Constance: City on the lake

This quiet city combines some of the best German science universities with picturesque beauty and a deep well of history.

City profile

From the German shore, the Swiss Alps frame the blue waters of Lake Constance.  On those waters sits “Flower Island,” or the Mainau, a picturesque, car-free paradise. In the city center visitors will find modern conveniences alongside historical landmarks dating back to the 4th century.  And nestled at the center of it all are two universities, both known for their social sciences and arts programs.

Overview of the universities

University of Constance

Founded in 1966, the University of Konstanz stands for top-level research, excellence in teaching, and internationality and interdisciplinary collaboration.  As one of the eleven universities chosen for the German Excellence Initiative, the school has received recognition and funding for both the Cluster of Excellence “Cultural Foundations of the Social Integration,” The Constance Research School of Chemical Biology, and the Graduate School of Decision Sciences.  The medium-sized campus keeps the school’s 13 departments in close range and close contact, while the initiative Zukunftskolleg (future college) helps support already excellent research conditions and an inspiring scientific environment.

Hochschule Constance University of Applied Sciences (HTWG)

This modern technical university takes a hands on approach to interdisciplinary instruction while integrating theory and practice throughout the curriculum.  Founded in 1906 and located on the Rhine River, the school focuses on engineering, design, and management.

Did you know?

Evidence of life in Constance dates back to the late Stone Age.  During the reign of Augustus (the founder of the Roman empire), the Celts were conquered by the Romans who first settled on the site around 40 AD.

During the Middle Ages the city was known for its linen production.

Konstanz is home to several prehistoric pile-dwelling (also known as stilt houses) settlements that are part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Things to check out

The Constance Minster or Cathedral that dominates the city’s skyline dates back to the 11th century.

On Katzgasse you will find both the Lake Constance Nature Museum and the Wessenberg Picture Gallery.

Niederburg is the oldest part of the town, and its narrow, winding streets make for an excellent walk.  Houses there date back to the 13th century.

Useful links

Find a place to live in Constance on

The official city website is a deep well of information and news about the city.

Virtual Tourist offers a list of 100 things to do while in Constance.