If you have been following me on my blog, then you know I love festivals, no matter what kind it is. There is something about a large gathering for a fun event especially with friends & family that make it enjoyable for me.
This past weekend I was able to attend the 42nd annual Balloon Fiesta with my sister in Albuquerque, NM. Everyone must wake up early to catch the morning glow where hot air balloons light up the dawn sky. This time of year is chilly so we were all bundled up in jackets and gloves.
The first fiesta balloon lifts off at around 6:30am to commence the celebration.
This year there was a delay in many of the balloons lifting off because the wind was stronger than they wanted it to be. After some time, the whole park was filled with inflated balloons waiting to lift off!
It was fun to see the mass ascension of so many balloons. The great thing about this festival is that it is one of the few places that will allow you to be up close to the balloons while they fill them up with heat and lift off. There are not only regular balloons, but they also have special shape balloons. Here were some of my favorites.
So why do so many hot air balloons congregate in Albuquerque of all places? It has to do with the “Box Effect” which is an air pattern that allows hot air balloons to lift off and land in the same area which is difficult to accomplish.
The balloon festival park is also known for their green chili breakfast burritos and tamales which were delicious!
So how did I travel for this for free with miles and points?
I flew Southwest using my points from my credit card sign up to fly to ABQ and I stayed at the Staybridge Suites less than 2 miles from the park for 20k IHG points for a night.