Last month, my job took me to the Big Island of Hawaii to do some location scouting for a client. If you aren’t familiar, the Big Island is the largest of the Hawaiian Islands and it’s also the island with the most volcanic activity! Growing up around mountains, I have been near volcanoes before but never so close to ACTIVE volcanoes.
This year, my intention when traveling for work is to really take the opportunity to explore my surroundings. I really want to appreciate all of the places that I get to travel to, even if it’s just for an afternoon. So naturally, when I found out that the best way to see the entire island was via helicopter I jumped on the opportunity to do a tour with one of the best tour companies on the island: Paradise Helicopters. From the first time I connected with their reservations department, everyone was so friendly!
Our tour required us to be at the airport by 7:30am. Not even the early hour could affect my excitement! After checking in, we met the rest of our group and were taken into a room for our safety briefing where the pilot also explained where we were going and what we could expect to see. Afterwards, grabbed some water and then we were heading out onto the tarmac to start our tour! Once we got our seat assignments, (I was in the co-pilot seat and so I had an incredible view of everything) we got strapped in and took off. When we got up in the air, you could immediately start to see all of the different landscapes and bio diversity of the Big Island. Our pilot took us over all of the major volcanoes and explained the history behind what we were seeing. Next, we flew over Volcano National Park (the highest rated national park in the United States) where we got to see an active volcano complete with lava flow!! Finally, we went around to the other side of the island to Hilo, saw incredible whales and dolphins swimming in the ocean and then flew into and over the most majestic waterfalls I’ve ever seen-seriously I felt like I was in a scene out of Jurassic Park! I think one of the most unique things about a helicopter ride is that the pilot really has the freedom to maneuver and get up close to what you are trying to see which makes the ride so much more interactive and fun! You are also connected to the pilot via your headset and can ask questions at any time making it such a personal experience. Finally, it was time to circle back and head down to reality…
I’ve done some really incredible things during my travels but truly; this was a highlight of my trip and one that I won’t forget! When choosing a tour, it’s important to know what you want to get out of your experience. My main goal was to see everything that the Big Island has to offer from active volcanoes to waterfalls and wildlife so our tour “Experience Hawaii” was perfect! To see all of the different packages and experiences, check out the website. Whether you’re on vacation with your partner, your family or you want to offer a unique experience to guests as a part of an event; a helicopter tour on the Big Island is truly the perfect way to wow anyone.