Serengeti Hot Air Balloon Safari
Each day at dawn over the African Serengeti plains, a fortunate few enjoy this ultimate and luxury hot air balloon safari experience. This is an exclusive hot air balloon safari over the Serengeti plains, offering unparalleled panoramic views of the awe-inspiring landscape and offering exceptional opportunities for taking stunning wildlife photos and possible big-five pictures. Your trip begins with a pre-dawn pick-up from your luxury African game lodge to the hot air balloon launch site near Masai Kopjes. Here you will meet your hot air balloon pilot, receive a briefing and watch the inflation of the hot air balloon. This is the only time you will be allowed to move about the Serengeti during the hours of darkness and you may just glimpse some nocturnal animals, with the possibility to capture some very unique animal photos.
Two Serengeti hot air balloons, capable of carrying 12 passengers each, fly once every day. At dawn they take off, rising as the African sun rises and floating in whichever direction the wind of the morning takes them. The pilot can control the altitude of the hot air balloon, sometimes taking you up to 1,000-foot in altitude, for a breathtaking, panoramic view of the Serengeti plains. Other timees you will be flying at treetop height, offering a unique perspective and great photo opportunities of the Serengeti wildlife below. More often than not, the early part of the flight is along the course of the Seronera River, an ideal location to get pictures of some animals taking an early morning drink. Lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo, hippo, cheetah, vultures, eagles, wildebeest, zebra, baboon, warthog, monkey, giraffe and sightings of many other animal species is possible. The hot air balloon pilot will help you spot and identify the animals below.
From time to time, the pilot will need to put more heat into the giant hot air balloon. There is a gentle roar from the burners, which, for obvious reasons, provides the opportunity for stunning pictures. Between burns there are periods of peaceful silence as you drift onwards. The whole trip is one long Serengeti photo opportunity. You are travelling on a totally stable, vibration-free platform with a unique perspective and nothing to block your view, which will provide you with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take absolutely unique and spectacular wildlife shots.
All good things have to come to an end, and your pilot will let you know when it is time to put away the cameras and crouch down in the landing position. Once everyone is out of the hot air balloon, the cork is popped and the chilled champagne is poured for a toast on this unique African safari experience. Some final picture taking will capture this memorable experience. After the champagne, it is off to the breakfast table which will have been set up under a fine umbrella tree selected by the crew close to the landing spot. Serving a full cooked English breakfast with some tropical additions, it is an Out of Africa style, fine spread served on bone china with silver cutlery and crystal glasses.
Enjoy the food, the African Serengeti scenery and your companions’ company. You’ll receive your Serengeti Hot Air Balloon certificate before being driven back to your luxury safari lodge or campsite, viewing game animals en route. You’ll still have most of the day ahead for game drives.