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Mexico City Hot Air Balloon Ride Over The Teotihuacan Pyramids: The Complete Guide

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Mexico City hot air balloon ride over the Teotihuacan Pyramids
a woman looking at a group of hot air balloons

Whilst you might not expect that a hot air balloon experience in Mexico City is something you can add to your itinerary, it’s actually one of the number one things to do in the area – and for good reason, because it’s absolutely incredible. 

This bucket list activity is one I’d highly recommend you prioritise – it’s truly an unforgettable experience and after visiting Mexico City a few times now, I was finally able to tick it off my list.

That being said, there are some things I wish I had known before choosing to do a Mexico City hot air balloon ride and things that you should watch out for – hence why I’m putting this guide together so it can hopefully help you to get the most out of the experience!

In this guide, I’ll cover where the balloons take off and the best way to get there, how to choose a tour company and what to expect on the day. I’ll also let you know the best time to visit and answer some popular FAQ’s at the end of the guide!

🎟️ Tight on time? After a lot of research, this is the tour I took and it was INCREDIBLE: Hot Air Balloon Tour (Without Transport) get 20% off with code ‘WILD20‘ until the 16th of June!

Where do the balloons take off?

hot air balloons in the sky
a group of hot air balloons

The balloons fly over the Teotihuacan pyramids and so you’ll be taking off from a dedicated field nearby.

Teotihuacan is located around 45 minutes to one hour north from Mexico City centre and popular neighbourhoods like La Condesa, Roma and Reforma.  

How to get from Mexico City to Teotihuacan

There are multiple ways to get from Mexico City to Teotihuacan and I’m going to walk you through all of the options that I explored.

By tour 

Booking a tour that includes transport is the easiest way to get to and from Teotihuacan, however it’s also the most expensive.

If you’re not on a tight budget then this is course no problem. But, for those looking to save some money then I’d recommend choosing a tour without transport

By Uber 

Taking an Uber is less expensive – particularly if there is a group of you – and of course very straightforward and comfortable.

One thing to also note here is that you’ll be travelling on a toll road. Both there and back, the Uber driver made us pay this toll road even though Uber states that additional costs are baked into the fare shown on Uber. The driver will claim that all you need to do is contact Uber and they’ll refund it, but they don’t.

It’s one of those situations where you’ll need to pick your battles though, as the Uber driver won’t back down and it’s only an extra few dollars each way. 

You’ll also find that early in the morning, Uber drivers will ask for cash outside of the Uber app. We had 3 drivers cancel the ride when we said no, so it’s worth factoring in a little extra time to secure a driver.

By public transport 

Whilst you can take public transport – and I will tell you how – here’s what you should know from my experiencing exploring this option: 

Whilst it takes slightly longer than an Uber and it’s very cost-effective, there are multiple changes to make. When you’re trying to get to the balloon site early in the morning, it’s quite a lot of faffing around and will likely be an added stress you will want to avoid. That being said, it is something that’s worth exploring if you feel like you’ll have the energy to on the return journey. 

If you do want to save some money and explore this option, here’s how you can do it:

Step 1: hop on the yellow Line 5 which will be heading to Politecnico. You’ll want to get off at Autobuses del Norte.

Step 2: At the bus station, find the company called ‘Autobuses Teotihuacan’ or if in doubt, head to ‘Puerta 8‘ (a.k.a door 8).

Step 3: Take the bus journey to Teotihuacan and then a taxi to your balloon company’s office.

Best Mexico City hot air balloon tour over the Teotihuacan Pyramids

a group of hot air balloons in the sky

After exploring many options, I eventually decided to book a tour through Tinggly – who, to be honest – I hadn’t heard of previously but I’m glad I stumbled across them. They’re a huge platform that offers hundreds of experiences and I like them because they have excellent reviews and a strong focus on giving back to the planet.

The whole process from start to finish was straightforward and the experience was exceptional, so I’d recommend them in a heartbeat to anybody looking for a tour provider!

I booked the Hot Air Balloon Tour Without Transport, however they also have:

Both of these look pretty cool and are extremely highly rated.

You’ll also find many tour guides around Mexico City trying to sell you this experience for a cheaper cost, but I’d always recommend booking through a reputable company like Tinggly as unfortunately there are scammers all over Mexico and you do need to be really careful who you trust. 

What to expect on the day

a hot air balloon in the sky

What happens before the flight?

There are usually 3 start times for the balloon ride: 

  • 4:40am
  • 5am
  • 6am

All of these are suitable for sunrise pictures, although the later the time the higher the sun will be. The images that you see throughout this post are taken from the latest flight time and as you can see, they came out pretty well!

