Regions and Cities of Germany
- Lower Saxony
- North Rhine Westphalia
- Frisian Islands
- Harz Mountains
Wiesbaden is the capital city of the state of Hesse and lies close to Frankfurt am Main. Situated on the southern side of the Taunus Mountain Range, on the banks of the Rhine, this city, also known as "Nice of the North" is famous for hot mineral water springs and its temperate climate. The tourist industry is a main economic factor for this city, which is also a noted cultural, transport and wine trade center. The industrial plants surrounding the city produce chemical and pharmaceutical products, as well as cement and machinery.
The first settlement ever known about in the region was a small Celtic town founded towards the 3rd Century A.D. where present day Wiesbaden stands today. Conquered by the Romans, it was fortified to be used as a spa, being named Aquae Mattiacorum, but towards the mid 9th Century began to be called Wisibada (Meadow Baths). Two centuries later the city came into possession of the Nassau family, who lost it to the Archbishop of Mainz in 1242. From 1806 to 1866, the year in which the town began forming part of Prussia, Wiesbaden became a part of the Duchy of Nassau. In 1946, it was made capital city of Hesse.
The city was a meeting point for the wealthy European aristocracy, co much so that a census carried out in 1907, showed that Wiesbaden had the largest number of Germany's millionaires as residents, many of them Russian nobles that settled in the city before the October Revolution. The broad streets, the wide squares, the elegant houses and the exuberance of the surrounding parks and gardens take the visitor back in time. This is where composer Richard Wagner lived, a regular at the roulette table in the city's casino; famous Russian writer Fedor Dostoievski used Wiesbaden as the setting for one of his novels: The Player.
The city has many interesting sights to visit and explore, some of the most outstanding being the old royal and ducal residences, the Kurhaus with its casino and concert halls, the Colonnade, remains of a Roman wall known as the Heidenmauer ("Wall of Pagans") and the Hesse State Theatre.