Longleat’s Sky Safari hot air balloon event lived up to its name on Tuesday when a group of exotic animals took to the skies above Longleat House.
The launch of the animal-shaped balloons, which included a koala, a cheetah, a wolf, a panther, a lion and an owl, marked the official start of Europe’s largest annual hot air balloon event which takes place at the Wiltshire estate from Friday 13th to Sunday 15th September.
Leading the aerial menagerie was Longleat’s newest arrival Adelaide, a hot air balloon in the shape of a koala, which celebrates the opening of their major new Koala Creek display, home to a group of the iconic Australian marsupials.
There will be as many as 30 other special shaped balloons making an appearance over the weekend; either flying or taking part in tethered displays with everything from a flying recreation of the Brandenburg Gate, a giant emoji and a full-sized version of the famous animated balloon from Up.
Pilots from as far afield as the USA, United Arab Emirates and Lithuania will be taking part in the event as part of more than 150 individual teams.
Now in its fourth year, Sky Safari is one of the Wiltshire attraction’s most popular events; featuring spectacular mass launches, tethered daytime displays and dramatic night glows.
Night glows, where tethered balloons are choreographed to a specially selected soundtrack, lighting up the night sky as their burners fire up in time to the music, will be taking place on Friday and Saturday.
Longleat has partnered with Exclusive Ballooning to put on the event which has attracted current and former world champions in hot air ballooning from Japan, USA and UK competitions.
Please be aware ballooning is weather dependent, and timings and launches may be subject to change. In particularly adverse conditions some launches and displays may have to be postponed or cancelled.
Sky Safari is included as part of a Day Ticket to Longleat however visitors are advised to book in advance of their trip.
• For full details and to book online go to https://clicktime.symantec.com/3Pdy7EfNPLcBivCis3vF5Ee6H2?u=www.longleat.co.uk%2Fwhats-on%2Fsky-safari .