This was a huge bucket list item for Gordon ever since he knew it was possible to do a Serengeti Balloon Safari. When we were planning the trip this was definitely a MUST do and all of us were super excited about it!
November 15, 2011 – Serengeti National Park
We made it out of bed at 4:00 am and surprisingly we felt pretty good, it must have been due to the adrenalin rush of knowing we would be soaring above the Serengeti! On our way to the balloon launch site, our driver spotted a striped hyaena which you can only see at night, and a lion. It was like our own night game drive. I’ll admit that I was a little nervous about going up in the balloon, neither one of us had done it before and so we were a little anxious. Our pilot assured us that it would be a very smooth ride (I had to believe him because he’s a fellow Canadian).
The balloon basket was lying on its side and we climbed in and laid down, I definitely had butterflies at this point! We heard the roar of the burner and then very smoothly the balloon basket went upright. We slowly lifted up into the beautiful Serengeti sky.
We had a perfect vantage point of the great migration, OMG there were thousands of wildebeast and zebra’s making their way south following the short rains.
We saw a large herd of elephants, hippos grazing, and a variety of birds.
Our flight lasted close to an hour and then our pilot asked us all to sit down to prepare for landing. The basket scraped across the ground and laid on its side, we ended up in the same position we started in.
Once everyone was out, they popped the champagne and we had a toast-or two-or three-to a fine balloon safari in the Serengeti!
After our series of toasts, we were served a fabulous breakfast under a large Acacia tree…and there was more champagne! There was even a “loo with a view”. Could this day possibly get any better?
Ever wondered what it would be like in a hot air balloon? Check out our video.
Once we all finished breakfast we were met by Modi for our game drive.
We immediately saw giraffes near the breakfast site. Then we spotted the same herd of elephants that we saw from the hot air balloon.
Then…Modi yells out in excitement and we see our first cheetah! It was on the lookout – what a sight!
Unbelievably, this is what we enjoyed watching while we ate our lunch – a beautiful leopard. What an incredible day!
The Serengeti is harsh, and we saw so many animal skeletons here…
Another great day of game viewing!
By the time we returned to our tented camp, we were all pretty wiped out and could barely stay awake through dinner. The camp was really nice!
It was absolutely magical flying high in a hot air balloon over the Serengeti, it’s a memory that will stay with us forever!
Where we stayed: Mbuzi Mawe Tented Camp 👍