Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
4.5
About
Imagine over 500 colourful hot air balloons rising up at dawn over the New Mexico landscape… there's truly nothing like it. The place to experience it is each October at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta. Spectators and balloon pilots from all over the world gather (some even camping in their caravans) to watch the mass ascensions held in the mornings, and night events like the 'glowdeo'. Music stages are set up during the day and performers stroll through the festival crowds, which can number 750,000 people.
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  • Rob S
    2 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Good, but could be better.
    Mornings are great! Evenings need more access to alcohol. It is VERY limited and there has to be a better ratio to crowd size. Also, for the amount of money brought in each year, permanent restrooms should be budgeted. World-class event. Welcome to our Porta Potties!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written October 7, 2023
  • BeeBuras
    Jamison, Pennsylvania42 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Put this on your Bucket List !!!
    This was a bucket list item that we’ve finally been able to complete. The weather was picture perfect all week & the hundreds of balloons were beyond belief!!! It is difficult to describe the experience. It is definitely a must do !!!!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written October 12, 2023
  • Marshall B
    111 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This is a bucket list event!
    One of the most amazing things my wife and I have ever seen. Huge field full of hot air balloons that you can walk right up to, watch them be inflated and then watch float away. Beautiful colors and smiles on everyone's faces everywhere. Put it on your bucket list!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written October 14, 2023
  • Rftstar
    Verona, Wisconsin220 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A Must Experience Event!
    For the first time we went, I secured tickets to the Gondola Club - so glad we did that. It helped us for parking first, but then it really allowed us to learn a little about the lay of the area/field/activities. Being there on a Mass Ascent morning, they start letting the balloons off in the Southern part of the field, and the balloon head south, so they were flying right over us. The pictures I took can't even beginning to express what one sees live. Came back a second evening with general admission tickets and explored the rest of the park and the evening activities. That was more of a state fair experience. Definitely would recommend the fiesta overall.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 15, 2023
  • mizzoumom100
    Saint Louis, Missouri59 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Balloon festival
    Do your research. Normally balloons lift off at 5-6am. Some people just park along the highways to watch the balloons. We just happened to be driving from Santa Fe to Albuquerque about 8am, and all of a sudden there were a zillion dots rising up, and then BALLOONS! I snapped a bunch of pics, while hubby was driving 75 mph, and they came out pretty clear. It must have been hundreds of balloons that all rose up into the sky at once. If we hadn't needed to catch a plane, we would have pulled over. So lucky that they were ascending so late that we were able to see them. A once in a lifetime chance!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 15, 2023
  • Nikzleez
    Prince George, Virginia793 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Bucket List!
    So glad we came. Phenomenal experience. First day (Tuesday) we did general admission morning session. We arrived around 4:00am. Great spot parking. No problems finding a bench. As the balloons inflated we gave up our seats...so much better to walk the field. Didn't even use the portable chair we brought. Not too crowded at all. Glad we did not pursue Gondola or Chaser Club (sold out regardless) for this session. Did have Chaser tickets for Friday night Glowdeo (evening session). It was SO crowded...45 minutes + to park. Longer walk in. Did appreciate the private section, seats, food provided and bathroom that night as no room to sit and LONG lines for food at the stands. Did walk around, but much more difficult than the weekday morning. Beautiful all around!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 15, 2023
  • JustGo
    30 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    MUST SEE!
    You have to go at least once! Words and pictures cannot describe the awe you will experience. This is one of the only venues that will allow you to walk onto the balloon field and be amongst the pilots and their crew. You see up close how to put up a hot air balloon. 3 things: get there for the dawn patrol. What an amazing sight to see the balloons take flight before the sunrise! Second: it is COLD in the morning. We are from the far north, and we know cold... but believe me when I say it is colder than you are expecting. I'm talking sweatshirts, long johns, coats, hats, mittens. Third: traffic is horrible. If you have the option, buy a Park and Ride ticket. You can choose from several locations to park, then a bus will take you directly to the gate - on a special road that is for service vehicles so you miss the traffic.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written October 17, 2023
  • Rachelle C
    38 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    So much fun!
