June 22, 2017

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta – Plan your trip now!


Do you like hot air balloons? Who doesn’t? Looking for a one-of-a-kind experience to take part in this autumn? Book a trip now for the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, October 7-15, 2017. Balloon pilots and enthusiasts from all over the world will gather for an incredible week of races, music, film, and activities. The Fiesta’s stated goal: “To conduct the world’s premiere ballooning event while renewing friendships and promoting camaraderie among all participants and promoting the sport of ballooning, the City of Albuquerque and the State of New Mexico, nationally and internationally.”

About the Balloon Fiesta

The Fiesta started from “a small gathering of thirteen balloons” in 1972 in a mall parking lot in Albuquerque, New Mexico. By the next year, thirteen countries were participating in the “First World Hot Air Balloon Championship.” The numbers have increased every year since, and now hundreds of thousands of guests and over six hundred balloons make up the show. The Fiesta, now much too large for a parking lot, takes place on a permanent 350-acre site.

Aside from the balloon races, the Fiesta also features a growing number of regular events, such as the Mass Ascension (when all the balloons rise from the park), Balloon Glow, Night Magic Glow, and Special Shape Rodeo. This has helped earn the Fiesta’s reputation as one of the world’s most photographed events. The Special Shape Rodeo, the most popular event at the Fiesta, showcases an ever-growing number of special balloon shapes to amaze and delight fans.

Other events include America’s Challenge, a long-distance gas balloon race which lasts three days. The balloons take off from the park and land somewhere along the East Coast. There are many other competitive events, in which balloon pilots test their flying accuracy against one another.

Although you can show up to the event and buy tickets to a morning or night-time session, the Fiesta also offers upgrade packages for balloon enthusiasts. The “Chasers’ Club” offers guaranteed seating and catered beverages, while the “Gondola Club” lets visitors enjoy a gourmet meal, exclusive seating, and an open bar while they enjoy watching the balloons go by.

Because there are no balloon events during the day, the Balloon Fiesta is a great opportunity to see other sights in and around Albuquerque, such as the Albuquerque Biological Park, White Sands National Park, the Albuquerque Museum, or Historic Old Town Albuquerque. with the help of a charter bus or shuttle van from Metropolitan Shuttle, getting around the city to see all these attractions is a snap. Our professional staff can help plan and organize a flawless schedule for making your next Albuquerque trip fun and easy.

Getting There

The north entrance of Balloon Fiesta Park is only less than 20 minutes from Albuquerque by bus. For an entire week in October, balloons will take off day and night from the 78-acre launch field. Because the crowds may number in the high tens of thousands, event officials recommend arriving early, particularly for weekend events. Since there is no shuttle service to and from the nearby hotels, a shuttle van or charter bus rental from Metropolitan Shuttle is the perfect way to get your group to and from the events in safety, ease, and comfort.

The Fiesta consists of fourteen “sessions,” each of which is a set of activities taking place during the day or evening. Each day includes one morning session and five evening sessions. Tickets for the event are $10.00 per session, with food available on-site. Parking is $15 per vehicle, which is another good reason to carpool or charter a bus.

If you’re interested in making your October special with a trip to this unique event, call Metropolitan Shuttle at 1-866-556-3545 or contact us today for a free quote.

You can find out more about the Balloon Fiesta at their website.


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