Ever dreamt of wandering through the fairy chimneys and looking at those colorful balloons decorating the sky against the magical landscape and carved valleys, Cappadocia is indeed magical. To corroborate this magic, you must experience the ride in a hot air balloon in Cappadocia.
But did you ever contemplate about taking a hot air balloon ride yourself? Here is all you need to know about booking and preparing for this unique experience.
Booking the Hot Air Balloon Ride:
- Firstly, it is very important to book your Hot air balloon ride at least 2-3 months in advance.
- If it is a low season, you can book a ride the day before without any problem. However, to ensure you get a spot on a balloon in the high season it’s probably a good idea to book at least a few months in advance.
- The easiest way to book hot air balloon ride is through your accommodation. Tell your hotel/hostel/Airbnb the day you want to ride, and they’ll take care of the rest. Once they send you the confirmation, you can pay the tour operator on the day of the ride.
- If you want, you can also book directly with the companies. You will find n number of Balloon companies online. We went with Voyager Balloons and had a fantastic experience, so we highly recommend them.
Choose the right tour operator for the flight:
Cappadocia has 25 balloon companies and 220 registered balloons, with up to 100 balloons flying on any morning. So, How do you choose a company that will give you a safe, fully satisfying flight?
- All the balloon operators usually include hotel pick-up and drop-off, plus a glass of champagne and a little certificate after your flight.
- We researched a lot and compared prices & reviews of different tour operators and then chose to fly with Voyager balloons.
- If budget isn’t a limitation for you, then you can book high-end companies as Butterfly balloons. These companies offer a top experience, and apparently there is a two month waiting list to ride with this company.
- Having said that , doesn’t mean other tour operators are not good enough to take you on a ride. We recommend checking price and reviews online before booking the flight. We can recommend few balloon operators like Turkiye Balloons, Kapadokya Balloon, Royal Balloons etc
- The company we eventually flew with, Voyager Balloons is listed and it was indeed well run and a great experience.
- Before booking with any balloon operator, check with them How many passengers will be in the balloon basket with you? Overloaded Balloons are inherently unsafe as passengers may not be able to take the landing position comfortably in the basket.
- In general, smaller balloons and baskets give better experiences—particularly if they are not filled completely. We had around only 12 people in our basket hence, it was a wonderful experience.
Cost of Hot Air Balloon Ride:
- Cappadocia hot air balloon can be costly but worth every penny. However, It all comes down to what you may want to be included in the price.
- The average price to ride a hot air balloon is in the price range between $140 and $250 (€125 – €220) per person. If you pay in the cash, the tour company gives additional 10% discount on the charge per person.
- The cost also depends on the duration of the flight, the moment of the day and whether is peak season or not. It is best to fly in the first flight in the morning when you can indulge in the beauty of Cappadocia landscape during the dawn .
- Usually the minimum duration is 1 hour flight and it can go up to 3 hours. Very often, the price is lower if you are in a group, so we recommend taking a Regular flight with the tour operator of your choice.
- There are different options to book the flight incase if you want take a private flight and include some indulgences during flight like Turkish food, wines etc.
- If your flight is cancelled due to weather conditions, they will put you on another flight the next day or refund you the full money.
Be Ready for an early start :
- Most hot air balloons in Cappadocia take off just before sunrise. So, the tour companies generally pick riders early in the morning between 4am- 5am local time.
- Voyager Balloons picked us up at hotel at 4.45am, took us to their Goreme office to enjoy a light Turkish breakfast .
- They ask riders to sign off some waivers and then then we were taken to the launch sight of the hot air balloon.
- The ride takes around 1.5 hours
Keep Few days extra in Cappadocia:
Hot air balloons can take off only when you get a clearance from the Turkish aviation authorities. So, in case, if your ride gets cancelled for the day you have booked it, Usually the tour companies put you on the next day. So it is always better to have few days extra in your hand.
Keep your camera ready for the initial 30 mins of the ride:
As the Balloon starts flying high and you start seeing hundreds of balloons filling sky over the fairy chimneys of Goreme, we highly recommend shoot the pictures you want to in the initial 30 mins of the ride as the light is just perfect at this time .
You can take multiple shots as your balloon rides over different valleys of Cappadocia and the other 30 mins of the ride, just live in the moment and enjoy the scenic view
The scenery – celebrated with valleys, canyons, and unique fairy chimneys – is absolutely spectacular and sharing the skies with 100 other balloons strengthens the experience even more. We can say with inevitability that the sunrise hot air balloon ride is the best thing to do in Cappadocia.
you may also like to read: 10 days Turkey Itinerary
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