    My husband and I went to the festival probably 20 years ago, and it has changed and gotten much bigger since then, but overall we loved the experience. We stayed at a nearby hotel and left our hotel on the Friday of the Special Shapes Rodeo at 4:50 am and had no trouble with traffic or parking. We left our hotel at 4:30 am on the Saturday of the final mass ascension (because we had a 5:00 am check in with Rainbow Ryders) and had no problem with traffic or parking. The number of balloons for both the Friday and Saturday events was mind-blowing. The crowd was big but not suffocating. We attended the special shapes rodeo on a Friday and a evening glodeo on a Friday and a mass ascension on a Saturday. We very much enjoyed all three. The drone show and the fireworks on Friday were both awesome. Saturday morning we went up with the mass ascension and had a wonderful time. Luckily for us, the weather was good the days we attended, but not the day before (Thursday) or the day after (Sunday). Get reservations way in advance to go up in the mass ascension and plan on attending at least two days, in case the weather isn't cooperating. Entrance is $15 per event (morning and afternoon events are separate if you leave in between) and $20 (cash only) to park. On Saturday, we also stayed for the eclipse, which was way fun. They gave us special glasses when we entered the park. Felt like a two-for-one event. Bring your own chair, if you plan to sit, and a blanket or winter coat. It is cold in the morning.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 19, 2023
  • Barb B
    41 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    An event that should not be missed
    Magical! We were fortunate to have the opportunity to volunteer as crew members. What an amazing experience to witness and have a front row, up close experience. The glow-de-oo by far the best, all different shapes too numerous to mention were ablaze in color when the burners were lite. The morning launch ascension on a clear chilly morning, so many balloons to focus on. The event had music, food vendors, and souvenirs. Stay late be sure to catch theskydivers, drone show and the fireworks were out of this world nothing I have ever seen before. This event is a must do if you are in the area at the time of the event. Be forewarned traffic and crowds can be very heavy.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 23, 2023
  • ScottEmmaLee
    Apison, Tennessee222 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Glamping on weekdays not same as weekends but same price.
    On-site Glamping great but not the same Monday to Wednesday as weekend. Our first time at Fiesta we booked glamping so we could experience show in part from our tent. You have to book 3 night minimum which is the same price weekend or weekdays. We turned in our rental car expecting morning and evening shows with onsite food vendors. Upon arrival we were told on weekdays after the morning shows there is nothing until the next day including no food vendors. Rather disappointing as if we knew that we would have tried booking weekends and kept rental car. Price for Monday to Thursday should not be the same for half the shows. Otherwise, glamping tents, toilets and showers were very comfortable. Camp host David was friendly and very welcoming. The Fiesta even with only morning activities was fantastic!
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written October 26, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Ashley
Neptune Beach, FL41 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Solo
This event is a must! I finally decided to attend when it coincided with the annular eclipse and really enjoyed the experience. The mass ascension at sunrise was almost overwhelming.
Written April 6, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GoPlaces12332
10 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Friends
My trip was the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, Oct 2023. The balloon fiesta was fabulous. Mike the driver was awesome. Our tour manager Jolie started out great, however, as the days passed she encourage travelers to go off on their own which changed the touring times for everyone else. The last day was a disaster, one lady was left behind because Jolie didn't do a head count. More stops were added so other people could leave the tour and go places on their own. Twice in the afternoon Jolie lost track of how many people were on the bus, she told customers to look around and report if someone was missing. She laughed on the bus intercom about how she didn't know how many people should be on the bus. A Mayflower rep stated that she was a favorite manager so nothing would be done. Most of these tours are attended by seniors, we need responsable employees to keep track of who is on the bus and who is not. She encouraged travelers to leave the tour and lost the ability to keep track of customers. Reckless...
Written November 22, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

hinhankola
Albuquerque, NM364 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
Always nice, always crowded. Every year or so they out-do themselves and add more fun. This year there were drone shows and dueling fireworks. You can never predict which special shapes are launching but there’s always lots to do. We found the NASA tent this year.
Written November 7, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jannesha J
Miami, FL24 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Friends
This was an amazing event. The experience was breathtaking. Yes, everything was done very early morning hour's but it was well worth it. Rainbow Riders...ther customer service was top notch. Brad Rice was our amazing pilot. He has the bluest eyes...this waa a bucket list asventure for me. Absolutely Amazing.
Written October 29, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ScottEmmaLee
Apison, TN222 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
On-site Glamping great but not the same Monday to Wednesday as weekend. Our first time at Fiesta we booked glamping so we could experience show in part from our tent. You have to book 3 night minimum which is the same price weekend or weekdays. We turned in our rental car expecting morning and evening shows with onsite food vendors. Upon arrival we were told on weekdays after the morning shows there is nothing until the next day including no food vendors. Rather disappointing as if we knew that we would have tried booking weekends and kept rental car. Price for Monday to Thursday should not be the same for half the shows. Otherwise, glamping tents, toilets and showers were very comfortable. Camp host David was friendly and very welcoming. The Fiesta even with only morning activities was fantastic!
