Just wondering if anyone out there can tell me about the balloon ride in the Masai Mara- is it worth all the money? Also should you book ahead? What experiences have people had on the balloon ride?
Have a look at the reviews for 'AYU -Gorillas & Masai Mara' on our website. Many cite the balloon ride as one of their trip highlights. You rise about 4:30 am and get transferred by 4WD to the point where the balloon takes off - the journey is done virtually in the dark when no other safaris have started so this journey is special. Those who did the balloon trip when I was out there saw a pride of lions on this transfer - pretty special in the still of the early morning. A balloon ride is always going to be a unique experience but the fact that you are moving over the Masai Mara (seeing game from the air) is a unique experience and if you have the budget. You can wait to book this locally but availabilty is not guaranteed, hence our recommendation in our trip notes to book prior to travelling to avoid disappointment. There are only two operators that we have access to in the Mara and there are limited spaces.
Hope this helps,
I did the balloon ride over the Masai Mara when I was on the Kenyan Safari in Nov 07. In my opinion it was well worth it. It is really really peaceful floating above the Mara watching the animals going about their business-granted its not cheap but if you are going to go in a balloon I can't think of a better place to do it!
Not sure about the arrangements on your trip but we booked it the evening before with the organisers who came to our lodge. Make sure you have a hat (to keep the heat from the burners off your head) and long trousers-its chilly at 4am (my mistake!). Also a note on insurance I had exodus insurance so knew I was covered but following a discussion around the dinner table the night after the flight many of the others did wonder would they had been insured if anything had happened! Lucky you going to see the Gorillas - that one is definately on my "list". Have a fantastic time-I am sure you will
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