Whilst every tour operates slightly differently, here’s what you can expect from the day: 

You’ll arrive at the tour office 30 minutes ahead of being transported to the take-off site and be asked to leave your personal belongings in the secure lockers. 

You’ll be offered a complimentary hot drink, juice and pastry, and asked whether you’d like any additional footage of the experience for an additional cost. 

In my experience, this was some drone footage of the hot air balloon flight which I did purchase, however at around $50 it was expensive and not really worth it as I felt like the images and videos that I took myself of the many other balloons surrounding us where just as great. 

Before long, you’ll be bundled into a mini van and transported to the take off point which is filled with balloons which is an incredible site to see! 

You’ll be ushered into a balloon basket and quickly be lifted off of the ground and into the air. Surprisingly, it’s a smooth journey and it doesn’t feel daunting in the slightest. 

a man looking at a hot air balloon
hot air balloons in the sky

What happens during the flight and how long does it last?

Depending on the weather, you’ll have anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour of flight time, where you’ll head over the Teotihuacan pyramids which is a spectacular view. Throughout the flight you’ll be surrounded by what must be at least 100 other balloons – something which really sets this experience apart from other hot air balloon experiences. 

When it’s time to descend, it’s a slow and steady journey and there will be a team of people ready and waiting to help with the landing process.

If you’re on the last of the three time slots, you may end up aiming to land in the back of the trailer. Our balloon pilot was successful in this and I have to say, it was quite impressive

a person holding a certificate

What happens after the flight?

The balloon is neatly packed away in less than 10 minutes and you’ll take a short drive back to the tour office where you’ll receive your balloon flight certificate and make a champagne toast with the group. 

If you’ve booked an experience that includes breakfast, then you may well skip this part and head straight for your food! 

Best time of year to do a Mexico City hot air balloon ride

You’re able to take a hot air balloon ride in Teotihuacan near Mexico City throughout the year, however, the best weather conditions are meant to be from November to April.

Ultimately it all depends on what the weather is like the day of your flight!


hot air balloons in the sky

What to wear

Regardless of the time of year you’re planning to take a hot air balloon ride in Mexico, you’ll want to bring some warmer clothing as you’ll be flying early in the morning. Even in the summer months, this can be a bit chilly to start with.

Once you’re up in the air, the heat from the hot air balloon will keep you nice and toasty though, so don’t worry about any extreme layers.

I did this experience in April when it was around 25 degrees in Mexico City during the day and wore shorts and a hoody, which I then took off whilst we were in the air!

How much is it?

The price varies depending on the tour company and which experience you choose – i.e. those with transport and breakfast included will cost more.

For the basic flight experience with a reputable company, it should cost around $160-$180 per person.

hot air balloons in the sky
hot air balloons in the sky

Is it safe?

Every activity like this comes with risks and sadly there was an accident at this site just a few weeks before I was here.

That being said, there are thousands of balloons that fly in this area every year without any problems, but it does highlight the importance of choosing a reputable company like Tinggly which works with providers under strict safety measures.

How high do the balloons go?

The hot air balloons go up to a maximum of 600 meters above the ground.

Can you fly a drone? 

Whilst there is conflicting information online about whether you can or can’t fly a drone, in my experience I was unable to – or at least, not anywhere near the balloons. 

I was told that you are able to take the drone to the archaeological site and fly from there, however with the high levels of corruption and scammers in Mexico, you need to be careful that ‘officials’ don’t try to take the drone off you or fine you. If you are approached, the likelihood is that they’re just trying to get a bit of cash out of you, so it might be worth carrying some if you want to protect your drone! 

hot air balloons in the sky

Will I get motion sick? 


And, that’s coming from someone like me who suffers terribly from this. Whilst they had tablets on hand at the tour office, they advised me these weren’t really necessary – which they weren’t. 

Is it scary?

If you’re scared on heights then this might be a daunting experience for you, but there is nothing to be worried about. The journey is very smooth and the balloon pilots who operate with the tour companies advertised on Tinggly are experienced.

Explore more of Mexico

Experiencing a hot air balloon ride in Mexico City is without a doubt an experience of a lifetime, however there are many incredible things to do here.

From quirky neighbourhoods like Roma Norte and La Condessa, to more upscale and fancy ones like Polanco – it’s one of my favourite cities that I’ve been fortunate enough to spend a lot of time in. 

If you’re looking to explore more of Mexico, then heading over to Tulum and Cancun, or even Cabo is well worth it. 

🎟️ Don’t forget to grab 20% off with code ‘WILD20‘ on Tinggly until the 16th of June!

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