*As seen in The Logbook
Coincidence brought a pair of like-minded adventurers together in 1984 who shared a loved for adventure and balloon flying. Colin McKinnon and Tony Pascoe founded Serengeti Balloon Safaris in 1989 and the rest is majestic safari history.
Colin was a pioneer of commercial ballooning in the UK and an early hot air balloon pilot in Kenya’s Maasai Mara who wanted to fly balloons over the Serengeti. Tony Pascoe was experienced in the running and management of luxury camps and a safari business in East Africa.
In 1984 ballooning was completely new to Tanzania, and it took five years for Colin and Tony, together with their wives Sally and Marijka and their new Tanzanian partner, Jimmy Mkwawa, to get all the permissions and licences in place. They finally placed an order for their first 8-passenger balloon from Cameron Balloons, the world’s leading balloon manufacturer.
In 1991 the first balloon took to the skies above the vast plains of the Serengeti. Those first years were tough as visitors to the Park were few; there was only one safari lodge and a handful of camps fed by infrequent flights to the park. It also took time to win over the sceptics and demonstrate the company’s commitment and environmental responsibility, which it did thereby winning the unwavering support of tour operators and conservationists alike.
SAFARIS BY AIR
With 80 locally employed staff working on the ground and in the air each safari lasts approximately five hours with one hour spent in the air. As Tanzania’s pioneering and most experienced balloon safari company it is the skills and know-how that are applied to each safari that keeps the balloons aloft as much as the hot air.
To operate safe, high quality balloon safaris in this environment is a challenge but it is also the most magical environment in which to experience a balloon safari.
As a B2B operator, the tourism trade is a vital part of Serengeti Balloon Safaris’ business model. To meet the demand, communication not only with their clients but with the authorities involved in local tourism is vital. As such they maintain regular communications with all, keeping themselves abreast of all the movements of their industry.
The Serengeti Balloon Safaris are also involved in several important projects within Tanzania including the Serengeti De-snaring Project which protects animals and local peoples from snares left by poachers. Plaster House, ALMC Neo-Natal Intensive Care Unit, Focus on Tanzanian Communities and other important charities and projects.
There are plans to have Serengeti Balloon Safaris operating in Ruaha National Park from June to October 2019. There is still time to get involved.
PRICE/NIGHT : $599
TELEPHONE NUMBER: +255 754 688 806