family hot air ballon ride in Luxor
Africa,  Destinations,  Egypt,  Planning,  Travel

The Ultimate Guide to Hot Air Balloon Rides in Luxor

Introducing the Ultimate Guide to Hot Air Balloon Rides in Luxor for Families!

In this post, we will provide you with everything you need to know about experiencing a hot air balloon ride in Luxor.

Dive into the nitty-gritty of Hot Air Balloon Adventures in Luxor with our no-nonsense guide! No fluff, no cheesy taglines – just the down-to-earth info you need for an epic family experience.

Whether you are a family looking for a thrilling activity or a travel enthusiast seeking a unique experience, this guide will help you make the most of your hot air balloon adventure in Luxor.

We spent a month living in Luxor and the hot air balloon ride was a highlight of our trip.

Why Luxor is the Perfect Destination for a Hot Air Balloon Ride

Luxor is the ideal place for a family adventure. This Egyptian city is loaded with ancient wonders and exciting experiences that go beyond the old and dusty. We originally planned to visit Luxor as part of the Luxor worldschooling hub, and obviously visit some ‘historical stuff’ but honestly Luxor blew us away with the activities that could be done. You can read more about them here.

We have all seen the pictures on the hot air balloon trips and they look pretty impressive, but is it really?


And let me tell you why.

Luxor hot air balloon with kids
Well worth the early wake up to experience this unforgetable flight.

Why take a Hot Air Balloon ride in Luxor

Taking a hot air balloon ride in Luxor is a fantastic idea for your family adventure! Luxor is absolutely packed with tombs, temples and historical artefacts. There are loads of options for accommodation in Luxor, but we would recommend staying on the West Bank to be close to most of the sights and for that authentic village feel.

Taking a hot air balloon rides provides a mesmerizing aerial panorama of Luxor. From up there, you’ll see the towering Karnak and Luxor temples, along with the sprawling Nile River – a view that’s truly spellbinding. The contrast between the green banks of the river and fields against the desert is amazing.

What to Expect 

  1. Booking: Most balloon tours include hotel pickup and drop-off. It’s recommended to book your ride a few days in advance, especially during high season.
  2. Safety: Safety standards for hot air balloon rides are very high. Each flight is operated by a certified pilot and is monitored by a chase crew on the ground. Wind is also monitored which can lead to delays or cancellations if they don’t feel it is safe to fly.
  3. Dress Code: Dress in layers, as it can be chilly in the early morning but can warm up during the flight. Comfortable walking shoes are recommended.
  4. Be prepared to wake up really early. Typical pick-up time at your hotel for the morning balloon tour could be as early as 4:30am. But trust us, it’s absolutely worth it!
GOBus travel with kids in Egypt

Now, let’s talk about the hot air balloon ride experience.

Your hot air balloon adventure in Luxor kicks off at the crack of dawn, just as the city stirs to life. Now when I say Kick off, I don’t necessarily mean go. Our experience was to be picked up at 5am, drive 4 mins down the road and then wait. The mini vans all drive in convoy which means you will wait for guests to arrive from the East Bank.

Our experience of this was a lot of waiting and then a mad drive/race to get to the fields for the balloon launches.

The site is really well organised (surprisingly after the first experience) and you are herded on to the balloon, a quick safety briefing, the ground crew prepares the balloon and suddenly you are on the move. Before you realize it, you’re ascending into the sky. The city below shrinks, and the Nile unfolds.

The journey takes about an hour, taking you over the Valley of the Kings, the Temple of Hatshepsut, and other significant archaeological sites. Now if there was a moment to be cheesy, this would be it. It was really beautiful and peaceful (except for the kids talking).

The Best Time to Visit Luxor for a Memorable Balloon Ride

Time of Year 

Generally, the best times to visit Luxor for a hot air balloon ride are during the cooler months, from November to April. During these months, the weather in Luxor is quite mild, which makes for a comfortable and enjoyable ride. The Early start is likely to be a little chilly so take a layer.

Please note, Luxor is a popular destination and this period is also the peak season. Early booking is therefore recommended to secure a spot in your preferred time slot. 

Time of Day 

Hot air balloon flights in Luxor usually take off at sunrise. It’s the most stable time for flights due to the cooler temperature and calmer winds, it also offers spectacular views (that’s a bit cheesy…but it’s true!) of the sun rising over the Luxor landscape.

Weather Considerations 

Hot air balloon rides are highly dependent on the weather. Ideal conditions include clear skies and low wind speed. Sudden changes in weather, particularly strong winds, can lead to cancellations for safety reasons. It’s always best to check the day’s weather forecast and confirm with your balloon operator the night before your ride. Most operators will offer an alternative day if you flight gets cancelled.

Luxor’s Balloon Operators: Choosing the Right Company for Your Family

Deciding on the right hot air balloon operator in Luxor can be a bit of a challenge, especially with so many competent operators to choose from. 

Operator Reputation 

Online reviews on platforms such as TripAdvisor and Google offer invaluable insights. Look for consistent high ratings and read through people’s experiences. Take it with a pinch of salt and trust your own instincts before booking.

Safety Record 

Never compromise safety for any other aspect. The operator’s safety record should be immaculate, and the company should stress their commitment to this aspect openly. They should be able to produce records and certifications upon request. If an operator seems hesitant or untransparent about their safety record, it’s best to consider other options. 


