Hot Air Balloon Festival

Here’s something for all you WA photographers! (and me!) There’s just three weeks until the skies above Northam and the Avon Valley will be adorned with 30 beautiful hot air balloons for the National Ballooning Championships and Hot Air Balloon festival.

Hot Air Balloon Festival

Hot Air Balloon National Championships

From 2 to 9 September, international, interstate and local hot air balloon pilots will descend on the Avon Valley, testing their skills at varying winds and altitudes.

To see so many colourful balloons in the sky at the one time is a visual treat for spectators.

Hot Air Balloon Festival

Northam Balloon Fiesta

Public festivities commence on Saturday 2 September with the Northam Balloon Fiesta from 4pm and visually stunning Balloon Glow (pictured above) after dark at the Henry Street Oval, weather permitting. The free Fiesta will include a live stage show, balloon discovery zone, carnival rides, game zone, markets, food and drinks and show bags.

The competition balloons will fire up in all their glory with musical accompaniment at approximately 7.30pm with a fireworks finale.

Hot air balloon festival

Photo by Austin Neill on Unsplash

Each day enthusiasts can see the balloons flying across the rolling hills and valleys at dawn and again in the afternoon if weather conditions are suitable. Spectating opportunities are available at various locations around Northam.

Colourful Hot Air Ballooning

Balloons will launch at around sunrise each morning and fly until approximately 9am. Another highlight is the Key Grab competition on Saturday 9 September. This is a flying task for the balloons departing from the Northam Airfield at first light. Pilots fly from point to point, collecting foam ‘keys’ from the end of 10metre poles in several locations.

The Championships course and best viewing spots will differ each day based on wind conditions. Spectators should check the event’s Facebook page (Northam Nationals) to see where flights will be each day, or start at the Northam Aero Club at Withers Street Northam to be directed from there to where balloons will take off from that day.

Hot air balloon festival

More event details

Visit the website to check out the balloons and pilots competing to pick a favourite. Will it be the ladybug balloon flown by pilot Claire O’Brien, the soccer ball flown by Ed Saunders, Russia’s Andrei Kulkov’s Hola colourful pixelated balloon or Defending Champion Matt Scaife’s balloon Felix?

For more information visit Northam Nationals.

Accommodation in Northam

For a wonderful hot air balloon experience if you’re a spectator or photographer why not stay overnight?

For the best prices for Northam Accommodation Check out Here.

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  1. Thanks for this Jo. We might be up this way in September, I will have to check and add it to our itinerary. What a great opportunity to see lots of balloons. We did a balloon flight some years ago. Such a gentle way to travel, other than the landing! Happy travels Jo.

  2. I can just see your fantastic photos from this event Jill! Can’t wait! What colour! What opportunity for fantastic photography 🙂

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