Hot Air Balloon flight over Melbourne's Yarra Valley | December 28th, 2019

Hello IFC! Here’s a slightly different topic.

Global Ballooning Australia offers sunrise flights over Melbourne and Yarra Valley, and while the price is quite ridiculous it’s something that you’ve got to try once.

So I channeled my inner @Balloonchaser and now we’re here at this topic.

Bit of a backstory: The sun rises before 6 am in Melbourne in the summer, which means the balloons need to airborne not long after then (both for visual and functional purposes). We were staying in downtown Melbourne which meant a 2:00 AM wake-up call and after a quick breakfast, we were in the car and on our way to the Balgownie Estate, 50 minutes away. After arriving around 3:45 AM and having a brief panic attack over the loss of my battery cover (I found it!), we got checked in and signed a few waivers. At 4:30 AM they grouped us up and started driving us out to the launch site (read: field), about 10 minutes away. By 5:00 AM they had given us a safety briefing and had unloaded all the balloons from the trucks, and by 5:50 AM the first balloon lifted into the sky. We were pretty middle-of-the-pack and we lifted off at around 6:20 AM give or take a few minutes.

I apologize if the pictures are of sub-par quality, since it was pretty dark for most of these I had to use a higher ISO and keep a slow shutter speed, even with my f/1.8 lens.

Shot on Nikon D7500 + Tamron SP 45mm f/1.8 VC

The initial inflation process takes more or less 15 minutes. The “engine” of the balloon was far more intense than I expected. It’s quite loud and you can feel the heat from quite a distance.

We were essentially the “leader” of this group of 5 other balloons, seen here lifting off under some nice sunrise colors.

The sky soon lit up beautifully as the sun passed through some broken dark clouds (I don’t care that there’s not a balloon in this).

I wanted a shot with all the balloons lit up but the guy in the closest balloon was super conservative and barely lit his engine for decent chunks of time. When he did light up for like 10-15 seconds though, the balloon behind him decided not to. This is the best I could get, I still really like this shot.

15 minutes later we landed in some other random field about 10 miles from where we started. It’s funny because they have you do this specific landing position but the balloons come in so slow and land so softly that you could’ve done a handstand in there and been fine. I guess it’s just in case of a rollover.

Also, if you’ve got a JetPhotos account, I would really appreciate a like on this photo of the balloons here:

Thanks for viewing this!


Nice! Being on a hot air balloon is on my bucket list.😀


This is so cool!

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wow 😍

I’m so glad that you shared this with the world - these pictures are stunning. Glad you enjoyed your flight!

I highly recommend everyone to take a flight when you get a chance. It’s amazing! - If you see a balloon in the sky, go follow it and help pack it up when it lands! It’s quite the experience in itself


Ay yes it’s so fun

Yeah I was quite surprised by how involved the packup process was. And being Australia there was like a group of kangaroos watching us do it.


Truly stunning, this is something much different I have ever seen on the IFC for a long time. I hope you have enjoyed your trip with @Balloonchaser dude! Might be painful to get up very early but the pictures here are brilliant and without saying, beautiful. Nevertheless, the trip looks worth it.


I don’t care what you say about those photos, they are amazing!

That is such a cool experience, and for sure going on my bucket list.
The colors, the scenery, and the perspective from that last photo are just WOW!


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The legend himself wasn’t there with me. But it was definitely worth it.

Thank you!


Ok balloonchaser… 😂


That’s a very picturesque part of Victoria. I’d still want an engine though. Not convinced about balloons.

Dang that sunset or sunrise 😮

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t at least a little apprehensive at one point of the flight, and I’m not one to be scared of flying things or heights. The whole thing feels in-control though, especially on a calm day.


Melbourne’s famous Yarra Valley and its early morning Hot Air Balloons.

Lovely shots mate, I hope to go on a Hot Air Balloon in Melbourne around the Yarra Valley one day.


Ooh, maybe I should channel my inner @Balloonchaser and share my International Balloon Fiesta pictures.


I’m kinda surprised you haven’t haha

Big bet


Those pics are so beautiful! Amazing job!

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Thank you!!

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