Saturday, October 26, 2013

Enjoy a Bird’s Eye View on the Giant Ferris Wheel of Vienna

Vienna ferris wheel in Prater
"Wiener Riesenrad" (Giant Ferris Wheel)

The giant Ferris wheel of Vienna, or the ‘Wiener Riesenrad’ has been one of Vienna’s great landmarks, rising up above the Viennese rooftops since its construction over 100 years ago. The Riesenrad charm obviously hasn’t worn off, as it has been consistently popular across the decades. It was among one of the first buildings to be reconstructed after the Second World War. Aside from being burnt to the ground and re-built, the wheel has been witness to numerous historical events and dramas, and often features in panoramas of Vienna and films including ‘The Third Man’ and ‘James Bond’.

The wheel has more recently been adorned with golden lighting and is spectacular after sunset. Enjoy the city from almost 200ft up and even find plenty to do from the ground, as the wheel is surrounded by shops, cafés, bars and sideshows, including installations in antiquated Ferris wheel waggons that float past, telling the story of the beautiful wheel that has now come to be part of a larger amusement park. Some tourists find the wider amusement park a little seedy and overrated, but none can deny the charm of the old wheel itself.

The giant Ferris wheel of Vienna

At the gift shop you can buy precious models of the Ferris wheel, or beautiful porcelain and crystal mementos. This is a great day out for families and couples alike, it’s easy to get to on the U-Bahn, and inexpensive. On the classic ride (in fact on one of the earliest wheels of its kind ever built) you can even privately rent a vintage wagon in which to enjoy champagne and a gourmet Viennese dinner, if you’re planning to pop the question, this is an extremely popular spot for proposals and you will be following in the footsteps of countless nervous individuals before you.