Tourism from the air: the dream of flight made real in Spain
Warning! This proposal is only for those who dream of flying over unique natural landscapes or areas that have been recognised as World Heritage Sites. Your dream can become reality in the skies of Spain. Whether in a balloon if you want to feel you are floating on air, paragliding or skydiving to get an adrenaline high, or in a light aircraft to enjoy the fascinating and unforgettable view. Who said that dreams cannot come true?
It's a unique experience, a revitalizing sensation. Take a bird's eye view and discover Spain. This our suggestion, and you can take us up on it in any Spanish region thanks to air sports clubs around the country. They have a wide variety of courses and trips available, on which you can enjoy beautiful sunny weather. You don't know what to choose? Then look at some of our suggestions.
A trip in a balloon
The first suggestion is one that makes you think you're floating on an invisible sea of air. Flying in a hot-air balloon will give you a feeling of freedom while the pilot uses the wind currents to vary direction. When you stop looking down below, you will discover your surroundings and fall in love with the horizon that opens up before your eyes: the Alhambra, the Generalife and the Albaycín in Granada, the historic city centre of Cordoba with its Mosque, or the Doñana Nature Reserve, all in the region of Andalusia; the sites of cultural interest in Aranjuez or Madrid; the historic city of Toledo and the walled town of Cuenca in Castile – La Mancha; or Segovia, with its aqueduct, and the old town of Avila and its walls, all in Castile and Leon. All of them have been declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites and are destinations offered by many of the companies that will organise your airborne visit.
For uneasy beginners or to introduce children to ballooning, we recommend a "captive" balloon. In this case the balloon rises, but is securely anchored to the ground at all times at a height of about 20 metres.
If you prefer speed or strong emotions, we suggest skydiving or paragliding. There are in fact companies that can offer you a multi-activity package.
Skydiving is a pure adrenaline high. You jump from a plane at around 4,000 metres and during the free fall you can reach speeds of up to 250 kilometres per hour in the first minute. Then the parachute opens and you soar in the sky, floating with an immense space beneath your eyes, for between five and ten minutes. When you land, you will still feel short of breath from the emotions you have felt. Good places for skydiving are Toledo, Girona (in the region of Catalonia), Alicante (Region of Valencia) and the Canary Islands. You can get in touch with companies specialising in skydiving through the tourist offices. They can offer you suggestions for beginners (jumps with a monitor) and experts.
Not as fast but equally exciting is paragliding, which uses a construction made of fabric with only one rigid part: the seat. The jump is from a running take-off from a high point and you may reach speeds of 50 kilometres an hour during a gradual descent handled with break and your body weight. You will fell like a bird and enjoy some incredible air views. Among the places you can go paragliding are Lleida in Catalonia; Cadiz and Jaén in Andalusia; the Canary Islands; and Toledo. If it's your first time, you can take advantage of special promotions offered by specialised companies to those starting off in paragliding.
No less incredible than the suggestions above are motor flights, for which you do not need to be especially fit. Whether in a paramotor, microlight, light aircraft or helicopter, you can enjoy the surroundings as you fly. Once more, the highlights will be the national parks and places declared World Heritage Sites.
To organise what most appeals to you, contact the tourist information offices or find an official flying club on the Spanish Royal Aeronautical Federation website (only in Spanish). Whatever you do, remember that you will always have to contact one of these clubs to get a licence for one of these sports, even if you have a professional qualification. We would recommend that you are always accompanied by expert monitors, who are included in the many courses offered on the market. They will guarantee that you have all the material and insurance required.
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