Sky-High in Orlando: Balloon Rides

Give your spirits — and everything else — a lift with helium and hot-air balloon rides in Orlando.

Give your spirits — and everything else — a lift with helium and hot-air balloon rides in Orlando.

By Samantha Bequer

We all feel the need to get away from it all now and again ... even those of us lucky enough to live in Orlando! The difference here is that we have a wealth of unique ways to do so, including hot-air and helium balloon rides. Offering one-of-a-kind sightseeing opportunities that are as relaxing as they are breathtaking, here are six fun options for going up, up and away the next time you're in Orlando.

Aerophile at Disney Springs

Aerophile Balloon Rides at Disney Springs in Orlando
Aerophile Balloon Rides at Disney Springs in Orlando

There's a lot to see at Disney Springs, but only one way to see it all at once. Located in the dining, shopping and entertainment district's West Side neighborhood, Aerophile uses an Aéro30 helium balloon custom-built for Walt Disney World Resort by Paris-based Aérophile S.A. Climb aboard the 19-foot-diameter basket for an 8-to-10-minute ride with up to 28 other people and get treated to stunning views as far as 10 miles away — including Disney's theme parks!

Orlando Balloon Rides

Orlando Balloon Rides
Orlando Balloon Rides

Open daily, weather permitting, Orlando Balloon Rides gives you the chance to experience Orlando from up to 2,500 feet in the air. Leaving from 40 different locations in the Orlando area, the approximately hour-long flights provide spectacular views that include orange groves, swamps and untouched forests, with FAA-certified pilots providing commentary along the way. Special packages, including those for anniversaries and birthdays, are also available.

Aerostat Adventures

For nearly two decades, Aerostat has offered hot-air balloon rides that run approximately 1 to 1.5 hours in the Orlando and Kissimmee area. During the adventure, you'll soar over Central Florida's tropical landscapes, enjoying views of scenery, wildlife and Orlando's theme parks. What's more, this operator's balloons hold a maximum of six passengers for more personalized experiences, and they also have private tour packages.

Orlando Balloon Adventures

Since 2002, Orlando Balloon Adventures has operated private charters and shared-gondola flights at sunrise, weather permitting, seven days a week. In addition to standard flights, they also have custom packages for engagements, weddings and other special occasions, as well as hotel-pickup services. The hour-long flights take varying paths depending on wind direction, with potential views including theme parks, orange groves and swamps. Last but not least, their gondolas hold a maximum of four passengers for maximum comfort.

Painted Horizons

Offering scenic rides over the Orlando, Kissimmee and Walt Disney World areas, Painted Horizons was established in 1991 as a result of its founder's passion for hot-air ballooning. Although they focus on flights for two to four people, they can accommodate larger parties as needed, and hotel pickup is available. The approximately hour-long flights primarily take place in the area southwest of Orlando.

Bob's Balloons

Take a hot-air balloon ride in the Orlando, Kissimmee, Walt Disney World and Davenport areas with this operator, which has been in business for more than 20 years and boasts more than 100 regular takeoff and landing sites throughout Central Florida. Their balloons can carry four to six people, and they'll ferry you by air-conditioned van to and from the sites. Special packages are available, and you can even charter a tethered flight for private events.

Experience the Greater Outdoors in Orlando

Orlando's natural attractions are every bit as amazing as our man-made varieties, and balloon rides are a great way to experience them. For an even closer look, check out the other sports, recreation and outdoor activities you can enjoy during your next visit. Have you participated in an Orlando-area balloon ride? Share your best photos with us on Twitter and Instagram!

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Related Categories: Sports, Recreation & Outdoors , Theme Parks & Attractions , Relaxation

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