Forgotten island paragliding: Forgotten Island | EN
Which of the world’s island escapes is right for you?
Some travellers dream of eating a zingy salad and chargrilled lobster on an empty beach in an African archipelago. Others crave the promise of primordial adventures and the anticipation of jumping down the face of a vertiginous waterfall in a tropical jungle. Many dream of indulging in time for themselves, to take yoga classes overlooking an electric blue sea or chant with monks in a spiritual setting. Whether you’re looking for an island that has carved a reputation for being a foodie destination or an enchantingly different, lesser-known haven where you can soak up the seascape, much of the world has now reopened for travel and that dream destination is back in reach.
Dominica’s dramatic cliffs are abutted by deep forests and secluded coastal coves.
Photograph by Courtesy of Secret Bay
1. Dominica, Caribbean
Best for adventurous travellers
If the views of jagged peaks from luxury resort Secret Bay’s magical treehouses send your pulse racing, wait until you try the activities on Dominica, home to nine volcanoes, dense rainforest and 350 rivers and waterfalls. Scramble, abseil and climb steep rock faces surrounding some of the island’s most beautiful waterfalls, plunging feet first into pristine pools in the heart of the tropical forest on a canyoning expedition. Or saddle up for a canter along the coastline watching the ocean for whales or dolphins. Night snorkelling and scuba diving are on offer too, as well as sedate hiking trails that lead to hidden beaches and hot springs or the chance to go standup paddleboarding along the resort’s river surrounded by native birds and wildlife. And if you’ve worked up an appetite, join a foraging and cooking class with a local chef to learn how to cook sustainable, freshly caught seafood.
How to do it: Seven nights B&B including flights from £3,586 per person.
Or try… The Azores
This far-flung archipelago in the middle of the Atlantic is made for adventure. São Miguel is the largest, and now easily accessible via direct flights with low-cost airlines and, more recently, British Airways. Its landscape looks like it hasn’t changed in millennia and the surrounding waters teem with life. Take a sea safari to spot whales and dolphins, surf the waves or explore the dramatic interior by mountain biking, trekking or kayaking. Adrenaline sports such as paragliding and canyoning can be organised independently or by Furnas Boutique Hotel, which is built on and around naturally occurring thermal waters.
How to do it: Two nights, based on two sharing, from €220 (£185).
2. Galápagos, Ecuador
Best for wildlife-watchers
Follow in the footsteps of Darwin and explore this biodiverse volcanic archipelago where blue-footed boobies nest on the ground, flightless cormorants hop from rock to rock, penguins play and marine iguanas soak up the sun. While most tours take in a variety of islands, the largest, Isabela, is home to one of the richest marine ecosystems in the world. It’s not every day you’re able to wander around the slopes of the world’s second biggest active volcanic crater. Punta Vicente Roca on the west coast is the place to scuba and snorkel among turtles, sea horses, frog fishes and the elusive ocean sunfish, which can grow to weigh more than 2,000kg. For some of the best views, stay at the safari-style Scalesia Lodge on the slopes of a volcano overlooking a forest and coastline.
How to do it: Wexas Travel features three nights’ full board at Scalesia as part of an island-hopping tour with prices from £5,735 per person including return flights, excursions/cruising, three nights’ full board at the Finch Bay Galapagos hotel and three nights’ B&B accommodation in Quito.
Or try… Guana Island, British Virgin Islands
Not far from Tortola, the 850-acre forest-clad Guana Island is an unpretentious paradise, crisscrossed by hiking trails that reveal native wildlife including flamingos, tortoises, turtles and giant iguanas at every turn. Accessible only by boat or helicopter, the private island has 15 charming cottages, which means only 30 guests on its seven secluded beaches at any one time. It’s the perfect destination for those seeking solitude among an almost completely untouched wilderness.
How to do it: Seven nights from £3,299 per person, all-inclusive, with flights and transfers.
Enjoying a wellness treatment on the island of Koh Samui.
Photograph by Kamalaya Koh Samui
3. Koh Samui, Thailand
Best for spa seekers
A firm favourite among travellers looking for a sublime spa retreat with warm weather and idyllic beaches, Thailand has a reputation for delivering wellness programmes that combine pampering treatments with meditation and holistic health, as well as wholesome food. Nestled in a valley with views overlooking the southern coast of Koh Samui, adults-only Kamalaya is considered one of the best. The brainchild of a Canadian who spent over a decade living in the Himalayas under the tutelage of a yogi master, there’s a real sense of spirituality and calming energy with result-driven programmes combining naturopaths, traditional Chinese medicine doctors, yoga teachers, fitness trainers, massage therapists and mentors. In between treatments, guests can attend lectures and workshops, or simply relax in the grounds of the resort overflowing with lush, tropical foliage, cascading streams and an idyllic beach.