The more years a company has been in business, the more experience they have navigating Luxor’s unique weather and landscape. Experienced operators often have a deeper understanding of the safety dynamics of balloon rides and a better ability to handle unexpected situations. 

Finally, keep in mind these tips are meant to guide and not dictate your choice. You might also want to consider aspects like balloon size (smaller baskets are often less crowded), inclusion of pick-up and drop-off service, and the operator’s knowledge of Luxor’s history. Prioritise what matters most to your family, and you’ll find the perfect operator for your Luxor hot air balloon adventure.

Pricing and Packages: Finding the Best Deals for Your Balloon Adventure

Here are the best tips for finding a great price for your balloon ride in Luxor.

Here’s why: Most operators run promotions or offer reduced rates for early bookers. Some even offer discounts for families. But, you need to step into a bit more detail to find a package tailor-made for your family’s needs and budget. 

Planning Ahead 

Planning ahead generally leads to better deals. About two or three months before your trip, start your research. Look at various balloon ride operators in Luxor, pay attention to their offerings, pricing, and importantly, their safety records. 

Comparing Packages 

When it comes to Comparing Packages, not all balloon rides are created equal. Some will offer a longer flight time, others might include extras like a breakfast or transportation from your hotel.

Booking as a Group 

Furthermore, consider Booking as a Group. If you’re traveling with another family or a group of friends, you might be able to negotiate a group discount.

Now, let’s have a detailed look at typical hot air balloon ride packages: 

PackageWhat’s IncludedEstimated Cost
Basic FlightFlight only, about 45-60 minutes in durationApproximately $70-120 per person
Flight with BreakfastFlight plus a light breakfast, usually includes transportation from your hotelApproximately $100-150 per person
Premium FlightLonger flight (up to 2 hours), high-quality breakfast, private transportation, and sometimes even a professional photographerApproximately $200-300 per person

Remember, the prices listed here are estimates, prices can vary depending on the season and demand. It’s always worth double-checking with the balloon operators for the most accurate rates. 

We booked our flight as a group and the price per person for a one-hour sunrise hot air balloon tour was $60.

Hot air ballooning over Luxor is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience and is one of the cheaper places to take a ride.

Luxor with Kids

Luxor with kids

Capturing Memories: Tips for Taking Stunning Photos from a Hot Air Balloon

Experience breathtaking views on your Luxor hot air balloon ride, and make those moments last a lifetime with stunning photographs. Follow these handy tips:

  1. Utilize the Golden Hour: Most rides happen around sunrise, offering soft, warm light that’s perfect for capturing Luxor’s ancient monuments, the Nile River, and sprawling sands. You will need to up your ISO to get a good exposure.
  2. Stabilize Your Shot: It can be breezy up there, so stabilize your camera or smartphone. Use a neck strap for your camera or employ burst mode on your smartphone for a clear shot.
  3. Experiment with Angles: Try different angles, capturing both the horizon and downward views. Look for unique patterns on the ground or the way sunlight filters through the clouds.
  4. Include the Balloon: Your hot air balloon is part of the adventure, so capture it in your photos. Snap shots of the burners flaming or the colorful fabric billowing as the balloon inflates.
  5. Follow the Rule of Thirds: Divide your viewfinder into nine equal parts with two horizontal and two vertical lines. Place points of interest along these lines or at their intersections for a balanced composition, enhancing the overall aesthetic of your images.

Note: Don’t spend the whole ride glued to your phone or camera, take a minute to look around you and enjoy the ride!

hot air balloon flight Luxor
Take off, hot air balloon departure in Luxor.

Hot Air Balloon FAQ: Answering Your Burning Questions

We’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions to help you gain a better understanding of what to expect.

Is hot air ballooning safe? 

The safety of hot air ballooning largely depends on the operator’s commitment to safety procedures and the condition of the equipment. Licensed operators in Luxor have to adhere to stringent safety regulations and regular equipment inspections to ensure a safe flying experience. However, as with any activity, there is never a 100% guarantee against potential risk. 

Is there an age limit for hot air balloon rides in Luxor? 

Yes, in Luxor, children under the age of six are generally not allowed on hot air balloon rides for safety reasons. Apart from this, everyone else, when in good health, can enjoy this experience.

What should we wear for our hot air balloon ride? 

Prioritise comfort. Wear layered clothes as temperatures can significantly change during the flight. Closed-toe shoes are advisable as well due to landing on uneven terrains. 

How long does a typical hot air balloon ride last? 

Average hot air balloon trips in Luxor typically last about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on weather conditions and landing site availability. However, note that the journey can take longer, including preparation, the flight itself, and the return to the initial meeting point. 

What happens if the weather is bad on the day of our flight? 

If the weather conditions are deemed unsafe on the day of your flight, most balloon operators will either reschedule your flight. Safety always takes precedence over any other considerations.

Final Thoughts 

I promised this would be a non-cheesy post but honestly it became tricky in parts. This experience is one that stands out in all our travels. Despite the early morning wake up and the several hours waiting to leave, this is one of those you should not miss on your trip to Luxor.

family travel coaching call

Meet the author

Lisa is the founder of Boston Tribe Travels. She has lived and travelled abroad for the last 15 years, visited more than 30 countries and has done most of that with her husband and two children. As a full time travel family, they like to travel slow, worldschool and seek new adventures. From living in Borneo for 5 years to backpacking South America, Lisa shares a wealth of travel experience to empower more families to travel and learn together.