Here you will find some useful information about the everyday life in Konstanz. We listed here not only the most important supermarkets but also -very important!- the best Cafes, Bars and Clubs in our home city! And you'll find a few facts about travelling from and in Konstanz and a few suggestions for one-day trips.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask!
At the University there is a refectory (Mensa), where you can eat for little money if you are a student. One meal costs between 3€ and 7€. You can choose between food with meat and vegetarian food. In the refectory you can pay electronically which is easier and faster.
Therefore you need a refectory card, which we can buy together on your first day at the university (you will have to pay a € 7 deposit). It is provided by “Seezeit”, an university organisation which is responsible for the mensa, a small shop, and the student apartments.
You can check the weekly changing menu here: Menu of Mensa Gießberg.
The refectory is open from 11:15 till 13:30. Before and after that you can buy some snacks at the cafeteria.
Who is hanging around in the city should go to the Klimperkasten, which is not far from Schnetztor. This bar would even be hip in Berlin because of its unique interior in retro-style. With a drink in the hand sitting in an armchair you can enjoy the Sixties, Garage, Soul, Rock ‘n’ Roll, Indie or Oldschool-Hip Hop via Vinyl.
Shamrocks is an Irish Pub near to the main station. It’s super for playing Bingo (you can win free beer!) on Monday or for testing your knowledge in the legendary pub quiz on Tuesday. Especially the Steaknight on Friday and the Burgernight on Monday are also advisable. The burgers there are very tasty.
Heimat is a bar for all circumstances. You will never make a mistake by going to this bar. It’s in a cellar vault, but when the weather is nice you can also sit outside the bar. The caipirinhas are really good and the waiters are very friendly!
The HTWG Konstanz has its own little bar, called “Strandbar” (which translates to beach-bar). It’s directly on the Rhine riverside and there is a little bit of sand. It’s the place for students to meet after lectures, so it’s not astonishing that it’s really hard to find a place! But it’s a good place to meet other students and get into a conversation with them!
The harbor is a nice place to be in the summer. You will meet hundreds of tourist (mostly swiss), be right next to the Bodensee and enjoy the holiday atmosphere. Hafenhalle is the “beer garden” in this place. A “beer garden” is a restaurant outside, usually under trees, where you can enjoy typical german dishes and (as usual) german beer.
You'll forget the time drinking coffee in the nice coffee bar Zeitlos. It’s super to meet friends in the afternoon for chilling, chatting and enjoying life. Insider tip: The brunch on Sunday is fantastic!
The English translation of “Vogelhaus” is birdhouse. It’s a nice and cosy coffee bar in the center of the old town. With its enchanting interior it is really a place to see in Konstanz. In the summer there are also a few spots outside. The offer goes from “boring coffee” to smoothies with ginger, or whatever starbucks-like drinks. It is more alternative and a lot of students like to go there. The cake is also great.
Located right in front of the university is the beer garden. Organized by a student booster club of the university of constance ("SFK"), they offer cheap beer and softdrinks if you need a break from working. In the summer this is one of the meeting points for countless students to enjoy a cold drink in the sun.
In the courtyard of the Neuwerk there is a nice little club called Kantine. Every Monday different organizer book local or international DJs- during the week everybody has time for relaxed clubbing. The simple but functional dance floor is also good for bands who sometimes give concerts in a pleasant atmosphere.
In the industrial area of Constance is former "die Bleche" (now "Alte Schachtel", which means "old box") and the home away from home for a lot of students during the weekend. If you’re looking for party you will find it in “der Bleche”.
When you don’t know what you can do on a boring Monday evening, there is only one possibility: Having a nice party night in the Berry’s. Berry’s is (like every club in Constance) in the industrial area. The “Studance” on Monday is very famous for students because they get free entrance until 11pm and all the drinks for half of the price. The best opportunity to meet other students and have a great time in Constance.
Dance Palace, Dance or Maex33 is the club who is always changing its name. It is (by its own account) the largest club in the “Bodensee area”. You should go there when student faculties are celebrating their “Fachschaftsparties”.
In the old-established Kula (Chérisy area) you can find professional live-booking. Every month the charitable club offers a new program, where nerds as well as normal persons can find something they like. Regardless which music style you prefer, there is everything between Rock, Indie and Hip Hop. The poetry slams are also very popular and recommendable. Naturally there are parties and little festivals taking place in Kula. A pub and restaurant are waiting in the upper floor.
There are many possibilities to discover Konstanz and the surrounding area. Ask other trainees if they want to join you and have fun!
