Hot air ballooning was on my bucket list so it was time to tick that one off by taking a flight with Barossa Valley Ballooning.
Starting in the early morning, we met our fellow ballooners and friendly pilot, Michael, and his crew. They drove us to a nearby field for our launching spot. A fan and then flame inflated the massive balloon (32 m high), then we gently took off and floated up … and up to a height of 3 000 feet, where houses and cars looked like small toys. It was a totally different (and much better) experience to a plane or helicopter flight as you’re up high with no windows or noisy engine, nothing but a basket between you and the sky. Gliding along, it was exciting yet also relaxing and peaceful.
We felt we were in safe hands with Michael with his 25 years flying experience. He was also the ultimate tour guide and pointed out wineries, towns and places of interest. Around us were beautiful views of vineyards and the rolling hills of the Barossa at sunrise. Then we floated closer to the ground, taking a herd of goats by surprise, and cruised over paddocks. Landing was almost as much fun as flying as we assumed ‘landing position’ – legs bent, holding handles and back against the basket.
Afterwards we were treated to a buffet breakfast at the Barossa Valley Novotel Resort and toasted the flight with a glass of Champagne. This was a great chance to chat to the group and enjoy a cooked breakfast including bacon, eggs, fresh pancakes, and healthier options such as fruit and cereal.
If you’ve ever dreamed of sailing through the air in a hot air balloon, then it’s time to get out there and try it. It was a unique, awesome experience! The people at Barossa Valley Ballooning are experienced, friendly and make the trip an absolute delight. They are based in the Barossa and schedule flights daily throughout the year, weather permitting.
By Carolyn J Wild
For more info:
Tel: (08) 8562 8688