Hot Air Baloon Safari Over Masai Mara

The alarm rang in the middle of the night. We woke up to some unheard of birds chirping. Sprung up to get ready. After all, we were going to tick one thing off our bucket list.

Our driver from the Balloon safari was ready. He hurried us all in the 8 seater land cruiser. We started our 10-minute drive to the landing area of the hot air balloon. The smell of the deep forest added to our excitement.

Just before we reached the landing area, could see a thin orange line at the horizon. It’s the start of what happens to be the most amazing sunrise we’ve ever seen.

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The driver slows down. We see a dog like structure walking ahead. He called it a jackal. Mean and conniving jackal as so many Panchatantra books has referred to them as. He dropped us at this landing point. There were around 10 HUGE deflated balloons in that area. 

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We were ushered into the little basket attached to the hot air balloon. The sky turned this beautiful blue and orange shade. It was such a beautiful combination. They lit a fire below the hot air balloon and the balloon started straightening up and raising slowly. It started drifting. Calm and quiet. 

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Hot air ballooning is a beautiful activity. We get to see the world from up above. It’s the most beautiful way to look at anything. Don’t you think so? Lucky birds 🙂

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We spotted a lion walking majestically right below us,  few gazelle hopping away, a couple giraffes being all graceful, one lone elephant and tonnes of wildebeest. It was a season to see The Great Migration of the wildebeests.

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The sun’s rays were all on our faces by then. It was golden and beautiful. This is often referred to as a golden hour. The one hour after the sunrise and it was beautiful to be looking at the Masai Mara from a hot air balloon.

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After a few peaceful minutes of drifting, the pilot casually pointed towards something on the ground. “A dead zebra,” he said. It was apparently poisoned by a plant, which is why no predators had even touched it. It was one of the saddest sights; Seeing it from above made it even more dramatic.

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We soared in the wide plains, occasionally lowered the altitude, and went high up again. It was a beautiful day. From far above we could see the wildebeest migrating together.

We could see some 1000s of them, running, walking, together. Our pilot, to lower the hot air balloon, deflated the balloon and it made a loud noise. These heard of wildebeest got really scared with this sound and started running, at this one point, they just split into two directions and joined back a distance later making it a perfect heart shape! This was definitely one of the glorious moments in our life. 

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After a good 2 hours, we got down from the floating balloon. We were taken to a plush bush breakfast. Widespread of fruits, bread, cheese, eggs, bacon, jams, some wild berry juices and a brightly dressed masai to serve the food. All this in the middle of the golden grasslands just like in the movies! What a gorgeous way to end a safari and start a day! Sunrise in Masai Mara was indeed so very special.

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Watch this little film about our experience of seeing the Sunrise at Masai Mara. The music is made my extremely talented Studio Nh47


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