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Have you ever seen pictures of a place taken from the air and thought about how much you would like to be there? What it would be like to see everything from a bird’s perspective, at 500 meters?
Although there are several ways of flying that can be very similar to what a bird can feel, a hot air balloon experience can be very close. If you want to make a quiet, comfortable trip with wonderful views, this may be your best option.
So, if you have seen hot air balloons from below and you’ve wanted to know what it feels like to be up there, let us tell you what a hot air balloon ride is like, as well as the best destinations to fly to and why Segovia is one of them.
Flying in a hot-air balloon
Ballooning is a very quiet, even relaxing activity. You can do so because you enjoy the views without experiencing any sudden movements. You will not feel dizzy because the trip is extremely smooth.
Is it safe to fly in a balloon?
In Spain, flying in a hot-air balloon is a very safe activity. It is regulated by the State Agency for Air Safety, meaning that each balloon guarantees all of its parts is in perfect condition for flying. And since the pilots are professionals, they know exactly what they are doing.
How do hot air balloons work?
The pilot places the balloon at a height that allows it to enter the air currents that are most favorable to it in order to achieve one or another direction. As hot air weighs less than cold air, the balloon will tend to rise.
Where to fly in a hot air balloon?
One of the most fun things about hot air ballooning is going to balloon festivals. There are hundreds of them every year and many are held on -where professionals consider- the best destinations.
Lots of balloons will be flying at the same time. If you decide to stay on the ground and watch them from there, you may also find other activities, such as live music concerts.
In any case, we recommend that you stay overnight to enjoy the light shows they do. Whether in the air or on the ground – you’ll see how beautiful they look in the distance!
Segovia is the city in Spain with the most annual balloon flights and one of the best destinations in the world for this type of flight.
Since the weather conditions are so good and the take-off area is so close to the city, it is possible to fly over the historical centre, seeing the Roman aqueduct and the landscapes of the Sierra de Guadarrama. Making Segovia a very attractive destination for people who fly over it every year.
Apart from leisure flights, competition flights are also part of the Accessible Balloon Festival of Segovia. This balloon festival is certainly worthwhile not only if you decide to fly but for all the other activities it offers: exhibition of paramotors, photo contests, and a”night flow” show, a night show in which the balloons move to the beat of music.
So if you finally decide to visit this World Heritage Site, you might get a delicious glass of cava after your hot air balloon ride in Segovia.
Other destinations to fly Hot Air Balloon
Besides the city of Segovia, there are many other destinations with wonderful views where you can take a hot air balloon ride. Here are some of the best in Europe:
Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1986, the City of Three Cultures retains the image of a medieval city that reflects in its towers and walls. It is a scene worthy of Game of Thrones from the sky, which despite not having its own festival, we consider an ideal destination.
Toledo is a city worth walking, however, it looks very different and much more beautiful from the air. So you might want to take a tour to know this imperial city from above. With the balloons passing just above the city, you can see the entire historic quarter -including the cathedral and the Alcazar-, delimited by the city and embraced by the river Tajo.
Every July, the European Balloon Festival is held in Igualada (Barcelona), the largest concentration of aerostatics in Spain and southern Europe. In this festival, more than 60 hot air balloons fly over the region of Anoia.
In this festival, you can even see some balloons with the shape of animals such as koalas, cheetahs and lions, among others… And take part in other parallel events such as the photography competition.
Here, as in most places, the flights are early in the morning and late in the afternoon. Just when the weather conditions are most suitable for ballooning.
This is the second largest hot air balloon festival in the world. Although it is usually held every two years between July and August, in its last two editions two world records have been broken consecutively. The one with the highest number of balloons taking off at the same time and the one with the highest number of balloons lined up for take-off.
This is where the German International Hot Air Balloon Cup is held, north of the Black Forest. This cup has taken place since 1988 and 40 countries participate with their respective teams.