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The 18 Best Hot Air Balloon Rides in the World

US News & World Report - Travel Logo By Gwen Pratesi of US News & World Report - Travel | Slide 1 of 20: It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience to quietly soar above the treetops or other landscapes, feeling as if you're suspended in the air. Hot air balloon rides offer a unique perspective of the scenery below, with flights soaring as high as thousands of feet into the sky. Most of the tours launch before sunset, when the winds are calm and the temperatures are cool, but depending on the destination, some sunset options are also available. While standard flights typically have between 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours of flying time, plan to allow a total of at least three to four hours for pre- and post-flight activities. These activities include driving to the launch site, balloon setup before and break down after the flight and a customary post-flight celebration. Perks usually included in the price are the celebratory toast with a glass of bubby, a souvenir flight certificate and a light breakfast or snack, but check with each tour company before booking as these amenities can vary. So, grab your camera or GoPro and get ready to soar to new heights with one or more of the 18 best hot air balloon rides in the world.

Fly up, up and away, and high in the sky on one of these bucket list airborne adventures.

It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience to quietly soar above the treetops or other landscapes, feeling as if you're suspended in the air. Hot air balloon rides offer a unique perspective of the scenery below, with flights soaring as high as thousands of feet into the sky. Most of the tours launch before sunset, when the winds are calm and the temperatures are cool, but depending on the destination, some sunset options are also available.

While standard flights typically have between 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours of flying time, plan to allow a total of at least three to four hours for pre- and post-flight activities. These activities include driving to the launch site, balloon setup before and break down after the flight and a customary post-flight celebration. Perks usually included in the price are the celebratory toast with a glass of bubby, a souvenir flight certificate and a light breakfast or snack, but check with each tour company before booking as these amenities can vary. So, grab your camera or GoPro and get ready to soar to new heights with one or more of the 18 best hot air balloon rides in the world.
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