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Where can one get a great breakfast in the morning?
Are there any cultural highlights, museums?
Ideas for 2-3 activities and daytrips?
Good restaurants for dinner?
Typical tourist activities or places that one should NOT do, as they are not worthwhile doing.
Things can do to make it a fun and memorable evening?
How to get around and find best means of local transportation?"Can you tell me what is the distance from the cruise docks to the museum? I will be coming to Kiel in a couple of weeks time on a cruise and would like to get to the museum by using my mobility scooter if it is possible. My poor husband will have to walk. If the distance is not very far. Jill Carson" (posted 06/18/2014)
Where to find good quality groceries?"I need a grocery store in Kiel on a Sunday. Is there any shop like that open on Sunday 15th of February?" (posted 02/06/2015)
Are there any special local events?
Are there any local food specialties one should try out?
What makes this destination special? Why should one spend some time here during vacation?"Best places to plan for kids 6 and 8 year old, and what are best things to take back as souvenir which are not very expensive" (posted 05/28/2014)
Is there a good local deli or restaurant with lunch menu?
Are there any points of interest or local attractions?"Hi, Can you tell me how many meters is Holstenstraße? All the guide books say that it's one of the longest in Germany. Thanks! Ann" (posted 02/12/2015)
What are good places to go for shopping?"What are the opening hours of the shopping center? I need to buy a suitcase, is this place convenient regarding prices?" (posted 08/17/2014)
Any sporting activites and recommendations to stay active?
Questions around the weather, different seasons, ...
Popular Points of Interest in and near Kiel
Old Botanical Garden, Kiel
The Old Botanical Garden in Kiel (German: Alter Botanischer Garten Kiel) (2.5 hectares), also known as the Old Botanical Garden on the Fjord (Alter Botanischer Garten an der Förde), is a former botanical garden and arboretum located at Düsternbrooker Weg 19, Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. It is open daily without charge.
Kiel has had various botanical gardens since 1668, when professor Johann Daniel Major (1634–1693) established his horticus medicus within the garden of Kiel Castle. It is unclear whether this garden survived the Danish occupation of 1675-1676. Subsequent gardens were established on the site of the former Franciscan monastery on the Falckstraße (from 1727) and the garden at the Prüne (from 1803). No trace of these early gardens remains.
The Old Botanical Garden began as the private park of tobacco manufacturer Abraham Christian Brauer, who in 1825 created a garden with curved walkways, differentiated woody plantings, a swan pond, and excellent views of Kiel's fjord landscape. Upon his death in 1868 the site was acquired by the University of Kiel, and from 1878-1884 was refashioned by botanist Adolf Engler as a botanical garden, introducing geographic plantings of exotic species while preserving the landscape aesthetics. In 1891 the university added a hilltop pavilion, an octagonal brick building with a graceful dome of iron mesh, and in 1906 added the garden inspector's cottage. After the university created a new botanical garden on its campus in 1978 (the University Botanical Gardens), the garden became a public park in 1980. Its fence and pavilion were extensively restored from 1984–1994, and since 1998 the cottage has served as the Literature House of Schleswig-Holstein.
Zoological Museum of Kiel University
The Zoological Museum of Kiel University is a zoological museum in Kiel, Germany. It was founded by naturalist Karl Möbius, and architect Martin Gropius designed the building.
The exhibitions display systematics, evolution, tropical and German fauna, butterfly ecology and history of zoology in Kiel.
Collections include specimens of Johann Daniel Major, Johann Christian Fabricius and Christian Rudolph Wilhelm Wiedemann and from marine zoology expeditions - Galathea Expedition 1845–1847, the Albatross expedition 1876–1885, the German Plankton-Expedition 1889, the first German deep-sea expedition 1898–1899 and the first German southpolar expedition 1901–1903.
The museum is part of the University of Kiel.
[ source: Ostsee-Schleswig-Holstein Tourist Bureau ]
Kiel's Maritime Museum is located in a former fish auction hall on the quayside. Visitors can see models of ships, nautical instruments, naval paintings, figureheads, a
Kaiserpanoramashowing 3D stereoscopic pictures and a panoramic picture of the harbor that measures 27m² and is the largest ever painting of Kiel. The
Brandtaucherbuilt in Kiel in 1850 by Wilhelm Bauer was the first working submarine in the world and a model of it takes pride of place in the museum. Also open to the public are three vintage ships moored up to the adjacent museum jetty: the Hindenburg lifeboat, the Kiel fire-fighting ship and the Bussard, a 1905 buoy layer with a fascinating historical steam engine and boiler room.
