This weekend, look at the sky. It won’t be a bird or a plane, and it won’t even be Superman. It will be 150 hot air balloons.
The International Hot Air Balloon Festival of Saint Jean-sur-Richelieu (officially called “International Balloon Festival”) is the largest balloon gathering in Canada. The week-long event is for the whole family and is a 40-minute drive from the island of Montreal.
In what began as a hot air balloon festival, the event has grown to host food vendors, bars, live bands, theater and magic shows, and activities.
Plus, a pretty impressive lineup of musical guests that includes Ludacris, Charlotte Cardin, Jason Derulo, Billy Talent, and more.
The nine-day festival also offers guests the chance to fly over the southwest in a hot air balloon thanks to three Quebec hot air balloon companies: Balad’Air, La Magie de l’Air and Montréal Montgolfières.
The festival also features yoga inside floating hot air balloons as well as nightly launches and early morning shows, with some fleets departing as early as 6 a.m. when the sun begins to rise.
If a sky full of balloons isn’t enough for you, the festival also includes an obstacle course, petting zoo, rides, skate park and virtual reality games.
General admission passports (for all nine days) are available for the festival starting at $64 for children and $104 for adults. Daily passes range from $40 to $54, depending on the headlining musical guest. Hot air balloon rides start at $344 for six-hour trips, and hot air yoga is $28.
When: August 13 to 21
Time: 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. (varies)
Where: 5 Airport Road, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu