If a high-flying adventure sounds appealing, the Houston area is certainly the place to be. With flat terrain and the Gulf of Mexico nearby, the Houston area is ideal for such skyward excursions as skydiving, hot air balloon rides, paragliding and other similar sports. With the right training and equipment, the free-spirited individual can be on his/her way to the experience of a lifetime hovering above the ground or water. Here are some of the best businesses for flying adventures in Houston.
Westside Skydivers
Gloster Aerodrome
4695 Gloster Lane
Sealy, TX 77474
(832) 301-1323

One of the newer flying operations in Houston, Westside Skydivers is located in the Gloster Aerodrome, about 45 minutes west of downtown. Skydivers receive special training on the extreme sport of skydiving and, to ensure safety, the first two jumps are in tandem with an instructor. Skydivers can opt to jump from altitudes of 13,000, 18,000 and 24,000 feet with the price per jump progressively higher with each increase in altitude. It may seem a little intimidating at first, but the Westside Skydivers crew is ready to make the experience smooth and memorable.

Texas Air Adventures
14722 N. Eldridge Parkway
Houston, TX 77070
(281) 379-3165

Offering high-flying adventures with a view, Texas Air Adventures specializes in hot air balloon rides around the Houston area. The balloon flights depart from the West Oaks Mall and are privately arranged for a more intimate experience between couples or a few friends. Guests can select from special packages that include such extras as champagne, Godiva chocolates, specialty gift baskets and more. The balloon flights circle around the local Houston area and offer spectacular views of the city and surrounding areas.

TX Fly Sports
(713) 494-1970

Owned and operated by Andrew McAvin, Tx Fly Sports is a great service for paragliding. Adventure seekers are well trained on all aspects of paragliding from the familiarization of the motor to the proper ground handling. TX Fly Sports provides paragliding training for beginners and for the more experienced sports person. A few weekends of training on the Gulf of Mexico beach is all it takes to get customers up in the sky for the first time.
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Paradigm Helicopters
Ellington Field
Southwest Airport Services Building

11811 N. Brantly Ave.
Houston, TX 77034
(877) 345-8687

Those who want to enjoy the view from the sky but prefer the security of a closed-in space will appreciate Paradigm Helicopters. Flights depart from Ellington Field near Clear Lake and can last anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour or more depending on the selecting charter or tour service. Paradigm Helicopters offers group discounts for larger parties and it even has an engagement package for those who want to pop the question at high altitudes. Whether individuals have a specific place they want to fly or just want a tour of the surrounding areas, Paradigm Helicopters has a flight waiting for them.

Air Texas Balloon Adventures
1029 Highway 6 N., Suite 650
Houston, TX 77079
(281) 733-1500
Air Texas Balloon Adventures is a great place to take to the skies in a hot air balloon and experience breathtaking views of the Houston area. Easily accessible to most of the Houston population, Air Texas Balloon Adventures is ready to whisk you away to the heavens above, soaring high above the ground in a basket supported by air. Adventure seekers will enjoy a wide open view, digital photograph of the excursion and a first flight certificate when applicable. A post-flight champagne ceremony caps off the event with a toast to all.
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Bryan Carey is a Houston, Texas resident with an avid interest in restaurants, dining, breweries, wineries, festivals, cultural events, museums, theatre, concerts, and other forms of entertainment. He has been writing about entertainment, travel, and related topics for more than fifteen years and has thousands of articles to his credit. His work can be found at Examiner.com.