße . Numerous townhouses, which were essentially medieval, were later redesigned in Baroque or Classicist style, especially in representative locations such as the Neuer Markt , today's Kröpeliner Straße or today's Universitätsplatz (formerly Hopfenmarkt).

From the Rostock city fortifications there are still three medieval city ​​gates made of brick ( stone gate , cow gate , Kröpeliner gate ) and one from the classical period ( monk gate ) , a defensive tower ( lagebuschtower ), larger parts of the city wall over a total length of about 1300 meters, some with Wieckhäuser , as well as parts of the fortress wall.

Distinctive buildings from the 19th century include the neo-Gothic Ständehaus , the main building of the university on Universitätsplatz in the neo-renaissance style . In the early 20th century, the city was greatly expanded, including a residential area in the Bahnhofsvorstadt (with the Zeeck Villa as a pioneering building from this time) and the workers' quarter Kröpeliner-Tor-Vorstadt . The water tower from 1903 is one of the numerous buildings from the period of industrialization .

A number of buildings that shape the cityscape were destroyed in the war, and a few more were also demolished in the 1950s and 1960s. In the 1950s, Langen Strasse was a representative thoroughfare in the style of socialist classicism , incorporating elements of brick architecture . Larger residential areas emerged in the 1960s and 1970s in the south and especially in the northwest of the city. Further prefabricated building areas followed in the 1980s in the northeast of Rostock.

Several of Ulrich Müther designed Hyparschalen facilities warehouse were built around 1970 in Rostock. These include the restaurant “Kosmos” in the southern part of the city, the “ Teepott ” in Warnemünde or the Christ Church southwest of the city center, which served as a replacement for the Catholic church on Schröderplatz, which was demolished in 1971.

At the end of the 1990s, under the management of Gerkan, Marg and Partners, one of the inner-city shopping malls in Rostock was built behind the Wilhelminian style facade of the former “Rostocker Hof” hotel . The same architecture office was also responsible for the urban planning concept and the IGA 2003 buildings. The office of the Danish architect Henning Larsen designed the business -like, modern buildings of the Max Planck Institute in the city ​​harbor , which was completed in 2001, and the university library in the southern part of the city (2004). In 2005, the post-modern building of Deutsche Med by German-American architect Helmut Jahn was built in the city center .

Further sights are the botanical garden , the former IGA , the Rostocker Heide with the “Ghost Forest ” and the Rostock Zoo in the local recreation area in the Barnstorfer Wald , which has been offering a special attraction since 2012 with the Darwineum .

In Warnemünde , which is dominated by the sea , the Alte Strom with a number of small fishermen's houses and the lighthouse from 1898 are landmarks of this district. In the 1920s and 1930s, the Warnemünde Kurhaus was built as an important individual building of the New Building . The lake promenade begins at the tea pot . The beach is over three kilometers long, stone-free and becomes narrower and narrower towards the Stoltera cliff .


Rostock offers a rich music scene at a high level , especially through the University of Music and Theater (HMT, see below ) and the A-Orchestra North German Philharmonic at the Rostock Volkstheater .

The most important orchestra in the city is the North German Philharmonic at the Volkstheater, the largest orchestra in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In addition to participating in the musical opera, operetta, musical and ballet performances, the regular Philharmonic concerts are well attended. Concerts take place regularly not only in the Great House, but also in the baroque hall and the Nikolaikirche. The Rostocker Singakademie , a choir association made up of professional singers and amateurs, is also active at the Volkstheater .

The main pillars of the performances of classical music in Rostock are the choirs of the St. John's Church , the Marienkirche and the Warnemünde Church . In addition to providing musical accompaniment to church services, the various choirs in these choirs also perform lively concerts with performances of cantatas , motets and oratorios, sometimes accompanied by internationally renowned soloists and orchestras.

Since 1991, the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Festival has been held every summer as a festival of classical music across the country . One of the venues in Rostock during the summer is an old shipbuilding hall from the Neptun shipyard .

With the Pasternack Big Band , Rostock is one of the few big bands still in existence in Northern Germany. There are also smaller, active and ambitious jazz ensembles and bands, such as Swing for Fun , The Marching Saints , the Breitling-Stompers , Ipanema and Fritzings Dixie Crew , which serve different genres and styles and fit harmoniously into the jazz scene in Northern Germany. The Jazzdiskurs series regularly introduces well-known and unknown formations and soloists from all styles of jazz, in the Bogarts Jazz Club (located in the pub and cabaret "Ursprung") there is blues and rock, Dixieland , bebop or modern jazz . The Jazzclub Rostock e. V. works towards the development of jazz music in Rostock and the surrounding area. Every year a five-day jazz workshop for traditional jazz, mainstream, modern jazz, contemporary jazz and blues takes place in Rostock.

The shanty choir Die Blowboys is known and active nationwide .


The first permanent theater in Rostock was established in 1786 with the old city theater, which burned down in 1880. In 1895 a larger theater was inaugurated southeast of the stone gate . This house was largely destroyed in the bombing raid on Rostock at the end of April 1942.

The Rostock Volkstheater developed into one of the most prominent theaters in the GDR. Ambitious plans for a new building have been discussed since the 1970s but never materialized. Instead, the houses, which had been set up as makeshift venues since the 1940s and spread across the city, were gradually expanded and expanded. Today the Volkstheater has three venues, the Large House, the Theater in the City Harbor and the Small Comedy, and covers the areas of drama , music theater / opera , ballet and philharmonic orchestra . There is a children's theater and a theater youth club especially for children and young people. The extremely tight budget situation in Rostock is leading to ever increasing demands for savings on the theater, which call into question its existence as a fully-fledged four-branch theater .

In addition to the municipal folk theater, the free Compagnie de Comédie, founded in 1991, enriches Rostock's theater landscape with musicals, drama, comedy, concerts and fairy tales. The Low German Stage Rostock has existed for almost 90 years and regularly appears in the stage 602 and in the theater in the city harbor with two premieres per season. The Jewish theater Mechaje has been part of Rostock theater life since 1997/1998.