How to do it: Seven nights’ full board including a Destress Asian Bliss programme but excluding flights from £3,115 per person.
Or try… Sumba, Indonesia
Just an hour from Bali, Nihi Sumba has long been popular with surfers and those seeking barefoot luxury and it now has a growing reputation as a wellbeing destination. Offbeat spa experiences include a spa safari — a 90-minute sunrise trek over rolling hills, through rice fields and a traditional Sumbanese village to meet a therapist in a private cliffside bale by the sea for a treatment. While yoga classes predominantly take place on an outdoor pavilion, there’s also the option to try it on a horse to help calm anxiety and stress. Alternatively, guests can simply watch the animals — every morning, they’re released from their stables to gallop freely along the beach and swim in the sea.
How to do it: From £900 per person per night. £100 for the spa safari.
4. Soneva Fushi, Maldives
Best for foodies
A handful of restaurants serve up the very best of international, Asian, plant-based and seafood specialities at this luxury resort in the Baa Atoll, but those looking for the ultimate gourmet getaway should time their visit to coincide with the rotating programme of visiting Michelin star chefs. This year, the star-studded line-up includes Chapter One’s Mickael Viljanen (1-15 July), Kong Hans Kælder’s head chef Mark Lundgaard (15-30 July), Northcote’s Lisa Goodwin-Allen (19-28 October), and Chantelle Nicholson (25 October to 10 November). But it’s not just the food that’s impressive, but where it’s served. Each restaurant has a fabulous setting with Flying Sauces taking it up a notch or two. Here, diners glide along a 655ft zip-line through the leafy jungle to reach a treetop table and open kitchen set 40ft above the ground with exceptional views over the sparkling ocean. Take the leap for breakfast, high tea or dinner for an elevated dining experience like no other.
How to do it: Prices from £4,449 per person based on two sharing a villa with pool for five nights including return flights from Heathrow and seaplane transfers.
Or try… Majorca
For those who believe good food to be a key ingredient of a memorable holiday, then Majorca — with 10 Michelin star restaurants — is an island worth visiting. But you don’t have to stay in Palma to sample the incredible food of one of the island’s most acclaimed chefs — El Vicenc de la Mar opened this year in a beautiful bay on the north of the island at the foot of the Tramuntana mountains. Here, star chef Santi Taura, best known for his 12-course tasting menu at DINS at El Llorenç Parc de la Mar in Palma, has set up a new restaurant. Expect traditional Balearic cooking with modern flair using seasonal products and a cultural story to each dish.
How to do it: Rooms from €400 (£333) per night.
Dining in style on Mnemba Island.
Photograph by andbeyond.com
Best for beach bathers
Synonymous with sweeping powder beaches and dazzling cerulean seas, Seychelles is the place to dive, without crowds, amid graceful turtles; wander through a jungle blanketed by coconut groves; or to gaze into the knowing eye of a 200-year-old giant tortoise. The archipelago of 115 islands has prolific rare and endangered species of plants, lizards and birds as well as some stunning picture-postcard beaches. For one of the best, head to the tiny coral island Desroches, just a 35-minute flight from the main island of Mahé. With eight miles of soft, white sand beaches, every guest can get that elusive castaway fix, but for those craving more activity, there are plenty of leisure activities on offer, too, from world-class diving and fishing to exploring nearly 10 miles of cycling trails.
How to do it: Seven nights starts from £5,050 for a one-bedroom pool villa on a B&B basis with two nights free at its sister hotel on Mahé.
Or try… Mnemba, Zanzibar
Ringed with powder-white sand and immaculate coral reefs far from the crowds, Mnemba island is famed for its blue waters, palm trees and spectacular sunsets. This roughly triangular island is just 1,640ft by 0.9 miles in size — a mere blip in the ocean that’s home to andBeyond Mnemba Island. This is a glorious shipwreck fantasy with life’s little pleasures conveniently at hand with a restaurant and just 12 rustic chic beachside bandas tucked into the tropical forest a few steps from the ocean. It’s a place to relax or explore the sea, a marine conservation area and important breeding ground for the endangered green turtle. Dive, snorkel and swim among hundreds of species of fish, dolphin and stingray and even humpback whales between August and November. Or just sit with your feet in the sand and watch the sun rise.
