Getting Medieval In Rostock, Germany.

When I told friends that I was headed to Rostock, many of them laughed and asked me why. The tone in their voice hinted that Rostock wasn’t at the top of most people’s “must visit” travel lists. Well, it happened that my German language school was offering a day trip there for only 10 euros and I thought why not? It was a chance to see the Baltic Coast and visit yet another part of Germany.

Sail The Seas of Old
Admittedly my friends were right, there is not a lot to see and do in Rostock. While the town is rather quaint and quite pretty, it doesn’t take long to catch most major points of interest like the waterfront or historical center. The city is best visited in a day before heading off to another town along the Baltic Coast or catching a ferry to Finland, Denmark, Sweden etc.

Lucky for my classmates and I, Rostock was holding their annual Hanse Sail. One of Germany’s largest maritime festivals, it attracts over 1.5 million visitors each year bringing all sorts of traditional sailing vessels to town. There was plenty of medieval entertainment to be had and we great day walking around, seeing the ships, laughing at the pirates and gypsies, listening to viking style music and most of all drinking beer, beer and more beer.

See why I had so much fun on my day trip to Rostock.

Medieval Entertainment

Cute Little Girl On a Human Powered Merry Go Round

Practicing His Shooting Skills

Viking Like Ships

A Viking Band

Pirates Talk On Cell Phones
Of course, I have many more photos. If you’d like to see them, take a gander at my Rostock photo gallery. Ahoy maties!


Founder of Canadian in Berlin. Frequent traveller now at 43 countries and counting.


  1. People might have laughed at you going but what a nice series of photos you got out of the one day trip. And it’s filled in another small corner on your mental map of Germany.

  2. For sure … I had a fun day there and may even head back to take a ferry over to one of the Scandinavian countries sometime. Also, can’t argue with 10 euros! šŸ™‚

  3. So true! I am from Germany and would have never thought of Rostock as a trip destination šŸ™‚ But the festival looks really fun!

  4. When people say “there’s nothing there”–that makes me want to go there. If there’s “nothing” then there will be no tourists. And obviously there was something going on THAT day! You captured the fun.

  5. Looks like you had a great day in Rostock! I would have gone just to see the Baltic coast, as you mentioned. Beautiful pictures. I especially like the first one of the ship!

  6. This looks amazing (aside from the journey getting there) – German, beer, pirate festival? Should be an alternative to Oktoberfest, haha

  7. The journey getting there and back were the least favorite parts of my day. It was horrible! I’m not convinced of the German rail system just yet … they say it’s always on time but it was late each way.

    We should have a Northern Germany based Oktoberfest. That would be awesome. šŸ™‚

  8. I was in Rostock shortly after the wall was torn down. It was interesting to see the contrasts between west and the newly liberted east Germany then. Rostock used to be the most important port city of East Germany. Today, I suppose, it’s just one of many. Would be interesting to have another look, 20 years later.

  9. That’s incredible Sophie. Hope you make it back to Rostock sometime!

    From what I read on Wikipedia, the city did not do well after reunification suffering economically and losing a good chunk of the local population when people left for former West German locations for new jobs and opportunities. They’re said to be doing better now and surely festivals like the Hanse Sail help.

    I’m still quite overwhelmed by the history sometimes. For example while touring that day, we learned how one citizen of Rostock wanted to escape the GDR so badly that he swam over 40 km to Denmark!

  10. I love unusual places and interesting festivals. This one definitely looks interesting! I love the detail of the first picture. Cool old boat, too!

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