Hessen is a state in the heart of Germany with just more than six million inhabitants. Situated in west-central Germany, Hessen is surrounded by six other states. There is no border to any other country. The landscape of Hessen is dominated by densely forested upland mountain ranges like the Rhön or the Westerwald that are popular with tourists and for local recreation of residents.
The Brothers Grimm made Hessen famous for its castles and forests, and the Rheingau has always been renowned for its wines. But Hessen's real claim to fame is Germany's most international and energetic city: Frankfurt am Main has Germany's tallest buildings and highest GDP, and as continental Europe's financial capital - home to Germany's stock exchange, the Bundesbank, and the European Central Bank - it has earned nicknames such as ''Mainhatten'' and ''Bankfurt''.
Frankfurt also draws countless international companies who want to be close to Europe' center of action. Moreover, it attracts an amazing 20 percent of Germany's overall foreign direct investment to Hessen. The city also hosts a number of major international trade fairs, featuring everything from consumer goods and books to automobiles. Likewise, its central location in Germany makes it a hub for road and rail traffic, and its international airport sees more travelers than any other airport in the country.
Although almost three out of four companies in Hessen fall into the service industries, there is also much manufacturing in the sectors of machine building, electronic engineering, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, and automotive. The region is also famous for its cultural offerings, such as Darmstadt' Art Nouveau buildings or Kassel's ''documenta'', the world's most important modern and contemporary art exhibition.