Where to Ride Hot Air Balloons in the Philippines and Other Fun Air Activities

Where to Ride Hot Air Balloons in the Philippines and Other Fun Air Activities

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Main bannerThe Philippines is known as one of the top adventure destinations in the world. While the country is also widely known for its breathtaking beaches and stunning islands, there are plenty of options when it comes to adventure activities in the Philippines. You can try shipwreck diving in Coron, spelunking in the caves of Sagada, and canyoneering in Cebu

In recent years, the Philippines has also become an emerging destination for hot air balloon rides, as well as other air recreational activities like paragliding, sky diving, ultralight flying, and paragliding. These activities are available in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao, so whichever part of the Philippines you are visiting, you will have options nearby.

If you’re looking for the best places to try air-based adventure activities, this guide will help you find the perfect Philippine destination to go to. 

Where to Ride Hot Air Balloon in the Philippines

Hot air balloonHot air balloon rides in the Philippines have become popular in the last couple of decades, thanks to the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta, which has been showcasing hot air balloons and other aircraft since 1994. 

Philippine Hot Air Balloon Fiesta 2024 in New Clark City, Tarlac

Hot air balloon PIHABFThe Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta is an annual event that is dubbed “A weekend of everything that flies.” The next one will be happening from February 16 to 18, 2024, and while it was previously held in Pampanga, it will now be happening in New Clark City in Tarlac. 

You can ride a hot air balloon at the festival (an additional cost must be paid on top of the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta tickets) for around 30 minutes to an hour. You can also try other recreational activities in the air like tandem skydiving, tandem paragliding, and going on a helicopter ride at the festival.

Helicopter rideWhile in the province, you can also try other things to do in Tarlac, including hiking at Mount Pinatubo and visiting Monasterio de Tarlac.


Chocolate Hills BoholBohol is most known for the iconic Chocolate Hills, and one of the best ways to see them is from a hot air balloon ride. Unfortunately, this tour is not available anymore, but it allowed travelers to enjoy the ride for around 45 minutes. The route passed directly above the Chocolate Hills, providing a bird’s eye view of the popular tourist attraction.

You can still see the Chocolate Hills on land by joining Bohol countryside tours that will take you to other Bohol tourist spots like the Loboc River and the Tarsier Sanctuary. You can also experience firefly-watching in the Philippines at the Abatan River.

Paragliding in the Philippines

Tandem paraglidingParagliding is an extreme air adventure activity that uses free parachutes and hills or mountains to allow humans to take flight. To take off, a paraglider must put on all the equipment needed and then run down a slope so that the parachute can catch air and lift them. If you are a beginner, you can start by trying tandem paragliding.

San Mateo, Rizal

ParaglidingThanks to its hills and mountains, Rizal is a great spot for paragliding, and one of the best places to try it is in San Mateo. However, because paragliding largely relies on the wind, you can only try paragliding here from June to October to take advantage of the westerly winds. This coincides with the rainy season, so be prepared for flights to be rescheduled or canceled because of bad weather.

Masungi Georeserve Rizal

If you are lucky enough to take flight here, you will be treated to stunning views of the Rizal mountains and the Metro Manila skyline. While in the province, you can visit other Rizal tourist spots like the Masungi Georeserve and the Pinto Art Museum.

Cagayan de Oro

Cagayan de Oro paraglidingCagayan de Oro is known as the Whitewater Rafting Capital of the Philippines, which you can experience with Cagayan de Oro tours, but another extreme sport you can experience here is paragliding. Head to Amaya in Indahag Hills so you can try tandem paragliding with a professional. During this experience, you will be able to take in beautiful views of the city and Indahag Hills.

Make the most out of your visit by checking out other Cagayan de Oro tourist spots, including the Cagayan de Oro River and Kweba de Oro. You can also visit Seven Seas Waterpark in Misamis Oriental, which is one of the best theme parks in the Philippines.

