Do you want to plan a scenic helicopter tour for you and your loved one, but you’re not sure what to expect? Helicopter tours are a safe and fun way to admire the natural beauty of the Florida Keys. You can see them from a perspective that only a few people get to see.
With this in mind, read to learn all about what to expect with Ultimate-HeliTours and plan one!
Reservations vs Walk-Ins
You’ll first want to determine whether the helicopter tour company you’ve chosen offers reservations or walk-ins. If a helicopter tour is something you and your partner definitely want to experience during your visit, we recommend a reservation.
A walk-in can be your last resort if you’re not able to book a reservation at your ideal time and day. Remember that you’ll want to inform the company at least 48 hours ahead of time if you need to cancel. Since seats and flights are limited, canceling any later will probably incur fees.
It’s important that you look up the restrictions for your helicopter tour. For instance, the Robinson Raven I only accepts a maximum of three passengers and a minimum of two for a tour. If you want to book a private flight, you’ll most likely have to pay a premium fee.
There is also a combined weight limit of 550 lbs not to exceed 350 lbs. person. Children under the age of five will always need to be accompanied by an adult. People with disabilities are welcome to fly.
It’s important that you research the cost of your helicopter tour so you can ensure you stay on budget during your vacation! The average cost of a helicopter tour is $59.00 – $459,00 per person.
If you’re not sure about the time, ask the staff for their recommendations. They’ll be able to help accommodate the time you have as well as your budget.
Some people can be nervous due to a fear of flying or a feeling of precaution. It’s important to ask the company your booking whether their pilots are certified and FAA commercially rated. This means that passed all FAA tests and have the required certifications.
You’ll also want to ask the company about their safety record. Safety measures should be in place as well as regular maintenance guidelines for their helicopters with FAA-licensed mechanics.
Handling Bad Weather
Once you make your reservation, you may be nervous about bad weather intruding on your flight time. However, it’s important to know that Florida’s weather is highly unpredictable. If it does rain, it normally only lasts for 10 to 15 minutes at a time unless there’s a predicted storm.
You don’t have to wear any specific attire in order to enjoy a helicopter ride! Florida tourism is all about keeping comfortable and cool, and that’s all you need to wear when you board a helicopter. It’s important to be as comfortable as possible so you can fully enjoy your ride.
If you’re riding in a Robinson R-44 helicopter with an open cockpit, it’s recommended to bring along your camera because you’ll have plenty of opportunities to get great shots. Wide-angle lenses are perfect to show the whole scope of the land below. If you want to take photos of marine life or other wildlife, a telephoto lens will serve you better.
If you’re not sure what kind of tour of the Florida Keys is right for you, you can make your decision based on time. Many companies offer the average length for each of their tours. We recommend starting with a short time if you’re new to helicopter flights and you’re not sure what your reaction would be.
Tours that are 25 minutes are less typically include:
- Pigeon Key Island
- Seven Mile Bridge
- Vaca Key and Boot Key
- Duck Key and Hawk’s Cay
- Sunset Experience
If you want to see everything, you can expect a 60-minute flight time as you cruise 300 to 500 feet above the keys. You can also choose to get a better view of the Bahia Honda State Park or a combination of the 25-minute tours.
Ask yourself whether you want to experience an overall impression of the Keys or if you want more detailed tours of specific areas. If you want to take photos with a telephoto lens of marine life and other wildlife, consider a shorter tour that will take more time exploring specific areas.
Read the Reviews
Last but not least, before you make a decision about what company to fly with, it’s important that you read their reviews. This will give you a good, overall impression of what to expect and whether they’re a trusted company. If you find that the majority of their reviews are negative, this is a strong indication that you should stay away.
Scenic Helicopter Rides for Your Florida Keys Vacation
Scenic helicopter rides are a great way to jumpstart your tropical vacation or to wave goodbye to a scenic area that you love. If you’re afraid of your experience being ruined by motion sickness, you don’t have to worry.
Helicopter tours are smooth rides with gentle turns. You’ll be comfortable enough to take out your camera and take photos as you enjoy the unique perspective.Ready to explore your helicopter tour options of the Florida Keys? Take a look at our tour packages today to get started!
If you haven’t realized yet how great helicopter tours are, you can bet your friends and family have!
After all, the helicopter tourism market is a massive one. In 2018 alone, it raked in an astounding $851.9 million, with projections to grow by 4.7% between now and 2027—bringing the numbers to $1,253.9 million in just under seven years.
