By Janine Sjostrom
Albuquerque is famous for many things, including the Sandia Mountains, which turn a beautiful shade of pink as the sun sets… the Sandia Peak tram, the third longest aerial tram in the world… Pow Wow, the world’s largest gathering of Native Americans… and the five prehistoric volcanos within the city limits. But most notable of all is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta in October of each year, the most photographed event in the world.
People come from all over the world to experience Balloon Fiesta, enjoying the dramatic sight of hundreds of balloons filling the skies each morning, and the magical evening balloon glows. And for some, the ultimate experience - a balloon flight during Fiesta.
What many people may not realize is that you can enjoy a balloon flight in the “Hot Air Balloon Capital of the World” nearly any day of the year. Balloons fly year-round, with only a few days of rain or wind that might restrict take off. Most flights take place in the morning, but in the winter months, you’ll frequently see balloons in the afternoon skies over Albuquerque.
As you plan your first or next trip to Albuquerque, be sure to include a balloon flight on your list of things to do. No matter where the winds take you, you’ll have extraordinary views that extend nearly a hundred miles, with plenty of mountains and mesas, the Rio Grande Bosque and the City of Albuquerque in sight.
You’ll have two balloon companies to choose from… Rainbow Ryders and World Balloon Company. Both have highly-trained and experienced pilots, and both will provide an experience you’ll remember for a lifetime. Your flight will end with a champagne toast, balloonist’s prayer and a flight certificate to prove to your friends that you flew up, up and away in Albuquerque!
Best of all, if you’re 55+, take time for another one-of-a-kind experience. Visit Jubilee Los Lunas, New Mexico’s premier active adult community just south of Albuquerque. Jubilee is noted for its luxurious 11,000 sq. ft. Villa, exceptional floor plans that you can modify by a little or a lot, and a wide variety of indoor and outdoor amenities, including an observatory and archery range!