The Ferris wheel: a brief story of the romantic carousel
The best way to discover the traditions and history of Cagliari is to visit the districts of the ancient Casteddu, but if you wish to have a different view of the city and have a magical experience you should allow yourself a spin on the new Ferris wheel.
It was inaugurated on the 6th of August 2020 and has been build next to the Ex-Marine Station on the seafront near via Roma. It will remain open until the 31st of May 2021, date of expiry of the concession to the company City Eye which won the contract for the installation and management of the facility.
At the top of the 45-metre-high attraction, there is a breath-taking view of the city. It has 36 cabins which are easily accessible for disabled, equipped with a piped system with multilingual audio guide and an air conditioning system for both winter and summer.
There is also a “VIP” cabin with armchairs and a bottle of champagne, perfect for a romantic moment looking out over the splendid Sardinian sea.
The story behind Ferris Wheels begins in Chicago in 1893 when American engineer George Ferris built the first circular metal structure with cabins for the Columbia Exposition. The wheel was 80 metres high, it had 36 cabins holding 60 seats each of which just 40 were sitting down and was capable of carrying up to 2160 people.
The attraction was named after its inventor and in 1904 it was dismantled and rebuilt in St. Louis in Missouri state for the city’s universal exhibition. Two years later it was permanently taken down.
During the beginning of the 20th century also in Europe and more precisely in England, a panoramic wheel was built with the same model of that made by Ferris. The Great Wheel designed by Australian engineers Adam Gaddeline and Gareth Watson was 94 metres tall and could carry up to 2.5 million people, it was then dismantled one year later in 1906.
Another two famous wheels where the Wiener Riesenrad in Vienna and the Grande Rou in Paris. The one in Vienna was designed by English engineer Walter Bennet, it was 65-metre-high with 30 cabins and built-in 1896 within the Prater, one of the largest and most famous public parks in the Austrian capital. In 1945 a big fire severely damaged the Riesenrard, therefore, the wheel was rebuilt with half the number of cabins so to lower the weight.
The Grande Roue in Paris was built in 1900 in the occasion of the universal exhibition of Paris and wasn’t far from the Machine Gallery, a building designed by the famous architect Ferdinand Duter with contributions from another famous man: Alexandre Gustave Eiffel, engineer and French businessman who only a year earlier had created the Eiffel Tower.
The great wheel of Paris wayed about 400 tons and had 40 cabins which could each carry 30 people. Its remained functional until 1937 when it was dismantled so to reuse the metal.
During the following decade, many more carousels were built around the world, mostly in fun parks and fairs.
The biggest wheel of our times is the 167.5-metre-tall High Roller in Las Vegas, but in Berlin, Dubai and Beijing structures are being built of 175, 185 and 208 metres.
Ferris wheel: everything you need to know about the wheel in Cagliari
Besides Olbia, also Cagliari has its wheel from which you can admire the city from 45 metres.
Here is everything you need to know about this new attraction changing the urban skyline and made for residents and tourists:
- Where is it: on the cities seafront in the area between Molo Sanità and Calata via Roma
- hours: open from 10 am until midnight
- duration of the panoramic tour: between 8 and 10 minutes
- cabins: are 35 plus 1 VIP with armchairs and champagne. Each cabin can hold up to 6 people and based on the anti-Covid set-up these people must belong to the same family. The cabins are accessible for disabled people.
- The cost of the ticket: 10 euros for adults and 7 for children. There are discounts for families.
Do you want to discover the authentic taste of Sardinian cuisine and experience a holiday full of charm and elegance? Book your stay at Palazzo Doglio in Cagliari