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You wouldn't be here if you weren't curious.*

Hi! I'm Elena! Welcome to my travel blog Creativelena.com.
For me, it is all about “life-seeing instead of sightseeing”: Join me as I create, eat & live my way around the world. Curious?

*Check out my book, “The Creative Traveler’s Handbook”, for learning more about what we mean by creative travel. Travelling means the world to me, makes me fit for everday life and sometimes, I trust, also calmer on the inside. Read this blog with a smile, share what you love and remember to check back regularly: After all, when was the last time you did something for the first time?

Hot Air Balloon Ride #InCostaBrava. A real #CatalunyaExperience !

“What do you mean, she doesn’t know ..? You haven’t told her anything?!” My eyes widen at the sight of the two big, bulging balloons in front of me. It is about seven in the morning and I am only just waking up, wondering why we had to get up so early. In the back, I can hear Marc’s mum speak and laugh out at the happy surprise – and my utterly stunned face, I guess. “But .. This is .. Are we going on a hot air balloon ride?!”

We are. Oh. My. God. Woooooowww …!

Ten minutes later. I am all giggly, wide-eyed and talkative (mind you, I’ve had my coffee and swallowed the surprise!). Rushing out the door of the cosy breakfast room at the hot air balloon headquarters of “Vol De Coloms” to take pictures, videos, Instagrams, what have you, of the two massive, soon-to-soar-into-the-sky balloons. I remember ever having been on two such hot air balloon rides in my whole life. This one overlooking half Catalonia simply is the perfect one, I must say.

Clear skies paint-brushed with white puffy clouds. A bright white moon against the flashing sun. Views all the way from France to Barcelona, the Pyrenees as well as the Mediterranean Sea …

… magic. And to top it all off, the team at “Vol De Coloms” have even pulled off a surprise for us: At the very climax of the ascent, some 7,000 feet above sea-level, our pilot pulls out the Cava sparkling wine and some kind of “sugar coca cake” (at least that’s what I’m told it was) for a “brindis” – Salut! to all of us 12 people who have come to join the ride.

An experience never, ever to forget.

“She hasn’t stopped taking pictures …” That’s Marc’s mum, still smiling. She is totally right, of course. But even without the #LifeOfATravelBlogger, I wonder … would you have been able to stop yourself in front of views like these?

Starting our way up ...

Starting our way up from La Fageda forest …

 

… our neighbouring balloon soon is reduced to a little dot in the sky.

… our neighbouring balloon soon is reduced to a little dot in the sky.

 

From here, I can see the Canigo mountain massif at the Catalan-French border to the north ...

From here, I can see the Canigo mountain massif at the Catalan-French border to the north …

 

… as well as a vivid display of autumn colours ...

… as well as a vivid display of autumn colours …

 

… and the perfect volcanic cone of "El Volca de …" at La Fageda forest near the small town of Olot.

… and the perfect volcanic cone of “El Volcà de Santa Margarita” at La Fageda forest near the small town of Olot.

 

Time for a toast ...

Time for a toast …

 

… marveling at the moon ...

… marveling at the moon …

 

… the balloon ...

… the balloon …

 

… as well as our safe and ultimately smooth landing ...

… as well as our safe and ultimately smooth landing …

 

… back to planet Earth, greeting "El Burro Català" - the Catalan donkey next doors.

… back to planet Earth, greeting “El Burro Català” – the Catalan donkey next doors.

 

After the hot air balloon ride, you can use the rest of the day for a lovely day hike around La Fageda forest – especially now as the autumn colours seem to have set them utterly ablaze.

Mild temperatures mark our day here in the mystic, fairy-tale like forests of La Fageda, some 50 minutes drive from the actual Costa Brava & provincial capital city Girona. The path to follow is Route Number One and very well sign-posted. It leads around the rather small, volcanic cone and through some pretty forests that are more reminiscent of the ones we have back in my home country Austria. Magical, really. Take your loved one(s) for a stroll …

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For a glorious finish, head over to nearby Olot 

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… and enjoy my travel video about this magic day living & breathing Catalonia from above.

See you soon #InCostaBrava #CatalunyaExperience 🙂

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Written by Elena

Elena writes about creative destinations, shares her personal travel stories and brings inspiring photography & interesting news updates home to you. Her mission is: "Continue to be amazed at this world, one creative travel experience at a time."

Ready for learning even more about creative travel?

Elena has recently published "The Creative Traveler's Handbook". Chock full of inspiratinal stories, travel tips and advice, it offers everything you need for planning and managing your next creative escape, addressing beginners and experienced travelers alike. Here's how to get your hands on it now!
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