Mainz

Mainz, even with a population of less than 200k, refuses to be overshadowed by neighboring Frankfurt – and makes a good case as a tourist destination of its own.  The city is situated where the Main and Rhine rivers meet, making it an important trading center through the Roman, medieval, and modern eras.  Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press in Mainz, beginning the 15th-century intellectual and informational revolutions; a museum dedicated to Gutenberg sits on the central plaza.  My favorite Mainz experience was a visit to Sant Stephanskirche, which features 9 windows by Marc Chagall that cast the entire interior in a dream-like deep blue aura.

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