When you travel to Konstanz from your home
country, chances are very high that you will fly. The nearest international
airport is Zürich in Switzerland; a train leaves there every hour with
Konstanz as a direct destination. The ride lasts about one hour. It is possible
to pay your train tickets in Euros but it may come in handy to have some Swiss
Stuttgart would be the next international airport but it serves fewer connections so your chances might be better with Zürich. Furthermore, it takes three hours to get from Stuttgart to Konstanz and you’ll have to change trains.
The third possibility is Friedrichshafen Airport, but it has very limited destinations.
If you arrive by train, go directly to “Konstanz Bahnhof” (there is only one main station).
In any case, let us know your approximate time of arrival at the train station and your contact person or someone else from the team will pick you up and show you the most important things.
For further information:
On the website of the DB (Deutsche Bahn – German Railroad) you can search for trains and regional bus connections
Keep in mind that on default the sites searches for the fastest connections including intercity trains (IC) which are more expensive than regional trains (RE/IRE).
If you travel within the boundaries of Baden-Württemberg (that’s the name of the federal state in which Konstanz is located) you can buy a special ticket: The “Baden- Württemberg-Ticket”. It allows you to use any number of journeys for one day, no matter how far or long. But there are three conditions: You have to stay within Baden-Württemberg, you cannot use intercity trains and you cannot travel before 9 AM. But if you travel in a group, the ticket becomes a little more expensive but in the end everyone pays less.
There is a counter at the main station and vending machines on every train station or online on the website of the DB.
For the buses in Konstanz you can buy different kinds of tickets:
We recommend buying a monthly ticket. Feel free to contact us before buying a ticket! The fine for riding without a ticket is enorm, so better buy a ticket in advance. The bus schedules and ferry schedules to Meersburg can be found here on the website of the Municipal Transport Services (called Stadtwerke Konstanz). You can also buy a schedule booklet at the Seezeitshop or get them for free at the tourist information right next to the main station.
You can buy bus tickets at the counter at the main station, at vending machines in many (but not all) bus stations or at the kiosk in the university. You can also buy it directly from the driver
We offer some bikes to rent for you. We bought them and the money you have to pay is €15 per month. You will get €10 per month back at the end if you hand in the bike in a good condition (=similar to the condition we gave the bike to you, including lights). There is also the possibility to rent bikes from the university (maximum of 120 days).
For direct connections to other bigger cities in Germany and the neighbouring countries there might be private bus companies allowing for cheaper travel than by train. Due to a new German law allowing competition for the Bahn, the remote bus services are quite well established.
Examples of connections already established from Konstanz:_Freiburg, Stuttgart, Tübingen, Munich (München), Zurich (Zürich), Strasbourg (Straßburg), Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Cologne (Köln)...
Directly from the driver (more expensive and without reservation) or online at this website (unfortunately only in German)
This is a meta search site that links to the corresponding private bus company. We recommend you reserving a seat online because it is much cheaper and often the busses are so full that they might not let you travel with them if you do not reserve.
A small town on the opposite side of the lake with a charming medieval city, promenade and castle. It is only a 15-minute ferry ride from Konstanz. But keep in mind: The ferry does not leave from the main harbour, but from a part of town called Staad!
Take the bus line 1, direction Fähre (which means ferry in English) and exit at the last station Fähre.
For more information visit the website of Meersburg
This is the biggest island of the lake, connected to the mainland by a causeway with a beautiful avenue. It is famous for its UNESCO World Heritage monastery, the Abbey of Reichenau (Kloster Reichenau).
The best and most convenient way is to go by bike on the official bike route into the direction Reichenau, it is approx. 9 km (30 minutes) from the city centre to the avenue. Alternatively take the bus line 7354, direction Radolfzell ZOB to the station Reichenau Bahnhof - from there it is a 15-minute walk to the avenue and another 20 minutes along the avenue to get on the island. Keep in mind: The island is larger than it might look like on a map, it can take hours on foot to cover the whole thing! Otherwise you can take a regional train (called Seehas or RE) from Konstanz main station, direction Singen to the station Reichenau Bahnhof.
For more information visit the website of Reichenau
Arguably the most beautiful island, called Blumeninsel (Island of Flowers) for a reason. The entrance fee is not cheap, but after 5pm in summer times you only have to pay half the price!
Bike: The official Lake Constance bike route runs right by the island, direction Mainau, approx. 20 minutes from the city centre. Or take the bus line 4 or 4/13, direction Wallhausen Hafen or Dettingen Spielplatz. Or take the ferry from Konstanz harbour, direction Bregenz that needs approximately 40 minutes.
