Grand Canyon Helicopter Tours for the Ultimate Perspective

If standing on the rim to peer into the canyon is an amazing sight, imagine what the gorge looks from high above. Grand Canyon helicopter tours make this idea reality; what better way to experience the canyon than to see it cut a full length swath through the land?

“The scenery was beautiful,” said tour participant Debbie Johnson of Ames, Iowa. “It was a clear day so you could see for miles.” After receiving a Grand Canyon helicopter tour as a Christmas present from her husband, the Johnsons headed to Arizona. Booked through a tour company, the package included a small plane flight from Scottsdale to the canyon, where they boarded the helicopter.

“I would recommend the helicopter flight but not the plane ride to the canyon,” said Johnson. “I would just drive there.”

Their one hour trip flew over the canyon; guests can typically choose whether to fly over or into the canyon. The helicopter, as it turned out, was not the most spacious. “They called it a six passenger but it was crowded, with two passengers being small children. [My husband] said not to use the word roomy.”

A number of Scottsdale and Las Vegas based tour companies offer Grand Canyon helicopter tours, otherwise you can go directly to the helicopter company and cut out the middle man.

Grand Canyon helicopter tours operate daily from airfields located just outside the National Park. Tours last from 30 minutes to one hour; tickets range from $100 to $200 per person. Some companies host tours during sunset so that guests may watch the setting sun light up the coloured, striated rocks of the canyon.

Some companies to consider:

Papillon Helicopters has been flying over the canyon for 39 years.

The Grand Canyon Tour Company provides package deals, letting guests customize their trip with hotels and car rentals.

GrandCanyon.com is an online planning tool that relies on Scenic Airlines for all its flights.

Contact the Grand Canyon Chamber of Commerce for information and a list of helicopter tour companies. If you plan to use your own air transport, contact the Grand Canyon Airport.