10 Best Places to Experience the Serene Beauty of the World through Hot Air Ballooning

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Another article published of mine in ‘TheHostelLife’ travel website. Here is the link and also the information for all of you to refer: http://www.thehostellife.com/news/item/480

I wish I could fly! Have you ever felt like this? Then you know what you can and Hot Air Ballooning has made it easier than said in today’s modern world. Its a majestic feeling as the balloon lift in the sky and fills you with the feeling of joy and serenity. And when you encounter the first ray of sun in the sky it makes it worthwhile to get up really early in the morning. Here are the top 10 amazing places in the world for Hot Air Ballooning:

  1. Hot Air Ballooning in North Pole in Arctic with Quark Expeditions (http://www.quarkexpeditions.com/). It is called ‘The Ultimate Arctic Adventure’ which doesn’t really surprise as getting the balloon up in the air at such place definitely shows the adventure involved with it. More than 50 guests celebrated 50 years of the ship with 5 minutes of Hot Air Ballooning experience at the top of the world. It is really once in a life time experience. Next date can be checked at the site and costs somewhere from $24,965 – $37,965.
  2. Great Barrier Reef is one of the best places to see the reefs and beautiful coast line in Australia. Australia gives you a wide variety to experience Hot Air Ballooning but flying above one of the seven natural wonders in the world is an unforgettable experience in itself. http://www.hotair.com.au/cairns/tours/hot-air-balloon-and-great-barrier-reef-cruise-with-great-adventures.html
  3. Hot air Ballooning in Grand Canyon gives you the birds eye view of the remarkable desert landscape and the mountains. It is a feast for one’s eyes when you see this beautiful scenery below from a few flying balloon. http://www.grandcanyonballoonrides.com/
  4. What can be a better option than flying over the breath taking regions of Niagara Falls. It is a tranquil experience for your soul to see the nature on its full swing like this. And ballooning makes it easier to fly across the falls and let you enjoy the amazing scenery below.
    http://www.balloonsoverletchworth.com/
  5. Mt. Everest is one of the unique places to fly over around the world. The first Balloon Flight Over Everest 1991. Not only it was built with special oxygen breathing systems but also had differently designed burners to allow the balloon to fly in extreme conditions at almost 40,000 ft. Andy Elson was the pilot of this first pioneer flight. Leo Dickinson even wrote a book about it – ‘Ballooning Over Everest’. This is not run as a tourist attraction due to its risky operation and extremely high cost but it has been done once and keep an eye open, may be someone starts it in future again. http://www.andyelson.com/Everest.htm
  6. Would you plan to go for a fight over active volcano – Mount Bromo in Java, Indonesia. Yes, I am just joking as it is not safe to fly over this place for sure. But you can definitely boast about flying over Cappadocia, Turkey where the rocks and stone towers were carved into the volcanic lava almost 65 million years ago. One of the best and amazing site to witness in the world if you like the concept of Hot Air Ballooning and the leisure time it gives you to soak into the scenery. Cappadocia, also known as ‘Land of the beautiful horses’ is an hour away from Istanbul. http://www.hotairballooncappadocia.com/
  7. Sunflower fields and vineyards surrounding a beautiful village in southwest of France is a very compelling reason to come to Loire Valley. It has more than 800 castles with a beautiful river crossing the area. One of the famous and scenic places for Hot Air Ballooning in the world, Loire Valley, still maintains the authenticity of the place in the midst of the touristy feel to it. http://www.france-balloons.com/balloon-ride,val-de-loire.php
  8. When talking about ballooning, how can we forget about the International Balloon Festival organized in Chateau d’Oex. This festival is held in the last week of January and gives a perfect view of Alps with the spectacular ski slopes. http://www.festivaldeballons.ch/en/festival_en
  9. Napa Valley in United States still maintains the reputation for being a great place for Hot Air Ballooning. Celebration with champagne after a flight over the beautiful vineyards mixed with the fields of sunflowers is a real treat. http://www.balloonrides.com/
  10. Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya provides a lifetime experience of Hot Air Ballooning. Specially during the migration season (from July to October) when over two million wild animals including zebra, wildebeest, eland and Thomson’s gazelle try to cross Mara River alive as the crocodiles in the river prey on them. This is the only place in the world where you can witness a massive and immense movements of wildlife. http://www.audleytravel.com/destinations/africa/kenya/things-to-do/hot-air-balloon-flight.aspx
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Why do I travel?

As a human I am gifted with different senses, emotions and witty nature. I was thinking today to write few reasons why do I love travelling. I felt that it’s the basic need for me to feel human and it is something that keeps me in touch of reality. So I am writing the reasons here in my way – Why do I travel?

  • Eyes: I have been gifted with these eyes to see everyday so I want to see what ever this world has to offer. I can choose on my way to close my eyes when I do not want to witness the cruelty of others but I can still look into other’s eyes with compassion and love. I want to express myself to as many people as I can and try to know them better.
  • Skin: We have this amazing ability to feel the touch, I want to feel like a kid again and close my eyes to feel the sensation of touching something different and new everyday. I want to touch the rock in a different country, I want to take sand in my hands and see it getting washed away with water.
  • Ears: I have ears to hear so I want to indulge myself into the music of various kind. I want to hear others to know what they have to say. I want to hear the noise and voice of wildlife creatures. I want to listen to the waves soaring, rivers roaring and wind blowing.
  • Mouth: I want to talk to people from different part of the world. I want to hear how they speak their language and how they pronounce different words. I want to try and speak their language if I can.
  • Lips: I want to smile as much as I can as its the simplest act that can do wonders I feel.
  • Legs: I have been given these legs to be mobile so no reason for me to crib and sit at one place all day. I want to walk around the cities, villages, towns, forests and run in the farms, hike the mountains and drag myself to bed 🙂
  • Tongue:  Why restrict myself from the distinct taste that various cuisines have to offer. I want to immerse myself in the nice aroma of the food all over the world.
  •  Nose: I want to smell the flowers, water, wet soil, farms, food and much more all over the world. 
  • Hands: I want to give a helping hand to someone in need when I travel. I want to shake hands and make new friends. I want to give a hug to someone close to my heart. I want to a gesture of friendliness to strangers.
  • Brain: I want to use it more into creating new ideas, solving problems at hand while travelling. I want to innovate and think new concepts to make every one around happy.
  •  Heart: I want to love myself and others. I want to love nature, love the wildlife, love people. I want to stop being choosy and love unconditionally.
  •  Soul: I want to give peace to my soul. I do not want to bother my soul from the nitty gritty of life but I rather would like to relax and be happy.

 All this happens naturally when I travel. I feel closer to myself and closer to nature when I travel. 

I would summarise it in one line what it means to travel for me – ‘I finally found myself after getting completely lost’. Now that I have found myself I do not want to loose sight of it even for a moment.

I believe that we have been gifted with this beautiful planet that we call Earth. It is so big and full of wonders then why not explore it while we are on this journey of life. Why not get to know how it feels to get up every day and see a new view from the window. Why limit ourselves because the possibilities are limitless. Let’s travel or at least see the world with new eyes and accept ourselves with big and open heart with love, compassion and kindness. You don’t have to travel to far away places to do any of this if that’s what limiting you but you can rather adopt the thinking of a traveller and you will be able to see the same place you walk everyday with new eyes, you will be able to walk to work and will be able to see more, you will be able to explore new parks around the corner, natural resources for your new found happiness. I think you can change the world if you change yourself for good. Use your imagination to create a happy world out there and to do that just create a happy place inside and you will see the world changing outside at the same time.