Every October, Albuquerque is home to the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, one of the largest hot air balloon festivals in the world with over 700 hot air balloons. It is a prime event for photographers and happens to be one of the most photographed events. It is never too early to start planning your trip to the 46th annual festival from October 6th, 2018 to October 14th, 2018.
Plan Ahead to Avoid the Crowds and Traffic
Whether you are nearby at one of the master planned community in Rio Rancho, you will still want to prepare and plan ahead before attending the festival. The weather needs to be ideal to launch the balloons, so check the weekly weather reports before you head out the door to avoid running into any disappointing cancellations. It is also smart to leave early to beat the traffic and the crowds. Keep in mind that most of the balloons are up in the air by 10am.
Plenty to Do During the Day
Outside of watching the balloons, there will be plenty of things to do with merchants and food options throughout the festival. In fact, it is home to the famous breakfast burrito, another reason to head to the event early. After enjoying some food, you can explore the Balloon Discovery Center to learn all about the festival and hot air balloons. A fun fact about the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is that it started in 1972 with just 13 balloons.
Don’t Forget About the Nighttime Festivities
Make sure that you either prepare for a long day at the festival or if you get the chance to leave for a bit, be back by dark for the Balloon Glow event. This takes place every evening at dark, usually around 6pm. It is a breathtaking sight with hundreds of balloons lighting their burners at the same time. Right after that, stick around for the spectacular fireworks display, known to be one of the best in the country.