When in Turkey, a Cappadocia hot air balloon ride is a must, along with a relaxing Turkish bath and a trip to Pamukkale. Seeing the jagged rock valleys of Cappadocia with the colorful balloons in the background is every traveler and photographer\u2019s dream. It\u2019s no wonder that the region attracts more than 3 million visitors every year! Apart from Istanbul and Ankara, make Cappadocia a part of your Turkey itinerary.\r\nIf you\u2019re interested in hopping on a hot air balloon and seeing Cappadocia from the sky, here\u2019s everything you need to know about hot air balloon rides in the region!\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nWhere Is Cappadocia? \r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by rux1984 on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nContrary to what most people think, Cappadocia is actually a region in Turkey, not a city. It is a semi-arid region in Central Turkey on the Anatolian side. Aside from its touristic cities like Nevsehir and Kayseri, the region also features underground cities, some of which you can explore on a guided tour.\r\nHow to Get There\r\nYou can get to Cappadocia by car, bus or by plane.\r\nBy Bus\r\nWhether you\u2019re in Istanbul or Ankara, there are various bus companies that have routes to Nevsehir and G\u00f6reme, two popular cities in Cappadocia. If you\u2019re traveling by bus, take note of the following travel times to the region:\r\n\r\n\tAnkara: 5 hours\r\n\tIstanbul: 12 hours\r\n\tKonya: 4 hours\r\n\tAntalya: 9 hours\r\n\tBursa: 11 hours\r\n\tIzmir: 12 hours\r\n\r\nDo take note that the travel times above are just estimates and actual travel times depend on the traffic situation. Expect heavier traffic during the high tourist season or during holidays.\r\nBy Plane\r\nTraveling by place is generally the fastest option to get to Cappadocia. The nearest airports are Erkilet International Airport (ASR) in Kayseri and Nev\u015fehir Kapadokya Airport (NAV) in Nev\u015fehir. From there, you can take the shuttle to Cappadocia. Travel time from the airport to the region varies between 45 and 60 minutes.\r\nIf you're coming from Istanbul, the flight will take you an hour. Daily flights from Istanbul Airport are available so you only have to choose if you\u2019ll land at Erkilet or Nev\u015fehir Airport.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nWhere to Stay in Cappadocia\r\nArtemis Cave Suites & Spa\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto from Artemis Cave Suites Booking.com Page\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAddress: Gaferli Mahallesi, Ayd\u0131n K\u0131ra\u011f\u0131 Sk. NO: 22, 50180 G\u00f6reme\/Nev\u015fehir Merkez\/Nev\u015fehir, Turkey\r\nPrice per night for 2 adults: Starts at 63 USD\r\nGet the best views of the hot air balloons in Cappadocia at Artemis Cave Suites & Spa. Guests love the cave hotel because of its comfy beds, delicious food, and friendly staff. At its terraces, you\u2019ll catch uninterrupted views of the sunrise or sunset as well as the famous fairy chimneys of Cappadocia. Make sure to wake up early if you want to witness the hot air balloons rising above as the sun greets the city! There\u2019s no pool in the hotel, but there are plenty of nearby attractions and other alternatives. If you want a place that has good value for money and is in a nice location, Artemis Cave Suites & Spa is your best choice. \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nCharming Cave Hotel\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto from Charming Cave Hotel Booking.com Page\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAddress: Ayd\u0131nl\u0131 Orta Mahalle, Kevenci Sk. No:16-1, 50180 G\u00f6reme\/Nev\u015fehir Merkez\/Nev\u015fehir, Turkey\r\nPrice per night for 2 adults: Starts at 79 USD\r\nThe Charming Cave Hotel in G\u00f6reme is one of the most affordable accommodations in Cappadocia. It features a restaurant, bar, shared lounge, and a nice garden. All cave rooms have a unique blend of rustic yet lavish furniture, complete with a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. Additionally, there\u2019s also a currency exchange and you can arrange a Cappadocia hot air balloon excursion with them. However, what makes it a top choice for tourists is its location in the heart of the city. Goreme Open-Air Museum is only a 30-minute walk from the hotel, while the Uchisar Castle is only a short driving distance away. In the morning, you can also see the hot air balloons floating up in the sky.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nMithra Cave Hotel\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto from Mithra Cave Hotel Booking.com Page\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAddress: Ayd\u0131nl\u0131 Mahallesi Akg\u00fcl Sokak No:10 G\u00f6reme Kasabas\u0131, 50180 Nev\u015fehir, Turkey\r\nPrice per night for 2 adults: 97 USD\r\nMithra Cave Hotel boasts great views at an affordable price. This hotel has numerous terraces with beautiful carpets and plush pillows, perfect for lounging in the morning or in the afternoon. The rooms have a Greek or Ottoman interior style, complete with wide and cozy beds, flat-screen TVs, and private bathrooms. In the morning, have breakfast with a view at the restaurant, perched on the hotel\u2019s highest point. Feast on a traditional breakfast buffet with assorted cheese, dried fruits, bread, borek, eggs, and unlimited Turkish tea. \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nYunak Evleri Cappadocia\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto from Yunak Evleri Cappadocia Booking.com Page\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAddress: Musaefendi, Balc\u0131 Sk., 50400 \u00dcrg\u00fcp\/Nev\u015fehir, Turkey\r\nPrice per night for 2 adults: Starts at 202 USD\r\nSet near the iconic fairy chimneys, Yunak Evleri Cappadocia is another great choice for accommodation in the region. Find exquisite handcrafted furniture along with marble bathrooms in its rooms, with some also having a jacuzzi. It is within a convenient five-minute walk from the G\u00f6reme National Park where you can explore the landscape on a scenic hike. No time to organize an itinerary? The staff at the boutique hotel can gladly arrange tours with professional guides, including Cappadocia hot air balloon rides. They can also give you an insider tip on the best restaurants as well as helpful information on the underground cities and other nearby attractions.