The statue of Archduke Charles looks over the Heldenplatz (Hero’s Square), next to the Hofburg Palace in Vienna. Built in 1860, it glorifies the Habsburg dynasty. Charles was the leader of the Austrian army, and in the early 1800s fought against Napoleon.
One thing we noticed at the festival is how proud the locals are of the heritage. Many people were dressed in traditional lederhosen, and they were not people in one of the events, they were just regular visitors to the festival. I think its great. We need to be proud of both our culture and our heritage.
We were lucky to be in Vienna during the annual harvest festival – a big celebration of local food and culture. The best part is that it was largely attended by Viennese locals, and we were one of the few tourists there.
The beer hall (of course there was a beer hall) had traditional singing and dancing throughout the day – although I find the Viennese folk dancing very different from the waltz for which the city is so famous. Most of the dances seem to require you to either stamp your feed, slap your knees, or slap your partner. But it was entertaining to watch.
Slap your knees
Dancing with your partner
Inside the beerhall
If you like fun fairs, then Riesenrad is the place for you. I have already posted some pics of the old ferris wheel, but there are plenty of activities for the more adventurous.
There used to be a children’s swing at the local fair that came to my local park in Cape Town from time to time, and I loved riding on it. This swing is about 4 times as big as the one I used to ride on, and I am not quite sure if that boy is very happy about it.
Entrance to the house of horrors – although I kind of like those trolls – they look to me like they could have stepped off the Discworld.
This contraption (no it’s not made of Meccano) flings you into the air and then throws you back to the ground. Why? I have no idea!
I took this shot of the Vienna skyline from the top of the ferris wheel – the Wiener Riesenrad at the Prater funfair in Vienna. The ferris wheel is over 100 years old, and the funfair is filled with amazing rides (more about the fund fair in an future post). But if you want to see an amazing view of the Viennese skyline in an historical manner, I recommend a ride on the Wiener Riesenrad.