Hours: April 15 - October 14 open daily 10am - 6pm. October 15 - April 14 open Tuesday – Sunday 10am - 5pm.
Admission: suggested donation of 1 € Adults, .50 € children.
Naval Monument and Museum
The Naval Monument towers 85 meters high above the Baltic coast at the entrance of the Kiel fjord and is visible for miles around. The monument was originally built to remember the members of the Imperial German Navy who died in the First World War, but in May 1954 it became a memorial for seamen of all nations and to commemorate peaceful seafaring on the open seas. Besides the unusually shaped tower, there is also an underground hall of remembrance, a historical hall with many ship models and other naval and maritime history exhibits and a 7,000m² open space covered with sandstone from the river Weser, on a total area of almost six hectares. A Second World War U-995 submarine was converted into a museum in 1972 to present the ideas and objectives of the Naval Monument. Visitors can gain first-hand experience of the suffering and fear faced by those involved in battles at sea. In good weather you can see as far as Denmark from the top of the memorial.
Hours: April 16 - October 15: open daily 9:30am – 6pm. October 16 - April 15: 9:30am – 4pm.
Admission: Monument: Adults 2.80 €, children under 17 1.80 €, U-995: Adults 2 €, children 1.50 €.
Old Botanical Gardens
The Old Botanical Garden is a green treasure at the fringe of Kiel's old town and the only former Botanical Garden in Schleswig-Holstein. It shows with over 280 woody plants in over 470 exemplifies probably the most diverse and valuable woody plant stock of all historical countryside gardens in the region.
The pavilion represents the crowning of the garden and the cupola is regarded as the crown of the city of Kiel. It was constructed as octagonal clinker building in 1891 and the viewing platform grants a wonderful view over the Fjord, one of Kiel's loveliest views.
The area of the Botanical Garden was from 1884 to 1985 part of the university Kiel and has become since then a public park. It is open daily.
[ source: Aquarium website ]
Aquarium - Institute of Marine Science
The aquarium of Kiel University is a display window of the biospheres in the North and the Baltic Sea down to the deep regions of the Northeastern Atlantic. In more than 30 tanks with a capacity of between 200 and 11.000 liters the most common fish species and invertebrates are shown. A special attraction is the circular basin populated by a shoal of herring. Some tropical basins with fishes and crabs of the coral seas present a colourful contrast to the fauna of the cold seas. Finally, freshwater basins with characteristic fish species of the lakes in Holstein complete the presentation of the regional underwater world. In front of the aquarium there is an open-air seal basin.
Hours: April - September daily 9 am – 7 pm. October - March daily 9 am – 5 pm.
Admission: Adults 3 €, Concessions 2 €, Children under 5 years free.
Schleswig-Holstein Open-air Museum (Freilichtmuseum)
This is the biggest open-air museum south of Kiel in northern Germany. On the 140-acre site with meadows, gardens, fields and ponds you can see seventy historical buildings, farmyards and mills from Schleswig-Holstein, complete with furniture, household equipment and tools. There is also a historical funfair with a roundabout and a swingboat. Household animals and pets that the children are permitted to touch are an added attraction. Craftspeople demonstrate their trades and sell their products. If you feel in need of refreshment you can stop off at the restaurant and try the products of the museum’s own bakery, dairy and smokehouse.
Hours: April 1 - October 31 open daily 9am - 6pm. November 1 - March 31 – 31 open 11am – 4pm on Sundays & public holidays.
Admission: Adults 4.50 €, Concessions 2.50 €, Children under 6 years free.
What is your insider travel tip for Kiel?
Travel Insider Tips for Kiel
Kiel is the capital and most populous city of the northern German state Schleswig-Holstein. Kiel is approximately 90 km to the north of Hamburg (Hamburg vacation rentals | Hamburg travel guide). Due to its geographic location in the north of Germany, the southeast of the Jutland peninsula, and the southwestern shore of the Baltic Sea, Kiel has become one of the main maritime centers of Germany. For instance, the city is known for a variety of international sailing events, including the annual Kiel Week, which is the biggest sailing event in the world. The Olympic sailing competitions of the 1936 and the 1972 Olympic Games were held in Kiel.