During the GDR era there were five cinemas in Rostock: the Hansa-Filmpalast , the Metropol , the Theater des Friedens , the Capitol in the Breite Straße and the cinema in Warnemünde. After the political change, the company Kieft & Kieft took over the Hansa-Filmpalast and the Capitol and converted them into cinemas with several halls. For this purpose, a large cinema was built with the Cinestar in the Lütten Klein district . The Metropol, Theater des Friedens and the cinema in Warnemünde closed one after the other. In 2012 the Hansa also closed due to unprofitability.

In addition to the Capitol and the Cinestar mainly current blockbuster show, there's the movie theater Wonderful (Liwu) since 1993 a cinema in Hamburg. It shows sophisticated films every day in three halls and two venues, the reopened Metropol and Frieda 23 . The Institute for New Media (IFNM) and the Rostock media workshop are also located in Frieda 23, and we work closely with them. The LiWu and the Institute for New Media are active members of the State Association of Film Communication Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania . School and other educational as well as other special events are often offered. Frieda 23 is the central venue of the Rostock Film Festival, the Festival im Stadthafen (FiSH), which is organized by the IFNM.


Rostock Zoo

The Rostock Zoo was founded in 1899 and covers an area of 56 hectares in Barnstorfer forest . With around 4500 animals and 320 different animal species, it is the largest zoo on the German Baltic Sea coast. These include polar bears , big cats ( lions , cheetahs , snow leopards , jaguars ), meerkats , penguins , fur seals , gorillas , orangutans and many others. In September 2012, the zoo's Darwineum opened an evolution exhibition and a new place to stay, especially for the primates.


The privately operated by an association Kunsthalle is the largest exhibition space for contemporary art in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It was the first and only new art museum in the GDR. The collection mainly includes important works of art from the Mecklenburg and Western Pomerania regions , as well as works from late Expressionism and New Objectivity .

The cultural history museum in the monastery of the Holy Cross is one of the largest and most important museums in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania . The museum houses u. a. a collection of around 70 paintings of Dutch painting from the 16th to 19th centuries, which are among the most important in northern Germany. A permanent exhibition on the fortifications of Rostock in the Kröpeliner Tor and the Societät Rostock maritim (formerly the shipbuilding museum including the traditional peace ship ) show (cultural) historical exhibits. As a literary museum, the Kempowski Archive is dedicated to the life and work of Walter Kempowski .

The BStU documentation and memorial site in the former Stasi detention center deals with the most important pillars of the SED regime in the GDR and commemorates the victims of the Ministry for State Security (MfS). It is one of the best preserved pre-trial detention centers of the MfS.

Outside the city center there is the Warnemünde Local History Museum , the shipbuilding and shipping museum on the traditional Frieden ship in Rostock-Schmarl and the forest and Köhlerhof Wiethagen .


The Rostock Literaturhaus in the Peter-Weiss-Haus focuses on promoting authors and strengthening reading skills in children and young people. Readings, workshops, writing workshops and exhibitions take place regularly. The house organizes the Peter Weiss Week every year . In 2010, the Uwe Johnson Society was founded in Rostock on the initiative of numerous Johnson research scientists with the support of the University and the city of Rostock .


The largest regular event in Rostock is the Hanse Sail . It stands in the tradition of the International Baltic Sea Week , whose main organizer was Rostock from 1958 to 1975. It takes place annually in August and attracts up to a million visitors.

The Christmas market is the largest in northern Germany. The Rostock Whitsun Market has been held at Whitsun since 1390 . It developed from an early modern trade and goods fair to a folk festival. Until the 1930s, the Whitsun Market was the largest event of its kind in Rostock. It wasn't until the 1960s that the Christmas market and other events became more important.

At the beginning of the year there is the cabaret competition Der Rostocker Koggenzieher , from the end of March to June the book spring on the Warnow, which offers many readings and exhibitions, and since April 2004 the biannual literature show Prosanova in the MAU Club, in April and October there is Rostock culture week . In May, the Kröpeliner-Tor-Vorstadt celebrates the district festival Blaumachen . The FiSh short film festival also takes place in May . In June there is the Baltic Sea Jazz Festival , in July there is the Rostock Summer with music, folklore, literature and on the beach the series of events Summer of Cultures , as well as the Warnemünde Week and the Rostock Christopher Street Day . Finally, the Boulevard Festival and the Rostock Harbor Festival take place in September , before the event year ends with the Rostock Christmas Market in November / December and the big New Year's Eve fireworks in the city harbor and Warnemünde.

Every two years, the Hanseatic City of Rostock's Culture Prize is awarded for cultural commitment and for achievements that significantly enrich the intellectual and cultural life of the Hanseatic City of Rostock .

In 2018 the Hanseatic City of Rostock will celebrate its 800th anniversary and also hosted the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania State Festival . Rostock was awarded the contract to host the Federal Horticultural Show in 2025 .


In 2016, Rostock achieved a gross domestic product (GDP) of € 7.218 billion within the city limits, making it 52nd in the ranking . In the same year, GDP per capita was € 34,910 (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania: € 25,454, Germany € 38,180). The GDP per labor force is € 62,689. In 2016, the city's GDP grew nominally by 0.9%, in the previous year the growth was 1.1%. In 2017, around 115,100 people were employed in the city. The unemployment rate in December 2018 was 7.3% and thus below the average for Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania of 7.6% (in the neighboring district of Rostock it was 5.6%).

Economic history

Working at Liebherr in the port of Rostock

The Rostock economy repeatedly experienced structural change. Due to the Hanseatic League and the associated free trade in Europe, the city experienced an enormous economic rise. At that time, its church towers were among the tallest buildings in the world. This rise only dried up when the Atlantic trade increased in importance: the Hanseatic League was exposed to too strong competition and could no longer hold its own against the princes. Power struggles during the Thirty Years' War bleeding out the city economically and resulted in a large city fire from which Rostock did not recover for a long time.

It was not until industrialization that new infrastructure was created in the city. In the Second World War, however, economic structures were destroyed and industries such as aircraft construction were initially not re-established. After the war, the city was of particular importance as the largest Baltic Sea port with the most important shipyard location of the new GDR state. With reunification, the city then faced the challenge of adapting the existing infrastructure to the changed economic conditions. During this process, numerous employees initially lost their jobs. Rostock has recovered economically in the 21st century and is home to some growth sectors in the city area, including those in the field of cutting-edge technologies .

