Just Wanderlust Blog » A discerning, food-loving, & culturally curious road warrior seeks the world's beautiful and bizarre destinations.

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Helicopter Tour in Los Angeles: Not Your Everyday L.A. Tour

This past weekend, to celebrate Mr. T’s birthday, I surprised him (in all his helicopter-riding-virgineous-glory… side note: did I just make up a word there?) with our own private helicopter tour of L.A.!   I tried to catch the moment I told him on video thinking that he’d be super stoked, but I’ve come to learn that he doesn’t get super crazy excited easily (such a composed man, I know).  Instead, as we pulled up to the small Hawthorne Airport, he thought I was about to take him flying again (date night we did a month ago) or skydiving again (birthday surprise a few years back).  Nope!  This time, we’re touring Los Angeles VIP-style! And let me just say… the tour was pretty damn cool.  We hovered right around 1,000ft and flew over the South Central LA (which apparently is just “Central LA” now although I still wouldn’t want to drive through it), USC, and Marina Del Ray, before swinging through Venice Beach and the Santa Monica Pier while hugging the coastline.  It reminded me of those special dates you see on The Bachelor (not that I watch…)!  Then we fly by UCLA (<3 Bruins!), Beverly Hills, and the Hollywood Hills.  Other notable sites we saw included the Playboy mansion, Paris Hilton’s house, and Johnny Depp’s house.  I thought I’ve already seen everything in Los Angeles, but I will admit it was pretty amazing to see it from that view!

(We could see people waving at us from the Santa Monica Pier)

(L.A. sure has some nice houses)

(The closest you’ll ever get to the Hollywood sign)

(Admiring Griffith Observatory from above)

(The farthest parking spot at Dodger Stadium is a mile away)

(Some of the buildings in L.A. were higher than we were!)

I’ve always thought helicopter tours were kind of “over the top” and “superfluous” given the price they charge, but after this past weekend’s tour, I am reconsidering — especially if the flights are that low to the ground! If you’re ever considering a helicopter tour, one lesson learned I’d like to pass on is to pay attention to the weather!  I actually had to reschedule the original flight due to the marine layer moving in. Anyway, if you’re visiting Los Angeles there are many helicopter companies to pick from.  If you’re curious who I went with, I chose Star Helicopters after doing a lot of research and have no regrets at all!  They were super nice, professional and quick to respond to all my emails.  Highly recommended!

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Amresh - April 25, 2012 - 10:31 pm

wow its amazing look like dreams comes true awesome.

Brock - Backpack With Brock - April 26, 2012 - 2:04 pm

Seems like a great time! Your photos are awesome!

Raji - April 27, 2012 - 10:14 pm

This looks awesome, and thrilling. I can see myself taking one similar ride when I go to LA. Thanks for sharing.

Edna - April 27, 2012 - 10:54 pm

Lovely shots and what a great idea! I’ll have to see if they’re available in Paris, I’ve got a birthday coming up…

Just Wanderlust - May 7, 2012 - 10:34 pm

Hi Edna – I bet a Paris helicopter ride would be mesmerizing! I’d be interested to know if that’s available there, too!

Ryan Rose - August 31, 2012 - 2:49 pm

Those are some great pictures of LA 🙂

James Colin Campbell - September 24, 2012 - 11:14 pm

Was that luxury home shot taken of Beverly Park or was it in Bel Air? Amazing photos!

Just Wanderlust - September 25, 2012 - 12:33 pm

Hi James – I think it was Bev Hills.

Hector Coleman - February 26, 2019 - 11:48 pm

Interesting! Thanks for sharing. Helicopter ride in Los Angeles can give great thrilling experience.

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