Bristol International Balloon FiestaView map
Don't miss the Nightglow
s it a bird? Is it a plane? Nope, it’s a giant floating turtle. Head to Bristol in mid-August and you might think you’re witnessing an invasion of giant cartoon characters. Fear not, though: it’s Bristol Balloon Fiesta – and there’s plenty more where that came from.
This is Europe’s biggest hot air balloon event, attracting up to 100,000 people, and it all takes place in (and above) the grounds of the Ashton Court Estate, close to Clifton Suspension Bridge.
If you can get the gang out of bed early enough, there’s a daily Mass Ascent – where 100 weird and wonderful flying objects take to the skies all at once – and the ultra popular Nightglow, where an assortment of airborne balloons glow in time to music. Might sound strange, but trust us: it’s pretty spectacular.
On top of all this there are balloon rides, food stalls, fireworks and a kids’ activity zone – not to mention an inflatable Scotsman playing the bagpipes looming overhead. These are four days that are literally unmissable. And the best news of all? It’s free.