Rostock, officially the Hanseatic and University City of Rostock, is the largest city in the German state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and lies in the Mecklenburgian part of the state, close to the border with Pomerania. It is the third-largest city on the German Baltic coast, as well as the 39th-largest city of Germany. Rostock was the largest coastal and most important port city in East Germany.
Rostock stands on the estuary of the River Warnow into the Bay of Mecklenburg of the Baltic Sea. The city stretches for about 16 km (10 mi) along the river, that flows into the sea in the very north of the city, between the boroughs of Warnemünde and Hohe Düne. The city centre lies further upstream, in the very south of the city. While most of Rostock's inhabitants live on the western side of the Warnow, the area east of the river is dominated by the port, industrial estates and the forested Rostock Heath. The city's coastline east and west of the river mouth is relatively undeveloped, with long sandy beaches prevailing.
Rostock is the economic centre of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and the state's only regiopolis. The port of Rostock is the fourth largest port in Germany, and the largest port on the German Baltic coast. The ferry routes between Rostock and Gedser in Denmark as well as Trelleborg in Southern Sweden are among the busiest between Germany and Scandinavia. Rostock–Laage Airport lies in a rural region south-east of the city.
The city is home to the oldest university in the Baltic region and one of the oldest universities in the world, the University of Rostock, founded in 1419. The university's hospital, Universitätsmedizin Rostock, is one of two university hospitals in the state, along with Universitätsmedizin Greifswald of the University of Greifswald in Western Pomerania.
The economy is mainly characterised by maritime industries (especially shipbuilding), high-tech industries (IT, biotechnology/life sciences, medical engineering), the University of Rostock, tourism and the service sector. Major companies include: Maritime Industry • Caterpillar Inc., manufacturer of diesel engines for ships • Deutsche Seereederei Rostock, transport, cruises, property and tourism holding • F. Laeisz • Neptun Werft, shipyard belonging to Meyer Neptun Group • Nordic Yards Warnemünde, shipyard • Schiffselektronik Rostock • Tamsen Maritim shipyard Other engineering • Nordex SE, a major producer of wind turbines • Suzlon, world's 5th largest wind turbine manufacturer • Liebherr, manufacturer of cranes Tourism industry • AIDA Cruises, German company for cruises • Scandlines, German-Danish ferry operator (by Scandferries Holding) Others • Hanseatische Brauerei Rostock, German brewery belonging to the Oetker-Gruppe • Rostock University Hospital (Universitätsmedizin) • Yara International, supplier of plant nutrients.
Rostock has a population of over 206,011 people. Rostock also forms part of the wider Rostock metropolitan area which has a population of over 221,000 people. Rostock is the #399 hipster city in the world, with a hipster score of 1.6323 according to the Hipster Index which evaluates and ranks the major cities of the world according to the number of vegan eateries, coffee shops, tattoo studios, vintage boutiques, and record stores per 100,000 city residents.