Why are helicopter trips so popular? The answer is simple: an increased interest in aerial sight-seeing. This point is especially true in beautiful and sunny Florida, where the Keys are waiting to be experienced from a bird’s-eye view: blue waters, fish and sharks, sandy beaches, historical monuments, and so much more.
If you want to experience something from a new perspective—whether you’re a resident or tourist of the Florida Keys—a scenic ride in the air is the way to do it. Below, we explain why this method of adventure is so compelling and awesome.
Helicopter Trips Provide a New Outlook on Things You’ve Seen Before
It’s as simple as that: scenic tours in the air are so much different than your average bus, bike, or walking tour. Whether it’s your first time to the Florida Keys, your tenth time, or you’re a long-time resident, there’s nothing comparable to a bird’s-eye view of a beautiful area.
From the sky, you can see crystal water, manatees, islands, wildlife, and so much more. These are things you might not get to see if you were walking, sitting on a crowded bus, or even walking around town. Some experiences are simply better from the sky, as they offer an unparalleled view of a town that’s historic and gorgeous.
At the end of the day, memories and experiences (as opposed to material items, such as souvenirs) are priceless. They bring us better satisfaction, become a part of our identities, and remain a part of us forever—unlike material goods. Booking a helicopter tour proves that.
Plus, They’re Affordable!
When you’re going on vacation, or even trying to experience your hometown in a new way, you may find that many experiences are quite costly. As a tourist, there’s the price of hotels, other types of tours, food, drinks, and more. As a resident, there are things like rent, utilities, and a slew of other charges making it difficult for you to splurge on something expensive.
Well, with helicopter trips, you’ll find they’re cost-friendly, especially when considering the experience that comes with them.
We have Discovery tours starting at under $59! With this price, you’ve got plenty of sight-seeing options: the Seven-Mile Bridge, Pigeon Key, Duck Key, Hawk’s Cay, or even a sunset experience. For only $205, you can experience sights like Bahia Honda, our famous Lighthouse, and much more..
When was the last time you had such an excellent, life-changing experience for such a good price?
They Provide Lifelong Memories in the Way That Other Experiences Don’t
You’ve ridden in a cab or an Uber. You’ve flown in a plane, taken a train ride through the country, and probably drive a car to work every day. But, what’s a more rare form of transportation you likely haven’t taken?
Simply put, a helicopter tour is more unique than your average ways of travel. Not everyone can say they’ve ridden in a helicopter, whereas many people can say they’ve taken a plane trip. This gives you an opportunity for some unique bragging rights.
Similarly, it just changes the way you see the world. A plane is too far away, while a car is too close. A helicopter is that perfect middle ground, allowing you the perspective you need to see some sights from a safe, engaging distance, without being too far away to need your binoculars.
Helicopter Tours Are Convenient and Time-Friendly
When was the last time you took a 30-minute plane trip? Heck, it takes more than thirty minutes to even get to your gate!
Similarly, a train ride is quite the commitment, and an Uber ride can be quick (but there’s not much in the way of views).
A helicopter tour, on the other hand, is a time-sensitive way to see some amazing sites when your schedule’s a little more packed than you expected. If you’re in a time crunch, you can take a 30-minute ride that doesn’t compromise greatness. You can even take a helicopter tour on the day of your departure if you plan it right!
With options ranging from 25 minutes to an hour, it’s easy and convenient to schedule a helicopter tour into your schedule. Simply book it in advance, arrive prepared, and you’ll be up and down in record time—no fantastic views spared.
Not many other tours can boast the same fantastic advantages!
Views From the Sky Are Unlike Any Other
Are helicopter trips in your future?
After checking out this article, they very well could be. Taking a helicopter tour provides a unique perspective, whether it’s something you’ve seen hundreds of times in your life or something you’ve never experienced. And that’s what helicopter tours are—an experience unlike any other!
We at Ultimate HeliTours provide an adventure that’s exciting, affordable, and memorable. You may have seen the Keys, but you’ve never seen them like this. Click here to book a tour with us today! Our variety of budgets and schedules guarantees that there’s something for everybody. We look forward to providing you with an excellent experience.
When visiting the Florida Keys, it’s easy to get lost in the tourist traps that line the islands. What many visitors miss out on is the natural beauty and history of the area.
Did you know that there are more than 1,700 islands in the keys (few are populated, however) or that there’s a shipwreck trail where Spanish vessels litter the ocean floor? If you’ve never seen the keys from the air, it’s understandable that these things might get lost in the shuffle of a typical vacation.
