Araku’s picturesque valley is all set to witness a splash of colours as it gears up to host the second edition of Araku Balloon Festival from January 18. Organised by Andhra Pradesh Tourism Department, the festival will be held from January 18 to 20 and will feature hot air balloon pilots from 15 countries including India, Brazil, Slovakia, Italy, UK, Thailand, USA, France, Spain, Malaysia, Netherlands, Australia, Germany, Japan and Belgium. In the three day carnival, the balloons will take their flight from 6 AM to 7 AM.
Nestled in the Eastern Ghats range, the scenic Araku Valley sits at an altitude of 1300 m above the sea level and is an amazing spot for a hot air balloon festival. Expected to make a mark in the growth of tourism in this edition, the district and tourism officials have rolled out elaborate plans for the event with pilots having already conducted a two-day trial run in Araku and special tents being erected at the camping site at Bosubeda village in the valley, where the participants of the festival will be accommodated.
With 20 hot air balloon pilots lined up with their balloons, the three-day event will reportedly have activities like morning balloon flights, scintillating balloon nightglows, tethered flights and para-motoring displays and stunts. The balloons in the competition are reported to come in unique shapes, featuring iconic characters like Bruno Clown, Honey Bee, Baby Car and Happy Children, colouring up the blue skies of the valley.
The visitors can opt for a camping experience through which they can discover the cultural ethnicity of Araku by taking out some time to flock to the nearby aromatic coffee plantations, tribal villages and soothing waterfalls. While the weatherman reported no possibility of rain during the three-day event, which was a dampener last time, the festival itinerary also offers visitors with the opportunity to be a part of the paramotoring display with aerial sports enthusiasts.