Major industries and companies

Today Rostock is the economic center of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and one of four regional centers in the state . The city's largest public employer is currently Rostock University . The service sector is becoming more and more important, as information technology companies , call centers , tourist and creative or online service providers are settling here .

An important branch of the economy for Rostock is the maritime economy , even if the fish processing ( Fischkombinat Rostock ) lost importance after the reunification and the shipbuilding ( Neptun-Werft , Warnow-Werft ) had to find itself again. The Rostock shipyards were retained. Today the shipping companies Scandlines , AIDA Cruises , Scandferries , Deutsche Seereederei and F. Laeisz are important in the service sector, while ship electronics Rostock , Tamsen Maritim , Liebherr-Mcctec Rostock and the Warnemünder Werften Nordic Yards (formerly Warnowwerft) are important in the manufacturing and processing industry. and Neptun shipyard. The cruise company AIDA Cruises in Rostock's city harbor is the largest employer and has around 6,000 employees. Several frost trawlers of German subsidiaries of the Dutch fishing group Parlevliet & Van der Plas are based in Rostock , including Maartje Theadora, the largest trawler in Europe.

The listed wind turbine manufacturer Nordex is the company with the highest turnover in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In 2007 the share was included in the ÖkoDAX , and the company is also listed in the TecDax technology index.

A nationally known company is the Hanseatische Brauerei Rostock GmbH, which, among other things, brews the Rostocker Pils beer, which has received several DLG gold medals, and markets it in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. With the reintroduction of the Mahn & Ohlerich brand at the end of 2011, the former founders of the brewery, Georg Mahn and Friedrich Ohlerich, will also be remembered.

The Society for Economic and Technological Development Rostock mbH - Rostock Business has been directing economic development in Rostock since it was founded in 2003 . An agency agreement was concluded with the city. The shareholders are the housing company WIRO , the port development company HERO Rostock Port and the Rostocker Versorgungs- und Verkehrs-Holding GmbH (RVV). The aim of the company is to increase the visibility of the region through city and location marketing, general tasks of economic development for the Hanseatic city of Rostock, approaching investors and acquiring companies, supporting local companies and providing advice on existence, as well as supporting and coordinating technology promotion. The supply of the Hanseatic City of Rostock is organized by the Rostocker Versorgungs- und Verkehrs-Holding GmbH (RVV). To this end, the RVV as the parent company, the Rostock public utility and the Rostocker Straßenbahn AG (RSAG) have joined forces to form a cross-network.


See also: Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania: Aviation and Space Travel

Replica of the Heinkel He 178 in Rostock-Laage Airport . The world's first jet aircraft made its maiden flight on August 27, 1939 over Rostock-Marienehe .

Rostock has an important history as a location for the aerospace industry . The renowned astronomer Tycho Brahe studied at the University of Rostock in the 16th century. The Rostock site was one of the most innovative production facilities for aircraft in the world before the war. Ernst Heinkel Flugzeugwerke, one of the largest aircraft manufacturers of the first half of the 20th century, was established in the Warnemünde district in 1922 . The company brought the city the final breakthrough in terms of industrialization in the first half of the 20th century , and Rostock became a modern city and technology location. The Heinkel He 178 was the world's first jet aircraft and had its maiden flight on August 27, 1939 over Rostock-Marienehe . Since 1921 there was also the Arado aircraft factory in Warnemünde . Also first in Warnemünde and from 1934 in Ribnitz was Walther Bachmann aircraft resident. For the rearmament policy from 1933 onwards, most of the companies were partially expropriated or had to switch to military production. During the GDR era, all remaining companies in the industry were expropriated from 1961 and z. B. converted to agricultural production, or completely liquidated .

After German reunification in 1990, the industry was able to re-establish itself in the greater Rostock area. Several Airbus - suppliers with around a thousand employees have settled around Rostock how the RST Rostock System-Technik GmbH , which opened in 2007 at the Center for Aerospace is the Technology Park Warnemünde. There, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) is also working on the development of the European satellite navigation system Galileo , with the “Sea Gate” project for ship control. Also Edag that luratec AG , Assystem , Ferchau Engineering and Diehl Aerospace are in Rostock.


The tourism is of great importance for Rostock. In 2011 a good 1.5 million guests stayed in the city, almost 900,000 of them in Warnemünde . The share of foreign guests was well below ten percent, both in absolute numbers and in terms of overnight stays.


Headquarters of AIDA Cruises in the Rostock city harbor

Cruises are important for Rostock and the region . In 2017, 892,000 passengers were handled in 190 calls by 36 different cruise ships. The situation is favored by the Rostock-Laage airport , the good connections to Berlin, Hamburg and Scandinavia as tourist destinations and the cruise terminal opened in 2005.

The German shipping company AIDA Cruises has been using Warnemünde as a base port for Baltic Sea cruises for several years . The Spanish Pullmantur now also uses Rostock as a base for its Baltic Sea cruises. Costa Crociere and MSC Kreuzfahrten have been using Warnemünde as a base port for Northern Europe cruises alongside Copenhagen since 2010 and 2014 respectively . The Norwegian Cruise Line and the American shipping company Princess Cruises allow on Baltic cruises up the approach in Warnemünde.

Due to numerous cruise ship calls in the Warnemünde area during the cruise season, the exposure to soot particles increases . In 2013, according to a NABU study, 300,000  fine particles per cm³ were measured. This means that the usual pollution in urban areas is exceeded by 60 times. Measured by the number of people who are on a ship, the emissions are low compared to, for example, automobiles. The shipping companies report that there are continuous improvements and clear exit scenarios. As a result of the SECA requirements that have been in force in the North and Baltic Seas since 2015, less polluting diesel fuel has been used instead of heavy fuel oil . Soot particle filters are not yet ready for series production and new engines are only being installed in new generations of ships.


Publishing house of the Ostsee-Zeitung in front of the stone gate

The first periodical newspaper in Rostock, the extract of the newest newspapers appeared from 1711. In 1846 it became the Rostocker Zeitung , the newspaper of the liberal bourgeoisie of the city. The longest circulation newspaper in the country was the Rostocker Anzeiger, founded in 1881 .