The best way to experience the keys is by searching for ‘helicopter rides near me’ when on vacation. If you’ve never been on a helicopter ride, you’re missing out on a once in a lifetime experience.
To find out more about riding in a helicopter and what you can expect from a helicopter ride in the Florida Keys, read on. We’ll go over some of the amazing sites you’ll see while flying high!
Benefits of Florida Keys Helicopter Tours
As mentioned before, riding in a helicopter allows you to see a new side of the Florida Keys. You’ll have an amazing view of sites that you would otherwise miss on your trip. With that said, there are many benefits of taking one of our exciting tours.
See The Keys Like Never Before
When you visit the Florida Keys, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the beauty of the area. Many people come to the keys and spend most of their time in one place, enjoying the beaches and local restaurants. They might see a lighthouse and a small piece of the coral reef too. While there’s nothing wrong with this, you’re missing out if you stay in a bubble while in the Keys.
When you go online and search for ‘helicopter rides near me’, you’re opening up the keys in ways that you can’t imagine. You’ll get a bird’s eye view of everything the keys have to offer.
From the air, you can see the hundreds of islands that make up the keys, including places that many people don’t know exist. You can see lighthouses, the amazing colors of sunset over the ocean, and the grand beauty of the Seven Mile Bridge from a new perspective.
You’ll also have the benefit of seeing it all with a knowledgeable and local pilot that can point out local secrets and areas that tourists generally don’t know about. We designed our helicopter tours to be both informative and breathtaking.
A Romantic Way To Impress A Date
The Keys are one of the most popular anniversary and wedding destinations in the world. It’s also a very popular spot for couples to come when they want to spend a week away from their regular lives.
While most of these couples spend their time on the beaches, you can spend it high above the world taking it all in with the person you love. You’ll get to see the world with your special someone, holding hands and making memories in our Robinson R44 helicopter.
Your special someone will appreciate the extra effort that you went through to make their trip to the Keys something special. Don’t settle for a normal vacation when you can have an extraordinary experience. Give your loved one something to brag about when they get back home from vacation with a helicopter ride in the Florida Keys!
All The Wildlife The Keys have to Offer
The Florida Keys have some of the most beautiful and exciting wildlife in the world. While in the Keys, you might get lucky and see some of these animals, but there are no guarantees. These animals tend to avoid humans as much as possible (rightly so), so seeing them at resorts and in the cities may not happen.
When flying above the crowds though, you’ll see many of these animals in their natural habitat. Not only will you get to see them, but you can experience them in a way that doesn’t disrupt their natural behaviors or habitats.
One of the issues that the wildlife in Florida faces is that tourists tend to go out of their way to see the unique animals and flora in the Keys. When they do so, they tend to disrupt them and wreak havoc on their wildlife. People have gone out to the beaches at night and disrupted sea turtle hatchlings, gone on boat tours and hurt manatees, and walked through vegetation and damaged food sources for our many animals.
Luckily, in the Florida Keys, we’re leading the way on sustainable tourism. One of the ways that we’re doing so is by finding innovative ways to allow people to experience wildlife with minimal interference.
With Florida Keys helicopter tours, you don’t have to worry about any of that. You’ll get to see Sea Turtles, Sharks, Tarpon, Dolphins, and more from a safe distance that doesn’t disrupt the wildlife. It’s a great way to experience nature without having a negative impact.
A Perfect Gift For Friends and Family
Whether you live in the Marathon area, are visiting the keys for an anniversary, or are throwing a birthday bash for someone, helicopter rides make amazing gifts for anyone.
Sure, you could get your loved one a cake or some flowers, but a helicopter ride will give them the best gift of all: memories. Your loved ones will get to see the Keys in a new and exciting way. They’ll always remember their helicopter ride and that you gave them something unique.
The best part about this gift is that helicopter prices aren’t as high as you may think. Our prices start as low as $59, meaning that you can give your loved one an amazing memory for less than it would cost for dinner!
We’ve had birthday parties, weddings, bachelor and bachelorette parties, and family vacations take advantage of our tours. Book yours today to see why customers rave about us on Google!
Things You’ll See on our Florida Keys Helicopter Tours
We’ve designed our tours so that you and your loved ones will get to see all the great things that the Keys has to offer. Every tour we offer showcases some of the best sites not just in Florida, but in the world.
Do you want to know what you can expect to see when choosing to take a helicopter tour with us? Let’s look at your options!
