Rostock Travel Guide
Rostock has a large port on the Baltic Sea and a shipbuilding legacy that dates from Hanseatic times. The city's port is actually its claim to fame, for during the Communist years it was the principal trading port for the East German nation, and now looms large as a major entry point for cruise ship visitors to Germany as well as a ferry port for ferries plying to and from ports in Estonia, Latvia, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. The city also has some good examples of Brick Gothic architecture, a style common to cities in northern Germany, and is home to the oldest university in northern Europe, the University of Rostock, which counts among its alumni Albert Einstein and Rudolf Steiner, the latter renowned as the founder of the Waldorf education system.
Rostock is situated on the Warnow River in the north German State of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, some 69 miles (110 km) west of Stralsund and 76 miles (122 km) east of Lübeck.
Rostock's principal visitor draw is Warnemünde, a popular beach resort some 12 kilometers north from the city center that features a large beach, old houses along cobblestone streets, a fishing port and a lighthouse. In Rostock itself the main interest lies in the Neuer Markt (New Market Square), fronted by 14th- and 15th-century buildings and a Brick Gothic-cum-Baroque town hall. Two 13th-century Brick Gothic churches, Marienkirche and Nikolaikirche, are worth seeing too, as is the old Franciscan monastery, Kloster St. Katherinen. Rostock's biggest festival is the Hanse Sail, which draws large sailing ships from all around. And among excursions from Rostock, the main ones are Bad Doberan, where you can visit the Münster, a 14th-century Brick Gothic church; and the coastal resorts of Heiligendamm and Kühlungborn, with the Molli narrow-gauge steam-train offering travel between the two.
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