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Touring some of the best paragliding sites on the planet

If the weather this summer has been another big disappointment, with too many wet and windy days, why not pack your wing and a few pairs of shorts and come out to play in the sunshine. Brazil is an amazing place! It is world famous for the consistently, reliable weather and superb flying conditions. The friendly nature and wonderful hospitality of the Brazilian people are second-to-none.

Whether you’re a budding sky-god with hundreds of hours under your belt or you are relatively inexperienced, Brazil has plenty to offer.

We provide a full fly-guiding and support service to take the worry out of your paragliding holiday, enabling you to maximise your airtime and just have fun.

We want you to get the most out of your holiday and also experience some of the many, varied and wonderful sites that we fly. We will typically visit three sites during your stay with us.

Take a look at the site descriptions for more information.

Tour Dates

These are the tour dates:

  • Tour 1902 – 8 to 23 February 2019
  • Tour 1903 – 8 to 23 March 2019

In 2019 we will be running just two tours to start with. Once these are full, we will consider running a third tour, in January, if there is sufficient demand. There will be a maximum of 7 pilots on each tour so please don’t leave it too late to confirm your booking.

If you have a group and want to arrange different dates we will try to accommodate you. Please contact me (email Steve Barton) to discuss the details.

This year we will be organising the tours a little differently from previous years. We are always looking for ways to improve the service that we provide and experience has shown that it’s not always wise to have a detailed plan in advance. We hope to visit two or three of the well-known sites on each tour. We aim to offer some variety but our priority will always be to maximise the flying time. Have a look at the individual site descriptions to get an idea of some of the places we usually visit.

The spectacular festival of the Brazilian Carnaval will be during the two-week period between these two tours, from 1 to 6 March. Why not combine one of our tours with some partying during Carnaval and have the holiday of a lifetime?

Prices

Only £1,790 for two weeks

Here is what is included:

  • Transport to and from Vitoria, at the start and end of the tour
  • 15 nights hotel accommodation, with buffet style breakfast
  • Daily transport to take-off
  • Use of SPOT Satellite GPS Messenger
  • Retrieval service
  • Local SIM card
  • All coaching and theory lectures
  • Second flights each day if needed

Note:

The price is based on shared hotel rooms, each with en-suite bathroom, television and either ceiling fan or air-conditioning. Most rooms also have wi-fi facilities. If you are travelling with a partner or friend and have specific requirements please let us know at the time of booking. If you prefer a single room this can be arranged at a small supplement.

What you get for your money:

Again I will be working with Dean Crosby, CFI of Active Edge Paragliding. Dean will be guiding the group in the air, providing in-flight coaching by radio and giving theory lectures where necessary. He is a BHPA Senior Instructor with a vast amount of experience – former Captain of both the British Paragliding Team and the British Hang Gliding Team; competing at national level in all three disciplines (paragliding, hang gliding and sailplanes); flying for 35 years; he has been British Paragliding Champion and twice British Cross-Country Champion.

I have been flying for more than 18 years and have lived in Brazil since 2006. I’ll be providing assistance and advice on the take-off where required, arranging any second flights and coordinating the retrieves.

How to Book:

  • Contact us by email to check availability quoting the tour number.
  • You will be notified of your provisional reservation.
  • Upon receipt of a deposit of £200 your booking will be confirmed and you will be sent further information.
  • The outstanding balance for your holiday will be payable one calendar month before the start of the tour.

Payment:

  • You can either pay by bank transfer or use the PayPal service.
  • Full details for making payment will be sent by email.
  • If you wish to use the PayPal service, please let me know and a PayPal money request will be sent. PayPal make a small charge for this service, which must be paid by you.
  • PayPal also gives you the option to pay using a credit or debit card for which they make a small charge. This must also be paid by you.

We’re sure you’ll find our holidays excellent value for money – remember to check out exactly what’s included and what isn’t if you’re comparing prices.

Sites

Choosing the Right Sites for the Best Tours

A lot of time has been spent finding the right sites for our tours and we’re always looking for others.

We will never use a site until we have thoroughly tested it ourselves, in a variety of conditions. Although it’s not possible to remove every potential hazard in a sport like this, we try hard to minimise the risks.

The take-offs are all clean and well-maintained, capable of being used by several gliders simultaneously and within sight of the usual landing fields or bomb-out fields.

The landing fields all have safe, alternative options, in case things don’t quite go according to plan.

Accessibility is an important consideration, in terms of both safety and comfort. Whenever possible we use 4×4 vehicles, particularly on sites that can only be accessed by dirt-roads.

Research and experience has shown that we are using the right sites, at the best time of year, for the most consistently reliable weather and cross-country flying conditions.