For more information visit the website of Mainau
Second biggest city of the lake with a nice promenade and interesting museums (Zeppelin and Dornier museum), the rest of the city is not so much worth seeing.
How to get there:
The catamaran from Konstanz harbour needs 50 minutes and is quite expensive. You can take the bus line 7394 instead (also called StädteSchnellbus) and exit at the station Friedrichshafen (FN) Hafenbahnhof, which is cheaper and has 1 hour travel time.
For more information visit the website of Friedrichshafen
Austrian city on the opposite side of the lake, famous for the Bregenz Festival with the biggest floating stage in the world and its local mountain, the Pfänder. Enjoy a breath-taking view on the lake and its surroundings from the over 1000 m high Pfänder – you can climb it by foot (90 minutes) or cable car (6 minutes)
Take regional trains via Radolfzell, Friedrichshafen and Lindau (German route) or via Romanshorn, Rorschach and St. Margrethen (Swiss route), approx. 90 minutes travel time, but wuite expensive. The ticket is called Euregio Karte. Or get to Friedrichshafen by bus line 7394 or catamaran and proceed further by train, approx. 2 and a half hours travel time, which is cheaper.
For more information visit the website of Bregenz
Biggest waterfall in Europe, at the town Neuhausen in Switzerland, 23 m high, 150 m wide. You have to pay an entrence fee to enter the platforms, but its worth it! Furthermore the castle which is next to the city can be visited.
Take the train to the station Schloss Laufen am Rheinfall via Winterthur
(Switzerland) or Radolfzell/Singen (Germany) and Schaffhausen (Switzerland), 50-90 minutes. For more information visit the website of the Rheinfalls
You will have the opportunity to go on different trips during your stay in Konstanz, which are organized by the local committee, e.g. tours to Munich or the Black forest. You can find the program on our Facebook page as soon as it is ready.
And last, but not least:
Kaufland is probably the closest supermarket to Walmart you can find in Konstanz. It is not as cheap though, but you will find probably anything you need going shopping once there. Kaufland has got its own brand, which is cheaper than the more expensive brands of well-known companies.
Carl-Benz-Straße 22 (industrial area)
Penny is a discounter chain which provides all basic groceries for average prices. Unlike Aldi, you can not only find discounter brands but also the more expensive ones. This raises the price, but for a good dinner you will find anything you need close by.
Wollmatinger Straße 22 (near Zähringerplatz)
Sonnenbühlstraße 98 (near Sonnenbühl, towards Tannenhof)
Stifterstraße 65 (Wollmatingen)
Rewe is pretty much the alternative to Penny. It’s a little bit more expensive than ALDI and you can find the same stuff as in the other markets. Just look for the closer shop. It has quite long opening times from 7.00 am – 10.00 pm and good, fresh fruits and vegetables.
Schneckenburgstraße 3 78467 Konstanz
Aldi is one of the cheapest food discounters. The quality varies depending on what you are willing to pay, although some organic products have been introduced recently. Aldi offers weekly sales.
Lago Center, basement, Bodanplatz 1, Konstanz (Downtown)
Oberlohnstraße 7, Konstanz (Industrial Area, near Europabrücke)
Alnatura is THE organic and fairtrade food store in Germany. You will not only find the standard food and hygiene products here but also special things like gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan food products. You can be sure that the quality is very good, so that you have to pay a higher price. Watch out for the cooler shelf next to the tills – you usually find reduced products here due to their expiring “best before”-date.
4a, Konstanz (Downtown)
Denn’s is an organic food store as well. It is very similar to Alnatura, though a lot smaller. You will not only find the standard food and hygiene products here but also special things like gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan food products. Although you can be sure that the quality is very good, you have to pay a higher price too. Watch out for the products in the far left corner of the refrigerated area – you usually find reduced products here due to their expiring “best before”-date.
Bodanstr. 19, Konstanz (Downtown, near Lago Shopping Center)
Edeka is one of the major food retailers in Germany, though not a discounter. Products of the brand “Gut&Günstig” can be fairly cheap though. They sell a big range of things with a good quality and also a lot of organic food. They also have a cheese and meat counter with very good quality products.
Bodanstraße 20, Konstanz (Downtown, near Lago Shopping Center)
Gottlieber Straße 34, Konstanzt (Downtown, Paradies)
Reichenaustraße 36, Konstanz (Industrial Area, near Europabrücke)