Travel Writer | Tour Guide
Today I am going to test my fear of heights again. I am going to ride a hot air balloon in Pamukkale! This fear will spike the adrenaline over the top I thought. But it was nothing like that. I was a little scared the moment the balloon went up, but after a minute or two the fear was gone. What an experience to just float between heaven and earth! Everyone should try a flying experience at least once in a lifetime. Soaring meters above the ground, hot air ballooning is the perfect blend of adventure and peacefulness.
The early bird catches the worm! So instead of sleeping the morning away, I woke up at 3:30 a.m. I am ready to watch the sunrise from high up in the sky! I enjoyed a rich Turkish breakfast of cheese, olives, eggs, jams, tomatoes, fruits and a cup of black tea. The White Heaven hotel is a true sample of excellent hospitality. The driver picked us up from the hotel for a short ride to the launch field.
When we arrived, the hot air balloon was laying on the ground tied to the burners and the basket. They used a large fan to inflate it with cold air. When that was done they removed the fan and used the burners to heat the air until it was hot enough to lift us off the ground. I was shocked at first how enormous that thing was. The crew offered us snacks and drinks while we were watching the launch of our hot air balloon. They gave us instructions about the landing and what can and cannot be done in a balloon. Everybody spoke very good English which made it easy to communicate.
With a mixed feeling of excitement, adrenaline and fear I climbed into the basket together with 15 other people. The basket looked really tiny compared to the 20 meter high balloon, but everybody was comfortable with enough space to enjoy the ride. With perfect weather conditions and permission to fly we were ready for take off!
It was just before sunrise when the balloon started to rise smoothly and silently towards the clouds. The cold breeze in my face and the first rays of sunlight touching my skin made me feel like an eagle flying up high in the sky. Looking down over the basket I saw massive white limestone terraces filled with intense blue water. When the pilot told us we had reached 1 km above the ground, we were in absolute silence. I spend most of the flight quiet and enjoying the amazing view over the cities Denizli and Pamukkale. The sky showed me there were more people who had this on their bucket list. There were hundreds of other balloons in the sky which made the view even more fascinating.
After almost an hour flying, it was time to put our feet back on the ground. I wished we could have stayed longer but nothing lasts forever. The pilot explained that we had to bend on our knees while holding handles attached to the inside of the basket. The smooth landing proved he had many years of experience flying hot air balloons. When we landed a glamorous glass of champagne and toast was waiting for us. We also received souvenir certificates. After we had our group photo taken with all big smiles on our faces, we were brought back to our hotel with memories I will never forget.
It’s Once In A Lifetime Experience