When considering a move to Kiel, the district of Gaarden might not be at the top of your list of potential destinations. Most people, if any, will tend to harbor more negative associations, such as crime and drugs, with it. But is this judgment really fair?

Indeed, there is a multitude of reasons why Gaarden is emerging as a viable alternative to the city’s more renowned West Shore. Arguably, Gaarden’s strongest asset is its location. Both Gaarden-Süd and Gaarden-Ost are situated in close proximity to the city center. With frequent bus connections, you can reach almost any place in Kiel swiftly. The Fachhochschule is just under a 15-minute ride away. Despite its central positioning, Gaarden boasts comparatively affordable rents. Finding budget-friendly accommodations here is generally easier than on the West Shore. In contrast to its urban character, Gaarden also offers an abundance of parks and green spaces, such as the Viehburger Gehölz and the Werftpark.

Green space in Gaarden Photo: Jonas Borrmann

Sports, Leisure, and Employment Opportunities

Gaarden provides a wealth of options for leisure activities. Six different clubs offer various team and individual sports, including soccer, handball, and boxing. If you prefer not to join a club, you can still make use of public spaces like the Sportpark Gaarden. Established as a charitable facility in 2007, it features not only soccer and basketball courts but also skateboarding ramps and climbing structures. For fitness enthusiasts, there are two major gyms in the area: FitX on Schwedendamm and McFit on Theodor-Heuss-Ring. Additionally, you’ll find both indoor and outdoor swimming pools, the Hörnbad and the Sommerbad Katzheide. Those with a passion for culture will discover a treasure trove at Werftpark. The Werftpark Theatre regularly presents both indoor and open-air events, often featuring a very young ensemble. Once a year, Gaarden hosts the „Kulturrotation 143“. At this event, various cultural activities take place throughout the district for an entire day. The program includes jazz, folk, rock, live readings and radio plays, as well as outdoor interactive art activities and much more. Admission is free.

Moreover, Gaarden hosts numerous companies offering part-time jobs for students. Examples include Domino’s, Hornbach, and, of particular interest to media students, falkemedia.

Sportpark Gaarden
Sportpark Gaarden Photo: Jonas Borrmann

Nice To Know

The name “Gaarden” derives from the fact that a substantial portion of the two villages, Hemminghestorpe and Wulvesbrooke, from which the current districts of Gaarden-Ost and Gaarden-Süd emerged, was leased as a garden during the Middle Ages. The population surged in the 19th century with the establishment of major East Shore shipyards, transforming Gaarden from a village into a bustling district. After World War II, many foreign workers were recruited as guest laborers by HDW, the last remaining shipyard, contributing to the district’s diverse population.

There are many more hidden gems to be found in Gaarden. So, go grab your pickaxe and give it a try!