Sunday, February 23, 2014

Turkey - Hot Air Balloon @ Cappadocia

We went on a hot air balloon trip last November. I was torn between going to Koln, Germany, for a Christmas Market trip, and this one. I haven't been to the city centre of Koln, but on the other hand, I don't think I can find anyone who is interested in riding hot air balloon in 10 years. Or even in my life time. I'm glad I chose the hot air balloon ;)

We headed to the site before dawn to get some complementary breakfast (just a cup of coffee and a slice of cake, nothing fancy). It was rather cold because it's almost the beginning of winter. Or perhaps winter had already come.

The ascent began when it was still partially dark, and the scene began with the silhouette of Cappadocia landscape.

While our balloon had risen up to quite some height, there were still other balloons nearby that had not been fully inflated. Maybe the balloons are not allowed to fly at the same time to prevent crash.

The ride was slightly shaky, but on overall, stable.  The staff who handled the burners was very professional, and he had been doing this for 10 years. 

It was -2C on the ground according to the weather forecast, but it was definitely much colder up in the air. Thankfully, the occasional burst of flame could warm you enough. Still, I don't think you can survive without a glove, especially if you want to take lots of pictures up there.

I don't know how many balloons fly every day, but you definitely can't count them by fingers.

The balloons don't really vary by size, but since they represent a company, the balloons have different designs and that makes the sky look really beautiful.

We stayed up in the air to watch the sun rise. It was really beautiful, but my camera was just not good enough to capture the best of the moments.

Aside from the sunrise, we also saw the best of Cappadocia landscape.

The landing was very smooth. We sort of had to cooperate by squatting down at the right moment to control the balance of the basket we were in. 

When we reached the ground, the balloon slowly deflated. They had to be careful not to get the balloon stuck on any tree branches nearby, and sometimes the wind could be a bitch. Ours was almost stuck to a tree nearby, but they managed to pull the balloon away from the tree :)

The whole experience was closed by a complementary champagne, and of course, this was the time to give tips to the staff for the awesome experience on the hot air balloon. 

I'm definitely recommending this company (Discovery Balloons) if you ever want to go for a hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia!

A big thanks to my brother and his friend for arranging this memorable trip :)


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