Wairarapa Balloon Festival
Hot air balloons from around New Zealand and the world are taking part in this spectacular four-day fun filled balloon extravaganza - one of the region's most spectacular events!
Our feature special shape this year is the brilliant and bright Peg Leg Pete the Pirate Parrot all the way from the USA. 90 feet high he is sure to be an eye catcher in the Wairarapa skies throughout the event!
Balloons launch everyday at dawn in a breathtaking display from locations in Masterton, Carterton, Greytown and weather permitting, some late afternoon flights may also take place.
Don't miss the dazzling festival spectacle! The Trust House Night Glow Show - Saturday 14th March.
Check out the Festival Programme below:
Thursday 12 March
7.00am Mass Ascension – Carrington Park, Carterton.
The fiesta’s official opening sees all the balloons taking to the sky together right on sunrise– an incredible and colourful sight not to be missed!. At the business end, pilots kickoff the start of their competition. Keep an eye out for amazing skills. Free entry
1.30pm Balloon pilots & crews visit various schools in the Wairarapa.
4.00pm Meet the pilots – Queen Elizabeth Park, Masterton.
Followed by an evening flight weather permitting. Have a chat to our fantastic and experienced pilots and see how a balloon works. If the weather allows, the balloons will try an early evening flight from the park. Free entry
Friday 13 March
7.00am Hare & Hounds Challenge – Greytown. (Includes special shape inflation at Greytown Park)
Balloons will lift off as dawn breaks. The balloonmeister will set the competition challenges for pilots to showcase their skills. Free entry
5.00pm College Gala Balloon Inflation – Wairarapa College, Masterton
Head along to the Wairarapa College school gala to enjoy the many fares and another chance to see the balloons up close!
8.00pm Burner Parade, Carterton and Greytown.
Balloon pilots and crews put on a fiery display parading through Carterton’s main street and then drive on to light up through Greytown’s main street. Free entry
Saturday 14 March
7.00am Island Hopper Challenge and Competition – Henley Lake, Masterton.
Balloons launch upwind of the lake and attempt to score points through a variety of exciting skill challenges. Multiple attempts can be made. An exciting competition event at a stunning venue! Free entry
6.00pm - 8.45pm Trust House Night Glow, Solway Showgrounds, Masterton.
The Night Glow is the jewel in the crown of the festival, where tethered balloons glow like light bulbs and brighten the night sky in a dazzling show choreographed to music.
Music, family entertainment, aviation displays and a dedicated kids zone too! Gates open from 5.30pm.
Bring the whole family and a picnic. Food and drinks available for purchase.
Cash gate sales available on the evening – adults $10, children 12 and under $5, under 5s free, family pass $25 (2 adults, 3 children). Online ticket sales available
Please note: Balloons may inflate at any time during the evening depending on weather conditions.
Sunday 15 March
7.00am Competition flying – Masterton Town Square
Pilots and their balloons undertake their final day of competitions this morning. Meet at the Masterton town square for more information on take-off venues and find the best vantage points. Competition points for pilots up for grabs! Free entry