Bahia Honda State Park
This island has shown up on Spanish nautical maps for hundreds of years. The name means “deep bay” and has been in use for centuries by sailors from all over the world.
Henry Flagler, an American industrialist who played a pivotal role in the development of Florida, wanted to build a railroad that would take passengers to the Florida Keys. To link mainland Florida to the keys, it took 43 bridges. The section over Bahia Honda was the most difficult, as the bay would quickly become filled with rushing water anytime the tide changed.
After constructing the bridge in 1912, it appeared that Flagler’s vision was set in stone until a category-5 hurricane destroyed it all in 1935. The decision was made to cover the railroad with asphalt and convert the railroad into a bridge for passenger vehicles.
The Overseas highway opened in 1938, with a gas station sitting where the marina is today. After several deals with private landowners and Monroe County, the entire island came under the control of the State of Florida in 1984.
Our Bahia Honda State Park Tour will take you along the bridge, where you’ll pass over Pidgeon Key on the way to Bahia Honda. You’ll then circle the island and make your way back towards Marathon, where you’ll see Sombrero Lighthouse in the distance.
You’ll experience beautiful beaches and the amazing water of the Florida coast. You’ll potentially see sea turtles, large ocean-water fish, the stunning park, the marina (where you can rent boat slips and cabins) bicyclists, and skaters.
You’ll take a trip through history and gain a greater appreciation of the work it took to bring Florida into the 20th century.
The Sombrero Lighthouse
General George Meade designed the Sombrero Lighthouse on a mostly submerged reef. The name Sombrero Key comes from a small island found on Spanish maps that eroded away in the last half of the 19th Century.
It went into service in 1958 and became automated in 1960. As of 2015 the lighthouse no longer operates, but it’s still an important piece of Florida history. It’s the tallest lighthouse in the Keys at 142 feet. Its construction and longevity leave all who view it with a sense of awe. It’s the epitome of the lonely lighthouse, standing strong against the ocean.
The Seven Mile Bridge & Lighthouse Tour will allow you the unique opportunity to see the lighthouse from the air. You’ll see the amazing image of the lighthouse in the middle of the water, a symbol of Florida’s past juxtaposed against the Seven Mile Bridge, or Florida’s present and future.
You’ll also see the Seven Mile Bridge as you would in the previously mentioned helicopter flight. This is a perfect tour to take for history buffs, lovers of lighthouses, and anyone who has an appreciation for dramatic imagery. Seeing the lighthouse as the sun sets, with the orange sky and structure standing against the waves, is one of the best sites you’ll see in the Keys.
Duck Key is a quintessential Florida Keys island community that lies just off of mile marker 6 of the Seven Mile Bridge. The key itself consists of five islands, each with a canal separating them. This means that half of the properties are waterfront!
Bryan W Newkirk is the person that started the development of Duck Key. His golf partner at the time, Coral Gables City Attorney Ted Semple, kept telling him one day about a property in the Keys. Because Newkirk couldn’t focus on his game and wanted to finish before nightfall, he agreed to buy it for $47,000.
That seems like a bargain, and in a way it was, but it would cost Newkirk millions of dollars to develop the area and get it to where it is today. In 1952, he built the first of the bridges that connected the islands so that he could bring out a crew of people to get the land ready for development. To do so, he had to pump 2.5 billion yards of fill onto the site, construct 4 miles of canal, and build smaller islands for homes.
In short, Newkirk built one of the best parts of the key, spending millions of dollars to do so, because he wanted to play a round of golf in peace. Many people that live in the keys today would find this relatable, as that’s why some of them moved to the Keys in the first place!
During the Seven Mile Bridge, Lighthouse & Duck Key Tour, you’ll have the opportunity of a lifetime. You can see the Seven Mile Bridge, Sombrero Lighthouse, and Duck Key. It’s like taking a trip through time as you explore three of the developments that made the Keys such a popular destination for millions of tourists.
This is one of our most popular tours, especially at dusk, when you can see Duck Key light up below you. You’ll get a bird’s eye view of a modern marvel. Duck Key is the story of human ingenuity and of one man’s pursuit to play a game of golf without his buddy rambling on about a property he was trying to sell.
Pigeon Key is a small, 5-acre island that’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Many of the eight buildings that are on the island are from the original work camp that was set up to help build the Florida East Coast Railway.
Now, those buildings house administrative offices for the Pigeon Key Foundation. There’s also a museum that tells the history of Pigeon Key. At one point, there were as many as 400 workers on the small island. People that think Miami is a crowded city often realize how lucky they have it when they see the island!
