When I first moved to Rostock 5 years ago, people told me that there is no better place to live as a student in Rostock than in the KTV (Kröpeliner Tor Vorstadt). The Hansaviertel and Innenstadt are fine, Südstadt and Altstadt okay, but don’t even thing about any other place to live is what people kept telling me when I asked them for some insider advice.
So what did I do!? I fought my way through a jungle of castings for shared flats and ended up in a small, overrated room in Parkstraße. Apparently I wasn’t the only one receiving that insider tip.
But is it really worth the money to live there?
My answer: It`s not worth the money, and as a student in Rostock, you should live, like I do now, in the Southland Hills, the Südstadt Rostock.
The KTV has some really nice bars, cafés and restaurants… the house fronts are painted colorfully and the streets have this charming brick paving that makes your surrounding patient and medieval. It is close to the river Warnow and close to the city center. I kind of get why people like it (like geraschel) and some told me to move there. BUT. It is neither New York nor London, where you have to decide to live either on the cheap and miles away from the hotspots or spend all your money for some square foot in a yucky basement or poorly insulated loft.
I live in the Südstadt. I know that it is considered as the elderly people’s paradise in Rostock, but so what? They don`t harm me and are generally friendly and helpful neighbors. Even if you have to arrange more time for grocery shopping than in other parts of the city, there is still no reason to see those people of advanced age as a burden – they don’t cut the lines, stand in the way or tell you their biographie half as much as you might imagine. There are also many beautiful parks in the Südstadt and I’ve never in my live been surrounded by so many different grocery shops. We even have the Südstadt Center, a small retail park with everything you need for the everyday life.
But what strikes me most about living here and not in the KTV is the cost-benefit calculation. From the Südstadt it takes me 5-10 minutes by bike to reach every faculty in Rostock. It takes 7 minutes to be in the middle of the KTV and 5 minutes to get to the city center. Than there is the fact, that the biggest library and the biggest cafeteria, as well as all faculties of natural science are in the Südstadt. Rostock is too small to pay 30% more rent for a supposedly cool neighborhood that doesn`t even have many green areas nor affordable apartments of high quality.
If I had a lot of money and was lucky enough to find an apartment in the KTV that had a kitchen, a little bigger than an average bathroom and maybe a balcony, I would consider living there. But what I would always tell students that move to Rostock is to see the bigger picture and take their own (real) benefit of their new neighborhood into account, and enjoy spending the money they save on a nice frozen yoghurt instead.