One experience that I have always wanted to tick off my travel bucket list was to go on a hot air balloon ride. But I didn’t want to do that just anywhere, but instead at a very special place. Because what are the chances of getting to fly in a hot air balloon in my life more than once?
As I was researching what to do in and around Mexico City, I of course stumbled upon a visit to Teotihuacán, just an hour outside of CDMX. And while visiting Mexico’s most-visited archaeological site was convincing enough by itself, I realised that there was the opportunity to not only see the UNESCO World Heritage Site from the ground, but to also see it from the sky. Long story short, I booked it, and it (unsurprisingly) happened to be one of my absolute favourite experiences!
So, if you are interested in a tour like this as well, then here I will give you a little run down on what the tour includes, and my experience with it!
There are different companies offering the hot air balloon rides, so I can only speak for the one that I ended up booking. I had booked my trip through Viator, and I had an amazing experience, so I would definitely recommend this tour!
Pick up and transportation to Teotihuacán
The tour includes a pick-up from Mexico City. When booking your tour, you can see if your hotel is included in the list of pick-up points. That was not the case for us, so we picked a hotel nearby and then took an Uber to the nearest pick-up point. There were also some other people waiting at the pick-up point, so it was easy to find and worked out well.
You will be picked up in a shuttle, and might make some more stops to pick up more people, depending on how full your car already is. The transportation from Mexico City to the starting point of the hot air balloon trip takes around 1 hour.
Most of the tours start very early in the morning, as you will get into the hot air balloon just after sunrise. Therefore, you will be picked up from Mexico City at around 5:30am already.
Tip: If you have just flown to Mexico from Europe, make sure to book this while you are still jet legged. Getting up this early then, wasn’t actually that bad.
What is included in the hot air balloon tour?
- A 30-50 minute ride in a hot air balloon above the city of Teotihuacán
- A certificate for successfully going on a hot air balloon
- Optional: Transportation to Teotihuacán (return included), from either your hotel or a place nearby
- Optional: Be dropped off/picked up near the entrance to the archaeological site after the flight, where you have an extra 3 hours to walk around (no extra costs, if you choose this option)
The price differs a little bit depending on if you would like to include round trip transportation or want to arrange transportation yourself.
With transportation, you can expect to pay around €161.09 per person for the Hot air balloon flight over Teotihuacán. Without the round trip transportation, the tour will cost you around €140.30 per person (last updated October 2022).
The whole duration of the trip is around 5 hours (or add another 3 hours if you are opting for additional time at the archaeological site (definitely do that)).
This is the tour I did: Hot Air Balloon Flight over Teotihuacan, from Mexico City
What to bring to the Teotihuacan hot air balloon flight?
- Your ID or passport
- Sunscreen (especially if you are planning on walking around the archaeological site after)
- Some warmer clothes for the morning
- Enough water, and maybe some snacks
Flying with a hot air balloon over Teotihuacán
After the check in at the location, where the shuttle had dropped us off, we waited around for a bit with a coffee, until our names were called. We were then put in a group with some other people and were assigned a hot air balloon. In the meantime, I watched some of the other balloons go up in the air already, which was great to see.
Once our balloon was set up and everybody entered, it was time for our balloon to get fired up as well. While the balloon went higher and higher, we also made our way closer to the archaeological site of Teotihuacán. At some point, we even flew directly over one of the pyramids.
The balloon operator spoke both English and Spanish, so we could ask him any questions throughout the balloon ride. The total length of the flight was about 45 minutes, and once on the ground we ended the trip with a glass of prosecco, before heading back to the starting position by car.
Once we arrived back at the location, there was a breakfast buffet waiting. While eating, we received a certificate with our name on it, stating that we successfully went on a hot air balloon.
Visiting the archaeological site afterwards
When booking the tour, you have the option to either go back directly after the hot air balloon ride in Teotihuacán or add 3 more hours to actually visit the ruins. The price for the tour is the same, but you will need to pay an extra $85 MXN (about €4.3) to enter the archaeological site.
Most people opt for the short trip and go back directly, which I would not recommend. Seeing the archaeological site from the air is great, but you don’t realise how big the whole city is unless you actually visit it yourself. I was worried, 3 hours of walking around might have been too long, but it was actually perfect! We even had to hurry a bit in the end to get back to the pick-up point in time.
Summary of the visit to Teotihuacan
While going on a hot air balloon of course isn’t cheap, this tour definitely has been worth every penny. Especially, if you have never been on a hot air balloon ride before! The incredible archaeological site of Teotihuacán seems like the perfect place to do it. And even having to get up at 4am wasn’t so bad in the end.
So if you are planning to visit Mexico City make sure to include a visit to Teotihuacán, and also make sure to go on this hot air balloon trip! Out of the 3 weeks that I had spent in Mexico, this was by far my favourite day!
Curious to know what my second favourite day included? Read all about releasing a sea turtle in Puerto Escondido, Mexico.
Talk to you later
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