There’s also a small historic district that consists of buildings remaining from when Flagler extended the railroad through the Keys. For television buffs, you may recognize the island as the finish line for contestants in The Amazing Race 18.
The island, like the others in the Keys, was inhabited by the Tequesta and Calusa tribes. As you take the Pigeon Key / Lighthouse Tour, you can almost imagine Juan Ponce de Leon charting the islands in 1513. It’s easy to see why he named the islands “Los Martires” or “The Martyrs” in English. The islands to him and his crew looked like lonely men away from their home, Florida.
Now, of course, people in the Keys would say that the mainlanders are the ones that are ‘lost’, as they get to live their life in paradise away from the troubles of the rest of the world. During this tour, you’ll get an aerial view of a historical lighthouse and island. This tour is perfect for history lovers and those that appreciate dramatic views.
Hawk’s Cay is a resort that sits between Miami and Key West. It offers one of the best resort experiences in the nation, as you get the beautiful waters of the Caribbean, the sunshine of the Keys, some of the freshest seafood in the world, and amazing water sports opportunities.
If you’re staying at Hawk’s Cay, seeing it from the air is a mind-blowing experience. There’s nothing better than watching the sunset miles above everyone else as the orange tint slowly washes over the horizon.
You’ll also get an aerial view of Key Colony Beach, a small town of about 800 residents. Most of the homes sit on canals and have quick access to the Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic Ocean. Many of the homes have ocean views, making this an ideal place to live and a beautiful place to see from the sky.
The area has a strong history, starting in 1957 when it became a part of Florida through to the Cuban Missile Crisis, which saw anti-missile units move into the city and a large exodus of residents. Today, the city is one of the most loved areas of the Keys.
Our Duck Key/Hawk’s Cay Tour will allow you to view two of the most beautiful parts of the Keys from the air, giving you a complete panorama of two amazing beach locations with the ocean as the backdrop. It will reinforce your love of the Keys and give you a memorable experience that you’ll talk about for years to come.
If you’re in the Keys and are searching for “helicopter rides near me” for you and a special someone, this tour is perfect for you!
Why Use Ultimate HeliTours?
If you’re ready to take a Florida Keys helicopter tour, Ultimate HeliTours is the best aerial tour company in Marathon and the Keys. We believe in giving our customers the best value possible and have built our company around the idea that every customer deserves a memorable experience.
Here’s why you should use Ultimate HeliTours when you want a once-in-a-lifetime memory.
All Our Pilots Have Local Knowledge
When you take a tour with us, you’re not only getting amazing views along the keys. Our pilots have extensive knowledge of the local area, meaning that they let riders know about points of interest and talk about local history on tours.
Our pilots will also take the time to answer any questions that riders may have, making our flights both fun and educational. You can bring your kids along if you want to teach them about the history of Florida!
We Believe in Safety First
Safety is our primary concern when you fly with us. The first thing that we do to guarantee your safety is to make sure that all our pilots are fully certified. Our pilots are FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) commercially rated. They’ve passed all FAA tests and obtained certifications.
We also ensure that our pilots remain compliant with all drug and alcohol requirements set by the FAA. We work hard to ensure that our helicopters are safe as well. The Robinson R44 helicopter that we use is a very safe and highly respected aircraft in the industry. Our mechanics are all certified by the FAA. We also use authorized Robinson dealers to ensure safety.
We have a 100% safety record, so when you fly with us you can sit back and relax as you take an aerial tour around the Keys.
We’ve Planned Our Tours To Show You The Best of the Florida Keys
When we set up our tours, we designed them with you in mind. Our goal is to show you the best parts of the Keys in new and exciting ways. Each tour shows off a part of the Keys that are often overlooked due to busy vacation schedules.
From the Sombrero lighthouse to Duck Key, you’ll get to see the Keys in a way that few do when you fly with us!
Ready To Fly?
Are you ready for a world-class aerial experience in the Florida Keys? We have flights seven days a week that leave from Marathon in the heart of the Keys.
Whether you want to explore the open water and look for sea-life or see the Seven Mile Bridge and Sombrero Lighthouse, we have an adventure that’s perfect for you. Bring your friends and family along for an unforgettable experience that you’ll cherish for years to come.
Don’t waste any more time searching for “helicopter rides near me”. Book your seat on our Florida Keys helicopter tours and prepare to experience the history and beauty of Florida in a new and exciting way. You can also contact us if you have any questions!