How to do it: Prices from $1,320 (£1,000) per person per night, on an all-inclusive basis, based on two sharing.
Published in the 2022 edition of National Geographic Traveller (UK) The Islands Collection
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Best Paragliding Documentaries/Movies & Podcasts/Webcast | Unlimited Potential, Up to 8000m
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Never Ending Thermal
Sean White’s amazing “Endless Summer” of paragliding around the world. Two top acro-pilots travel to spectacular aerial locations, from Angel Falls in Venezuela to the Himalayas all in search of the perfect thermal.
This is the documented road trip of young and talented pilots from the world of acro paragliding. They will cross a large range of scenery throughout Europe (France, Spain, Italy and Switzerland)
On 14 February 2007, in spite of weather reports heralding the presence of violent thunderstorms, Wiśnierska decided to try to fly in order to train for the 2007 paragliding world championship near Manilla, New South Wales, Australia. She got trapped in the updraft of two joining thunderstorms. Unable to get out, she was lifted to an altitude of 9,946 metres (32,631 ft), according to her GPS. The GPS variometer also tracked vertical speeds of up to +20 m/s (77 kilometres per hour (48 mph)). She landed 3.5 hours later about 60 kilometres (37 mi) north of her starting position.
In the same weather event, the Chinese paraglider He Zhongpin was killed by a lightning strike.
Higher Ground: Paragliding in the Himalaya
Tom de Dorlodot and Horacio Llorens go paragliding in the Indian Himalaya. Leaving from the popular site of Bir/Billing they fly first to Manali, then cross the Rohtang Pass before flying to Keylong. They then enter the remote valley of Spiti, where they experience some spectacular flying
I Would Land In Your Backyard
The concept is simple: Fly across the entire length of the Alps, solo, and go for a swim in the Adriatic Sea. Following in the footsteps of Didier Favre, Antoine Boisselier embarks on a massive Alpine vol-biv adventure with the goal of sharing his experience with as many mountain locals
A group of professional test pilots explore the remote and rarely visited Island of Socotra off the coast of Yemen in the heart of the Middle East. Join them as they thermal up to 1000m over the Indian Ocean, battle 40km winds, and fly from the longest caves in the orient.
Surf The Line
Have you ever dreamed of surfing in the sky? To experience this ultimate sensation of freedom and limitless movement? The Flying Frenchies did it!
Surf the Line is an immersive documentary that tells the behind the scenes story of a wild and crazy project, which required two years of preparation, complex calculations, the creation of a kilometer-long cable and a custom surfboard to the delight of our imagination! In order to live this extraordinary adventure, it was necessary to overcome the most difficult tests of life, self doubt, and engage in deep reflection.
Extreme sports, buffoonery, genuine inventions and a lifestyle close to nature: plunge into the extreme and bohemian universe of the Flying Frenchies !
Using a paraglider as a ski-lift is not a dream anymore, it’s a reality! During a full spring all the Blues team played in the mountains to find some incredible lines from the sky to then enjoy it on the snow!
What happens when The North Face climbers Cedar Wright and Matt Segal become absolute bumbling beginners at an obscure and adventurous air sport called paragliding? The Answer: Hilarity ensues. Follow Matt and Cedar on a perilous, beautiful, light hearted, sometimes intense journey to fly off of the highest peak in Mexico with less than a year of experience. Just because you are a beginner doesn’t mean you can’t dream big.
Red Bull X-Alps 2019: Full Documentary
As snow settles across the Alps it seems crazy to think back to just six months ago when 32 of the world’s top adventure athletes set off from Salzburg to race to Monaco.
Athletes have been quick to move on with their lives, back to the day jobs as teachers, engineers, guides, instructors and full-time adventurers now skiing and flying. But for many of us, fans and athletes included, the memories are still fresh – the pain, the glory, the exhaustion and elation.
With this documentary on the race, we take a look back to remind ourselves of some of the golden moments and unique trends from the 2019 edition.
The race may be six months ago, the pain may be long since forgotten. But as the saying goes, the glory lives on.
Relive the World’s Toughest Adventure Race | Red Bull X-Alps 2017
In July 2017, 31 world-class athletes from 20 different nations embarked on a grueling hike and fly adventure across the Alps. Filming the race was an 18-man camera crew, equipped with the latest technology and a helicopter. Just in time for the holidays, we’ve put together a 52-minute documentary showcasing the most epic moments of this year’s edition.
