Paragliding enthusiasts have been soaring through the skies for decades; and due to favorable wind conditions and the proximity of the mountains to the sea, Lebanon is an ideal location for this exhilarating sport.
There’s no greater sensation than the magical feeling of flying free like a bird
Paragliding is a sport in which a wide canopy, resembling a parachute, is attached to a person’s body by a harness in order to allow them to glide. Suspension lines to the harness secure the wing that is usually made of nylon. If launched by foot, the canopy, or wing, is stretched on a hill and the pilot inflates it while moving forward on a downward slope, taking advantage of good wind direction.
When the wing is inflated, the pilot then runs down the incline until the wing can carry them into the air. Unlike a parachute, which descends vertically, the wing has the ability to move forward thus enabling the pilot to maneuver more, take thermals (columns of warm air rising up) and stay airborne.
GLIDING IN LEBANON
Paragliding in Lebanon started in the early nineties. The paragliding experience is enriched by the diversity of the country’s landscapes, with mountain and sea views that can be enjoyed from the sky like Ghosta, Jounieh, the Cedars, Shouf Cedars, Lessa, Miziara, Dedde, Annaya and Hammana.
Flight time depends on the weather, the pilot’s experience and the glider. A flight could last from 10 minutes to a couple of hours or more. Flying safely is also very important. One should fly in good weather, understand the conditions (wind gusts, obstacles, thermals), assess their levels of skill and not take unnecessary risks. When in doubt, canceling the flight is a wise decision.
Triathlon champion and paragliding instructor Milo Daou says: “There’s no greater sensation than the magical feeling of flying free like a bird. It’s an amazing experience, which you can try in several locations.”
Paragliding can be experienced either by choosing to go on a tandem flight or by learning to fly solo at a paragliding school. When flying in tandem, the pilot talks the student through the operation of the glider. If the conditions are right, the pilot may even turn the controls over to a willing passenger, and let them experience what it’s like to fly an unpowered craft. When in a tandem flight, the person in the front is in an ideal position to document the journey with a still or video camera. If you choose to fly on your own, a set of procedures is in place, with courses divided into three levels.
Where to enroll
- Exit to Nature: 03 270592 / 03 684556
- Paragliding Club Thermique: 03 288193 / 09 237193
- LiveLoveParagliding: 71 326039