Balloon & Carousel

Please note: The City of Irvine continues to follow state and local health and safety guidelines. Our community centers and indoor facilities are open for drop-in use. Outdoor recreational spaces including parks, playgrounds, and athletic fields and courts are open. Recreational programming is available to the community for registration at yourirvine.org. Learn more at cityofirvine.org/reopenirvine.

Great Park Balloon flights and Carousel rides have resumed.

 


 

Great Park Balloon: Sponsored by FivePoint

The Great Park Balloon is Great Park’s iconic attraction. With the ability to soar 400 feet above the surrounding landscape, it serves as a public observation deck for Great Park’s development and offers an unmatched 360° view that spans 40 miles on a clear day.

For up-to-date flight information and weather-related availability, call the Visitors Center at 949-724-6247.

Hours

Monday–Wednesday: Closed
Thursday–Friday: 10 a.m.–3 p.m.; 7 p.m.–10 p.m.
Saturday–Sunday: 9 a.m.–3 p.m.; 7 p.m.–10 p.m.

Parking & Admission

Cost: Free, sponsored by FivePoint.
Parking and admission to the balloon are free. From parking lot #3, follow signs towards the balloon to join the line. Explore the Great Park through our interactive map here.

Boarding

  • Balloon rides are on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations are not available.
  • All rides are weather permitting and not guaranteed.
  • Check-in begins 30 minutes prior to each session of flights. When at Great Park, follow the signs to the Balloon Line.
  • Each rider* must complete an online waiver the same day of the flight. Use the link below to complete in advance, or scan the QR code at the Balloon Line. A completed waiver does not reserve a spot or guarantee a ride. 
    *A parent or guardian must sign for children younger than 18. Children younger than 13 must be accompanied by an adult. 

Balloon Waiver

Flight Rules

  • Balloon pilots reserve the right to reprioritize or split groups to maintain physical distancing. 
  • Wait times may vary based on demand and could be up to three hours; flights are not guaranteed and are weather permitting. If the line is full, Great Park staff will add your name to a waiting list and you will be contacted via text message when your flight is available. 
  • There are no age or height restrictions to fly on the Great Park Balloon. The Balloon is wheelchair accessible, allowing guests with wheelchairs and Electric Convenience Vehicles (ECV) to remain in their seat during flight. Should a wheelchair or ECV exceed the maximum dimensions permitted (25″ wide by 48.5″ long), the options to transfer to a standard wheelchair or folding chair are available at the Visitors Center.
  • Recommendations:
    • Visitors suffering from the following are advised not to fly:
      • Vertigo
      • Travel Sickness
      • Heart Problems
      • All other Conditions that are aggravated by flight
    • ​Flights are strongly discouraged for pregnant women.
    • Parents should not carry children on the gondola.

Children younger than 13 must be accompanied by an adult on Balloon flights.

Did You Know?

The Great Park Balloon is one of the largest tethered helium (not hot air) balloons and the first of its kind in the United States. It is environmentally safe, non-polluting, and virtually silent.

Standing 118 feet tall with a volume of 210,000 cubic feet, the Balloon can hold up to 30 passengers in its 1,810-pound gondola. Flying at an altitude up to 400 feet, it is always tethered to the ground by a steel cable with the strength of 99,000 pounds, making it a safe and fun experience for everyone.

Great Park Carousel

An Orange County tradition, updated with vintage-inspired scenic artwork, is a favorite for kids of all ages.

Hours & Rates

Monday–Wednesday: Closed
Thursday–Friday: 10 a.m.–10 p.m.
Saturday–Sunday: 9 a.m.–10 p.m.

All-Day Pass: $10
Single Ride: $3

Registration waivers for the Carousel can be completed online the same day as your ride:

Carousel Waiver

Please note: Balloon and Carousel hours may vary on holidays. For hours, directions, and park maps, visit ocgp.org/maps. For questions, contact the Visitors Center at 949-724-6247.