Jam-packed with incredible paragliding and almost impossible feats of Alpine adventure. Narrated by race reporter Tarquin Cooper, the documentary features veteran pilots such as reigning champion Chrigel Maurer (SUI1), Paul Guschlbauer (AUT1) and Romanian running man Toma Coconea (ROU), as well as rookies like Benoît Outters (FRA4) and Simon Oberrauner (AUT4).
Red Bull X-Alps 2015: The Documentary
Red Bull X-Alps 2015 saw fierce competition, tough weather conditions and athletes pushing themselves to the limit to make it to the cool waters of Monaco. Relive the race with ‘The Documentary’.
Best Moments from Red Bull X-Alps 2013
Monaco welcomed its tenth and final athlete, just hours before the Red Bull X-Alps came to an end at 12:00pm local time. It is perhaps fitting that on the ten-year anniversary of the first Red Bull X-Alps, it should be Toma Coconea (ROM) to arrive in 10th place as he has competed in every edition of the race since 2003.
X-Alps Ends with a Bang – Event Recap – Red Bull X-Alps 2011
It was a spectacular end to the world’s toughest adventure race today with a close duel between two athletes sparring for second place.
The Red Bull X-Alps finishes 48 hours after the winner arrives in Monaco. Christian Maurer clinched victory at 16:22 on Thursday, and at that time, his nearest followers were over 150 km away.
However, by last night, Toma Coconea and Paul Guschlbauer were lying neck-and neck, around 65 km out from Monaco. They had both flown spectacular flights at heights of up to 3500 m through the southern Alps putting them within range of goal.
As dawn broke, Coconea set off. He ran fast through the twisting valleys that lead to Monaco, sometimes averaging 10 km/h and living up to his nickname, ‘the raging Romanian.’
Meanwhile, Guschlbauer took his time. He knew good flying conditions were forecast, and elected to hike to the same launch place above Isola that Maurer had used two days ago.
Chrigel & Michael Maurer – 6h XC
SRF SlowTV presentation of an epic end-to-end cross-country paragliding adventure XC flight from Zermatt to Klosters, Switzerland on 2015-06-03.
Alps Paragliding VolBiv 2019: Nice to the Dolomites
An 11 day paragliding VolBiv trip, covering 750km in the air, from Nice to the Dolomites.
Me and Tony shared the first seven days of the journey together, carrying everything we needed for the journey, and then I continued on my own.
Paragliding. “Dream. The feeling of flight”
The film is about that, and old man and man with multiple sores can be engaged in extreme sports. It brings great feelings. Main characters – a young instructor Paul Mityuklyaev (one of the most experienced Russian paraglider), and old student Peter Maximov (wood sculptor, speleologist, mountain-skier and snowkiting-man) and many other Russian and international paragliders.
Magikistan – Paragliding into the heart of Tajikistan
In spring 2018, paragliding acrobatic world champion Christina Kolb and paragliding instructor Gypaetes Alain Lehoux, went on a vol-biv trip to the mostly unexplored country of Tajikistan… Here is the story of their journey.
Film about Paragliding Vol Biv Pamir – Tian Shan 2019 Russian Team
Jean-Baptiste Chalendier cinematic paragliding
Philip Brugger cinematic paragliding
Hang gliding movie “Free Flyers” (full movie)
World famous hang glider pilots launch from Utah’s most iconic flying sites.
Starring John Heiney, Zac Majors, Wolfgang Siess, Alex Tatom, Dan McManus, Todd Weber, Joe Bedinghaus, Beau Buck, Jackson Menius, Jeff Davies, Jeff Parrott, Bob Lenc with many other pilots and even a dog named Shadow.
Wind Rider (Hang Gliding Documentary)
Extreme athlete Jonny Durand attempts to break a world record flying a hang glider across the American State of Texas with no engine. Dave Malkoff follows the journey from Mexico to his landing site hundreds of miles away.
Speedraid – The First Documentary About Speedflying (Full Movie)
Paragliding over the beaches of Bali
Paragliding over the beaches of Bali
What are you looking for?
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Did you fly in your dream? Then you remember this feeling of freedom, extraordinary lightness and silence, incomparable with any earthly pleasure. Now we offer you to fly in reality – a paraglider in Bali!
This is truly a gift for any traveler, the opportunity to take in the whole island of the Gods and admire the incomparable beauty, accessible only from a bird’s eye view.
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|Tandem paragliding 15 minutes Spot: Uluwatu; flight is possible only in flying weather!||
|Paragliding in tandem 15 minutesSpot: Nusa Dua; flight is possible only in flying weather!||
* Discount available for organized groups.