Hot Air Ballooning in Cappadocia

By Peter of Wardrobe

When we were in Cappadocia, Mom and Dad decided that they wanted to go on a Hot Air Balloon over the Cappadocian landscape. The day that we were going to go, we woke up really early at 4:30am and got dressed in our warmest clothes for our 5:10am pick-up by Urdup Balloons.

Before we got there (to the Urdup Balloons), we had to stop at other hotels to pick up more people. When we got there, they had a little breakfast for us, like cake, desert, hot chocolate, tea, and coffee. Then after breakfast, we boarded the van again to the place where the Hot Air Balloons were.

Our Hot Air Balloon being blown up as we wait.

The Hot Air Balloon basket was rectangular shaped and had four sections for people to go inside. Our balloon was yellow with rainbow colour stripes on it. There were about twenty people in our group that was going to go up with us in the hot air balloon. Most of them were Asians. We (our family) went in one part of the 4 sections with 2 other people. Murat our pilot introduced himself and told us the position on how we were going to land.

View from our balloon as we were starting to lift off.

Then, all of a sudden we started to lift off the ground. We were flying! I was excited and amazed at the view. Mom and Susan were taking pictures. As we got higher, it started to get colder. Before we lifted off, I remember the pilot telling us that the person closest to the hot air balloon flame would not be as cold as the rest. I was lucky because I was close to the flame.

Fairy Chimneys in Goreme, Cappadocia

We rode down really low in the valley and then rode up really high into the clouds. The landscape was beautiful with fairy chimneys everywhere in a colourful valley. There were lots of different coloured balloons too. Our pilot said there were 40 balloons flying in the sky that morning, and when it is balloon festival, there could be more than a hundred flying all at once. It was cool to be in the clouds. You could only see white, and it was really quiet, and you could feel the humidity on your skin.  

We flew for about an hour. When it was time to land, our pilot gave us instructions to get in position to land. We had to hold on to a handle with an adult holding us and facing backwards. I think that the pilot asked us to face back so we wouldn’t be scared when we were landing. It was a rough but fun landing. The landing felt like being on a galloping horse and there were shouts from the passengers because they were a little scared. I wasn’t scared though. Our basket ended up tipping over, landing on its side. It was really fun!

Look at the basket's skid mark!

When we got out we could see the basket’s trail on the ground by being dragged by the balloon. The Urdup men gave us champagne and juice to toast the balloon ride. We each also got a certificate to remember the day. They spelled dad’s name as BRAIN instead of Brian, which was really funny!

We made a friend named Vivian. She is from Hong Kong and was in our section of the balloon. She helped hold Lucy when we were landing.

It was a good experience and really fun! My most favourite part was when we were landing. 

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2 Responses to Hot Air Ballooning in Cappadocia

  1. Beth says:

    ‘Wish I had the chance to join you on this expedition, esp seeing those Fairy Chinmeys formation. It looks like something you only see on someone else drawing board, a ‘figment of an artist imagination’. Yes, I definitely can relate to all of your thrills as you fly on this balloon bec I myself had this opportunity joining a pilot in his balloon as we ascend up in the blue yonder of the skies during a Hot Air balloon competition at Clark Air Force Base in Angeles City during my short visit in PI. about 2-4 yrs ago. Way to go! Life is to be enjoyed in its’ fullest sense while we can, whenever we can, wherever we can, for as long as we can.

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