If you are looking for your fill of goosebumps, you will find several ghost-houses and rides in the Prater. We went on the following 2:
Jack the Ripper House
You walk on foot through this maze of dark passages which hold frightening surprises. Surrounded by the sounds of eerie laughter, you try to find your way around the complete darkness that is only broken by sudden flashes of light and skeletons falling in front of you, jets of air coming up unexpectedly when you step on hidden planks, and guys who act like statues that spontaneously come to live to scare the living daylights out of you. We entered an elevator that crashed, and then ended up in a room that swayed very wildely and seemed to turn around us when we sat down on a bench. The walk through the house was really long with a lot of grizzly sights, such as torture chambers, fake blood, medieval birds, etc. . We both kept pushing the other in front since we were lost in the maze of passages. This was quite scary and is definitely not for the faint hearted.
This is a ride on little wooden trains. It's quite frightening - if you are 5 years old.... cute otherwise.
A short 30 minute, if that, U-bahn (Vienna's underground system), from Stadtpark Station and Vienna's District 1, you must go to Prater to ride the Riesenrad.
If you're planning to go to Vienna, rent the movie "The Third Man", a classic Carol Reed movie, starring Orson Welles in 1949. The movie is a mystery thriller that also provides a lot of history about post World War 2 Vienna. Personally, I adore Austrian Actress Alida Valli who plays Anna Schimdt, a Czech woman trying to pass as Austrian so that she wouldn't be sent to that country now under Russian occupation and Lime's love interest.
There's a memorable scene when the "hero" Holly Martins finds Lime and they have a discussion on the Riesenrad.
The scene is famous because of one of Orson Welles most famous movie lines:
"Don't be so gloomy. After all it's not that awful. What the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock."
The "Spiegel-Irrgarten" (mirror-maze) was great fun. First you walk through a house with crooked walls, floors, and ceilings, illusions, weird mirrors, and any sort of trick that can be played on one's mind.
One of the rooms contains an arm-wrestling machine, on which you can measure your strength. While Eve showed "herculean" strength, Ash made it up to the "barely out of diapers" level. hehehehehe
Once you make it through this crazy house of mind-games, you will end up in a maze of glass walls. In order to exit the place you have find your way out of this "Irrgarten" of glass. Ash called me "plain rude" because I was cracking up when my mom ran smack-bang into one of these glass-walls. In the meantime he himself had to turn and secretly giggle.......
This is a fun thing to do for the entire family.
ASH's COMMENT: I DID NOT GIGGLE! Maybe a bit of a smile ... but DEFINATELY not AS LOUD AS HER GUFFAW!! ARGH!!!!! Impolite I tell you! :)
We thought the craziest thing we did on this trip was this attraction in the Prater: the Ejection Seat (until Ash bungee-jumped off the Donauturm, but more about that in the Sports-tips).
This is how it works ...
2 people are seated in a ball that is pulled back by springs and then shot up into the sky. You'll fly up for about 90 meters, and then bounce back and forth for a while. It's crazy - it's fun, its free fall upwards, and then heart stopping back down.
The price for this is 15 Euros; they also strap a camera to the machine, so that you can get the video of yourself screaming and shouting out expressions you normally wouldn't use. :D
The best part of it all was when we got to seeing the video at Eva's dads place over beer, everyone was tickled pink at us yelling like asses while on the slingshot, and how she was all white in the face from being shuttled up at such high speeds. This was our first crazy stunt together. Don't think I'd forget it ever!
Don't get me wrong - this is not an US-style amusement park. The Prater is rather small. But still it is a good place to stroll around, sit in the grass somewhere, eat good food or to enjoy some of the joyrides.
It's also not a bad idea to take a ride on the "Riesenrad" in order to get a good view over vienna.
Prater's a traditional Viennese amusement park, opened to the public by Emperor Joseph II in 1766. Among other things, you can ride on the Giant Ferris Wheel built by Walter Basset in 1896/97 or on the Lilliput Steamtrain.
The Café Restaurant Luftburg is an oasis of fun, dining and drinking in the heart of historic Vienna. Enter the haunted house, if you dare. Put the kids on the swinging Superman or the indoor Roundup. Prater is a retro-chic carnivale in a city with both modern and ancient roots that are evident in the parks, architecture, music, food and customs.
Deffinitely take in the Luftburg one night in Vienna. Order yourselves some worst and a swine hax with the mustards and the horseradish. Drink a liter mug of Budweiser Budvar (not from AB, but the original Bud from Czech Republic). When you do so, it is best, I find, to sit outside so you can look up to the same stars Wolfgang and Ludwig stared at whilest dreaming & composing.
Some say the city is boring and stuffy. Take a chance and experience Vienna's one-of-a-kind old world / new world charm.
If you have time enough during your stay in Vienna,another interesting and funny option may be take one of this ships along the Prater and have a break while you see the beautiful architecture of the city.There are some ships with dinners available aswell.
A visit to Vienna isn't complete if you haven't been in the Praterpark. It's an old amusement park famous for it's Giant Ferris Wheel. This Riesenrad is more than 100 years old and on top of it, you can enjoy a superb view on the city.
The Prater dates back to the 12th century as an imperial hunting ground. In the late 18th century it was opened to the public with some games, attractions and snack bars.
After opening to the public it became a "true carnival" with "freak" sideshows, magic shows and a wax museum. Since then it has gone through many changes and transformations to become the world-famous amusement park that it is today.
But the Prater is not just an amusement park. Another aspect of the Prater is the Hauptallee-a tree-lined boulevard-where rotal events were held and there is a 200 year old coffee house.
Another little known aspect of the Prater is the area known as "Venice in Vienna." This was a lagoon city, modeled after Venice, Italy, with musical and theatrical entertainment open to the public. It is no longer in existence, but still a colorful part of Viennese history.
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