Elevation is a skill enjoyed only by certain winged species and whimsical English nannies with state-of-the-art umbrella technology. Today's Groupon lifts you up without the hassle of being reborn as a bird: for $126, you get a hot air balloon ride and champagne brunch from Tucson Balloon Rides ($229 value).
Tucson Balloon Rides operates sunrise hot air balloon rides over the spectacularly scenic Sonoran desert, Tucson Mountains, and Saguaro National Park. You'll arrive on site about 45 minutes before sunrise, and board one of two balloons: one accommodates up to four passengers, and the other seats up to eight. The balloon and its eager cargo will then peacefully ascend to heights of 500–4,000 feet above the ground, where the balloon floats at 10–15 miles per hour, drifting with the wind for an hour or more. Your ride will be piloted by a certified ballooner who will alert you to local landmarks, roaming wildlife, and pesky ex-boyfriends that wander the earth below. A post-ride champagne brunch is included in the price of this deal, polishing off the approximately three-and-a-half hour adventure.
Rising above the earth can be a wonderful way to get away from it all, as the high-altitude sights and sounds offer a serene escape from the pesky demands of life and gravity. Take this opportunity to transcend your reality, and dress accordingly in comfortable clothes that are designed to get dusty. Call or e-mail to schedule your flight.
Passengers must be over 6 years old. Flights are only available September through April.
Tucson Balloon Rides
As the sun rises and illuminates the jagged Sonoran Desert with rose-colored light, colorful hot-air balloons rise into the sky right along with it. This scene occurs seven days a week from September to April during Tucson Balloon Rides' one-hour sunrise floats. Soaring with the morning's easy wind currents, FAA-certified pilot Kevin Wilbur ferries passengers for 10 to 15 miles at altitudes between 500 and 4,000 feet over the cacti forests of Saguaro National Park West and the shrub-covered flatlands of Avra Valley. While gliding over the Tucson Mountains, he also points out important sites as well as deer, foxes, and coyotes. After a gentle touchdown, Captain Kevin and guests enjoy a champagne toast and brunch. If the voyage inspires anyone to become a hot-air-balloon pilot or a cloud, he can also help them earn their private or commercial pilot license with his training program.