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nSultan Cave Suites\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto from Sultan Cave Suites Booking.com Page\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nAddress: Ayd\u0131nl\u0131 Mah, Ayd\u0131nl\u0131 Sk. No : 40, 50180 G\u00f6reme\/Nev\u015fehir Merkez\/Nev\u015fehir, Turkey\r\nPrice per night for 2 adults: Starts at 92 USD\r\nSultan Cave Suites is another affordable option with stunning views of the city. The hotel boasts antique furniture sourced around Turkey, with some rooms having a private terrace or balcony. From the sun terrace, catch panoramic views of Goreme as you lie down on soft cushions and carpets. Snap Instagram-worthy photos of the landscape and if you\u2019re lucky, the resident dog might join you for a photo or two! After a delicious dinner of Mediterranean and Turkish cuisine, head to the terrace to relax and have a couple of drinks. Aside from Cappadocia hot air balloon rides, the hotel can also arrange local excursions, hiking tours, and private tours. \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nThings to Note Before Going to Cappadocia, Turkey\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by Mario555 on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\tIf you plan on going on a Cappadocia hot air balloon ride you can go at any time of the year! June to August brings in the most crowds and accommodation and tour rates are at their highest during these months. Plan your trip sometime from March to May or September to November if you want good weather conditions and fewer crowds. December to February are also good months to visit Cappadocia if you\u2019re willing to brave the cold weather.\r\n\tWhile underground cities are fascinating to visit, this isn\u2019t the best activity for travelers with claustrophobia since you\u2019re going through little to no open spaces.\r\n\tMake sure to bring cash with you since not all establishments accept credit cards. You can use Visa, American Express, Maestro, and Mastercard, but just to be safe, bring cash instead. You can exchange money at the airport or at the currency exchange offices in Nev\u015fehir. Additionally, you can withdraw Turkish Lira at nearby ATM machines, but don\u2019t forget to inform your bank that you\u2019ll be using your card overseas. \r\n\tBefore traveling to Cappadocia, and even Turkey, know if you\u2019ll be needing an eVisa. As per Turkey\u2019s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, all American passport holders will need a Visa to enter Turkey. \r\n\tAside from Cappadocia hot air balloon tours, you can also go sightseeing. The Green and Red tours include entrance fees and lunch, so all you need to do is to decide on which attractions you\u2019ll see.\r\n\tIn Turkey, the most common electrical adapters are Type C and Type F. If you\u2019ll be bringing a travel adapter or converter, be sure that it supports the plug type used in the country.\r\n\tWhen shopping at markets and bazaars, sellers tend to raise the price for tourists. You can negotiate or haggle for a better price.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nWhat You Need to Know About a Hot Air Balloon Ride\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by Free-Photos on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nLanding on the Ground\r\nWhen going on a hot air balloon ride, don\u2019t be surprised at the possibility that you will be instructed to crouch down. Landing a hot air balloon depends on the wind speed. During calm weather, a so-called \u201cstand up landing\u201d is possible, meaning that the basket will land on the ground with minimal impact. Meanwhile, during moderate winds, the pilot may instruct you to prepare for a different kind of landing. \r\nIt\u2019s important to follow your pilot\u2019s instructions since accidents may happen during the process. Since the flight trajectory of a hot air balloon depends on the wind, a hot air balloon chase crew follows you via radio so they can meet and assist you at the landing site.\r\nProper Attire\r\nWhen going on hot air balloon rides, like a Cappadocia hot air balloon, it\u2019s important to wear the proper attire. In terms of footwear, wear shoes that you wouldn\u2019t mind getting dirty. There\u2019s no guarantee where the balloon will land and you might land in the middle of a field for example. Additionally, wear comfortable clothing where you can move around freely since you\u2019ll be climbing in and out of the basket. Don\u2019t forget to dress according to the weather. If your flight is during the autumn or winter months, make sure to bring extra layers.\r\nPost-Flight Celebration\r\nWhether you\u2019re going on a hot air balloon ride in Barcelona or in Orlando, post-flight celebrations are common. After landing, you are welcomed with a glass of champagne, snacks, fruits, and even cold cuts. In some places, you also get to receive a special certificate commemorating the experience.\r\nPossible Cancellations\r\nPlanning to end your trip on a high note and go on a hot air balloon ride? You may want to reconsider this. Hot air balloon trips are very dependent on the weather and there may be instances where activity providers cancel the booking due to the wind and other factors. If possible, book your trip in advance and have a set of alternative dates in mind as a back-up.