Every year during August to September the southerly trade winds coming off the Indian Ocean allows for ideal wind direction and strength affording some of the most ideal teaching conditions known to us. Taking advantage of these magical winds means that even a novice pilot can fly the entire 12km stretch of the Bukit Peninsula all the way from Nusa Dua to Nyang-Nyang, Uluwatu.
The views are magic, blue seas and gliders dotting along the cliffs flying over 5 star resorts, spotting Dugong feeding on seaweed and the graceful manta ray dancing beneath your feet – its a flying experience second to none.
Then once you’ve overdosed on sun and scenery, top landing is a breeze on the huge take off area where the local villagers come and greet you with cold beverages and a well earned snack – even packing your glider while you enjoy a refreshing drink and take in the day.
Paragliding is a special experience; whether it’s your first time, your 50th or your 500th, there is something deeply moving about relying on nature’s breath to carry you. It’s a freedom that comes from flying without an engine, the thrill of taking off into empty space, a deep sense of joy and playfulness that comes from gliding like a bird.
A paraglider is essentially a nylon wing, which works by inflating cells to create pressure and an aerodynamic shape that generates lift. Be it riding a sea breeze or a rising thermal (bubbles or cores of hot air) this giant piece of fabric is designed to fly, and fly it does, often for hours and for many hundreds of kilometers.
One of the greatest draws to this adventure sport is its accessibility. While most people believe it’s a pastime only suited to adrenaline junkies, it is actually a gentle sport that is easy to learn and something that anybody with an adventurous spirit can take up. It doesn’t matter if you are tall, short, light, heavy, strong, weak or even slightly disabled; chances are you can still fly a paraglider.
Bali’s unbeatable coastal flying draws a motley bunch of pilots here every year to take advantage of the consistent trade winds and the perfect mix of sunshine, warm water and cheap beer. Many of the crew have been flying for over 30 years, some for just a few seasons, and quite a number stand fidgeting nervously, about to embark on their first solo flights.
Paragliding is often touted as one of the most amazing ways to experience a perspective of earth otherwise only accessible to birds. No motors, no engine noise, no metal cage. Paragliding offers an inexpensive form of aviation making it one of the most accessible ways to get your feet off the ground.
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