If you've ever been too scared to skydive, but you've tried out parasailing (where you are towed behind a boat while attached to a specially designed canopy wing that is similar to a parachute), then this would be the next step. You aren't attached to a boat via a rope like parasailing, but you aren't experiencing the feeling of falling out of an airplane either. Paragliding is similar to the experience that a person would have after they've opened their parachute when skydiving. It is a rather gentle and slow decent to the ground while getting the views from the sky.
Switzerland is a adventure lovers dream, and the landscape is simply mind blowing. No wonder it has been the filming location for a number of hits such as a number of James Bond films (the Contra dam in the Vezasca Valley from Goldeneye, Schilthorn mountain from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Furka Pass from Goldfinger, and the slopes of St Moritz from The Spy Who Loved Me) as well as Star Wars Episode III (the mountains around Grindelwald in the Jungfrau region for Alderaan), Iron Man 3, X-Men: First Class, and even Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.
Additionally, you can learn more about Switzerland’s culture by reading Switzerland - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture.
We signed up to go paragliding through the Kandersteg International Scout Center (KISC), but you could do it through some other tour operator if you desire. After we were signed up, we needed to walk to a location not far down a trail in Kandersteg and meet up with the professionals who would be flying our gliders (tandem flying means you are on the front, but they are doing the majority of the work and giving you instructions from behind as you two are strapped together). You generally start off on the top of a hill or mountain and do a slow jog down the hill with the parachute behind you. Eventually it lifts up and you're in the air sailing toward amazing views!
It's all done tandem with your paragliding guide strapped behind you. If you're feeling more daring, the guides can also do exciting tricks on your descent and it will feel more like a roller coaster as you corkscrew down and turn quickly side to side. Just hang on tight, and enjoy the ride!
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Jenny & Bradley of EatWanderExplore