What’s better than exploring the beautiful landscape of South Africa? Doing it by air! We recently had the incredible opportunity to go ‘up, up and away’ with Bill Harrop’s Balloon Safari in Magaliesberg, Johannesburg.
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The hot air balloon adventure was initially booked for last year October in celebration of Candi’s mum’s 50th birthday. A terrible storm that hit Johannesburg the night before left us extremely disappointed with a text message confirming cancellation.
As it would be – all things worked out perfectly. By postponing the ride to this year July, Candi and the rest of her family were able to join the ride and experience the bliss of viewing the world from a balloon.
The weekend was hyped up excessively – and the experience far surpassed this expectation.
An early start
In order to meet at the launch field in Magaliesberg, we had to wake up at 4 am and drive to Bill Harrop’s. The road was riddled with 60km/h speed restrictions and in our exhaustion, there were plenty of opportunities for laughs and delirium.
When we eventually arrived, the balloons were lined up on the field, ready to be ‘heated up’. In the meantime, we heated up ourselves with some delicious coffee and biscuits. It was freezing! Watching the hot air balloons rise in preparation was a spectacular experience, and provided wonderful photographic opportunities.
Up, up and Away
The four Lands huddled in their corner of the basket, anticipating take-off. The lift-off was so smooth that we barely noticed that we were off of the ground. We were lucky enough to get an incredibly groovy captain who kept us entertained throughout the flight.
There were spectacular views that spanned up to 100 kilometers. It was a lot warmer when we reached the inversion layer. It felt like we had barely blinked before the hour was up, and we were approaching the ground again. Champagne and orange juice was served on the ground in celebration of our ‘bravery’.
The hot air balloon adventure truly was a once in a lifetime experience. The phenomenal buffet breakfast was the perfect ending to the morning. There was a huge selection of delicious food that filled us up and put us to sleep for the drive home.
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* Joakim Karud – Balloons
* Johan Lilja – Good vibes