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Johannisnacht in Mainz

June 23rd to 26th, 2017

"Johannisnacht" is one of the yearly event highlights in the calendar. It is celebrated in remembrance of Johannes Gutenberg, the famous inventor of the printing press with moveable type. Four days long there is a great atmosphere in the centre of Mainz. Free entry on all days!

Main attractions

Topical events on printing and calligraphy

During these four days in June Mainz focusses on printing and calligraphy with exhibitions in the famous Gutenberg-Museum and its printing shop as well as with different activities. Everyone is invited to learn more about printing and Gutenberg's invention and to test it oneself.

Children can playfully learn more about printing with creative activities.

Gautschen - The merry printers' baptism, 24th of June, 2017

The merry printers' baptism, the so called "Gautschen", is a traditional highlight of the Johannisnacht (24th of June, 2017). Since the 16th century assistants have been submerged in a barrel filled with water symbolising a release of the years of apprenticeship as well as the removal of lead dust.

This tradition is still celebrated on Johannisnacht Saturday, in historical costumes on stage at Liebfrauenplatz. Today the apprentices are usually digital media designers who have just finished their apprenticeship.

Book market and artists' market

One of the attractions is the book market during Johannisnacht which is the biggest market of its kind in Germany.

The impressive artists' market serves all sorts of different items 700 metres along the Rhine such as jewellery, clothes and dishes. The artists come from all sorts of areas in the federal state as well as from abroad. Here you will find unique presents!

Events on stage and fair in the centre

Theater, cabaret and jugglers performances as well as several music concerts guarantee a diverse entertainment programme on six stages downtown. You should not miss the cabaret night at Ballplatz.

Fun runs promise joy and action for children and older visitors.

Sports activities

Also sports lovers will be entertained. Sports events take place such as sailing and rowing regattas and the popular "Drei-Brücken-Lauf" (run) on 25th of June, 2017.

Fireworks, 26th of June, 2017

Four days of celebration and fun end on Monday evening, 26th of June, 2017 with a magnificent firework display over the Rhine. 

Special in 2017: street artists

A firedrake and a dancing sceleton as well as Caribbean steeldrum sounds and medieval flair with "Donner Trummel": At 50th Johannisnacht street artists stroll through the alleys of Mainz. The Belgian combo "Les Contes d'Asphalt" impresses with its fairy-tale puppet theatre - a premiere in Mainz. "Sunshine Coconuts" create Caribbean flair with their steeldrums. Besides the audience is transferred back to medieval times by "Donner Trummel" .

Programme 2017

For further information on events during this year's Johannisnacht please find the event calendar (German). The programme including the stage events will be completed by the middle of May, also you will find a programme broschure and a plan of the city centre to download here.

Arrival and event area

With the public transport in Mainz it is easy and convenient to get to the Johannisnacht area.

Public transport in Mainz

In direct vicinity of the event area the following stops are located:

  • Schillerplatz
  • Fischtor
  • Rheingoldhalle/Rathaus
  • Brückenplatz
  • Höfchen (stops C + D in Quintinsstraße)

There will be a special timetable for the buses with extra offers: public city transport service day and night on Friday and Saturday and till 1 a.m. on Sunday and Monday.

Connections to areas around Mainz

On Johannisnacht the "Rheinland-Pfalz-Takt" guarantees service of the regional bus lines 650 and 660 on Friday and Saturday till 2 a.m. and till midnight on Sunday and Monday.

Extra buses on bus lines 650 and 660 are planned on Friday and Saturday after 2 a.m. There will be extra bus rides after the fireworks on Monday round about 11.30 p.m.

Extra trains will be running on Friday and Saturday from Mainz to Worms, Alzey and Bingen till 2 a.m. and till 1.30 a.m. from Mainz to Bad Kreuznach.

Parking facilities

If you are not able to go by public transport please drive into the following car parks located in direct vicinity of the Johannisnacht:

  • Rheinufer
  • Rathaus
  • Brand
  • Löhrstraße

Other car parks in the city centre:

  • Kronberger Hof
  • Theater
  • Römerpassage
  • Schillerplatz
  • Kaufhof
  • Karstadt

Near the old town:

  • Römisches Theater
  • Fort Malakoff Park

Near the central railway station:

  • CityPort
  • Taubertsberg
  • Bonifaziustürme

parking ticket = bus ticket (only in car parks run by PMG)

You want to leave your car and carry on by bus - this is easy. The parking ticket of "Parking in Mainz" (PMG) is a bus ticket at the same time for all bus lines of the Mainz public transport company (MVG) - valid all day long till midnight and with up to four accompanying travellers.

Event area

The Johannisnacht takes place in the whole city centre of Mainz, especially in the following areas:

  • Schillerplatz
  • Ballplatz
  • Bischofsplatz
  • Gutenbergplatz
  • Marktplatz
  • Liebfrauenplatz
  • Jockel-Fuchs-Platz
  • Leichhof
  • Ludwigsstraße
  • Rheinufer from Kaisertor till Fort Malakoff
  • Fischtorplatz