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Kenyan balloon festival gets off the ground

25/12/2013 Jo Bailey Hot Air Balloons at Events

A hot air balloon event in Kenya that takes in sweeping views of the Masai Mara National Reserve was held recently.

As the wildebeest set off on their second migration of the year, a host of colourful hot air balloons took to the African skies, offering their passengers spectacular views over the fertile region.

It is hoped that the festival will bring a much needed boost not only to the Masai Mara park, but also the wider Kenyan economy, by boosting tourist numbers to the region.

Visitors who travelled to the area were said to be wowed by the sight of the hot air balloon armada rising each morning at dawn. People had the opportunity to pay for a trip amongst the clouds to explore the Masai Mara – which is situated in Kenya’s populous Narok County – from a much higher vantage point than is usually possible.

Not only is the festival hoped to raise the profile of the ballooning activities available in the state, something which is integral to the Kenyan tourist economy, it is also hoped that the festival will be able to raise awareness of the problems of poaching in the area. A portion of all the profits made at the event will be given to Kenyan anti-poaching operations.

It is thanks to Kenya’s Civil Aviation Authority that the festival was able to take place in 2013, and balloon enthusiasts are hopeful that it will continue for many years to come.

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