I July my boyfriend and me have been visiting our families in Hungary and the Czech Republic. Since we both had birthdays recently, there was also some celebrating going on. And I got an amazing surprise present from my sisters and their husband and boyfriend – a hot air balloon flight!
There is a hot air balloon centre BALONY.EU located in a neighbouring village called Břestek. I remember I was always looking out for the balloons flying in our direction when I was spending the summer in my home village Buchlovice. I was always dreaming what would it be like… And now I could try it!
When I said it was a surprise present I meant it – I had about one hour to get ready and off we went to the balloon centre.
There was just a bit of necessary formalities and organization and soon I was climbing into the basket.
Watching getting the balloon ready:
The balloon I was flying in had a basket that can take in around 20 people. The staff told us it is the biggest one in central Europe. There are two members of staff travelling with you – the pilot and a stewardess. There was a quick briefing and up we went! We were waving to our families and friends until the amazing views grabbed our attention. There was another, smaller balloon starting shortly after us and it provided a great point of interest for our photos during the journey.
This is a view up the balloon and the first picture from up in the air:
The hot air balloon flight allows you to see even the places you‘ve been to hundred times in a fresh perspective. If you fly over towns and villages you know people from, you can even spy a bit and have a secret peek into their gardens 🙂
It was awesome to see the for me less walked-through part of the Chřiby hills. Also, I have never seen the Buchlov castle from this angle. The fields were creating great patterns. During our journey we saw some deer as well.
The harvest was in full swing, so we could watch combine harvesters plowing through the fields, leaving dusty trails behind.
The weather was very warm, so I didn‘t even need a jumper even though at one point we were about one kilometer above the ground. The wind was ideal so the flight was really calm. The staff was explaining everything about the balloon, flying and the locations we were seeing. There was even champagne on board!
The flight took nearly 80 minutes and the ground distance covered was nearly 10 km. We landed into a harvested field in Kudlovice.
After everybody got out from the basket there was a ceremony for the first-time flyers. I will not describe it so as not to spoil the surprise for those who might be interested in flying in future.
Then we just watched the balloon to slowly collapse. The crew that have meanwhile arrived by cars to our destination packed it. They drove us back to the balloon centre where we received our certificates.
The pilot also emailed us the flight info from a GPS app. After uploading it to Google Earth I could see the exact route even with elevations. Here are some screenshots I made:
All in all, it was an exceptional experience and I would encourage anyone who would like to fly to do it.
A huge thank you to my sisters and Karel and Milan for this awesome present! I really enjoyed it.