Legazpi, Albay

Mayon VolcanoMayon Volcano is the most popular tourist attraction in Albay, and paragliding in Legazpi allows you to see it from a unique perspective. When paragliding in Legazpi, not only will you be treated to breathtaking views of the volcano, but you’ll also see Poliqui Bay, Albay Gulf, and the surrounding greenery.

Here, the flying season is from October to May, and you can take off from the Noah Rhyme Flysite, which is around 120 meters above sea level. 

Other Legazpi tourist spots you shouldn't miss are the Cagsawa Ruins, Daraga Church, and  Ligñon Hill Nature Park.

Carmona, Cavite

Paragliding aerial viewCarmona has been hosting paragliders for more than a decade, and thanks to its accessibility, it has become a favorite spot for those who live in Metro Manila. Paragliding in Carmona utilizes the winds coming from Laguna de Bay and will reward you with bird’s eye views of Metro Manila, Tagaytay, and Mount Makiling.

The best time to try paragliding in Carmona, Cavite, is during the Amihan season, which usually falls from October to March.

Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine CaviteSince you’re already in the province, you can also check out other Cavite tourist spots like the Emilio Aguinaldo Shrine and Museum and the Malibiclibic Falls.

Oslob, Cebu

Sumilon Island CebuWhen you mention Oslob, most people immediately think of swimming with whale sharks, but you can also enjoy tandem paragliding here, and if you want to learn how to paraglide on your own, Oslob Cebu Paragliding Development offers paragliding lessons.

Whether you choose to do it with a professional or learn how to fly on your own, paragliding in Oslob will provide you with views of Oslob’s verdant hills and mountains. Just note that while paragliding in Oslob is available year-round, it is extremely weather-dependent, so sometimes the waiting times for safe take-off can take hours.

During your stay here, you may also visit other tourist spots in Oslob, including Sumilon Island and Tumalog Falls.


Gumasa BeachFor paragliding in Sarangani, head to SAFI Ranch in Maasim. This area is a known paragliding site across the world, as it has hosted the International Paragliding Accuracy Competition, the Paragliding Accuracy World Cup, and the National Paragliding Fun Fly and Costumed Flying Event.

Those who are inexperienced can try tandem paragliding, which will allow you to see amazing views of Sarangani Bay. If you find yourself loving the experience, you may also book paragliding lessons here. 

While you’re in Sarangani, make the most of your visit by visiting other destinations like Sarangani Bay and Gumasa Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches in the Philippines.

Where to Go Skydiving in the Philippines

Skydiving Skydiving is for adventure seekers looking for an adrenaline rush, as it involves jumping off an aircraft and experiencing a few moments of freefall before parachuting to the ground. You can experience this exhilarating activity in several destinations, each providing you with different views of landscapes as you are floating in the air. For beginners, tandem skydiving with a professional is recommended.

Bantayan Island, Cebu

Bantayan Island CebuBantayan Island is famous for its pristine beaches, a mangrove forest, and caves, but you can see the island’s glory from above when you go skydiving. You can find the only United States Parachute Associated (USPA) Member dropzone in Cebu here.

Tandem skydivingWhile licensed skydivers can skydive here, anyone who wants to try it for the first time can go tandem skydiving, which includes a 15- to 20-minute instructional class pre-flight. Once you are ready, you and your tandem instructor will board an aircraft and jump, descending to the ground with views of the Bantayan Island landscapes.

After landing, you can continue your exploration by visiting Bantayan Island tourist spots like Kota Beach and Ogtong Cave.



SkydivingApart from Cebu, Pampanga is the most popular place for skydiving in the Philippines, especially for those who want to learn the basics. When the Philippine International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta was held in the province, people took advantage of the tandem skydiving being offered at the festival. 

Since the event has moved to Tarlac, visitors can try their luck with private companies that offer tandem skydiving. 

