Florida Guide > Other Activities
Hot Air Balloon Ride (2)
We booked a balloon ride through the Orlando Villas site (Park Tickets) – and what a fabulous time we had!
We decided to do it on our first day in Florida, partly because it was our friend’s birthday, but also because on the first morning we are always awake very early due to the time difference.
We had to meet just before dawn at a hotel on the Highway 192. Having been greeted by one of the balloon team we were then driven, along with a few others, to a field on a ranch, a few miles west of the Highway 27.
Upon arrival it was all hands to the deck to get the balloon out of the trailer, lay it out on the grass and then attach the basket. A large fan was then connected to a generator to begin the inflation of the balloon.
When the balloon was fairly well inflated the burners were lit and we were instructed to climb in to the basket.
By now there were several other balloons in the field. Dawn was breaking.
The lift off was so gradual that I didn’t even notice at first that we were off the ground! We rose gradually over the trees and our pilot guided the balloon gently up and down so that we could look for wildlife and get the best view of the terrain below. We flew very low over some orange groves so that we could see the individual oranges growing and then higher to get a good view of the whole area.
The ride is so gentle that there is no feeling at all of motion sickness - and believe me I am the worst for this normally!
The trip lasted about an hour and a quarter and we eventually came to land in a field near the Four Corners at Davenport. If I’m honest, I was dreading the landing in case it was bumpy or in case the basket tipped over, but it was great – very smooth indeed and nothing at all to worry about.
Once on the ground we were told when to get out of the basket so as to keep the right weight in it whilst the balloon was deflated. The ‘chaser party’ were already in the field waiting for us so the men all helped to put the balloon away in the trailer.
We then had champagne! There were three birthdays being celebrated that day so we also sang Happy Birthday!
Then it was back into the mini bus and we were taken back to the hotel where we originally met and breakfast was laid on for us. This was an ‘all you can eat’ buffet and was very good!
Before we said our good byes we were presented with a certificate as a commemoration of our trip!
A very enjoyable trip – and well worth doing!
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