Bali is probably the most common travel destination for Australians and over the last few years, mainly due to a couple of Australian paragliding schools. Bali becomes a major winter destination for Australian paragliding pilots.
What makes Bali so attractive in winter?
It is the consistent sea breezes, warm temperatures, possibility of thermal flights and from this year, the option of flying over an active volcano, launching at 3,000 metres.
How to get there – there are many cheap flights from all Australian cities. Pilots from Europe or America can easily find flights that are connecting to Bali.
Accommodation – there are many hotels and hostels ranging from 3 stars, to 5 star resorts in all areas of Bali. We recommend focussing on Candi Dasa or Nusa Dua, depending on the area that you intend to fly.
Timbis – The launch is on the Southern part of the island, directly in the path of prevailing winds. You launch on top of the beautiful seacliffs, which is relatively easy depending on the conditions on the day. Occasionally the winds can be quite strong, creating a very large band of lift going out 100 metres in front of the cliff. Mostly a top landing area, however in strong conditions we recommend landing down at the base of the cliff on the long beach. In most situations, catching a taxi back to launch is not a problem. Depending on conditions, the ridge extends for many kilometres on both sides of the launch, and flying is very picturesque in front of the hotels and villas perched on top of the cliffs. In good conditions, you can fly for many hours at a time – and it would probably be the easiest flying that you would have every done. It is possible to follow the ridge for kilometres, just weight shifting, hands free, enjoying the view.
Candidasa – A more challenging terraced launch with more possibilities for thermalling. It allows generally for higher altitude with landing on the beach and easy retrieve.
Nusa Dua – We strongly recommend if you plan to fly Nusa Dua you join one of the schools that organises trips there. Generally it requires early morning or overnight walks, with very specific conditions needed for the flight to be safe and successful.
Bali remains the same relatively cheap destination, providing world-class flying in a period when the weather is more inclement. Its culture and non-flying activities will also provide many attractions for Northern Hemisphere pilots, who want to experience a different type of tropical destination and flying. It is one of the few good flying destinations that cater exceptionally well for non-flying partners too. In planning a trip, the budget required varies from as little as $60 per day up to $300 per day for 5-star accommodation.
Press play to enjoy our videos of the Timbis site: