The skis above Bristol began to be full of color from yesterday, when the Bristol International Balloon Fiesta started at 06:30 BST with dozens of balloons heading over the city towards the Clifton Suspension Bridge. Over 140 hot air balloons from around the world have gathered at Europe’s largest annual hot air balloon meeting.
Organizers initiated the ascent 24 hours earlier than scheduled due to predicted strong winds on Friday and Saturday. However, the event is taking place until Sunday at Ashton Court Estate and is completely free to attend with lots to see and do for the whole family.
Thousands of visitors are due to attend this year’s 41st Bristol International Balloon Fiesta and along with a spectacular view of the hot air balloons that fill the sky, there will be a multitude of stands, fairground rides, and entertainment.
For some participants, balloon flying runs in the family, for example, Geoff Miles went on his first hot air balloon ride in 1981, sparking a lifelong interest. Later, his daughter Joanne has taken over the hobby, and now his granddaughter is studying to become a balloon pilot, despite the fact that she had “no interest” in flying until only a month ago.