In the 20th century, the newspapers mostly reflected the political groups. In the first half of the century, the social-democratic Mecklenburgische Volkszeitung and the communist Volkswacht can be found in the left-hand political spectrum , while the right-wing Mecklenburgische Warte and the National Socialist Low German observer can be found . At the time of the GDR the media landscape was determined by the state and so the Volkszeitung appeared as the organ of the SED , which from 1946 was to be called the Landeszeitung and then in 1953 the Ostsee-Zeitung . For the CDU appeared Democrat , for the Liberal Democratic Party , the North German newspaper , and for the NDPD the North German Latest News . After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Der Demokratie was sold to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung publishing house and, like the Norddeutsche Zeitung, was discontinued in 1991.

On the other hand, the Ostsee-Zeitung (OZ) and the Norddeutsche Neuesten Nachrichten (NNN), which now appear as regional daily newspapers in Rostock, have survived . In addition, the tabloid Bild publishes a regional edition for Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. There are several online city magazines such as Rostock Today and the Rostocker Journal , as well as free advertising magazines that appear regularly. The 0381-Stadt & Kulturmagazin , the Szene Rostock , the city ​​and scene magazine Piste , the ok Ostseekalender and HRO Live appear regularly as monthly publications .

The city is the seat of a regional studio of the NDR , which produces contributions for radio and television programs. Two regional television stations report from Rostock, the private broadcaster tv.rostock and the community television broadcaster rok-tv (Rostock Open Channel ). The state-wide private television broadcaster MV1 , which has been broadcasting since 2012, is also based in Rostock . In the summer of 2005, Radio Lohro , a non-commercial city radio for the Rostock region, went on the air. The state-wide private broadcaster Ostseewelle also broadcasts from the Hanseatic city .

The German Press Agency (dpa) is represented with a branch in Rostock .

Protected areas

There are five designated nature reserves in the city area (as of February 2017).


Molenfeuer in Warnemünde, at the entrance to the Rostock ports


After the end of the war, the badly damaged city ​​port , which was Rostock's main port for centuries, was repaired over several years. However, the economic growth of the GDR and the establishment of a large state merchant fleet required the construction of a new, high-performance sea port, which was put into operation in 1960 outside the built-up city on the Breitling. To this end, a new access to the Baltic Sea was dredged in Warnemünde. In order to be adapted to the needs of the GDR and Eastern Bloc economies, the overseas port was constantly being expanded and rebuilt and in 1989 achieved its best result to date with over twenty million tons of handling - mostly bulk goods.

With the German reunification began the arduous path of redesigning the port, which was designed exclusively for the needs of the GDR, so that it could find an acceptable place in the ensemble of German ports. In the past 15 years, the overseas port has therefore changed its appearance and the range of services it offers. Due to the modern oil port, the facilities for grain, coal, fertilizer and cement handling and the terminal for the export of sugar, wood, scrap and piece goods, it is still a universal transshipment point.

Measured in terms of annual cargo handling, the overseas port is the second largest German Baltic Sea port after Lübeck and Puttgarden , and it is the one with the second highest number of travelers (approx. 2 million passengers). Passenger ferries operate to Gedser ( Denmark ) and Trelleborg ( Sweden ). The port infrastructure is owned by Hafen-Entwicklungsgesellschaft Rostock mbH (HERO), a joint venture between the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and the Hanseatic City of Rostock. The port operations are carried out by Seehafen Rostock Umschlagsgesellschaft mbH , which is privately owned, and other companies.

In 2013, a total of 23.2 million tonnes of goods were handled via the Rostock port facilities (2012: 22.7 million t, 2011: 24 million t), of which 21.4 million t were in the Rostock overseas port. On the Adriatic-Baltic axis, there are freight train connections between the port of Rostock and the end point of the maritime silk road around the junction of Trieste .

Along with Brunsbüttel, Stade and Wilhelmshaven, Rostock is one of the cities that are in talks in favor of an LNG terminal; 50 environmental associations and citizens' groups are against it.


Public transport network in Rostock and the surrounding area

The first horse-drawn tram with wagons on rails went into operation in 1881 . Right from the start there were three different routes. In 1904 the first electric tram of the Rostocker Straßenbahn AG went into operation. 1944 RSAG after the license to was urban streetcar Rostock , from 1951, VEB transport Rostock emerged. 39 years later the Rostocker Straßenbahn AG (RSAG) was re-established.

Local public transport is served by the Rostock S-Bahn from Deutsche Bahn , trams and buses from RSAG. There are six tram, 22  city ​​bus and two night bus lines. Two ferry lines operate over the Warnow: a passenger ferry between the city center and Gehlsdorf and a car ferry between Warnemünde and Hohe Düne. Regional bus routes open up the surrounding area. They are operated by rebus , the bus transport company Güstrow and other companies within the Warnow Transport Association (VVW), which was founded in 1997.

From 2006 there were plans to create a light rail system by linking the tram, regional and suburban railway lines . These plans were also abandoned for economic reasons.


Central station, north reception building from 1913

The largest and most important train station in the city is Rostock Hauptbahnhof , a national railway junction. Various railway lines from all parts of the country come together here, the corresponding regional trains always meet on the hour ( ITF node ).

In long-distance traffic, ICE and Intercity trains connect Rostock u. a. with Hamburg , the Ruhr area , Stuttgart , Stralsund , Berlin , Munich and Leipzig . Individual long-distance trains also stop at Warnemünde station .

Rostock has its own S-Bahn network . Its main axis connects the city center with the northern large housing estates and Warnemünde . The S-Bahn trains run every 7½ minutes at peak times . S-Bahn trains run every hour via Schwaan and Laage to Güstrow.


Rostock is located on the A 19 (Rostock - Autobahn triangle Wittstock (Dosse) - Berlin) and A 20 (Stettin-Stralsund-Rostock-Lübeck), which cross at the Rostock interchange, and on the B 103 , B 105 and B 110 federal highways . The motorways and the federal highways 103 and 105, together with the Warnow tunnel, form a ring of expressways in and around Rostock.

