Lara Goes Local⑪: Jumping out of a plane at 14,000Ft

By / / Updated: 10:41,03-December-2021

One by one the people who came up here with you leave. 1, 2, 3 go. 1, 2, 3 go. 1, 2, 3, go. And, then, there were none left in front of you. You're at 14,000 feet and it's your turn to jump out of a plane. Scared much?

I had been mentally preparing myself for this for quite some time due to my prior fear of heights which I can happily say is no longer a fear now. I'm not sure what I'm going to do to cure my banana phobia - but I'll figure something out.

Thankfully I didn’t have to make the final choice of when to jump because it being my first ever jump, I was still in tandem with an instructor and, tightly attached to me and my harness, Instructor Hu made the jump for us. Falling. Falling. Falling. Flying.

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

I think, if he wasn't there with me, it might have taken me a bit more to make that final step. I might have been stuck up in the sky a little longer. Once he took both of us out the door of the plane into the cold rushing winds of the sky, that single jump was an incredible, unforgettable, indescribable experience that will stay with me to the day I die.

To be completely honest, once I saw the world so far beneath me, it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. For one second, I wasn’t too sure which way was up and which way was down – but then I realized I was flying. Soaring.

I saw the heavenly golden rays of the sun obliquely lighting up clouds so close it felt like I could reach out and touch them.

I saw the briney blue of the ocean in a dazzling array of colors and depths.

I saw the glorious green island that I treasure so much.

Seeing all this from a completely different perspective made me fall in love with Hainan all over again. My senses were so overwhelmed with all these stunning experiences that I couldn’t help but just let the tears flow.

Weland Skydiving—the company that took me up to 14,000 feet and threw me out of a plane—has instructors and staff come from all over China. After having a chat with them, I found that the reasons behind this were very simple and obvious: Hainan has fantastic weather all year round. 

Other than Guangzhou, Hainan is the only other place where you can skydive throughout the year and the instructors informed me that here, the views from above, were some of the best they have ever seen.
 

For all of you who haven’t tried skydiving before and who’re considering to take on the challenge – I would absolutely recommend that you try doing it for the first time in Hainan, so that you too could have the same incredible first experience I had.
 

For those of you who have skydived in other locations and who are adrenaline junkies in search of a new thrill, I’m pretty sure Hainan will wow you too!
 

I was very impressed by their friendly service – but not surprised – seeing that a very good friend of mine recommended them to me after sending her husband for a jump on his birthday.
 

Several instructors speak English - so for those English-speaking expats whose Chinese is yi ban ban – you can feel safe knowing that you’ll be clear on the instructor’s safety briefings.

After safety briefings and gearing up, you will get into a tiny plane, go up to altitude, and jump!

You get about a million years, I mean a minute, of free fall followed by 4 minutes or so of slow descent with a parachute and a beach landing.  Depending on the time of day you'll have different kinds of scenic views. I’ve been told by no few friends that sunset jumps are usually the best.

Although many people are just crossing it off their bucket list, a surprising number of first timers return for more jumps. Some even return to Weland to train for their Solo Skydiving licenses. Once you have qualified for this internationally recognized license here, skydiving bases around the world will allow you to jump with just equipment rental.

This is a lot cheaper as you don't need to also pay for the instructor who is strapped to you in tandem. Instructor Hu says it's a lot more fun but the 25 jumps and exams you need to pass to qualify is a bit daunting to me.

Many who have tried skydiving explain that it has given them a lot of confidence to face their fears, deal with problem solving and show you what you’re really made of.

The tourism industry in Hainan is paving the way for more people to explore outdoor activities, water sports, and extreme sports such as skydiving. If you do find yourselves on our beautiful island, make sure that you thoroughly explore Hainan’s beauty from all possible angles! That’s what I did - and I hope you find the courage within yourself to live up to similar challenges while here!

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