Wiener Riesenrad Giant Ferris Wheel Highlights
Vienna's Giant Ferris Wheel (Wiener Riesenrad) is a symbol of the city, rising 65 metres above Prater to offer unforgettable views of Vienna. Take a turn on this historic observation wheel to experience its unique atmosphere and see Vienna from all angles. Located in the Prater, Vienna's long-established amusement parkland, Wiener Reisenrad has been gently revolving above the rooftops of Vienna for 120 years. Visitors can board one of the wheel's 15 gondolas for a relaxing 15-minute revolutuion that allows you to see the sights of Vienna from above.More Info Read Less
Sights of Vienna
As the Wiener Riesenrad makes a revolution, you'll enjoy fantastic views of Vienna from a variety of different angles. See Danube Tower, Augarten, Karlskirche, the River Danube and more as you circle over Vienna.
History of the Giant Ferris Wheel
The Wiener Riesenrad was built in 1897 by English engineer Lieutenant Walter Bassett Bassett as a temporary structure to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Emperor Franz Josef I. It was one of the earliest Ferris wheels ever built, and following the dismantling of large ferris wheels in the US and England, it quickly became the tallest. Wiener Riesenrad was almost demolished in 1916, but because no one would pay for the job, it survived. After sustaining extensive damage during WWII, it was rebuilt - but this time with only 15 gondolas, not the original 30.
The Wheel in Film
Over the years, the Wiener Riesenrad has had quite a ~turn~ in the limelight. Notably, it appeared in post-WWII film noir The Third Man, based on the Graham Greene novella of the same name. It can also be seen in the 1987 James Bond film, The Living Daylights; Richard Linklater's famous romance Before Sunrise (1995), and the recent Woman in Gold (2015), about the repatriation of a Klimt portrait stolen from a Jewish Viennese family by the Nazis. In literature, it features in The Glass Room by Simon Mawer, and The Star of Kazan by Eva Ibbotson. In one 1914 film stunt, a famous circus director and equestian named Madame Solange d’Atalide completed a full rotation of the Giant Ferris Wheel on horseback. The horse was standing atop one of the gondolas!
The Wiener Riesenrad is open from 10:00 every day, but please note that closing times are subject to change daily due to private events and seasonal operating timetables. Please print your ticket voucher and present it at the Wiener Riesenrad ticket office prior to entry. Children 3 and under go free of charge.