A flightseeing trip around Hong Kong is one of the most thrilling experiences of a lifetime. While it doesn’t come cheap, the exhilaration that comes with soaring like a bird above the city, harbor, mountains and countryside that make up Hong Kong is totally awesome.
One of the really amazing things is just how small Hong Kong is; once you’re up at cruising height, you’ll be able to see up to the border with China, out over the South China Sea and across the Pearl River Delta to Macau. And the forest of skyscrapers that make up the metropolitan areas seem like so many little models.
Heliservices covers almost every corner of Hong Kong — Photo courtesy of The Peninsula Hotel
There are four possible tours with Heliservices, the only flightseeing operation in Hong Kong. The first flies around Hong Kong Island, concentrating on Victoria Harbour. The flight lasts approximately 12 minutes, at a cost of HK $1,200 per head, which works out at a pricey HK$100 per minute.
Slightly longer at around 15 minutes, the Hong Kong Island Experience takes in the whole of the Island, looping down over Stanley and Aberdeen and the beaches and bays on the south of the island. The cost is HK $8,500 per head.
Longer still, the half-hour Kowloon and Hong Kong Island Experience heads north over the mountains that separate the city from the New Territories at a cost of HK $17,000 per head. Finally, the Geopark Experience, of a similar length and cost, flies east to take in Sai Kung Country Park and the Hong Kong Geopark.
The tours usually employ a seven-seater MD902 Explorer, and they're piloted by expert crews. A full safety briefing is given beforehand, and safety equipment such as lifejackets are provided.
Naturally, flightseeing is best experienced on a bright sunny day (Be sure to keep your camera lens close to the exterior glass to avoid a reflection.), but when the weather is cloudy, the flightseeing remains a stupendous activity.
Heliservices enjoys a special relationship with The Peninsula Hotel, which was refurbished in 1993 to include a helipad atop its tower. As a result, guests can simply ride an elevator to board their flightseeing trip. And for visitors in a hurry, Heliservices also operates a high-flying shuttle service to and from both Hong Kong and Macau airports, which takes in flightseeing as well as dodging the traffic jams!
Hong Kong is a sight to behold, wherever you’re placed. But from a seat in a helicopter, it’s really and truly unforgettable.