Written October 26, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Barb B
Orchard Park, New York41 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
Magical! We were fortunate to have the opportunity to volunteer as crew members. What an amazing experience to witness and have a front row, up close experience.
The glow-de-oo by far the best, all different shapes too numerous to mention were ablaze in color when the burners were lite. The morning launch ascension on a clear chilly morning, so many balloons to focus on.
The event had music, food vendors, and souvenirs.
Stay late be sure to catch theskydivers, drone show and the fireworks were out of this world nothing I have ever seen before. This event is a must do if you are in the area at the time of the event. Be forewarned traffic and crowds can be very heavy.
Written October 23, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ConfederateMike
Glasgow, KY368 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
It was quite a disappointment after arriving at 5:00am in the dark and 45 degree temperature just to wait around for 2 hours then find out they think its too windy to launch. Most of the balloonists packed up and left. Talk about wasting $25 for a shuttle ticket and admission.
Written October 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Crystal P
Liberty, Illinois367 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Family
This was a bucket list item for us, and we planned an entire road trip to New Mexico around it. It was so much fun! We did splurge on Gondola Club tickets for a couple of mass ascensions, and Chasers' Club tickets for an evening glow, and we were so glad we did. Gondola Club is pricey, but we received free private parking, transportation from the parking lot, a full meal, three alcoholic beverages, snacks, soda/hot chocolate/coffee/tea, dedicated gift shop and restrooms, and a special gift, plus an unequalled view of the balloons taking off right over our heads. On the final Sunday, we purchased a Concierge tour, which was also worth the expense--free parking and a private tour on a large golf cart by an experienced staff member or balloonist. We had plenty of opportunity to ask questions and pretty much went wherever we wanted! A few tips: no matter where you are going to be,--general admission, Chasers' Club, or Gondola Club, leave your lodgings very early. The morning session starts at 5 a.m., and we recommend getting up by 3:30 a.m., getting on the road to the festival park no later than 4:30, earlier if possible. Evening sessions begin at 5 p.m., and we left our b&b by 3 p.m. Dress warmly for the morning sessions, in layers, including hats and gloves. Bring a good camera, you won't be able to stop taking photos!
Written October 19, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rachelle C
38 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Couples
My husband and I went to the festival probably 20 years ago, and it has changed and gotten much bigger since then, but overall we loved the experience. We stayed at a nearby hotel and left our hotel on the Friday of the Special Shapes Rodeo at 4:50 am and had no trouble with traffic or parking. We left our hotel at 4:30 am on the Saturday of the final mass ascension (because we had a 5:00 am check in with Rainbow Ryders) and had no problem with traffic or parking. The number of balloons for both the Friday and Saturday events was mind-blowing. The crowd was big but not suffocating. We attended the special shapes rodeo on a Friday and a evening glodeo on a Friday and a mass ascension on a Saturday. We very much enjoyed all three. The drone show and the fireworks on Friday were both awesome. Saturday morning we went up with the mass ascension and had a wonderful time. Luckily for us, the weather was good the days we attended, but not the day before (Thursday) or the day after (Sunday). Get reservations way in advance to go up in the mass ascension and plan on attending at least two days, in case the weather isn't cooperating. Entrance is $15 per event (morning and afternoon events are separate if you leave in between) and $20 (cash only) to park. On Saturday, we also stayed for the eclipse, which was way fun. They gave us special glasses when we entered the park. Felt like a two-for-one event. Bring your own chair, if you plan to sit, and a blanket or winter coat. It is cold in the morning.
Written October 19, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

JustGo
30 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Family
You have to go at least once! Words and pictures cannot describe the awe you will experience. This is one of the only venues that will allow you to walk onto the balloon field and be amongst the pilots and their crew. You see up close how to put up a hot air balloon. 3 things: get there for the dawn patrol. What an amazing sight to see the balloons take flight before the sunrise! Second: it is COLD in the morning. We are from the far north, and we know cold... but believe me when I say it is colder than you are expecting. I'm talking sweatshirts, long johns, coats, hats, mittens. Third: traffic is horrible. If you have the option, buy a Park and Ride ticket. You can choose from several locations to park, then a bus will take you directly to the gate - on a special road that is for service vehicles so you miss the traffic.
Written October 17, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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