Often described as a “once in a lifetime experience”, helicopter tours offer you a unique opportunity to see the world’s most famous icons and cities from above. Only in a helicopter can you hover, land and gain access to areas that would otherwise be off limits to tourists. It’s a great way to start or finish a holiday, and for many travelers, a helicopter tour is the absolute highlight of their trip. This year, New York City and Las Vegas helicopter tours were our travelers top picks! With such iconic attractions and amazing skylines, it’s no wonder helicopter tours in these areas are consistently popular.
From natural wonders to amazing skylines, here’s our complete list of our top 10 most popular helicopter tours:
#10. Niagara Falls
You don’t need to go over the Falls in a barrel to get your kicks. Enjoy just as big a thrill (and the best views!) from the safety of your seat on the Niagara Falls Grand Helicopter Tour. On this 20-minute scenic helicopter tour you’ll get panoramic views of Niagara Falls, as well as see Niagara’s historic landmarks and fly over the region’s renowned wine country.
#9. Uluru and Kata Tjuta from Ayers Rock
See Ayers Rock, one of Australia’s most spectacular icons, from the air on an Uluru and Kata Tjuta Tour by Helicopter from Ayers Rock. Don’t settle for just seeing these these significant landmarks from a distance! Get a real sense of their enormity and uniqueness from above on this helicopter tour of Australia‘s remote and beautiful Red Centre.
#8. Great Barrier Reef
Choose to fly and cruise the world’s largest reef system on a Great Barrier Reef Scenic Helicopter Tour and Cruise from Cairns. Spot turtles and other marine life from above and then explore beneath the water on a snorkeling or coral-viewing adventure.
#7. Franz Josef & Fox Glacier
Find out why Heli Hiking Franz Josef is described by those who’ve done it as “a trip of a lifetime”. Only in a helicopter can you access the most remote and pristine areas of the Franz Josef Glacier. This tour combines a scenic helicopter flight over Franz Josef Glacier with a two-hour guided walk through the ice caves, pinnacles and seracs of New Zealand‘s South Island.
#6. Sydney Harbour
Take the Sydney Harbour Tour by Helicopter and see one of the world’s most beautiful harbor cities from the air. Gain a unique perspective on Sydney’s famous icons like the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House as you peer down at the yachts and ferries in the sparkling water below.
#5. San Francisco City Tour
Get a bird’s eye view of one of the world’s most famous cities. The San Francisco Vista Grande Helicopter Tour will whisk you over and under(!) the Golden Gate Bridge, hover above Alcatraz and even fly you as far as Sausalito! Expect to see all of San Francisco’s well-known landmarks including Fisherman’s Wharf, Coit Tower, the financial district and the spectacular Pacific coastline.
#4. Grand Canyon Tour from Arizona/Grand Canyon National Park
With so many Grand Canyon tours on offer how do you choose between them? Well, our travelers have voted and the 45-minute Helicopter Flight Over the Grand Canyon from Tusayan, Arizona comes in at number four. Fly over the Kaibab National Forest and see the Painted Desert, the Marble Canyon and Point Imperial as you fly through the Canyon and climb above the North Rim to the Dragon Corridor, the Canyon’s widest and deepest section. For a shorter version of this tour, check out the 25-minute Grand Canyon Dancer Helicopter Tour from Tusayan, Arizona.
#3. Las Vegas Strip
Prepare to be dazzled as you hover over the lights of Sin City on this great value Las Vegas Night Strip Helicopter Tour. Champagne in hand, you’ll fly past New York New York, Bellagio, Paris, the Venetian, Caesars Palace, Treasure Island, the Stratosphere Tower, Fremont Street and downtown. On your return, you’ll be lit up by the Luxor Pyramid’s space beam. For a bit longer version of this tour, check out the Vegas Strip and Hoover Dam Twilight Helicopter Tour and, in addition to the Las Vegas strip, experience scenic views of Lake Mead and Hoover Dam at sunset!
#2. New York City Tour
Don’t get lost in the maze of the world’s most famous city. See Manhattan’s skyline and its famous landmarks from the air on the Big Apple Helicopter Tour of New York. Enjoy unsurpassed close ups of the Statue of Liberty, the iconic Empire State Building, the Art Deco brilliance of the Chrysler Building, and the sprawling green expanse of Central Park. Looking for something slightly different? As our second most popular helicopter-tour destination, it’s hard to go wrong with any helicopter tour you choose. Check out all of our New York City Helicopter Tours and find the perfect fit for you!
#1. Grand Canyon West Rim from Las Vegas
And the winner is…. the Grand Canyon All American Helicopter Tour! For obvious reasons, helicopter tours offer the best and often the only way to appreciate the might and grandeur of the incredible Grand Canyon, and the Grand Canyon All American Helicopter Tour is by far our most popular helicopter trip! This fantastic half-day tour has over 90 minutes of flying time as you take in Lake Mead, Hoover Dam, the Grand Canyon AND Las Vegas from above. Come back down to earth with a champagne picnic deep in the canyon!
The following Grand Canyon tours are popular runners up. There’s heaps of variation so you can choose a tour that best suits your needs.
– Viator Travel Team