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Taking off at sunrise.
Taking off at sunrise.
Up, up and away for a bird's eye view.
What a glorious way to see NT.

Northern Territory Ballooning

Thursday, March 21, 2002
There is one glorious way to see our Australian outback, and that's floating in a colourful balloon over Alice Springs.

Outback Ballooning has been floating its colourful balloons over the centre of Australia since 1987. They provide rewarding and enjoyable flights and are highly regarded by customers and the tourism industry. John Sanby has flown more than 1500 hours in balloons of all sizes, and has recently added two new balloons to the fleet.

Age is no barrier and passengers are encouraged to participate in the launch and dismantling of the balloons.

Alice Springs has dry conditions most of the year — winters are cool to mild and summers are warm to hot. They cover a radius of 30km of Alice Springs, depending on prevailing winds.

Flights start pre-dawn while the stars are still bright and the air fresh and cool. Inflation of the balloon begins and you are aloft when the morning light hits the red landscape and the sun shines on the ancient MacDonnell Ranges.

It's only when you are high above the ground that you really appreciate how vast and rugged the outback is, and it is quite wonderful to see coloured flashes of galahs and budgerigars as they fly by, and kangaroos and wallabies leaping about below you.

Breakfast is served in the bush, somewhere off the Stuart Highway. Jane Sanby is out of bed before everyone else and cooks up a three-course gourmet champagne breakfast. A glass of apple and guava juice, with a dash of champagne if you choose, is a happy way to celebrate your flight.

Passengers are advised to wear comfortable outdoor clothing (preferably not white), sturdy shoes and warm clothes in winter.

Outback Ballooning's complimentary vehicle will collect you from your accommodation an hour-and-a-half before dawn, and return you at the end of your flight.

There are several trips you can choose from: 30 minutes or an hour with breakfast tour; a 30-minute flight and Aboriginal dreamtime tour; dawn to dusk tour and a chase and breakfast run. Chase and breakfast is for anyone who wants the outback experience without being in a balloon. A car follows those aloft, and joins everyone for breakfast after their flight.

Location

Alice Springs, in the centre of Australia.

Cost

Outback Balloon flights start at $170, including breakfast. Chase and breakfast is $50. Each person pays a $15 civil aviation levy.
Please note prices are valid at time of transmission and to the best of our knowledge are inclusive of GST.

More information

Outback Ballooning
35 Kennett Court, Alice Springs 0870
Ph: (08) 8952 8723
www.outbackballooning.com.au

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