(German: Hessen) is a state of Germany with an area of 21,110 km²
and just over six million inhabitants.
The state capital is Wiesbaden.
Hesse's largest city is nearby Frankfurt am Main. Hesse contributes the
largest share to the Rhine Main Area.
Situated in western-central
Germany, Hesse borders on the German states (starting from the north-west
and proceeding clockwise) of North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony, Thuringia,
Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate.
The principal cities of Hesse
include Frankfurt am Main, Wiesbaden,
Offenbach, Hanau, Gießen, Wetzlar and Limburg in the greater Rhine
Main Area, Fulda in the east, and Kassel and Marburg an der Lahn in the
The most important rivers
in Hesse are the Fulda and Eder rivers in the north, the Lahn in the central
part of Hesse, and the Main and Rhine in the south. The countryside is
hilly and there are numerous mountain ranges, like the Rhön, the Westerwald,
the Taunus, the Vogelsberg, the Knüll or the Spessart.
Most of the population of
Hesse is in the southern part of Hesse in the Rhine Main Area. The Rhine
borders Hesse on the southwest without running through the state, only
one old arm -- the so-called Alt-Rhein -- runs through Hesse. The mountain
range between the Main and the Neckar river is called the Odenwald. The
plain in between the rivers Main, Rhine and Neckar, and the Odenwald mountains
is called the Ried.