So you have booked your hot air ballooning adventure, the day is drawing closer, you cannot contain your excitement and you are wondering what to wear, what to bring and what to expect!
First of all, it is a very early start to the day. You will need to meet us on the launch site just before sunrise, but it is so worth it! You will be welcomed with hot chocolate and marshmallows, tea and coffee, and can enjoy an optional glass of sherry while the crew prepare the hot air balloon for inflation.
Feel free to get involved and offer your assistance with the inflation process and safety checks, under the guidance of your pilot or one of our experienced crew members. We encourage a hands -on ballooning experience, and you are sure to learn some fascinating ballooning facts in the process. Be sure to bring your camera and take lots of photos while the pilot fires up the burners and brings the hot air balloon to life.
You will be called to board the balloon by climbing into the basket and after a safety briefing from your pilot, we have “lift off”. You will be surprised at how warm it is up there, especially under the balloon’s burners.
It is advisable to dress comfortably, in layers and wearing flat shoes. We recommend cotton or natural fibres as opposed to nylon and synthetic fabrics, which are more flammable. You may like to wear a cap to shield the top of your head from the heat of the burners. Beanies, scarves and gloves are a good idea on the launch site during the winter months (May – August).
You will float aimlessly above the earth for about an hour, drifting wherever the winds decide to take you. This makes each flight a totally unique and special experience! You can expect a gorgeous all-round view of the area, and if the skies are clear enough, your pilot will point out various points of interest.
During any good balloon flight the pilot will gain altitude for incredible views and maybe even skim a few tree tops during contour flying. You will be amazed at the tranquillity of free flight and how quiet it is up there.
You can expect one of two types of landings. The first being a very gentle touch down hardly noticing you have landed, the second being a slightly faster landing where the basket drags along the ground before coming to a stop. Both are perfectly normal, and depend on the prevailing winds at the time of landing. It is important to follow your pilot’s instructions when coming in for landing, and to take the landing position, safely tucked away in the balloon basket.
The retrieval vehicle will track the balloon from the ground, and be ready to welcome you back to mother earth, with a traditional champagne toast. Your pilot will share the interesting story of why we participate in this age old ballooning tradition which dates back to one of the very first balloon flights. Again, we encourage you to participate in the fun of packing up the balloon, under the guidance of your pilot and crew.
You will then be transported back to the launch site and your vehicle, before heading to the breakfast venue for a scrumptious ballooning breakfast. The perfect way to end a magnificent morning – all the excitement, adventure, tranquillity, romance and fun you could possibly pack into one morning!
We look forwarding to sharing this adventure with you!