When planning the tours we try to offer some variety, usually visiting three different sites during the tour, while minimising the amount of time spent driving on Brazilian roads. Although we plan the tours well in advance, we try to retain some flexibility in case of inclement weather and this sometimes means that we don’t get the accommodation we would prefer but, when all said and done, the flying is what you are here for.

 

Reviews

Below are some of the reviews that previous clients have given us. There are more on my Facebook page. Each one contains a link to the page of the person who wrote it.

Mark Carter

Steve is by far the most organized guide I have come across yet. Plans have contingencies, and the contingencies have contingencies.

Our first day was greeted with a PowerPoint briefing outlining many of the key considerations when flying in Brazil followed by a pictorial walk through of the 100 km milk run from Governador Valadares to Caratinga.

Keeping with the trend of layers of redundancy, Steve also issues simcards, SPOTs, and has a driver in constant radio contact with the group as they head out along Dean/Robs chosen path for the day.

Speaking of Dean + Rob. Both instructors/guides have a unique take on client instruction. Where many guides/instructors will focus on the barbell clients (the best and the worst of the group, leaving the middle third to their own devices), Dean and Rob will make it a point to explicitly set aside one day of extra attention for each pilot on the tour – ensuring everyone comes away from the trip having grown as a paraglider pilot.

On the off/weather days, Dean seemed to have a presentation readily at hand whether it be XC flying considerations, route planning, or vol biv to help make sure pilots get the most that they can from the trip.

To sum it up my experience with XC Brazil: within a day of returning from XC Brazil’s January tour in 2016, I had a deposit down on 2017.

A recap of my experience flying with one of the guides during the 2017 tour can be found under my blog @ the flyinorange.blog and is titled ‘Cross Country Guidance’.

John Norman

I’ve done paragliding tours in 4 continents but I keep returning to Brazil to fly with Steve Barton of XCBrazil. When I’m on a paragliding tour I want to push hard to maximize every flyable hour. In Brazil with Steve I can totally relax about the logistics because I know he is as keen as I am for everyone to fly as far as possible. Steve has chased me into some quite remote places and always arrives full of enthusiasm. The flying is generally epic and Steve takes you to places that would be very difficult to fly on your own.I love these trips because they are so much fun and so well organised.

I have always gone on this tour solo, but by the time the tour ends I’ve always made friends and we then always spend a few days flying and exploring Rio. One day I will fly over the Christo statue.

Here’s John’s video, showing some of the flying at Castelo, Alfredo Chaves and then Valadares –

Graeme Stephenson

Brazil was brilliant!  I needed to hit the ground running upon my return to work – and other things in life – so it’s taken me a while to process the whole experience.  It’s only just dawning on me what a brilliant holiday it was.

It was great to meet you!  The holiday was great value for money and you pitched it all just right!  The hotels, transport, food, places and sights all added to the overall experience and of course I managed to break my own personal bests on a daily basis.  30km is an achievement for me and I’m delighted with all the flying sites.

Just wanted to say thanks for everything – I won’t hesitate to recommend you and Dean – and if you’ll have me back again I hope to notch up the big 100 next time around!

Silvia Nagy

I went to Brazil in March 2012, in what was to be my first thermalling experience. After yet another unsuccessful trip to one of the UK sites, a friend convinced me to invest in an organised trip abroad. As we were driving back to London without even having taken out our wings, rain pouring on the windscreen, he told me stories of the perfect weather and spectacular sites of Brazil, where everyone flies to their heart’s content – a few months later, we were landing in Rio.

I was not disappointed. The sites are every bit as breath-taking as advertised – and you will definitely improve your personal best, no matter what your level of experience: as I was congratulating myself on my first altitude gain, others were beating their best XC distances, logging 50+km. We were a small group and it was reassuring to have a couple of local, experienced pilots keep an eye on each of us. The weather was on our side a lot of the time, and and on the rare days when it wasn’t, Steve came to the rescue: he spared no effort to try and get us the maximum flying time possible, weather it meant loading up the van and moving to a different location (It was Valadares and Pancas for our trip), or waking us up at a different time to make the most out of the day.

Brazilians are the friendliest people, and if you are willing to learn only a few basic portuguese words (most won’t speak english) you will be able to strike up conversations with many of the locals as you are checking out the colourful markets or having a cold drink in the evenings. Part of Steve’s team are locals, and more then willing to help you get around, improve your vocabulary and really immerse yourself in the culture.

All in all, a pretty fantastic two weeks!

Xiaoting Hou Jones

Steve is the best organizer with a lot of local site knowledge and a passion for getting the best experiences for his clients. You are guaranteed to have fun with Steve.  

Gina Eveson

Thanks Steve. I’m back at work.  Slept like a baby last night but very sad when I woke up NOT in Brazil! Thank you again for such an amazing time – we all had the best holiday ever and you did an amazing job with the organisation of accommodation and flying for the boys. Hopefully we will return one day. . . much love x x x