October visitors to Santa Fe find Autumn brings a special and beautiful event our way- 2017 Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta!! 9 full days of enchanted skies filled with color and special shaped hot air balloons. Oct – 2017 the beautiful blue skies of Albuquerque and the Rio Grande Valley are breathtaking with the backdrop of majestic Mass Ascension (large numbers) of balloons for the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Many guests of Pueblo Bonito Inn enjoy our quiet downtown historic Santa Fe accommodations to center themselves during Balloon Fiesta. They can get up early for Balloon Fiesta, return same day to tour Santa Fe! We highly recommend the Railrunner (commuter train going through nearby pueblo lands taking passengers to Albuquerque) for transportation purposes on Saturday/Sunday visits to/from Balloon Fiesta park. The Santa Fe depot is a 3 block walk to/from Pueblo Bonito b&b inn (stick with us folks, we will make your trip fun, memorable, affordable and with our tips you’ll use all your vacation time efficiently).
The Balloon Fiesta & Rail Pass includes:
- All Day Pass on the New Mexico Rail Runner Express.
- Shuttle to/from the Los Ranchos Rail Runner Station and the Balloon Fiesta Park.
- Admission to a morning or afternoon Balloon Fiesta session on the day you choose.
- Dates Available: Oct 7, 8, 14 and 15 ONLY.
- Advance online purchase only (cannot be purchased on the train). Riders must have ticket to board shuttle to Balloon Fiesta Park. NOTE: No Refunds- so if the event/session is cancelled, you will not receive a refund! Watch weather for forecast because advance tickets can be made as late as night or morning before!
- View Special Balloon Fiesta Rail Runner Schedule for departure times. Click here!
Mass Ascension is a launch of all balloons and is a spectacular display of sound and color. During mass ascension, balloons are launched in two waves. Weather permitting, balloons launch beginning at about 7:00 AM, led by a balloon flying the American flag to the strains of The Star Spangled Banner.
Balloon Glows: Twilight Twinkle Glow™ / Balloon Glow / Night Magic Glow™
Events known as balloon glows were invented in Albuquerque in 1979! Local pilots inflated balloons on Christmas Eve to thank local residents in a way only balloonists can! The sight of mass balloons glowing at night created the illusion of giant holiday ornaments- it is breathtaking and now the glow events are now held all over the world. The Albuquerque Balloon Glow is followed by a spectacular fireworks display.
Special Shape Rodeo
The most popular event at the annual Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta which began in 1993. It’s compliment “glow” has become known as Special Shape Glowdeo! Hundreds of special shaped balloons fill the sky from Mickey Mouse to Darth Vader to Elsie the cow and more! It’s truly amazing to watch these massive balloons take fill up taking shape and then lift off. Traditionally held on Thursday and Friday mornings with their glow from the field on the same evenings.
In Flight Competitions:
Fun, exciting and truly amazing to watch these skillful pilots fly their balloon to preform predetermined feats. You really have to see this one to understand. For more information regarding the competitions click here!
BALLOON FIESTA TRAVEL TIP:
Santa Fe Aspen Viewing
Autumn or October is definitely a favorite time to travel to New Mexico as “color” seems to be theme! Not only might planning coincide October travel dates with 2017 Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, but Ski Santa Fe opens it’s lifts aspen leaf viewing! Gorgeous hues of gold, auburn, crimson glitter making the slopes of the Sangre de Cristo look like velvet. A breathtaking 16 mile drive from Pueblo Bonito b&b’s into autumn changing foliage of the Sangre de Cristo forests. Beginning in late September, Ski Santa Fe is alive with local musicians, brews, brats, and friendly folk enjoying the glory of creation as the aspen foliage change colors seemingly before your eyes! BOOK DIRECT NOW for great rates, room selection and travel dates at Pueblo Bonito b&b inn!
WHERE TO STAY: Stay in Santa Fe:
October Balloon Fiesta, though wonderful is also crowded. Lines on highways, with in nearby restaurants, shops, etc are abundant in Albuquerque. We suggest staying in Santa Fe and enjoy the convenience and relaxation of enchanting historic Old Santa Fe. While Balloon Fiesta is in Albuquerque, Santa
Fe is less crowded, there are more available restaurant seats and parking spaces! Choose a location in downtown and take the rail runner commuter train to Balloon Fiesta! Downtown Santa Fe features world class galleries, shops, museums (all walkable from Pueblo Bonito Inn) and more vs chaotic traffic and lines at commercial chain hotels and restaurant of bulging Albuquerque. Regardless, Santa Fe is a viable and persuasive alternative when planning your Balloon Fiesta New Mexico adventure visit. Add the 400+ yrs of history Santa Fe offers to October Travelers with our 156 yr old authentic, traditional Old Santa Fe bed and breakfast to make a real one of kind historic southwest travel adventure experience! Visit Pueblo Bonito bed and breakfast’s history page here!