Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2018 | Albuquerque

Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta 2018

What's happening?

The worlds largest Balloon Festival takes place in Albuquerque on October 6-11!

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a yearly festival of hot air balloons that takes place in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA during early October. The Balloon Fiesta is a nine-day event, and has over 500 balloons each year.

The event is the largest hot air balloon festival in the world.

From Humble Beginnings to Epic Proportions

The Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta began in 1972 with a mere 13 balloons. This was set up at the Coronado Shopping Mall for 20,000 spectators in a roadrunner vs. coyote-style chase—one balloon in the lead as the roadrunner, while the others play the role of coyote. In 1975, the World Hot Air Balloon Championships merged with the fiesta, causing its reach and size to expand. The fiesta grew steadily in size every year until 2000, when over a thousand entrants forced officials to cap the official number of balloons participating in the race at 750. In 2009, the cap was changed again, limiting the number to 600. This limitation emphasized a quality-over-quantity aesthetic that has upped the ante for balloon design each year, yielding exclusively elaborate and colorful balloons for what has become the biggest balloon convention in the world. Both European-style balloons filled with precious helium gas and the more common fire-warmed hot-air balloons, whose glowing side effect is utilized in the night flights, make appearances.

Taking place every year at the vast 78-acre Balloon Fiesta Park, the site fills every autumn with something in the area of 100,000 spectators taking advantage of the perfect pocket of balloon-riding weather known as the “Albuquerque Box.” Watching the sky fill with balloons from the ground is truly an awe-inspiring, borderline spiritual sight.


Saturday, October 6th 2018 10:00am


Albuquerque, NM, United States


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