Cappadocia itself is a magical place welcoming visitors from all over the world. With its unique volcanic rock formations, valleys, ancient churches and caves and fairy-chimneys the area is one of the highlights of Turkey. Right now, Cappadocia is counted as one of the best places to do hot air ballooning in the world and it has real reasons for that.
Firstly, the climate in Cappadocia is perfect for a hot air balloon ride. At 1200m above sea level, there is a big difference between day and night temperature, just like in the deserts. Even in the hottest summer days, early morning before sunrise is not more then 18-20 degrees. This low temperature allows hot air balloons to rise using a relatively small amount of gas. Balloons can fly 4 seasons of a year - only in harsh Autumn days are the flights are canceled for a few days ; approximately . 230 days of the year we see balloons flying.
Secondly, balloons have no motor or direction control, they need some light wind to push them to move but this needs to be done very gently. Göreme is set in a canyon -the fairy-chimneys cut the stronger wind on top and leave a gentle, soft wind inside the valley for hot air balloons to drift like a boat on the river. Once the balloons rise higher they can ride the upper winds and travel outside the canyon area. Here the landscape has flat areas offering many places for hot air balloons to land gently, most often right on the trailer.
The unique natural and historical geography of Cappadocia is one of the main reasons that this amazing area is one of the best places to do hot air ballooning in the world. Most hot air balloon flights are over the National Park of Göreme, a UNESCO world heritage site. This is mainly because most interesting shapes of fairy-chimneys, caves, valleys and pigeon houses are inside this naturally shaped volcanic canyon. One will drift around the fairy-chimneys and caves, dive into the valleys of Pigeons and Love and rise above Rose & Red valleys. Sometimes the balloon will drift so close to apple and walnut trees you can pick fruits and sometimes will ascend 2000 feet up to the sky for a magical bird eye view.
Many other colorful hot air balloons in the sky also makes Cappadocia a magical place do hot air ballooning. While enjoying the natural beauties seeing other many colorful hot air balloons in the sky will amaze the rider. Definitely one will try to count how many hot air balloons are in the air but will get tired when its over 50-60 :)
In conclusion, Cappadocia is a unique place in the world! For more than 20 years hot air balloons are flying here and as a local I have to admit that they have a great influence on the visitors coming to Cappadocia. Right now almost 3000 people enjoy this “once upon a life time experience” over Göreme National Park every day, weather permitting.