Vienna’s iconic Riesenrad (giant Ferris wheel) is the central attraction in amusement park in the Prater, a large public park in the Second District. My favorite mention of the Prater is in Richard Strauss’ opera Der Rosenkavalier, in which the Marschallin tells her young lover Octavian that he may ride alongside her carriage in the Prater. Probably the best-known reference is the famous scene with Orson Welles on the Ferris wheel in Carol Reed’s The Third Man, though the Prater and its ferris wheel also feature in Before Sunrise (starring the nicely-named Ethan Hawke).
(In related news, Vienna’s Riesenrad is the inspiration for the logo on this blog.)
So on April 10, 2009, I went out to the Prater to ride the Ferris wheel. That afternoon I took nearly 400 photos, just a fraction of which are in the set highlighted here. It’s still an exhaustive (exhausting?) study of the wheel itself, with a few other skyline and park shots sprinkled in. At least it completes the collection of five photo sets I made on that short visit to Vienna!
These photos look best at the largest size possible, for which purpose I suggest using the slideshow on Flickr here. But I’ve also inserted a gallery below. I hope you enjoy seeing this century-old attraction through my eyes.