13.6 C
Byron Shire
June 18, 2021

Sitting on top of the world, or at least Byron Bay

Latest News

Bad news

Raphael Lee Cass, Byron Bay I’ve taken umbrage with the expression, ‘fake news,’ – proud of our Echo – but...

Other News

You Can Close Your Eyes

There is a beautiful James Taylor song (‘You Can Close Your Eyes’) that commences with the words; Oh, the sun is surely sinking down, But the moon is slowly rising. 

Loft: top of the town

  S Haslam Winter doesn’t have to mean hibernation! Shake off those winter woolies and enjoy the best of town again.  Loft...

Catch Flock’s Brice Fundraiser: Cycle For Brighter Futures

Matt Brice cycled through India solo in 2014 under the name of Cycle for Brighter Futures (CFBF), raising funds...


Kate Coxall, BSC Green candidate, Wilsons Creek In response to the silencing tactics of unaware and privileged men in last week’s Echo,...

Cartoon of the week – 16 June, 2021

We love to receive letters, but not every letter will be published; the publication of letters is at the discretion of the online and print letters editors.

Some insights from Malcolm Turnbull

From the deceptive and underhanded conduct of our current Prime Minister ScMo, to the destructive impact of Tony Abbott and the far right of the Australian political and media scene, A Bigger Picture, by Malcolm Turnbull, provides an interesting insight into how he perceives the Australian political landscape.

Balloon Aloft

Eve Jeffery

Hot air ballooning has a rich history – it is the original form of aviation and was pioneered in France in 1783, so it seems only fitting that the first form of flight and the first rays of light in Australia are joined together in a wonderful experience in Byron Bay.

What many may not know is that ballooning suits Byron perfectly as it is a sunrise sport owing to the light and safe, navigable winds in the early morning.

Family owned and operated, Balloon Aloft Byron Bay opened last year out of the rising demand for the experience, not only from tourists, but old and new residents alike.

Balloon Aloft’s Taylor Miller says that ballooning is a bucket list adventure, often chosen to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, work and family get-togethers.

A Balloon Aloft room with a view – you can see for miles and miles and miles and miles and…

‘People who come fly with us love the scenic beauty and peacefulness,’ says Taylor. ‘They can’t believe the floating sensation and silence above the treetops on a calm dewy morning.’

Taylor says she enjoys seeing how passengers react to the experience. ‘Anyone who has any fear of flying or heights – which can be often – is quickly cured of that as soon as they see the gentle moment of lift-off. The majesty of the experience seems to just wash it all away. Also, the pilots are incredibly professional and helpful – somehow they seem to imbue a kind of serenity.’

Balloon sizes can vary according to the size of the group – a small VIP basket is available for a couple, and there is a big basket that can cater for up to 24 passengers.

Taylor says the Balloon Aloft Byron Bay experience lasts about four hours. ‘We meet at the Farm in Ewingsdale before dawn and after checking in we drive out to one of many launch sites across the region, depending on the winds of the day. The flight time lasts for one hour and then we return to the Farm for a wholesome coffee and breakfast at the Three Blue Ducks Restaurant. This is another great highlight to the morning because such a big morning outdoors really stimulates the appetite!’

After three months of COVID-19, Balloon Aloft is open again with special arrangements and more spacious basket compartments to accommodate the times.

Taylor says that Balloon Aloft pilots are CASA certified, the same as any other commercial aircraft pilot. ‘All the balloons are handmade and manufactured in Sydney, by the Kavanagh family, and are well recognised as the best in the world.’

Taylor says working with the balloons has made her fall in love with home all over again. ‘Having grown up in the region, I relish driving through the green valleys and seeing the morning sun wash over the landscape, near and beyond the coast. It’s wonderful being surrounded by a group of happy smiling passengers – it’s such a positive start to the day and generally, it’s a 5-9 instead of a 9-5!

‘For all of us, the crew and the pilots, it is one of the best jobs in the world, and in the best place in the world, and an amazing way to see the ocean and hinterland and the magic light of the rainbow region.’

Bookings for Balloon Aloft flights can be made at balloonaloftbyronbay.com.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Tender to build rail trail from M’bah to Crabbes Creek awarded

The debate over the tender for the building of the rail trail between Murwillumbh and Crabbes Creek was ultimately held behind closed doors, Mayor...

Massive multi-dwelling Paterson Street DA before Planning Panel

The Northern Regional Planning Panel (NRPP), an unelected consent authority that overrides Council decision making, will be considering a 14 townhouse DA for Paterson...

Backsliders coming to Lennox

Australian music legends the Backsliders are coming to Lennox Head for the first time, to play at the Lennox Head Cultural Centre on Saturday 26 June 2021.

Youth stage features at Byron Music Festival

Byron Youth Service says it is proud to be partnering with Byron Music to host the first ever Youth Stage event at the Byron Music Festival, to be held around the CBD and beachfront from June 18 to 20.