The Warnow tunnel was opened in 2003 as a connection between the districts to the west and east of the Unterwarnow between Schmarl and Oldendorf. The A 19 begins at its eastern end; the western end is connected to the expressway from the center of Rostock to Warnemünde. The tunnel is the first privately financed and toll road tunnel in Germany. If the planning initially assumed 22,000 passages per day, today the traffic occupancy has leveled out at around 12,000 passages. So far the expectations could not be fulfilled. As a result, the financing model was subsequently adjusted.

From 1998 to 2007, the inner-city road network was also fundamentally redesigned with the new construction and expansion of Arnold-Bernhard-Strasse and August-Bebel-Strasse and the connection from Schröderplatz to the Warnowufer. At the same time, the formerly busy Neuer Markt and Doberaner Platz squares were closed to through-car traffic.

Bicycle traffic

Rostock is connected to numerous national and international long-distance cycle routes: including the Baltic Sea Cycle Route (as EuroVelo Route 10 runs around the Baltic Sea to cities such as Kiel, Stralsund and Danzig), and the Berlin-Copenhagen cycle route (including via Güstrow and Gedser) and the Iron Curtail Trail (runs through 14 countries along the former Iron Curtain from Norway to the Black Sea).

Air traffic

Terminal at Rostock-Laage Airport

Rostock Airport is located in Laage about 25 kilometers southeast . In 1993, civil air traffic began at the airport, which was previously used exclusively for military purposes. Via Rostocker Versorgungs- und Verkehrsholding GmbH (RVV), the Hanseatic city has a 54.1% share in the operation of the airport.

Lufthansa connects Rostock with the Munich hub all year round . Germanwings operated the Cologne / Bonn – Rostock and Stuttgart – Rostock routes until 2019 . In the 2014 summer flight schedule, Germania also connected Rostock with Hurghada , Varna and Palma de Mallorca . The Turkish holiday metropolis Antalya was served by both Germania and Tailwind Airlines . In 2014 169,946 passengers were handled. In the civil sector, the airport wins u. a. as a feeder for cruise tourism, for other vacation flights, as well as for business flights in German-speaking countries.

Education and Public Institutions

Federal and state institutions

Maritime facilities and navy


See also: List of schools in Rostock

University and research

Main building of the University of Rostock

Rostock University

University of Rostock : founded in 1419; It is the oldest university in Northern Europe and one of the oldest German universities. It is the third oldest German university. The founding faculties are the law, the philosophical and the medical faculties and, since 1432, theology . After a short time it was given the nickname "Light of the North". The individual faculties and institutions have been concentrated in four locations in recent years. After 1950 at the instigation of the East German government, the Legal Department was closed, it was reopened in the fall 1989th

Today it consists of ten faculties for agricultural and environmental sciences, information and electrical engineering, law, medicine, mathematical and natural sciences, mechanical engineering and ship technology , philosophy, economics and social sciences as well as theological and, as a specialty, an interdisciplinary faculty. The University of Rostock has 12,996 students (winter semester 2018/19) and 2900 employees, including 327 professors.

The four departments of the interdisciplinary faculty simultaneously represent the main research areas: Science and Technology of Life, Light and Matter ( life, light and matter ), Maritime Systems ( maritime systems ), Aging Science and Humanities ( aging of the individual and society ) and knowledge - Culture - Transformation.

The range of courses at the University of Rostock includes more than 100 Bachelor, Master, Magister and Exam courses from the classic areas such as theology, human medicine or mechanical engineering, as well as interdisciplinary and international courses.

University of Music and Theater

University of Music and Theater

In 1947 a university for music, theater and dance was founded which later trained music students as a branch of the Berlin university "Hanns Eisler" . From this tradition, the Rostock University of Music and Theater (HMT) was created in 1994 . In 2001 it received a remarkable new building on the ruins of the former Katharinenstift . About 500 students study at the university.

The university is one of the youngest of its kind in Germany. It feels strongly connected to corresponding institutions in Vilnius , Riga and Tallinn and also cooperates with the universities in Krakow , Gdansk and Poznan .

University of Wismar

The maritime division of the University of Wismar with the maritime simulation center is located in Warnemünde.

Other research institutions

Libraries and Archives

Rostock University Library New
library building from 2004 in the Rostock Südstadt
  • The Rostock University Library was founded in 1569 and has a stock of approx. 2.2 million volumes. It is responsible for the university supply of research, teaching and studies and, as a large academic library in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, also serves as a regional and national literature supply .
  • The Rostock City Library is the second largest library in the city with a total inventory of around 150,000 media, spread across several district libraries.
  • The library and estate of the writers Walter Kempowski and Uwe Johnson are important . While the Kempowski Archive is managed by the Kempowski Archive Rostock - Ein bürgerliches Haus association, the library and estate of Uwe Johnson are made accessible by the Uwe Johnson Research Center of the University of Rostock and the University Library of Rostock and made available for scientific use.
  • The list of libraries and archives in the Rostock region gives an overview of publicly accessible libraries, archives and special collections in the city and the Rostock region.

See also: Category: Library in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

Garrison in Rostock

Rostock was a garrison town for the Prussian army , Reichswehr , Wehrmacht and the armed forces of the GDR. The infantry barracks on Ulmenstrasse (GDR designation: Fiete-Schulze-Kaserne / 6th Coastal Border Brigade , today Rostock University ) came from the time of the monarchy . During the arming of the Wehrmacht , two new barracks were built on today's Kopernikusstrasse / Tschaikowskistrasse . (GDR designation for the areas used by the 8th MotSchützendivision : west of Erich-Mühsam barracks , now open; east of Wilhelm-Florin barracks , today Hanseatic barracks of the Bundeswehr )


The Michaeliskloster is also used secularly today. It serves the university as a history library and archive. The same is true of other sacred buildings: The Nikolaikirche serves as living space and concert hall, the Cistercian monastery of the Holy Cross as a museum, the former St. Catherine's monastery of the Franciscans houses the University of Music and Theater.

Paganism and Christianization

If the Wends were still " heathens " who resisted violent Christianization , Christianity was introduced under the political influence of Heinrich the Lion at the latest with Pribislaw in Mecklenburg and thus also in the region around Rostock.

