Bucket List Adventures in Sri Lanka – Hot Air Balloon Ride
At the risk of sounding like another venturesome journey, Hot Air ballooning is a must experience adventure in the cultural triangle. Eager to experience a Magical trip in the air SoulTrek team got in touch with Sun Rise ballooning Pvt (Ltd) to arrange us a heavenly getaway in the sky. Sunrise ballooning is the premier operator and the first commercial balloon Team in Sri Lanka since 2003. Well trained pilots gave us the assurance that we are in safe hands. Ideal time for this amazing experience would be during April to November, when the skies are clear and wind conditions ideal. As we were already in a hotel near by the cultural triangle the previous night it was easy for us to reach kandamala grounds by 5 am. The chief pilot briefed us about safety precautions witnessing how the balloon inflates made us more curious about the adventure that we were yet to explore. Making a blast off the burners we took off gradually high up the sky to catch the sunrise around 6 am. Drifting serenely over the cultural triangle was a breathtaking view indeed. The moment you detach yourself from earth and make that heavenly bond with the blue sky is a moment to treasure for life.
Sunnies, Sunblock and a Hat would be essential to carry with you, while comfortable footwear and cotton clothing would assure you the best experience. Flying over the wilderness you may sight heaps of gigantic elephants, buffaloes, peacock, herds of deer, different varieties of birds and groovy monkeys swinging from one tree to another effortlessly. Capturing shots of these beautiful moments was our utmost desire. As we flew over the clay houses we spotted some villagers waving at us staring up above also little mischievous kids running towards the balloon and some of them on their little foot cycles, reminded us about the friendliness and warmth of Sri Lankan culture. Whilst indulging in the tranquil sensation of the wind blowing through our hair, our pilot pointed out some important landmarks in the cultural triangle such as the Kandalama tank, the Golden Buddha statue, the Rock Fortress at Sigiriya, the Cave Temples at Dambulla, Minneriya National Park and the ruins of the Medieval city of Polonnaruwa.
Passing the lush green forests and the rolling paddy fields for an hour and a half it was announced that we were about to touch down for a champagne celebration. At the landing site we shared a pack of sweets with the little kids who welcomed us as an adventure to their village.
As we got off the balloon our friendly pilot made a toast merrily cheering the SoulTrek team to an end of a successful tour. Concluding another sensational journey we were escorted to our hotel back again by the Sunrise ballooning crew to lay back, relax and revitalize ourselves recollecting the memories made during the trip.