A Timeline Of Hot Air Balloons

A Timeline Of Hot Air Balloons

A Timeline Of Hot Air Balloons

Hot air ballooning in Melbourne is quite the attraction for locals and tourists alike. If you have been privileged enough to experience the thrill of a hot air balloon ride in Melbourne or anywhere in the world, you know how peaceful and exhilarating it feels to be floating through the skies and enjoying the city from bird’s view. If you are going to experience a hot air balloon ride for the first time in your life, why not travel to Northam in May, where the national championships are being held. In the battle of the sexes, women have no opposition in September, also in Northam, where the World Women’s Ballooning Championship will be held.

Welcome to Liberty Balloon Flights where we help you experience one of the most scenic tours of your life with our hot air balloon rides. Pilots at Liberty Balloon Flights have been flying since 1993 and our company has been operating hot air balloon flights over Melbourne since 2002 and we now also fly in Perth (Avon Valley), WA

Outlined below is a historic timeline of how hot air balloon rides have gained popularity and attraction:

The Timeline: 

September 19, 1783

In the year 1783, scientist Francois Pilatre De Rozier helped to launch his first hot air balloon on record, called the ‘Aerostat Réveillon’.  Built my the Montgolfier brothers, the balloon rose quickly off the ground, carrying a sheep, a duck and a rooster. Just after 15 minutes, the balloon landed on the ground with all passengers safe. 

November 21, 1783

Two months after this first flight, the Montgolfier brothers Etienne & Joseph launched their very first manned hot air balloon in Paris. The balloon was made from paper and silk and successfully travelled across the city in around 20 minutes. The aeronauts on board were, again, Pilatre De Rozier and nobleman François Laurent d’Arlandes



January 7, 1785

After Rozier’s failed and fatal attempt at flying across the English Channel, French Balloonist Jean Pierre Blanchard flew across from France to England successfully. This was a huge step towards discovering long-distance balloon travelling

January 9, 1793

George Washington witnessed Jean Pierre Blanchard become the first man to fly a balloon in North America. 

1800s to 1950s

For around hundred and fifty years, the ballooning industry was relatively dormant until 1983, when gas balloons slowly outranked the hot air balloon and hydrogen gas balloons became the preferred method of aviation. 

Late 1950s

Ed Yost brought manned air balloons and created the idea of every balloon carrying its own fuel source. 

1960-October 22

Using new propane burners, Yost was able to fly his modern first air balloon in Nebraska’s Bruning, flying for 1 hour and 35 minutes. 


The practicality of hot air ballooning was proved by Yost and Don Piccard who flew The Channel Champ across the English Channel.




Per Lindstrand & Richard Branson were the first to cross the Atlantic in a hot air balloon. The pair set multiple records by flying over 4600 kilometres in 33 hours in the largest hot air balloon the world had ever seen. 


The World Altitude Record was set by Per Lindstrand by achieving the highest recorded solo flight in a hot air balloon, a large 19812 meters!


Richard Branson and Per Lindstrand collaborated for one of the most breathtaking adventures of all time, flying in a hot air balloon across the Pacific. In 47 hours, they travelled for 10782 kilometres, from Japan to Canada, breaking the record by travelling at a speed of 394 km/ph. 

June 19, 2002

The world saw Steve Fossett’s 55 metre tall hybrid gas balloon. He became the first man to circumnavigate the world, solo, in a hot air balloon! 

The entire experience of flying in a hot air balloon is a gift, whether it is for your friends, your family or for yourself. Get in touch with us today to book a hot air balloon in Melbourne, in Geelong or in Perth (Avon Valley) and the exciting breakfast options that are included in our packages. Call us today at +61 400 694 299, send an email to info@libertyballoonflights.com.au or fill in our enquiry form on our website to explore the skies Melbourne and Yarra Valley have to offer.


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