The relationship between town and church was not free from tension and differences. For example, the Pope's excommunication from the university led to the university moving out of the city for a short time.


Since 1868, after Mecklenburg-Schwerin joined the North German Confederation , Jews were allowed to settle in the city again . The Rostock Israelite Community quickly formed , and in 1870 it set up the Old Jewish Cemetery on the edge of the Old Cemetery , today's Lindenpark , where funerals were held until 1942.

In 1902 the Israelite Community inaugurated a synagogue for the approximately 280 members at Augustenstrasse 101, which was burned down by the National Socialists on November 9-10, 1938 , during the Reichspogromnacht . Many Jews had already emigrated under the pressure, and some had committed suicide. Jewish property was " Aryanized ". For the “ final solution to the Jewish question ”, the 70 community members who remained in Rostock were deported to concentration camps from 1942 to 1944 , almost all of them perishing. To victims of the Holocaust from Rostock sunken memorial plates of the recall in the ground in front of their homes or places of activity Association of Friends and Supporters of the Max-Samuel-house e. V. since 2001 in cooperation with the city.


After a Low German hymn book with Lutheran songs for “werkleute” was published in 1525 by the chaplain of the Petrikirche, Joachim Slueter, the Lutheran Reformation began in Rostock, which Slueter enforced until 1531. After he died in 1532, the trial was continued by his successor, Johann Oldendorp . At the same time, the Reformation also prevailed in the other Hanseatic cities, which became the bourgeois center of this denomination. By 1534 at the latest, Catholicism was strongly suppressed and the Catholics were insulted as "Papists". Rostock got its own superintendent and its own spiritual ministry . In the period that followed, the evangelical faith remained the predominant religion in the city.

In the 19th century, Catholics returned to the city. In 1872 they founded the first parish since the Reformation. Since 1909 there has been a Catholic church in Rostock for the first time, the Christ Church on Schröderplatz. Like all of Mecklenburg, the congregation initially belonged to the Apostolic Vicariate of the Nordic Missions , whose jurisdiction was permanently linked to the Bishop's Chair in Osnabrück. In 1930 the area officially became part of the Diocese of Osnabrück (Mecklenburg Dean's Office). In 1941 the Mecklenburg dean's office was divided into a western, a central and an eastern conference district. The demarcation of borders after the Second World War made it increasingly difficult for the Osnabrück bishop to exercise his official duties in Mecklenburg. So in 1946 the Episcopal Commissariat of Schwerin was created, from which in 1973 the Episcopal Office of Schwerin emerged with an auxiliary bishop as "resident bishop". In 1971 the Christ Church was blown up despite protests. A new building in Häktweg was built as a replacement.

Religions today

Today the Evangelical Lutheran parishes of the city belong to the Rostock provost in the Mecklenburg parish of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Northern Germany (Northern Church) .

The Rostock Catholics have belonged to the newly founded Archdiocese of Hamburg since 1995 . The parishes of the city of Rostock are part of the Rostock Dean's Office of the Archbishopric of Schwerin within the Archdiocese.

There are free churches in Rostock , including two Evangelical Free Churches ( Baptists and Brothers Congregation ), the Methodist Church of St. Michaelis , a community of the Seventh-day Adventist Community , the "Christian Center" ( Bund Freikirchlicher Pfingstgemeinden ) and the charismatic "gospel center". There is also the regional church community , a pietistic community movement within the Evangelical Lutheran regional church. The New Apostolic Church is represented by two congregations. The community with the larger number of members has been located in the Hansaviertel at the confluence of Parkstrasse and Voßstrasse since 2013 . The other community is in Warnemünde on Wiesenweg. The Russian Orthodox Church is represented by the parish of Blessed Xenia of St. Petersburg . The congregation of the Berlin diocese has been in the city since 2000, at Thünenstrasse 9 since 2006. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also called Mormons) is represented with a congregation, as is the Christian community based on anthroposophy from Rudolf Steiner is based and gathers in the Pauluskirche . Two congregations of Jehovah's Witnesses share a Kingdom Hall (community hall) on Schweriner Strasse. A Catholic-Apostolic congregation has existed in Paulstrasse since the end of the 19th century.

Today there is again a Jewish community in Rostock. This has around 600 members and has a new community center with a synagogue . The community is looked after by the state rabbi William Wolff . The new congregation, at the time looked after by Rabbi Andrew Steiman, set up the New Jewish Cemetery in 1996 on a section of Rostock's West Cemetery, which was opened in 1977 .

Several hundred Muslims live in Rostock . There is a mosque on Erich-Schlesinger-Strasse, whose sponsoring association is the Islamic Federation in Rostock e. V. is. As early as 2016, there were concerns that this mosque would become radicalized. In 2019 it became known that the city of Rostock and the Islamic Federation had agreed on a new mosque on Holbeinplatz. There were massive concerns and protests from residents of the district against this building, and it was also criticized that there was no information about the long-running talks with the Islamic community. Due to a lack of funding commitments from the Islamic Federation, the project was postponed by the city in mid-March until the end of 2019.

Denomination statistics

Currently (as of December 2018) of the 209,085 inhabitants, 20,531 (9.8%) are Protestant and 6,810 (3.3%) are Catholic and 181,744 (86.9%) have any other or no denomination. A year earlier, of the 208,156 inhabitants, 20,760 (10.0%) were Protestant and 6,770 (3.3%) were Catholic and 180,906 (86.7%) had another denomination or no denomination. The vast majority of Rostock residents are non-denominational . Since 1993, the Protestant and Catholic population has grown while the total population has shrunk.


