On our first visit to Rio, I knew we had to go hang gliding (don't ask where that crazy notion came from at my age). After checking out a number of providers, I found the reviews for Just Fly Rio on this site. Although there were only four at the time, they sounded very positive. From my first contact with Paulo, I was sold! Because of the uncertain weather (and partly because of our erratic schedule), he was in constant communication providing answers to every question and offering supplemental explanations that he felt important. He even provided a link to Wind Guru. It finally looked like we would have to abandon the adventure for this trip, because of the weather forecast, until we received an e-mail from Paulo on our last morning informing us that the weather conditions were starting to look favourable. We finished wolfing down breakfast and grabbed a cab to São Conrado where Paulo's colleagues were waiting to help us attend to the formalities and whisk us up to the Pedra Bonita Ramp where we were greeted by Paulo.
Not being adventurous sorts, we were a bit intimidated by the dune-buggy ride up the mountain took it as part of the adventure and decided we could handle anything after that! (I am known to exaggerate a tad at times.) We were certainly put at ease by the calm manner of Paulo and his colleagues in preparing us for the flight and by the precise instructions on what we must and must not do to ensure its success. No chances are taken and take-off is delayed until the winds are optimal. (We had already been reassured that the only cost to us would be our transportation and the hang gliding association registration fee - for access to the mountain - should the flight have to be cancelled.)
And then you are floating through the sky with the birds. I spare the description of the emotional high from the experience but couldn't imagine a more beautiful place in the world to enjoy it. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat! Would I choose Just Fly Rio again? I couldn't imagine even considering anybody else! (As I mentioned, I had already checked out others.) Oh, and if you are dithering about whether to spend the extra on the photos and video, stop right now! Go for the package and you will have an amazing record you can share and use to relive the experience as often as you like.
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