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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Paragliding in Puncak, Indonesia

Paragliding in Puncak, Indonesia 

The Movie Peter Pan always reminds me of my flying addiction. I want the adrenaline pumping through my veins, intoxicating my mind and the ecstatic feeling after the flight. During my college days I was hooked on zipline rides, the moment it opened its doors to Cebu I was first in line. Aside from my zipline shenanigans I did base jumping in Bohol, Parasailing in Boracay and this time around Paragliding in Puncak, Indonesia.   


I've always love the feeling of flying and some people find that confusing. A lot of them asked me if I feel scared, of course I do. Aren't I afraid of falling? That's definitely one of my deepest nightmares but I'm thinking what if I don't fall what if I fly?! ahahaa. Seriously speaking, let's just say I'm a big fan of all those sports brand logo like "face your fear", "just do it" and "let's get it on". It's one of those explainable feelings you have with people or things that you love. For me, Nothing compares to the Gush of Wind blowing my hair, Heart beating Fast and the Magnitude of Scream I let out from my lungs.

When we booked a flight ticket bound to Jakarta I didn't know a thing what to do there. I've never exactly plan to go there at all. However, Airasia had all the promo fares laid out and a flight ticket to Jakarta was the cheapest one for the specific dates me and my cousin had in mind. I've searched what's interesting in the city and I didn't find anything appealing to me. I'm not a big fan of city tour, I would like to learn about their culture and traditions in a different way. An interaction with the locals, hearing the whole story with their tongues is more absorbing for my brain cells. It's quite hard to look for blogs about Jakarta in English context. I've never intended to stay in the city so I've search what kind adventures are just hours away from Jakarta. I've found blogs with parachutes ,flying in the air and with big laughs on their faces. That's when I've found out that they offer paragliding in Puncak, a few hours away from the bustling capital of Indonesia. I made contact right away with a reputable company in Puncak and I met Nixon who owns the Paragliding Indonesia. The moment you open their website a lovely song plays along and that simply powers up the thrill of flying with them. Puncak is three hours away from Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, so we asked for an airport transfer. He was also kind enough to book us 2 nights at a nearby hotel he knows. 

Soekarno-Hatta International Airport to Puncak
Airport transfer: IDR 700,000/ SGD 70
Travel time: 3-4 hours (depends on the traffic)

Check in Hotel Permata Alam
Jl. Raya Puncak KM. 83 Cisarua Bogor
16750 , West Java Indonesia
3D2N 
IDR 600,000

We only stayed in the hotel for two nights, breakfast of bread and coffee is provided, staff was excellent but the amenities needs a lot of work. It was the Ramadan month so almost all the food outlets were closed yet we still managed to have a good meal. Good thing we arrived in the evening so people were allowed to eat and a few restaurants were open to serve us. 

A few things I've learned that night : First, its the Ramadan season so restaurants are only open after 6 in the evening next time I'll try to avoid the fasting month. Second, they don't sell beers we asked different kinds of convenient stores around the area and we couldn't even find one. Third, bring a jacket with you it really gets cold in the evening. Fourth, only a few people knows English so communicating is a bit hard so learn to be animated when conversing or use sign language. Fifth, Don't ever forget your universal charger, I always have it with me, just a gentle reminder for travelers. The next day we were picked up from the hotel around 9 in the morning to the paragliding site. 

IDR 350,000 Paragliding Package ( Tandem Flight)
IDR 200,000 Pictures & Videos
We took the Tandem flight, a professional paraglider will be coming along with us during the flight. They also offer courses for those who wants to fly on their own but you have to stay for two weeks to learn how to fly on your own. I wanted that. Period. Anyways moving on, there's one important thing they have to check before the flight and it's the wind direction. During that time the wind wasn't really cooperation with us so we waited for an hour or so for it to blow at the right direction. Our guide asked a small noodle store to serve us brunch, he had to explained that we were not fasting at all. The view was excellent in that part of the store, the mountains looked stunning and it made the food taste even better. We had Nasi Goreng with Egg and Indomei Noodles. Afterwards my cousin bought some tea in a nearby store selling dried tea leaves and tea bags. They were kind enough to serve us tea while waiting for our tandem flight. As I was having sips of the hot tea the guide informed us that the wind is ready and due to my excitement I wasn't able to finish my cup of tea. I came back for it thou but a fly has taken over it as its pool.

The paragliding bags were ready, the pilot has suited up, borrowed shoes fitted and the butterflies in my stomach are all in full throttle. Everyone was ready except me, by the time the harnessed were fully attached to my bag the operator tasked me to run along with the pilot. It caught me of guard as my feet ran ahead of me as I said the word "wait" ahahaa. I screamed and laughed. It was a smooth ride, the pilot told me that we were lucky because the weather was great. I flew first before my cousin yet he landed first before me. It was an incredible ride thou it only lasted for a few minutes. Another bucketlist ticked off from the pages of my adventure book. 

Later that afternoon we asked our pick up driver going to drop by Gunung Mas so we can have a glimpse of the Tea Plantation. We added IDR 100,000 for the ride to the Plantation. Long hectares of tea plants covered Gunung Mas, "Gunung" means mountain in Malay and everything looked fresh and vibrant. We roamed for awhile, took some pictures and just walk around breathing the fresh air. Horseback riding and Kite Flying are some of the activities you can inside the plantation. The next day we took an early ride back to the city, as early as 7 in the morning we were up and heading back to Jakarta. We encountered less traffic this time around and arrived an hour or so to our hostel. We actually planned on taking the bus, ticket would just be around IDR 35,000 to IDR 40,000 however we don't exactly know where our hostel is located. The hotel staff advised us to avoid taking the taxi they will charge around IDR 300,000 or more and might drive in circles around the city before taking us to our hostel.

Puncak to Jakarta
Private Van: IDR 600,000 
Travel time: 1-2 hours



“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” 
- Leonardo da Vinci


For more details:
Address: JL Raya Puncak, KM 87, Bukit Paralayang, Puncak, 16750, Indonesia
Contact number :+62 21 87952963
Email Address: flyindonesia@yahoo.com,  info@indonesia-paragliding.com
Website: http://www.indonesia-paragliding.com

Check out: What to do in Jakarta, Indonesia

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