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Konstanz is the largest city on Lake Constance and the district town of the district of Konstanz. The former free and imperial city belongs to the Federal Republic of Germany and lies on the border with Switzerland. Constance has been a major district town since April 1, 1956 and forms a regional center within the Hochrhein-Bodensee region in the Freiburg administrative region of the state of Baden-Württemberg. There are two universities in Konstanz, the University of Konstanz and the University of Konstanz Technology, Business and Design (HTWG). The history of the place goes back to Roman times.


Constance is the largest city on Lake Constance and is part of Baden. The city lies at the point where the Rhine flows out of the Obersee of Lake Constance, the so-called Konstanzer funnel, and flows west of the city into the Untersee. The 30 km long headland of Bodanrück ends in the northwest, separating the Untersee and Gnadensee from the Überlinger See in the north.

The old town of Konstanz is located south of the Konstanz funnel, i.e. on the actually Swiss side, while younger districts are located on the tip of the Bodanrück. This particular geographic location alone explains why Konstanz has a strong traditional relationship with its Swiss environs. Zurich is easier to reach than the state capital Stuttgart. Visitors who are not familiar with the area should not make the mistake of calling Constance residents Swabians. Constance is part of Baden, and that is sometimes taken very seriously.

Day tourists like to visit Constance in summer, not least because of the nearby island of Mainau, which is known for its well-tended and flower-rich park. Because of the lake, it usually doesn't get too hot in summer. The winters are rather mild, but notorious for long periods of fog. The allemannische Fasnet (carnival) is traditionally strongly cultivated in Constance. On the Thursday before Carnival (Schmotzige Dunschtig), public life comes to a complete standstill. The streets then belong to the fools. In a somewhat weaker form, this also applies to the following three days, while normality returns on Rose Monday and Shrove Tuesday.

Founded by Emperor Constantius Chlorus in the 4th century, Konstanz rose to become the bishopric of the largest diocese in Germany in 590. At the time of the Council of Constance from 1414 to 1418, the political and spiritual world of the West came together here to discuss the great church reform with the participation of the German and Bohemian King Sigismund. With the election of Pope Martin V, the end of the forty year schism in the church was reached. The council went down in history with the condemnation and execution at the stake of the Bohemian reformer Jan Hus in 1415.