Grip onto the basket, feel the warmth of the gas fire and hear the whoosh of the flames above you as you drift up and over the magnificent landscapes of Africa on a ballooning safari.
Instead of trundling along on four wheels or stepping it out on foot, a safari in the sky offers a particularly unique way of experiencing where you are situated in Africa. Under the colourful canopy of the balloon, you will get to watch, as a quiet spectator, the goings on of life in the wilderness below. For once, you will be taller than a giraffe and the elephant’s impressive size will not seem so intimidating from above.
While the thought of soaring thousands of feet above the ground may not appeal to all, those initial five minutes of ‘butterflies in the stomach’ are definitely worth the magical view you get to marvel at for the next one hour. A ballooning safari is a full sensory experience and, if you are feeling adventurous on your getaway to Africa, one that should not be missed!
Here are two premier wilderness destinations in Southern and East Africa that offer hot air ballooning safaris:
Okavango Delta, Botswana
When you take a hot air balloon into the sky above the Okavango Delta in Botswana, you will be flying over one of Africa’s most iconic UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
A panoramic view of this mesmerising ecosystem is perhaps the only way to really see and understand its incredible expansiveness.
When you look over the edge of the woven basket, you will see a massive puzzle of watery plains interspersed by grasslands that could only have been designed by Mother Nature. Elephants, lechwe and giraffe are just some of the delta inhabitants you are likely to witness.
Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
The annual mass migration of millions of wildebeest, zebra and antelope across the grassy plains of the Maasai Mara and Serengeti is an unforgettable sight to behold from the ground.
So just imagine what witnessing this, one of the world’s greatest wildlife spectacles, from the air is like – we’ll tell you, it is simply breath-taking!
As Kenya’s major wilderness conservation area, the Maasai Mara National Reserve is a haven for healthy populations of big and small game. Look out for the Big 5 (buffalo, elephant, lion, leopard and rhino) while cruising over the plains during the golden light of dawn.
Back onto terra firma, celebrate with a glass of bubbly and depending on your destination, a sumptuous bush breakfast.
Contact us to plan your holiday to Africa that includes exciting activities like a hot air ballooning safari.
Feature image courtesy of Governor’s Camp in the Maasai Mara, Kenya.