I always had a wish to do paragliding and experience how it would feel like to fly in the open sky. At first I was scared of thinking of falling from such a height and imagined what if the parachute would not open. But still I had a wish to do paragliding once and my wish was fulfilled during my trip to Switzerland last month.
As soon as we got down from the train at Interlaken East station, I saw lots of parachutes flying in the sky and that very moment I decided to try it if there would be enough time. I told my wife about it but since she has height phobia, she suggested I do it alone. That evening we reached our hotel quite late from Jungfrau and the next morning we wanted to go back to Geneva via the Golden Pass Scenic Train.
But in the morning we both were less interested in going via Golden Pass Scenic Train as it would take most of our day and it’s hard to take photos from the train. Then I read reviews on the internet about Golden Pass Scenic Train and there were mixed reviews. Some people said its worth and some said it’s just a much hyped brand and that any train in Switzerland is beautiful as all train routes are scenic. So we decided not to go by the Golden Pass Scenic Train to Geneva and go by a fast train.
Now we had enough time, so I searched the internet where I could do paragliding and found the details of “Skywings Adventures” on tripadviser and found a very good review of that. I called them and booked for Tandem para gliding for around 10:00 o’ clock. Tandem gliding is one in which a trained pilot and you jump together and both are harnessed together to the parachute. On the phone a lady said my wife can come along with me to the top and then I can fly and she can come back to the landing area in their pick up van. The van came to pick up around 10:00 but there was only one seat available . The driver suggested that my wife directly walk to landing area which was just 3-4 minutes walk. I didn’t like that but my wife said she will take the walk and wait for me there. There were 4 other people with me who were going for paragliding. There were 5 pilots one for each person. The Van drove us to the mountain peak from where we needed to jump. On the way one pilot gave us the tips and asked to fill an insurance form. Soon we reached the designated diving area.
We were introduced to the pilots and were asked to choose our pilots. I choose one of them (sorry, forgot the name) but all pilots were excellent professionals. Each Pilot arranged their parachute and helped us to put on the harness and then attached himself to the harness. The first thing we did was run down a gently sloping downhill, accelerated a bit and then jumped right at the edge of the cliff. I was 4th in the order. I took the photos of other gliders and then it was my turn. The first step was quite hard as the chute tries to pull us back as it goes up. As we kept on running, the parachute opened and it was time to jump. Initially I felt a bit afraid while running but as soon as my legs were in the air I enjoyed a lot. I was finally flying in the sky. The whole Interlaken was looking so beautiful from the sky and we were above the mountains. The Pilot took our photos from different angles. He was carrying a camera with a Mono Pod. It was such a good experience I was just feeling like floating in the air in the open Sky. I was very comfortable with the parachute and the Pilot. Interlaken is one of the best place for paragliding. The view was breathe taking with the snow covered mountains, under flowing green river and colorful trees. I also took few photos with my camera. Before landing the pilot recorded a quick video. It was almost 15 minutes flight and I enjoyed it very much. After 15 minutes, we landed at Central Park where my wife was waiting for me. She took my landing pictures. The Central park is in middle of Interlaken City and its a beautiful park in front of the Grand Hotel.
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After landing the pilot copied the photos and video in a flash drive and handed over to me. I paid the charges over their counter and we headed to go for a walk in Interlaken. It was a great experience and I would love to do it again.