Anyone who has been following me on Facebook or Twitter over the last month has been wondering why, all of the sudden, have I become an action adventure seeker. I was keeping the excitement on the hush for the most part, not revealing exactly why I was doing all of these things. Well, the issue is finally out, and I can share my amazing journeys with you.
It began in a monthly editorial meeting when we were brainstorming ideas for the 2012 January issue. In a mildly selfish notion, never expecting it to come to fruition, I suggested a "adventure bucket list" for 2012. The idea was massaged and caressed from there by our team only to turn into a wonderful piece about how to improve your life in the new year, written by People Magazine writer Kristin Harmel.
Before the new year ever stepped foot across the threshold, I was able to go soaring over Central Florida in a light weight glider during a rainstorm, take trapeze lessons with the performers from Cirque du Soleil, fly in a hot air balloon over swamps at sunrise, and jump off a 70 foot platform to go ziplining around tree tops. I cannot be grateful enough to everyone involved who made the experiences so wonderful, and all just in time for my 30th birthday!
The cover image is from the glider, which was my first of the experiences. I was honestly expecting something heart pounding, similar to jumping out of a plane. It was anything but! It was extremely relaxing, unlike my second adventure- the trapeze. If you have never jumped off a platform before, not sure if this will be the easiest thing for you to do. I was fine until I got toward the top of the ladder and realized the board we had to stand on was only 1 foot by three foot and there were two other people standing on it. I would do it again in a heart beat, but that first step is a doozy!
Hot Air Ballooning was absolutely amazing, but be ready to get up at 4:00am. One of the best parts of the morning was watching the process of the balloons being filled. They push air into the balloons with large industrial fans, then heat the air with the burners to get the balloon to rise. You only have a fraction of time to climb into the basket. The feeling of extremely warm heat on your face when the burners were lit was a bit of a wakeup call if you weren't paying attention, but it's all part of the ride. Don't forget the champagne toast after you arrive back at your location.
Ziplining was my final adventure. Similar to jumping off the trapeze platform, but this one was 70 feet high and above the tall tree tops. I'm quite happy I was able to experience the 35 foot platform before jumping off the 70 foot platform. It definitely made stepping off little easier, plus I knew I was always clipped on to a wire of some sort as well.
I highly recommend all of these activities to anyone who is physically capable. For the amount of money you spend it is definitely worth the experience and the memories.
Soaring/Gliding: Soar Florida
Trapeze Lessons: The Orlando Circus School
Hot Air Ballooning: Orlando Balloon Rides
Treetop Ziplining: Forever Florida