All being well, a Sunday morning in June will see up to 50 hot air balloons drifting over central London.

This is the Lord Mayor’s Hot Air Balloon Regatta, a now annual event that raises money for the Lord Mayor’s charity, and gives early risers on a Sunday morning a lovely sight of all the balloons silently drifting over sleepy London.

The lift-off is weather dependent and takes place from Battersea at first light on a Sunday morning in June.

Balloon lift-off in 2015

Hopefully, they’ll head eastwards over the city, but that’s down to the wind direction on the day. Obviously, they can’t control the wind, so there’s an outside chance they’ll drift a bit more to the south or north than hoped for.

The following standby dates are confirmed for this year:

  • 6th June 2021

Update 3rd June – weather looking favourable for the 6th June lift-off. Confirmation expected Friday evening.

Update 4th June – stand down, due to low winds. Next update expected at 4pm on Thursday 10th June.

  • 13th June 2021

Update 10th June – The conditions look favourable to place The Lord Mayor’s Hot Air Balloon Regatta 2021 on official standby for Sunday June 13th 2021. The next update will be released on Friday 11th June 2021 around 4pm.

Update 11th June – The forecast has been subject to some fluctuation in wind speeds and direction in the last 24 hours but is still within the realms of permitting balloon regatta to proceed. In light of the forecast they will provide a further update at midday on Saturday 12th June 2021 as to whether this will be stood down or given the Green light.

Update 12th June – Cancelled.

The forecasted conditions were acceptable at launch time, but as the morning goes on the wind speeds will slow down which will prevent us from clearing the city within two hours. The next standby date is 18th July 2021.

  • 18th July 2021
  • 25th July 2021

They’ll be on standby with a confirmation usually issued on the Friday afternoon around 4pm that the weather looks favourable, although even then, last minute changes can scupper lift-off.

Lord Mayor’s own balloon


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  1. Bob says:

    Britain is a lot more than London centric!!!

    • ianVisits says:

      This London based website that writes about things to do in London for people in London is unsurprisingly going to have more articles about London than non-London.

    • Adam T says:

      Wow.. thanks for letting us know, Bob.

  2. TT says:

    Oh thank god, that hopefully means there will be no helicopters in the sky. Such a rare occurrence.

  3. John says:

    I remember many years ago being woken one Sunday morning by strange noises outside, I looked out to see many hot air balloons floating in the sky past Charlton. It was the sound of the heaters that woke me. Absolutely beautiful sight that hopefully I’ll see again soon in June.

  4. Jody steere says:

    What time (besides morning) do the balloons take off? or should we look up??

    • ianVisits says:

      “The lift-off is weather dependent and takes place at first light on a Sunday morning in June.”

  5. jennifer hayden says:

    I love Ian Visits , as person who lives in London it gives me opportunity to know about events , historical and new that happen in town Like the Balloon event , I thinks its a great site well done , many a event I have gone to or told friends about that were published here, they have enjoyed .

  6. Sanna says:

    Wow, super exotic. My neighbour saw hot air balloon drifting above 6.30 am this morning, East London. Thanks for sharing the joy!

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