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Exploring South Africa’s landscapes through hot air balloons

Are you ready to explore the landscapes of the beautiful South Africa? Hot air ballooning is undoubtedly the best way to get panoramic views of the gorgeous countryside. Floating in a hot air balloon quite high above the ground is simply a magical experience. It offers uninterrupted views of the country’s scenic natural wonders, and its flora and fauna.

Hot air balloons, which have been known to offer one of the oldest forms of flight to man, has become the most sought after adventure activity in South Africa. Before you proceed to enjoy your flight in a hot air balloon, it will be good to know how hot air balloons came to be used in the country. The military was the first to make use of hot air balloons for reconnaissance purposes. The army successfully used them as observation points for identifying the enemy camps and monitoring the movements of the enemy during the Boer War. The hot air balloon made its first entry in South Africa in 1969. Later a Balloon Section was founded by the Aero Club of South Africa in 1972. After four years, the first International Balloon Race took place from Johannesburg to Durban in which 16 pilots participated. This event became the launch pad for hot air ballooning in South Africa and other adventure activities.

Floating in a hot air balloon is great fun. The hot air balloon trip usually starts immediately before sunrise. Those taking the trip would be gently lifted off the ground and taken to a height of nearly 10 to 20 meters and would be leisurely floating along with the wind. This is the perfect height to get amazing views of the sunrise and also to keep an eye on the animals moving on the ground below. The spectacular views that you get and experience from a height of nearly 20 meters will leave you stunned. Witnessing the sunrise and see its light spreading to the opposite horizon is an awesome experience, which you are surely to treasure it for long.

Those who want to enjoy hot air ballooning need to have few physical requirements mandatory for this adventure activity. You should be sturdy enough to climb in and out of the basket. You will also be required to lean or stand for nearly an hour during the course of the hot air balloon flight.

In Mpumalanga and its surrounding areas hot air ballooning is an all year-round activity. This is simply because of the weather conditions that are generally good throughout the year. The hot air balloon operators in KwaZulu Natal are however forced to close the adventure activity between the months of June and October due to high winds.
 
The hot air balloon flight usually lasts for approximately an hour, although you will be expected to spend nearly 4 to 5 hours with your hot air balloon operator since the time of your arrival. After the end of your flight, your operator will offer a champagne breakfast once you have reached the terra firma. If you want to get an awesome experience floating on a hot air balloon, make sure that you book your space at least two weeks in advance of your scheduled flight date. Most bookings are however provisional till few days before the actual flight. This is only to make sure that the weather is fine and ideal for your journey.

The popular hot air ballooning trips are held in Magaliesberg, near Johannesburg; the Drakensberg and Natal Midlands in KwaZulu Natal; Oudtshoorn in the Karoo; and Sabie and Hazyview in Mpumalanga during summer. It is also held in the Cape Winelands from September to March.

If you want to get fascinating views of South Africa, hot air ballooning is perfectly a great idea. This is surely the best way to enjoy the wonders this country has to offer.

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*Fares are round trip, Fares include all fuel surcharges, our service fees and taxes. Tickets are non refundable, non transferable, non-assignable. Name changes are not permitted. Fares are subject to change without notice. Fares subject to availability. There is a higher probability of seats being available at this fare on Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday. Certain Blackout dates may apply. Holidays & Weekend travel may have a surcharge.Other restrictions may apply. .

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