Kiel has also been one of the traditional homes of the German Navy's Baltic fleet, and continues to be a major high-tech shipbuilding centre. Kiel is an important sea transport hub due to its location at the Kiel Fjord and the busiest artificial waterway in the world, Kiel Canal. A number of passenger ferries to Sweden and other countries operate from here.
Kiel's 2005 GDP per capita was 35,618 , is well above the national average of Germany and equals 159% of the European Union average.
Within Germany and parts of Europe, the city is known for its leading handball team, THW Kiel. The city is home to the University of Kiel (established in 1665).
Things to See
The oldest building in the city is the 13th century Nikolaikirche (St Nicholas' Church), which has a sculpture of Ernst (Ernst vacation rentals | Ernst travel guide) Barlach in front of it called Der Geistkämpfer.
Kiel is Schleswig-Holstein's largest city, and therefore Kiel's shopping district is a major attraction, and will see further improvement and renovation efforts in the upcoming years. Kiel's Holstenstrasse (Holsten Street) is one of the longest shopping miles in Germany. The Rathaus (town hall), which was built in 1911, has an operating paternoster and its tower was designed after a model from Venice, Italy. The square in front of it is bordered by a lake and the Opera House. There are also a number of lakes and parks in the city centre, e.g. Schrevenpark (Schreven Park). There are two botanic gardens, Alter Botanischer Garten and Neuer Botanischer Garten.
As Kiel is situated near the sea, popular places to visit in spring and summer are also the beaches to the north of Kiel such as Kiel-Strande, Kiel-Schilksee, Möltenort and Laboe.
Kiel Week is the largest sailing event in the world, and takes place every last week in June. Many thousands boats and ships of all kinds and times take part in the parade. Kiel Week is also a festival, Volksfest and fair at the same time as it is a maritime event.
There are a number of sports venues in Kiel, most notably the Sparkassen-Arena (formerly known as Ostseehalle), which is the home ground of one of the most successful team handball clubs in the world and multiple German champion, THW Kiel. There is currently no top Bundesliga football club in Kiel, but Holstein Kiel plays at Holsteinstadion. There are a number of yachting and sailing clubs in picturesque settings.
Kiel also features a number of museum, including zoological, geological, historical, fine art, industrial, and military museums. Laboe is home to the Laboe Naval Memorial, as well as the World War II submarine Unterseeboot 995, which are popular tourist sites.
[ source: wikipedia ]
More about the History of Kiel
St. Niclas' Church was built in the 13th century and is the oldest building in Kiel.
The Kiel Fjord was first settled by Normans or Vikings who would colonize the land along their raids for many years staying in German villages. This is recorded by the geography and architecture of the fjord. Kiel was first originally founded in 1233 as Holstenstadt tom Kyle by Count Adolf IV, and granted Lübeck (Lübeck vacation rentals | Lübeck travel guide) city rights in 1242 by Adolf's eldest son, John I of Schauenburg.
Kiel, the capital of Holstein, was a member of the Hanseatic League from 1284 until it was expelled in 1518 for harbouring pirates. In 1431, the Kieler Umschlag (trade fair) was first held, which became the central market for goods and money in Schleswig-Holstein until it began to lose significance from 1850 on, being held for the last time in 1900.
The University of Kiel was founded on 29 September 1665, by Christian Albert, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp. A number of important scholars, including Theodor Mommsen and Max Planck, studied or taught there.
From 1773 to 1864, the town belonged to the King of Denmark. However, because the king ruled Holstein as a fief of the Holy Roman Empire only through a personal union, the town was not incorporated as part of Denmark proper. Thus Kiel belonged to Germany but was ruled by the Danish king. Even though the Empire was abolished in 1806, the Danish king continued to rule Kiel only through his position as Duke of Holstein. When Schleswig (Schleswig vacation rentals | Schleswig travel guide) and Holstein rebelled against Denmark in 1848 (the First Schleswig War), Kiel became the capital of Schleswig-Holstein until the Danish victory in 1852.
