Go back to school on your visit to Rostock, where you can admire a famous zoological collection, a botanic garden and impressive 19th-century architecture.
As one of the Baltic’s oldest universities, the University of Rostock has shaped the city’s character since its founding. Rostock’s ambiance is deeply affected by its status as a university town, home to 14,000 students. The town’s pride in its university shows the devotion that locals give to the institution. Go for a walk or learn something new in this historic and preeminent academy.
Begin your tour in the Universitätsplatz, where you’ll find some of the university’s most famous buildings. On a hot day, walk through the cool spray of the Fountain of Joy, which depicts a series of jubilant figures, human and animal, playing in the water. Admire terracotta buildings lining the square, most famous among them the Hauptgebäude, whose doors are constantly filled with students hurrying between classes.
Linger on a bench in the square as you appreciate the architecture and energy of the university and its students. At noon on Saturdays, listen to the carillon toll from its bell tower.
Visit the school’s Zoology Collection, which features taxidermy including the famous “arrow stork.” This bird helped prove how far birds migrate because it had an African spear in its neck when it was shot down over Germany in 1822. Admire elaborate glass models of various animals.
Leave the collection and walk down the stately tree-lined avenues zigzagging through campus. Keep walking west until you reach the university’s Botanic Garden, which in summer abounds with plants from the area and abroad. Sit under the shade of a tree and breathe in the spirit of energy and learning that permeates this university.
The University of Rostock’s buildings are spread out across the city, but the main university building is located south of Rostock’s Old Town. Walk here in 5 minutes from the New Market or in 20 minutes from the central train station. The botanic garden is a 15-minute drive or 30-minute walk to the east and is served by a train. The garden is open from Tuesday to Sunday during the summer, from the early morning to the early evening. The taxidermy museum is open on weekdays from mid-morning to early afternoon.