\r\nSafety\r\nLike airplane pilots, hot air balloon pilots go through extensive training to guarantee your safety. They also go through examinations, regular safety checks, and medical checks before flying a hot air balloon. Your pilot may have hundreds of flight hours under his or her belt and decades' worth of experience. Most Cappadocia hot air balloon companies have been around for more than 20 years, guaranteeing the quality and safety of their services. \r\nWhen going on a hot air balloon ride, it\u2019s important to follow your pilot\u2019s instructions to a T to avoid accidents.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nWhy Is Cappadocia Famous for Hot Air Ballooning?\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by Timrael on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nWhat makes Cappadocia a famous destination for hot air ballooning is its landscape. A UNESCO World Heritage-listed region, Cappadocia boasts dreamy and spectacular landscapes as a result of thousands of years of erosion. These cave dwellings and underground cities date back to the Byzantine period and the 4th century. \r\nIf you have a fear of heights, don\u2019t worry! Even as a spectator, you can\u2019t deny the beauty of seeing colorful hot air balloons floating above the jagged valleys, caves, and fairy chimneys of Cappadocia. You can simply head to your hotel\u2019s terrace, lounge at the cushions, and enjoy the breathtaking view of these famous Cappadocia hot air balloon rides.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nFacts About a Cappadocia Hot Air Balloon Experience \r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by tkirkgoz on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\tA Cappadocia hot air balloon ride can take 45 minutes or a longer two hours. Flight durations vary depending on the company and package you\u2019ll choose. \r\n\tThe basket capacity also depends on the company and flight package selected. For private flights, it will be only you and the pilot. On the other hand, if you choose a regular flight, you will share the basket with other participants. The hot air balloon capacity normally ranges from 10 to 20 persons per basket.\r\n\tHot air balloon flights range between 125 to 220 EUR (140 to 250 USD). The rates depend on flight duration, time, and capacity. Rates are lower for shared flights and will be more expensive if you opt for a private flight. The seasonality also affects the price; during peak tourist season, expect higher rates. \r\n\tThe price for a hot air balloon ride typically includes a complimentary pick-up and drop-off at your accommodation, the balloon ride itself, snacks and drinks upon landing, and a congratulatory certificate. If you choose a sunrise flight package, the fee can also include breakfast at the activity operator headquarters.\r\n\tCappadocia hot air balloon rides can reach up to thousands of feet high depending on the balloon company, wind condition, and season. Some companies' maximum height is 800m while others can go as high as 3,000m. The hot air balloon speed varies between2 to 22km\/h.\r\n\tIn the morning, only 100 balloons are allowed to take off before sunrise. Thirty minutes after sunrise, another 50 balloons are allowed to take off. \r\n\tUp to 100 balloons are allowed to take off before sunrise, and another 50 are granted permission to take off half an hour after sunrise.\r\n\tTake-off sites vary depending on the wind direction, so expect that tour companies change take-off sites daily or regularly.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n \r\nTips on Cappadocia Hot Air Balloon Rides\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nPhoto by amlicht on Pixabay\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\tTo avoid possible cancellations, make sure to book your hot air balloon flight in advance. Additionally, you can also inform your activity provider of alternate dates in case your earlier choice isn\u2019t available. Booking in advance also guarantees that you\u2019ll have a hot air balloon ride as opposed to booking on the spot.\r\n\tApart from booking through third-party websites, you can also book a hot air balloon flight through your accommodation (if available). Simply tell them your preferred date of the activity and the number of participants, and they will take care of the rest. Once your booking is confirmed, you can pay the fees on your activity date.\r\n\tSince Cappadocia hot air balloon flights are dependent on the weather, there may be instances when you operators cancel a flight due to inclement weather. Furthermore, it\u2019s best to plan your trip to Cappadocia when weather conditions are at their best to avoid cancellations.\r\n\tMake sure to confirm your take-off time a day before the activity. Since most hot air balloon rides take off before sunrise, tour operators will pick participants anytime between 4 to 5 in the morning.\r\n\tIf you have your camera with you, keep it ready for the first 30 minutes of the flight. This is when you\u2019ll see dozens of other balloons floating up over the picturesque chimneys and valleys. \r\n\tHot air balloon rides in Cappadocia operate all-year-round, but cancellations are most prone from October to March due to the weather. While a balloon ride during winter is as picturesque as in summer, unpredictable wind conditions may hinder you. If you\u2019re planning to visit in winter, have your balloon ride as early as possible.\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nSee the Beauty of Cappadocia From a Hot Air Balloon!\r\nGet a chance to see Cappadocia\u2019s iconic fairy chimneys, caves, and valleys from the sky on a hot air balloon ride. This allows you to get a better look at the landmarks and see the Turkish region from a different perspective. If you\u2019re worried that it might cost you a fortune, there is a balloon ride for every budget. A typical hot air balloon ride includes pick-up and drop-off from your hotel as well as extras like drinks and snacks upon landing and a certificate.