International PHAB Fiesta

International PHAB Fiesta

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The upcoming International Putrajaya Hot Air Balloon Fiesta is bound to attract a large crowd, as it always did in the previous installments. Set to begin from 27th to 30th March 2014, it will be a fun-filled event, right on time with the coming school holidays. There is no entrance fee to enter this event.

I had my first taste of the festival two years ago. Together with a few friends of mine, it was our first time attending the event. When we reached Putrajaya, we saw how packed it was. The whole compound was full of peoples of all walks of life.

We arrived a bit too early for the hot air balloons free-flying show, scheduled twice a day at 7.30 am and 5.30 pm. Hence, we decided to explore the surrounding area. There were many activities all lined up for the festival. From extreme sports like wall climbing to leisure activities like picnics, you can join in any of those while waiting for the free-flying show.

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For those who wanted to try riding on hot air balloons, you can opt for tethered hot air balloon rides just at the price of RM 20 per person. You will ride on the hot air balloon where it will hover briefly up in the sky before descending down. The whole ride is about 5 to 7 minutes long. However, there is a limited number of tickets available so it is a first come first serve basis. Hence, you should arrive early and start to queue up for the tickets. This tethered ride is also subjected to weather conditions such as strong wind and rain.

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Personally, the highlight of this hot air balloons fiesta has to be the night glow. Scheduled to happen on Saturday night, the balloonists will ignite their burners, turning their hot air balloons into giant light bulbs. The whole launching pad looked like an arena for light show as the hot air balloons lighted up in sync with the background music, mostly Top 40 songs.

We were in awe when we first saw it. The whole area was surrounded so we had to find a spot with clear view. All of us were mesmerized as the balloons glowed in tune to the music. It was definitely quite an experience.

/// Written by Seng Aik Chuah, Malaysia