Hot air ballooning in its modern form began in 1960. The record for the highest hot air balloon has been set by Vijaypat Singhania in 2005 at 21,290 meters. The distance record stands at almost 20 days, set in 1999, for a global tour.
The first hot air balloon safari in India was launched on 12th January 2021, at the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, in Umaria District, Madhya Pradesh. It was started by the Sky Waltz Ballooning company. The take-off point was the buffer zone, and the landing point was the exterior part of the buffer zone. The maximum capacity was limited to 9 passengers, and every ride had the required safety equipment.
Why Was a Hot Air Balloon Wildlife Safari Started in India?
The concept of a hot air balloon wildlife safari was started in India by Madhya Pradesh Forest Minister Vijay Shah. The reason was to fulfil the vision of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, to boost tourism in the region and attract more tourists to Madhya Pradesh through the "Buffer Main Safar" campaign. The name meant that the safari would be restricted to the buffer zone of the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve.
For the first time, tourists would be able to enjoy the rich array of wildlife comprising tigers, leopards, Indian Sloth Bears, etc., from such a high position. The inspiration to offer this ride came from the hot air balloon wildlife safari available for tourists in Africa.
There are plans to extend this service to other tiger reserves at Panna, Pench, and Kanha. The responsibility for providing this has been given to Skywaltz Balloon Safari, a government-approved commercial operator. This company is also the first operator with a full license in this domain.
Hot Air Balloon Safari in India - Overview
- The inaugural charge for this hot air balloon safari in India, valid till 31st March 2021, was Rs. 15,000/- for adults and Rs. 9000/- for children between the ages of 5 and 12, along with applicable taxes.
- Exclusive rides can also be booked at Rs. 75000/- plus taxes for up to 4 people and Rs. 100,000/- plus taxes for 5 to 8 persons. Cancellations due to adverse weather conditions entitle you to a refund.
- The duration of each trip lasts from 45 minutes to 1 hour.
- Bookings for the trip can be made through the website of SkyWaltz or any authorized tour operator.
- Pickup and drop facilities to and from the hotel are provided. Light refreshments are available at the launch site.
- Flights can be customized to your needs. You can watch the balloons being inflated before the trip.
- The flight can be booked either in the morning or evening.
- Check the payment terms, cancellation policy, confirmation policy, and refund policy before booking a flight.
FAQs on Hot Air Balloon Wildlife Safari
Q.1 When did the first hot air balloon safari in India take place?
The first hot air balloon safari in India took place on 12th January 2021.
Q.2 Who started the first hot air balloon safari in India?
The first hot air balloon safari in India was started by the Madhya Pradesh Forest Minister Vijay Shah.
Q.3 Where was the first hot air balloon safari in India launched?
The first hot air balloon safari in India was launched at the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve in Umaria District, Madhya Pradesh.