Mt Pinatubo trekWhile you’re here, you can visit other tourist spots in Pampanga, like Mount Pinatubo and Sandbox. Since the province is considered the Culinary Capital of the Philippines, you can also try some of the best Filipino cuisine here by going on a Pampanga food trip.

Vigan, Ilocos Sur

Vigan Calle Crisologo

Vigan may be known for its cobblestone streets and is one of the Philippines’ UNESCO Heritage Sites, but you can also experience the thrill of a lifetime when you go tandem skydiving here.

Of course, you will need to undergo a safety briefing before the actual activity, but when you are ready, you will board an aircraft that will take you approximately 10,000 feet in the air. From there, you will be diving with your instructor, who will ensure your safety until you land. 

After skydiving, you can enjoy more laid-back activities and serene tourist spots in Vigan, including going on a horse-drawn carriage or a kalesa ride or strolling along Calle Crisologo.

Mati, Davao Oriental

Davao Mati BeachWhile it is not available year-round, skydiving in Mati, Davao Oriental, is still a must-try. Not only is it the first destination in Mindanao to offer tandem skydiving, but it was also the host of the first Philippine-Taiwan Skydive Boogie, where Filipino and Taiwanese skydivers jumped out of planes together. 

You should definitely keep an eye out for when it becomes available again, as experiencing skydiving in Mati will allow you to see the pristine coast of Davao. When that happens, you should also check out other Davao tourist spots in the region, like Samal Island and the Philippine Eagle Center.


Zambales Anawangin CoveApart from Pampanga, Zambales is the easiest dropzone to access from Metro Manila, as you can reach it via a road trip. The dropzone here can be found in Iba, with the aircraft taking off at Iba Airport. 

Like some destinations on this list, skydiving in Zambales is not available year-round, and those who want to try it need to wait for the next available schedule. The experience will be worth the wait, as you will see gorgeous views of the Zambales coast.

If you have time, you should also visit Zambales tourist spots like Anawangin Cove and Capones Island, which you can explore by booking Zambales tours.

Ultralight Flying in the Philippines

Ultralight flyingAs its name suggests, ultralight flying involves riding a light and small aircraft that is designed to carry only one or two passengers. It usually flies lower than bigger aircraft for safety reasons. In the Philippines, two places where you can try this are Pampanga and Mati, Davao Oriental.


Ultralight interiorIn Pampanga, you can head to Magalang (which shares a border with Angeles City) and take a trial intro ultralight flight with Angeles City Flying Club. You will be aboard the aircraft with a commercially licensed coach and fly for around 15 minutes. At some point, you will even be able to take control of the aircraft! 

Mt ArayatDuring the flight, you’ll soar above Pampanga farmlands and see a spectacular view of Mount Arayat. Should you wish to fly more, you can even take the Ultralight Flight Discovery Program, which will allow you to be certified to fly all over the world.

Since you will already be near Angeles City, you can also try other things to do in Clark, Pampanga, like exploring Clark Safari and Adventure Park.

Mati, Davao Oriental 

Dahican BeachWhile waiting for a skydiving schedule to open up in Mati, Davao Oriental, you can try ultralight flying. Here, you can fly above the famous Dahican Beach and see the turquoise waters and white sand from a bird’s eye view.

Like in Pampanga, a trial intro ultralight flight here lasts for around 15 minutes, allowing you to enjoy the views while feeling an adrenaline rush. Take note that ultralight flying here is weather-dependent and may be canceled during bad weather. The best time to fly here is early in the morning, right after sunrise, when the winds are not strong. 

Plan your trip and experience these recreational activities in the air in the Philippines!

Paragliding bannerApart from riding hot air balloons, there are plenty of other outdoor recreational activities that you can try in the Philippines, like skydiving, paragliding, and ultralight flying. The best part is there are many places in the Philippines where you can experience these activities.

For drivable destinations, you can rent a car in the Philippines, and for those that will require you to take a flight, you can book airport to hotel transfers to make your trip more comfortable.

You may also book Philippine vacation packages to make your visit to the country hassle-free.

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