Important sports clubs

society Most successful

(2015/2016 division)
founding Home ground Members
Hansa Rostock Football
( 3rd division )
1965 Ostseestadion 12100
HC Empor Rostock Logo.svg Up Rostock Handball
(3rd Bundesliga)
1946 Rostock city hall 250
RHC-Logo-Wiki.gif Rostocker HC Handball
( 3rd division women )
2007 Marienehe sports hall
Sv warnemuende football logo.gif SV Warnemünde Volleyball
( 3rd division women and men )
1991 Scaffolding ring sports hall 1193
(Rostock Ice Hockey Club)
Ice hockey
( Oberliga Nord )
1990 Rostock ice rink
Rostock Seawolves
(First basketball club Rostock)
( Second Basketball League Pro A )
1994 Rostock city hall
Rostock seals Beach soccer
(German Beach Soccer League)
2010 AOK Active Beach 100
HSG Uni Rostock Hockey.png HSG University of Rostock Hockey (women and men)
(each major league )
1949 Sports facility Danziger Straße
Sports hall Bertha-von-Suttner-Ring
UWR Team Rostock 071.jpg UWR Rostock 071 Underwater rugby
( 1st Bundesliga North )
1999 Neptune swimming pool
HSG Warnemünde Water polo
( Oberliga )
1971 Neptune swimming pool 70
Logo Rostock Coati.JPG Rostock coatis Inline skater hockey
( 2nd Bundesliga )
2005 OSPA arena
Logo PSv.jpg
PSV Rostock Popular sports club 1992 OSPA arena 2750
1. LAV Rostock athletics


Ostseestadion and athletics stadium

In 1905 the Rostock FC 1895, FC Alemannia 1903 and FC Germania 1901 were accepted into the Mecklenburg Football Association . Since 1899 there was also the International FC . However, no Rostock football club was able to achieve any particular success until well after the Second World War.

During the 1954/55 season , the GDR sports management decided to delegate the team from the Saxon BSG Empor Lauter to Rostock during the season. In 1965 the football department was spun off from SC Empor Rostock as FC Hansa Rostock . For 32 years Hansa played in the GDR top division . In the 1990/91 season Hansa was the last champion and FDGB cup winner of the GDR and qualified for the Bundesliga and the European Cup . Since then, Hansa has been a member of the 1st and eight years of the 2nd Bundesliga for a total of twelve years . In 2010 the club was relegated to the third division for the first time . Hansa plays its games in the Ostseestadion .

The second team of Hansa Rostock plays in the fifth-class Oberliga Nordost . A league below, in the Verbandsliga Mecklenburg-Vorpommern , enters the Rostock FC at. The SV Rostock 61 is now the only Rostock club in the division , while formerly successful clubs such as SV Warnemünde and the PSV Rostock only in the country class play. In GDR times, BSG Schifffahrt / Hafen Rostock (today SV Hafen Rostock 61 ) and TSG Bau Rostock (today Rostocker FC ) had played in the second-rate GDR league for 17 and 13 years respectively, BSG Motor Warnowwerft Warnemünde (SV Warnemünde ) played six years , SG Dynamo Rostock (Police SV Rostock) two years in the league.

In the youth sector, Hansa Rostock's A-youth team has been part of the U-19 Bundesliga since it was founded in 2003 and became German champions in 2010 . The B-youth played by the establishment of the U-17 Bundesliga in 2007 for four years also in the top league, but rose in 2011 to the Regional off.

The BSG Post Rostock was in the 1970s and 1980s, one of the most successful women's football clubs of the GDR and in 1990 the last champion and cup winner of the GDR . In 1995/96 , the team, which had meanwhile switched to the police SV Rostock , played for one season in the women's Bundesliga , but was immediately relegated. The team now plays as a division of SV Hafen Rostock 61 in the association league. Rostocker FC also competes in the association league .

As a modification of football, there is also a beach soccer team, the Rostock Robben . With the victory in the German Beach Soccer League in 2013, this became the first German champion in the area of ​​responsibility of the DFB and was able to qualify for the following season of the Euro Winners Cup in the same year . Three more German championship titles followed by 2017. They are also supported as a sponsor by the rapper Marteria .


The men's team of the handball club HC Empor Rostock was GDR champion ten times and in 1982 European cup winners and club European champions . 1979 was rise of the final of the European Champions' Cup . From 1991 to 1993 Empor played in the handball Bundesliga . Today the men's team plays in the 3rd Bundesliga .

The women's team was three times GDR champions in indoor handball. The Rostocker HC team played in the 2nd Handball Bundesliga North until 2010 and since then in the 3rd league .

water sports

Rostock is a center for swimmers and divers. In addition to the classic sports, Rostock is also ideal for sailing or rowing due to its exposed location and is considered a good sailing area on the German Baltic Sea coast. The high-performance athletes in swimming, water jumping and canoeing usually start or started for the SC Empor , the rowers for the ASK Vorwärts Rostock , which was dissolved in 1990 . Many of the successful athletes are now active as trainers at Empor.

The swimmers have already achieved numerous successes , especially in the long-distance segment, most recently by Britta Kamrau-Corestein , who was four times world champion in the 10 km and 25 km distance between 2002 and 2007. Peggy Büchse was twice world champion over 5 and 10 km in 2000 and 2001.

In the early 1990s, Nils Rudolph was one of the world's fastest sprinters over the 50 m distance and celebrated his greatest sporting success at the 1991 European Championships in Athens by winning the gold medal.

In Diving was Christa Köhler 1973 world champion and took the 1976 Olympic silver medal. In 1970 Heidi Becker became European champion in jumping from the three-meter board. In 1996 Annika Walter won the silver medal from the 10-meter tower, Dörte Lindner won the bronze medal at the 2000 Olympic Games. Martina Proeber was second in the Olympic jumping in 1980.

The canoe racer Ramona Portwich won gold medals at the Olympic Games in Seoul in 1988, 1992 and 1996. Anke von Seck also won Olympic gold in 1992 . Between 1978 and 1981 Roswitha Eberl won six world championship titles.

The rower Stephan Krüger started for the Olympic Rowing Club Rostock from 1956 and was world champion in double sculls in 2009. Ulrich Karnatz started for the ASK Vorwärts Rostock and was Olympic champion in 1976 and 1980 and world champion in the eighth position in 1977, 1978 and 1979. Klaus Kröppelien won the 1980 Olympic gold medal in a double scull.

The underwater rugby team UWR 071 Rostock has played in the league since 2000 and was promoted to the top division, the 1st Bundesliga North, in the 2012/2013 season.

The water polo players at HSG Warnemünde play in the third-class upper league Schleswig-Holstein / Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.


