Prater Amusement Park, Show all 26 places in Vienna » Vienna26, Show all 26 places in AUSTRIA » AUSTRIA26
- Prater 7/3, A-1020 Vienna, Austria
- Working hours*:
Tuesday - Thursday
10:00 - 13:00
Friday - Sunday and on holidays
14:00 - 18:00
Closed: January 1, May 1, December 25, as well as on Easter Monday, Whit Monday and other bank holidays that fall on a Monday.
The admission to the Viennese Prater is free of charge. However, the use of the different attractions is subject to charges.
- * - opening and closing times as well as entrance prices, are subject to alterations without notice. Visitors are advised to check before visiting.
- Sunday: free entrance to the permanent exhibition!
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A fascinating world awaits visitors and guarantees entertainment for both young and old. Full of turbulent roller coasters, spooky ghost trains and attractions of all sorts - there is hardly any other place in the world to challenge your senses in this intoxicating way. Time flies here while spendind a few pleasurable hours with your family, enjoying the Prater highlights or just having dinner with friends. Have fun and enjoy – this is the Prater's motto!
The History of the Vienna Prater (from 1766)
The Prater was once imperial hunting ground and only accessible for the aristocracy, until the Austrian Emperor Josef II donated the area to the Viennese in 1766 as a public leisure center. And since Emperor also allowed the establishment of restaurants and snack bars – small wonder that it didn’t take long until the precursors of today’s Wurstelprater appeared on the edge of the former aristocratic hunting grounds. Innkeepers, coffee brewers, and gingerbread bakers (Lebzelter) hung out their shingles; seesaws and merry-go-rounds as well as bowling alleys were not far behind.
World Exhibition 1873 in the Prater
The first and only World Exhibition in Vienna took place at the Prater in 1873. Around 53,000 exhibitors presented their achievements focusing on cultural issues in an area covering approximately 2.3 million square meters. The 84 meter high Rotunda with cupola diameter of 109 meters, around which the exhibition was centered, fell victim to fire in 1937. Today, the Wiener Messe ("Vienna Trade Fair") main building is erected on these grounds.
Carriages and Laundry Girls
In 1895, the amusement area "Venice in Vienna" was established, in whose midst one of the landmarks of the city, the Riesenrad, appeared in 1897 The Prater became a place where everyone finds enjoyment. The "better” class of people came here in their horse-drawn carriages, military cadets and laundry girls met on secret dates, one found barrel organs, Heurigen singers and ladies orchestras – and some of the great composers of their time, such as the Waltz King Johann Strauss or the composers Joseph Lanner and Carl Michael Ziehrer performed here. For children's entertainment, puppet theaters were established in simple wooden booths, where Hanswurst played the leading part. The name "Wurstelprater" derives from this figure.
Reconstruction after 1945
In 1938, the Prater became the property of the City of Vienna. During World War II, bombs and the construction of trenches destroyed large parts of the Prater area. A large part of the Wurstelprater fell victim to fire in April 1945. After 1945, the Wurstelprater rebuilt with the help of private initiatives, and the devastated Prater grounds afforested by the Vienna public park authorities.
Robert Stolz, Graham Greene & Helmut Qualtinger
Several writers and composers, among them Adalbert Stifter, Felix Salten, Peter Altenberg, Robert Stolz and last but not least Graham Greene and Helmut Qualtinger have immortalized their impressions of the Prater both in literature and in music. These records have helped to reproduce all the facets of development of this city space over the decades and over centurie.