During the Second Schleswig War in 1864, Kiel and the rest of Schleswig and Holstein were conquered by a German Confederation alliance of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia. After the war Kiel was briefly administered by both the Austrians and the Prussians, but the Austro-Prussian War in 1866 led to the annexation of Kiel by Prussia in 1867. On 24 March 1865, King William I based Prussia's Baltic Sea fleet out of Kiel instead of Danzig (Gdańsk).
When William I of Prussia became Emperor William I of the German Empire in 1871, he designated Kiel and Wilhelmshaven (Wilhelmshaven vacation rentals | Wilhelmshaven travel guide) as Reichskrieghafen, or "Imperial War Harbour". The prestigious Yacht Club of Kiel was established in 1887 with Prince Heinrich of Prussia as its patron. Emperor Wilhelm II became its commodore in 1891.
Because of its new role as Germany's main naval base, Kiel quickly increased in size in the following years, from 18,770 in 1864 to about 200,000 in 1910. Much of the old town centre and other surroundings were leveled and redeveloped to provide for the growing city. Kiel was the site of the sailors' mutiny which sparked the German Revolution in late 1918. Just before the end of World War I, the German fleet stationed at Kiel was ordered to be sent out on a last great battle with the Royal Navy. The sailors, who thought of this as a suicide mission which would have no effect on the outcome of the war, decided they had nothing to lose and refused to leave the safety of the port. The sailor's actions and the lack of response of the government to them, fueled by an increasingly critical view of the Kaiser, sparked a revolution which caused the abolishment of the monarchy and the installation of the Weimar (Weimar vacation rentals | Weimar travel guide) Republic.
During World War II, Kiel remained one of the major naval bases and shipbuilding centres of the German Reich. There was also slave labour for the local industry. Because of its status as a naval port and as production site for submarines, Kiel was heavily bombed by the Allies during World War II. The Bombing of destroyed 80% of the remaining old town, 72% of the central residential areas, and 83% of the industrial areas. During the RAF bombing of 23/24 July 1944, Luftwaffe fighters tried to intercept the spoof force instead of the main force attacking Keil, and there was no water for 3 days; trains and buses did not run for 8 days and there was no gas available for cooking for 3 weeks. The town, its port, the canal and its scientists were seized by the British T-Force under Tony Hibbert just after the German surrender to the western Allies to stop them and access to Denmark falling into Russian hands, despite it being beyond the stop-line set by the surrender.
Just like other heavily bombed German cities, the city was rebuilt after the war. In 1946, Kiel was named the seat of government for Schleswig-Holstein, and it officially became the state's capital in 1972. Kiel is once again an important maritime centre of Germany, with high-tech shipbuilding, u-boat construction, ferries to Scandinavia and Russia, as well as the largest sailing event in the world called Kiel Week. The Kieler Umschlag is another festival, which has been taking place since 1975. Kiel is also home to a large service sector and a number of research institutions including the University of Kiel, which is oldest, largest, and most prestigious university in the state.
[ source: wikipedia ]
With its roots reaching far back into the shadows of Viking history, Kiel is the largest city in Schleswig-Holstein. Due to its location on the Baltic coast, the city is a major maritime center, and the Kiel Canal is the busiest artificial waterway in the world. Kiel is also a high-tech shipbuilding center and is home to Germany's Baltic fleet. In term's of tourist destinations, the shopping district is a major attraction, and the city's other notable sites include its two botanical gardens and the City and Maritime Museum. If you have an interest in Germany's naval history, spend an afternoon at the Laboe Naval Memorial. Here you can view U-995, a preserved World War II-era U-boat. If you are interested in sailing, time your visit to coincide with the city's annual Kiel Week in late June, the biggest regatta and sailing event in the world. Every year, 5,000 sailors, 2,000 ships, and 3 million visitors converge on Kiel for this amazing event. This is also the time of the city's tall ship convention, which involves the display of hundreds of traditional ships, mainly historic shipping vessels. Although this week's focus is on sailing, the city hosts concerts on public stages around Kiel, which keep the city hopping until late in the night. If you want to get out of the city for a day, hop a train to Hamburg for more coastal pleasures. It is only 55 miles to the South.
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