The 1st LAV Rostock is the most important athletics club in the city and one of the most important in northern Germany. Numerous successful athletes were or are active in the 1st LAV, for example the 2006 European marathon champion Ulrike Maisch . The professional triathlete Andreas Raelert is the reigning European triathlon champion in the middle distance and vice world champion in the Ironman distance. His brother Michael Raelert is two-time world (2009 and 2010) and European (2010, 2012) champion in the middle distance.

Christian Schenk achieved his greatest success with the 1988 Olympic victory in the decathlon. In 1980 in Moscow, Marita Koch was Olympic champion over 400 meters and in 1983 she was three times world champion in Helsinki, plus six titles at European championships between 1978 and 1986. Sprinter Silke Möller was, among other things, double world champion in 1987. Hansjörg Kunze's greatest success was the bronze medal in the 5000 meter Run at the 1988 Summer Olympics. The javelin thrower Steffi Nerius started for Empor Rostock until 1991 and won the Olympic silver medal in 2004 and the world championship in 2009.

Other sports

The Rostock coatis played from 2008 to 2010 and 2013 in the inline skater hockey Bundesliga . They have been playing in the 2nd Inline Skaterhockey Bundesliga North since 2014 .

The Rostock Griffins team currently plays American football in GFL 2 Nord (2nd Bundesliga).

Respectively, in the third league of women and of men playing volleyball players of SV Warnemünde .

The Rostock Piranhas (officially: Rostocker Ice Hockey Club ), who play in the Oberliga Nord , are also in third class .

The basketball men of the EBC Rostock Seawolves played successfully in the ProB (3rd league) in the 2016/2017 season.

The cyclist Jan Ullrich was two times world champion in the individual time trial as well as winner of the Olympic road race in 2000 and was the first and so far only German to win the 1997 Tour de France . Due to his involvement in the Fuentes doping scandal , however, he was found legally guilty of doping by the International Court of Justice (CAS) in 2012 , and all of Ullrich's successes since May 1, 2005 were canceled.

In 1968 the two wrestlers Lothar Metz and Rudolf Vesper from ASK Vorwärts Rostock became Olympic champions. The wrestler Heinz-Helmut Wehling became European champion in 1970 and world champion in 1977.

Rugby: In October 1993, the Dierkower Elche was built at what was later to become the Albert Schweitzer High School in Dierkow . As a division, they belong to SV Dynamo Rostock . The men's team plays in the 2015/2016 season in a syndicate with the University of Greifswald and the privateer RC Wismar in the Verbandsliga Nord. The Dierkower Elche have spawned in the late 1990s with Sabine Juchelka and Manuela Jost two internationals.

In judo , VfK Bau Rostock was among the best at national championships twelve times.

Promotion of young talent and training centers

The CJD Jugenddorf-Christophorusschule Rostock has a funding branch for competitive athletes. It is continuing the tradition of the Rostock children's and youth sports school. The Christophorus School has both the rank of an elite school of sport and an elite school of football . The sports classes are attended by students who are active in the youth departments of Rostock's competitive sports clubs, especially short trackers from ESV Turbine Rostock , youth players from HC Empor Rostock , athletes from 1. LAV Rostock, soccer players from FC Hansa Rostock , rowers, swimmers and High diver.

At the Olympic training center in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania in Rostock, athletes mainly train in the main sports rowing, short track and diving. Other sports are fin swimming, football, handball, athletics, sailing, swimming and triathlon.


Famous Rostock
Joachim Gauck,
the eleventh Federal President, former pastor and officer in charge of Stasi documents, was born in Rostock in 1940 and is an honorary citizen of the city.
Walter Kempowski
The writer was born in Rostock and is an honorary citizen. He put the city's literary monuments. The Kempowski-Ufer at the city harbor is named after him.
Jan Ullrich,
who was born in Rostock, won the 1997 Tour de France .
Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher
The Prussian field marshal was born in Rostock. He is an honorary citizen. There is a memorial for the general on Universitätsplatz.
Marten Laciny, who grew up in Rostock, is one of the most successful German rappers.

sons and daughters of the town

See: List of Rostock's sons and daughters


See: List of Rostock mayors


The Hanseatic city has been awarding the following honors to personalities who have rendered outstanding services to the city since 1990:

Other personalities

See: List of personalities of the city of Rostock

See also

Portal: Rostock  - Overview of Wikipedia content on the topic of Rostock
Portal: Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania  - Overview of Wikipedia content on Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania
Commons : Rostock  - album with pictures, videos and audio files
Wikivoyage: Rostock  - travel guide
Wikisource: Rostock  - sources and full texts
Wikiquote: Rostock  - Quotes
 Wikinews: Portal: Rostock  - in the news

Literature and films


  • Contributions to the history of the city of Rostock
    • Vol. 1 (1895) to 22 (1941). Edited by Association for Rostock Antiquities
    • New series , issue 1 (1981) to 9 (1989). Edited by Rostock City Archives and the Rostock City Cultural History Museum.
    • Vol. 23 (1999) to [last published] 31 (2011). Edited by Association for Rostock History V.
  • Klaus Armbröster: Rostock - Warnemünde. City guide . Mitteldeutscher Verlag, Halle (Saale) 2014, ISBN 978-3-95462-246-7
  • Hans Bernitt : On the history of the city of Rostock . Rostock 1956, new edition: BS-Verlag, Rostock 2001, ISBN 978-3-935171-40-3
  • Dörte Bluhm: Rostock - my city. From the Slavic trading center to the Baltic metropolis. 800 years of building history on the Warnow , WIRO, Rostock 2005
  • Hans Ohle: Rostock . ( City books of art history ), Leipzig 1970
  • Karsten Schröder: There is harmony and general well-being within your walls. A history of the city of Rostock from its origins to 1990 . Ingo Koch, Rostock 2003, ISBN 3-929544-68-7


Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Statistisches Amt MV - population status of the districts, offices and municipalities 2019 (XLS file) (official population figures in the update of the 2011 census) ( help ).
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  7. Cadastral, Surveying and Property Office of the Hanseatic City of Rostock, Department of Cadastre SG Cadastral Renewal / Municipal Geodata.
  8. DWD
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This article was added to the list of excellent articles on August 27, 2006 in this version .