Paragliding in Tyrol Austria will Blow Your Mind
I would consider myself a daring individual. I don’t shy away from doing crazy things… well, unless it involves eating insects or activities as inane as Russian Roulette. So you can only imagine the thrill in my bones at the opportunity to paraglide while in Hopfgarten, a tiny little town within the region of Tyrol.
A Little Bit About Hopfgarten
A teeny town within Tyrol, Hopfgarten is a very popular destination for the European skiiers seeking a small getaway. With everything from bunny hills to diamond runs for expert slopers, Hopfgarten definitely is an athete’s haven hidden within one of the most beautiful mountain ranges in Europe.
But it doesn’t stop there. The region is also quite popular beyond the winter months. Many a mountain biker and trout fisherman holidays to Tyrol to soak up the views in warmer weather.
Then The Adrenaline-Filled Day Arrived….
So the day arrived to do our scenic glide. Hubby and I were ready. Blood pumping, we couldn’t wait to see Austria from a bird’s eye view. The rolling mountains, the chalets within the peaks, the wild cattle grazing peacefully, the majesty of the area was more than a visitor could ever imagine.
We arrived at the peak of choice. Tandems were scattered across the grass awaiting riders to take the leap. Mine, a bearded brute with harness in hand, stood calmly as we were paired. He looked somewhat scruffy, but in his broken English, he explained the process, putting me at complete ease. Hubby’s tandem, similarly confident, saddled him up with his harness and glider.
Once harnessed and ready, my pilot and I headed to the edge of the mountain….it was surreal being surrounded by such gorgeous untouched landscapes. Soon I would see everything from the air! I was ready for him to snap the amazing panoramic photos and proof of my flight for those occasional doubting relatives…
Free As a Bird…
We were ready to fly. My burly pilot explained that we had to run off the side of the mountain to take off. Sort of like a grassy runway ideal for human feet. My heart pumping I was ready to run this mountainous marathon. On his cue we sprinted to the edge and took the largest leap you could imagine. My eyes squinted as my hands clenched the harness I dropped my legs and allowed myself to sit back and enjoy the view.
The green hills, the small chalets speckled throughout, and tree-topped peaks in the background, you are fully immersed in untouched, pristine landscapes. Sadly, they don’t allow you to take photographs due to droppage, but your pilot does take photos for you via photo stick. Should you wish copies of your photos, they are available for purchase from the paragliding company. He takes 20+ scenic and selfie-type photographs showing exactly how far off the ground and daring you truly are, proving the strength of your bravery to your friends and yourself. I highly recommend buying the photographs as you won’t have another way of documenting your death-defying feat.
Paragliding is a wonderful way to see Austria from a different perspective. If you have the money (roughly 200 Euros) to book the activity, it is worth every penny. Swallow your fears, ensure you’re wearing close-toed shoes, and head over to the edge of the mountain. No Austria vacation would be complete without this experience of a lifetime.