Helicopter tours in Big Island, Hawaii – prices, duration, what to expect

Big Island Helicopter Tour

Image: Bluehawaiian.com

The Big Island is the largest island in Hawaii. It has many natural attractions such as green-colored Papakolea beach, black-colored Punalu’u beach, lush rainforests, and active volcanoes like Kilauea and Mauna Loa. 

Since most of these sites are best seen from the air, helicopter tours of Big Island are popular with tourists. 

These helicopter tours come in many flavors and take off from Kailua-Kona, Hilo, and Waimea.

This article shares everything you must know before booking a helicopter tour of Big Island, Hawaii.

Cancellation policy

You can cancel your helicopter tour of Big Island, Hawaii, up to 24 hours before the experience for a full refund. 

All air tours over Hawaii require good weather. 

If it is canceled due to poor weather (heavy rain, low cloud ceilings, lightning, or extreme winds), you will be offered a different date or a full refund. 

Failure to show up for your appointment without notice will result in the cancellation of your tour without a refund.


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Helicopter tours from Kona

Kailua-Kona is a town on the west coast of the Big Island, also known as Hawaii Island.

Since it offers better weather, beaches, snorkeling, the latest resorts, and more nightlife, most tourists prefer to stay in Kailua-Kona. 

As a result, some of the best helicopter tours in Big Island take off from the Kona Airport. 

We list them below – 

Big Island Spectacular Helicopter Tour

This helicopter tour of the Big Island takes you above Hawaii’s stunning peaks, beaches, and valleys.

View lava flowing from volcanoes, fly over the lush rain forests of the Hamakua Coast and end your journey with views of the Kohala Mountains’ waterfalls.

Only a helicopter tour allows you to see so many of Hawaii’s attractions in one trip and from such a unique vantage point.

You can choose an 8 am departure or a 1.30 pm afternoon take-off. 

Duration in the air: Two hours

Cost of the tour: $760 per person


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The Big Island Experience

You get treated like a VIP on this tour because it is a private 4-passenger helicopter tour of the Big Island from Kona.

If you want to take your Hawaii vacation to the sky, this is the perfect experience.

Your pilot explains the terrain below, including valleys, waterfalls, coastline, and—of course—an active volcano. 

You will head straight to Kilauea via the saddle running between Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, Hawaii’s tallest mountains.

Duration in the air: Two hours

Cost of the tour: $550 per person


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Kona Coast Helicopter Tour

This trip is the best helicopter tour to explore Kona Coast from the air.

You will fly from Kona Airport (Southbound) past Honokohau Bay, Kona Town, Keauhou to the famous Captain Cook or (Northbound) to the famous Kua Bay, Kiholo Bay, Hapuna Beach, and Kawaihae. 

This heli tour gets even more popular during the whale season because you get to spot whales from the top. 

Duration in the air: 30 minutes

Cost of the tour: $175 per person


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Volcano and Kohala Landing Helicopter Tour

Experience the breathtaking scenery of Hawaii’s Big Island from the air, the way it was designed to be seen.

On this fantastic helicopter trip, soar over the Big Island’s rocky coastline, active volcanoes, and gushing waterfalls.

While soaking up stunning airborne views of the smoldering Kilauea Volcano and the magnificent mountains and sea cliffs of the Kohala Coast, listen to expert narration from your pilot.

Land on a remote rarely visited section of the island and explore the quiet tropical paradise.

After you have had your fill, climb back aboard the helicopter to continue your flying tour of Hawaii’s natural landmarks. 

Duration in the air: Three hours

Cost of the tour: $750 per person


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Helicopter tours from Hilo

Located on the northeastern side of the island of Hawaii, Hilo offers breathtaking natural beauty.

Lots of helicopter tours take off from Hilo International Airport, out of which we recommend two of the best below.

Lava and Rainforests Adventure by Helicopter

This Big Island helicopter flight from Hilo is a must-do for adrenaline junkies.

On this aerial adventure, you fly over the island’s volcanic landscape and peer into craters, and spot lava. 

During the tour, you also enjoy stunning waterfalls and other natural features of the Big Island.

Duration in the air: 60 minutes

Cost of the tour: $350 per person


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Circle of Fire Helicopter Tour

During this 45-minute long tour taking off from Hilo, you will fly over Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

You will enjoy an aerial perspective of the Kilauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes and stunning views of Earth’s most geologically active environment. 

The highlight of this trip is the Halemaumau Crater, and all through your pilot will share facts, stories, and history about the landmarks. 

Duration in the air: 45 minutes

Cost of the tour: $400 per person


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Helicopter tours from Waimea

Waimea is known for its lush green hills, its proximity to the impressive Waipi’o Valley, and the beautiful white sand beaches on the north Kona and Kohala coast.

Many helicopter tours of Hawaii’s Big Island take off from the Waimea Kohala Airport, and we recommend a few below. 

Big Island’s Volcano Helicopter Tour

This experience is the ideal heli tour to explore Hawaii in a short time.

You will see the steam vents and fiery lava streams of Kilauea and marvel at the Hamakua Coast’s rain forest. 

View Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa while soaring over Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and hover above waterfalls cascading from the cliffs of Kohala.

After the tour is over, you can purchase souvenir photos and HD flight videos on USB. 

Duration in the air: 1 hour 45 minutes

Cost of the tour: $599 per person


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Doors-Off Tour of Kohala Valleys and Waterfalls

This open-door helicopter tour of the Big Island takes you deep into the heart of Kohala.

The 4-seater doors-off helicopter takes you over Kohala’s valleys and waterfalls and puts you up close to towering cliffs along the coast.

It is the best way to see the lush grandeur of the island’s valleys and waterfalls.

This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to feel the scorching heat of volcanic lava.

A two-way headset provides live commentary, guaranteeing that you don’t miss a thing.

Duration in the air: 30 minutes

Cost of the tour: $370 per person


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Kohala and Hamakua Coast Flight

On a helicopter flight along the Big Island’s east coast, see the island from a fresh perspective. 

This experience is an excellent aerial tour of valleys and waterfalls along the Kohala/Hamakua Coast.

View the island’s wide valleys, sheer ocean cliffs, old mountains, and magnificent waterfalls from a bird’s eye perspective. 

Duration in the air: 45 minutes

Cost of the tour: $300 per person


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Kohala Valleys & Waterfalls with Remote Hike

This trip is a helicopter ride plus hike combo that takes off from Waimea-Kohala.

On this tour, take off from Waimea-Kohala airport for a thrilling helicopter flight along the coast. 

Admire the black sand beaches and waterfalls from above, fly over Mokupuku island, and touch down to enjoy a short hike through a remote Guava forest.

This is an intimate small-group experience with a maximum of four people.

Duration in the air: 1 hour 45 minutes

Cost of the tour: $510 per person

Recommended Reading

# Helicopter tours in Kauai
# Helicopter tours in Oahu
# Helicopter tours in Maui
# Helicopter tours from Honolulu
# Helicopter tours from Kona
# Helicopter tours from Lihue
# Helicopter tours in Hawaii

Ankita Roy: Having grown up amongst beaches, Ankita Roy prefers coastal holidays. Besides seafood, she is a sucker for the way sand feels on her feet, and sea breeze on her face. Favorite Cities: Cape Town, Edinburgh, Tokyo, Sydney