Get high in the sky and see the beauty of New Zealand from above

Posted on 22/09/2019 by Spaceships Crew

Excitement awaits you on your road trip through New Zealand. This great land has so many stunning things to see and do, but how many of you would like a real adventure? We guess quite a few, so why don’t you fun-loving travellers do something out of the norm and see New Zealand from the air. There are many great tours and trips that offer you the chance to see New Zealand from above.

North Island: see it from above

Add a unique experience to your North Island road trip. So many travellers only see the North Island just from the road. The view from above is completely different. See how many amazing options there are for a scenic flight by helicopter or small plane. Experience New Zealand like never before.

7653 Mt Burke Wanaka Jay French web

From the air or on the ground, there are many ways to experience New Zealand to the fullest | photo: Jay French

North Island plane trips

An amazing seaplane flight from Auckland over Hauraki Gulf allows you to see New Zealand from above with impressive views of the rugged coastline and many of New Zealand’s islands. With uninterrupted views of Rangitoto volcano, you zoom to Waiheke Island and experience a thrilling landing in Man O’ War Bay. Catch your breath at the east end of the island as you feast on a gourmet, lunch platter and a wine tasting session at the famous Man O’ War vineyards.

A half-day fly/drive tour will give you the chance to view the best of North Island from two different viewpoints. The exciting, 45-minute, aeroplane flight takes you over Doubtless Bay, Cooper’s beach and the world-renowned Nine Mile Beach before landing a hop, skip and a jump away from Cape Reinga lighthouse. From there you spend a 2 ½ hour, driving tour of Tapotupotu Bay and the awesome sand dunes at Ninety Mile Beach.

North Island helicopter flights

Leave Tauranga for an exhilarating helicopter flight to White Island and rater tour. Soar over the Northern Lake District for aerial views of the volcano’s active, hissing vents and lunar-like scenery. After an impressive landing, you’ll tour the crater and then explore old mining ruins and get up close and personal with the many, incredible formations and features of this astounding, natural area.

Whakatane Whakaari White Island Frontier Helicopters Kahu NZ web

Helicopter flight to White Island | photo: White Island Frontier Helicopters Kahu NZ

The Tongariro Crossing is one of the Great Walks of New Zealand, but there are even more exciting ways to enjoy the scenery of Tongariro. Hop on a helicopter and fly over majestic volcanoes in the World Heritage Tongariro National Park, the Kaimanawa Ranges and the amazing Lake Taupo.

Or fly you over Tongariro National Park and volcano craters such as Ruapehu, Tongariro and Ngauruhoe, which can be seen at their best from the air. Your pilot will provide an in-depth commentary of this World Heritage area where you can be snap happy taking pics of volcanic landscapes and glacial valleys before making a dramatic landing close to the Rangitikei River.


South Island: fly like a bird over amazing scenery

The South Island is the perfect place to climb on things (mountains) and to jump off things (bungy jumping). Queenstown is home of the original bungy as you can read in our blog post about activities that will get your heart rate up. But there are so many more options to experience the South Island from above. Nothing beats experiencing New Zealand like a bird. Check it out.

Scenic flights over South Island

From Queenstown, take a full-day Milford Sound flight that will also include a cruise and jet boat tour. This must-do experience will blow your mind as you see New Zealand from above. The riveting sight of Mitre Peak and Bowen Falls will enthral you as will a two-hour cruise on the fiord where you drift below magnificent cliffs and catch a glimpse of fur seals lounging on rocks. Next, board a chopper for a daring, scenic flight as you float over the Southern Alps to Glenorchy. Finally, there is an enthralling, wilderness jet boat ride on the Dart River to discover even wilder and wonderful sights.

A short flight from Kaikoura offers a unique chance to go whale watching. Get an eyeful of humpback whales, sperm whales and dolphins in their natural habitat. This is the best way to view these mammals in all their glory as the high-winged plane skims 150 metres over the sea, giving you a great photo op.

AD274 Milford Sound Fiordland Glacier Southern Lakes Helicopters web

Fiordland's beauty can be appreciated even better on a scenic helicopter flight | photo: Glacier Southern Lakes Helicopters

Fearless action adventures on South Island

Get your adrenaline pumping on a paragliding flight from Wanaka. You’ll be accompanied by a trained paragliding pilot on a breathtaking, tandem paragliding flight. During this awe-inspiring event, you will float close to Twin Falls and the surrounding, mountainous area, spot wild deer or falcons and then gracefully land on terra firma.

After you've seen the amazing Wanaka scenery from above, how about climbing a waterfall? This is a tour that's perfect for active adventurers that love to explore the outdoors, waterfalls and beautiful places. This waterfall climb is a 3-hours tour where you'll be climbing steel ladder rungs and crossing 6 bridges next to a massive waterfall.

Vision of a good time in Wanaka - Morgan Burke

Looking over Lake Wanaka from Rocky Mountain | photo: Morgan Burke (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

See New Zealand from above

Seeing New Zealand from above is unlike anything you’ll see on a road trip. Take to the air in a plane, helicopter or seaplane and get a bird’s eye view of ice-capped mountain tops, deep, blue lakes, volcanoes and rivers. These remarkable aerial tours are a photographer’s paradise where you can catch sight of rugged, exotic scenery, wildlife and birds that can only be seen from the air, so treat yourself to one of these mind-blowing events or add them to your “bucket list.”

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