Most people who travel all over the world spend their time exploring cities and countries by foot and by vehicle. For a unique experience, consider taking a breathtaking bird’s eye view from a helicopter and discover the beauty of those cities and countries from the air. The views from the air are spectacular and those aerial views of a place look nothing like the views from the ground.
Here are 11 of the world’s coolest helicopter rides:
1 New York City
New York City is huge and one of the best ways to see the major sights quickly is taking a helicopter ride. People can see Ellis Island, Central Park, Freedom Tower and the Financial District, the Midtown skyscrapers, the George Washington Bridge, the Palisades, and Yankee Stadium from high up in the sky. They will not need to worry about the crowds or missing anything from this vantage point.
2 Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is massive and people would need to spend weeks exploring it all by foot. On a helicopter ride, people can fly over Kaibab National Forest, Marble Canyon, Point Imperial, the North and South Rims, and the section that is owned by the Hualapai Tribe.
3 Hong Kong
A helicopter ride over Hong Kong includes the downtown area as well as the islands that are in the Harbour. The downtown area is filled with skyscrapers that surround Victoria Harbour.
4 Great Barrier Reef
Most people like to explore the water and marine life around the Great Barrier Reef, but those who see this natural beauty from above get an entirely different experience. You can’t really appreciate the size and scope of this natural wonder except with a view from above. The Great Barrier Reef can be seen from space, so anyone up in a helicopter is getting an amazing view.
5 The Amalfi Coast in Italy
The Amalfi Coast is known for its beaches, sparkling water, and quaint and romantic towns. While a lot of people will want to venture from town to town, some of them will view those same towns from the sky. Many of the helicopter tours on the Amalfi Coast include stops at different towns and people are also known to take these tours when they are headed to another town for their vacation.
6 Niagara Falls
The Maid of the Mist has been a popular attraction in Niagara Falls since 1846, but helicopter rides offer people similar views and they won’t get wet in the process. On a helicopter tour, people will see the Horseshoe Falls, American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, the Niagara River, Whirlpool Rapids, the Rainbow Bridge, and the Queen Victoria Park. Everyone will be amazed as they watch upwards of four million cubic feet of water pour over the falls every minute.
7 Victoria Falls in Africa
Victoria Falls is also known as the Smoke that Thunders. Straddling the Zimbabwe-Zambia border, these falls include six gorges and two islands. Helicopter rides in this area take people over the falls and through the Zambezi National Park. Certain helicopter rides will go even further and give visitors a more comprehensive tour of the entire area.
8 Rio de Janeiro
Almost six and a half million people live in Rio de Janeiro and with that many people, it can be difficult to see the best of what the city has to offer. Many people will board a helicopter ride so that they can get up close to the 98-foot-tall Christ the Redeemer statue, plus see the Lagoon, Rio’s Botanical Gardens, the Tijuca Rainforest, Sugar Loaf Mountain, and Corcovado Mountain.
9 Iguazu Falls on the Argentina and Brazil border
The spectacular Iguazu Falls has more than 275 drops and it is twice as tall and three times as wide as Niagara Falls. In 2011, Iguazu Falls was named as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. The only way to truly experience the falls is in a helicopter and people can also see the Parana River, the Iguacu River, Three Border Landmark, and the Itaipu Dam while they are up there.
10 Cape Town, South Africa
The mountains, hills, and valleys of Cape Town are filled with indescribable beauty, most of which can only be seen from above. Helicopter tours include views of the City Bowl, Camps Bay, the Twelve Apostles, and the small villages that surround Cape Town. View both the Indian and Atlantic Oceans or combine a visit to one of Cape Town’s wine farms on a helicopter wine tour.
11 Mount Everest
Some people decide that they are going to conquer climbing Mount Everest, but for those of us who know we would never make it to the top on the strength of their mountain climbing skills, there is another way. People can ride up to the summit of the mountain via helicopter and see the same sights that they would if they had actually climbed. The helicopter will fly over the Himalayas and alpine villages as it slowly approaches the summit. You may not get the same bragging rights as climbers, but neither will you risk frostbite, falling into a crevasse, or any of the other myriad things that could befall you.
The views of the world are vastly different from the sky above and people will want to experience a view like that at least once in their life. Although, as soon as anyone goes on one of these rides, they will decide that they need to do a helicopter tour of every place that they visit in the future.