Paragliding in the Philippines

Riding the rainbow.edParagliding is a relatively new sport here in the Philippines but it is rapidly attracting a growing stream of determined and avid participants. Much like surfing it’s a sport which is just now being explored here , a reason for this I believe is that it’s just recently been discovered that there are sites where you can engage in these sports here in our own country. It even took foreigners to discover the now world class surf breaks of Cloud 9 at Siargao. But proudly, the main sites for paragliding here have all been established by local pilots who are still very much involved in the sport.  The challenge now for local pilots is to discover new sites which can be used to develop their skills and explore new challenges. Currently only 2 sites are used on a regular basis due to the accessibility and regularity of the flying conditions; Carmona and Safii

The Crucifix

The Crucifix

Ranch in General Santos down South.  Carmona is an excellent little flysite which offers the citygoers easy access to the flysite–an easy 45 minute drive from Makati is all it takes. From the Alabang area it’s just a short 30 minute drive.

As for thrills, paragliding is hard to beat–just imagine yourself flying through the air high above the ground with a view that very few people ever get to see. You are floating in the air , borne aloft only by the wind — this is probably the closest thing that man will ever come to experiencing natural flight. But I’m getting ahead of myself, I’ve forgotten to  describe the experience of taking off. You begin your flight on the ground–usually an elevated patch of land; a hill or ridge of some sort which faces the wind and has a clear landing site at the bottom which is un-cluttered by electrical poles, buildings and other structures. Once you’ve determined that the conditions are suitable– wind speed, wind direction are good you then start to raise your wing overhead, steady it for a moment then run towards the wind and away from the cliff.  And just like magic you find yourself in the air and floating above the ground , above the trees and free as a bird. A feeling that is hard to beat, in fact it still gives me a rush just remembering my first solo flight; a wonderful flight in Bali — but that’s another story.

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13 thoughts on “Paragliding in the Philippines

  1. “A feeling that is hard to beat, in fact it still gives me a rush just remembering my first solo flight; a wonderful flight in Bali — but that’s another story.” – I hope you write about it, too! I’ve always been scared of heights but am definitely interested in trying this out. I just don’t know when I’d have the guts to finally do it. 🙂

    • You have to try it, u can accomplish 2 things at once… experience the joy of flight and conquer your fear of heights. It’s such an adrenaline rush.

      • Haha! Next year, probably (yep, I’m that scared). 🙂 I was also looking at doing ultralight flying, which my friend tried about a couple of months ago. Just been putting it off because, again, I need to gather (a lot of) courage for that. And, paragliding, as I see it, is waaay scarier! Hahaha! But yes, baby steps, I’ll get there. 🙂

      • Hahaha! I believe in the “life is too short” thing, too! Okay… err… I’m looking at my calendar and I MAY have time to do it prolly in September. 🙂 But, wait, how do I prepare for it?

      • You make it sound so! 🙂 How did you get into paragliding? Or, are you going to write about it and I’m just preempting it? Haha!

      • Haha–that’s a good story in itself. Once I learned we had it here I was at the flysite trying it out the very next day, no hesitation!

      • I would actually be very surprised if you’d said that you hesitated! Haha! Okay, okay, this now goes into my bucket list, thanks to you! 🙂

        And, write about how you got into paragliding, please. 🙂 It’s very interesting. 🙂

      • Ok, will do. You’ve given me a few ideas on material for my little blog–thanks. I may even post some artworks–watch out for it and let me know what you think.

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