Between the 9th and 12th of August this year, the 34th Annual Bristol International Balloon Fiesta is set to take place. One of our largest Virgin hot air balloons will be there to whisk our passengers skywards on a Champagne balloon ride.

The first ever Bristol Balloon Fiesta took place in 1979 when a small gathering of like-minded balloonists came together to launch their balloons from Ashton Court. Onlookers were wowed by the mass ascent of 27 balloons and enjoyed many other flights that took place throughout the weekend. Since then, interest has increased in the Fiesta more and more each year, until gradually growing into what is now Europe’s largest annual hot air balloon festival.

Pilots from all parts of the UK and the rest of the world bring their balloons to Ashton Court to participate in the event. Recent fiesta's have gathered over 100 hot air balloons of all shapes and sizes to entertain more than 500,000 spectators who attend the three day event. Spectacular take-offs happen twice a day, one to enjoy the sunrise and one just in time for sunset. There are also two spectacular night glow events on Thursday and Saturday evenings.

At Virgin, we’ve had some exciting flights at the fiesta such as a fantastic mid-air performance from singing sensation Beverley Knight who joined us last year for an exclusive performance for Virgin Red Room.

“I enjoyed every minute of the flight and really didn’t want it to end. It was nothing like I thought it would be because I expected to hear the wind and for it to be bumpier, but it was smooth, silent and so clear up there. I would love to do it all again tomorrow!” Beverley told us.

Virgin Balloon Flights pilot Mark Simmons, from nearby Melksham, is a regular participant in the famous balloon event.

He said, “Virgin Balloon Flights are set to take part in Bristol Balloon Fiesta this year and we’re delighted to be involved again because it’s a spectacular event and a real showcase for ballooning. I’m looking forward to it!”

This unique event provides tons of entertainment including fairground rides, daredevil motorcycle stuntmen, parachutists leaping from helicopters and of course amazing airborne antics from over 100 beautiful hot air balloons.

You can join Virgin and be a part of it all by purchasing a special Bristol Balloon Fiesta ride voucher. Existing customers can also take part by upgrading their existing voucher. Spaces are very limited and are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so don’t hesitate to book your flight now! Call us on 01952 212750 or email for more information.