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One of the most thrilling ways to see New York City is on a Helicopter Tour. In addition to having a birds eye view of Central Park, the Hudson River, New York Harbor and the East River you'll have the opportunity to see and photograph iconic NYC landmarks.
Helicopter tours are an exciting and memorable way to see the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Governors Island and famous skyscrapers such as the Empire State Building, Chrysler Building and Woolworth Building. NYC's many bridges including the Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan, George Washington and Verrazano Bridges all look amazing from the air.
I've taken several New York City helicopter tours as you can see from my photos featured on this page and many other pages throughout the site.
If you are interested in aerial photography be aware that you will be shooting through tinted glass. You may want to process your images with Photoshop or another image enhancement software. I've also found that if your camera has the option it is best to choose shutter priority with a relatively fast shutter speed (even faster for telephoto shots). You won't have a lot of time for manual adjustments.
Security for helicopter flights over Manhattan is tight. Reservations and photo ID are required and other restrictions including limited carry-on apply. Lockers are available to store backpacks, etc.
Be aware that "A $30 security / facility fee per person will be collected…" In the past (before the security fee) a fuel surcharge has been added and could be again in the future. Full descriptions as well as all charges are detailed on booking pages.
The chart below lists three NYC helicopter tours that can be booked through Gray Line along with the price and length of tour for each.
Following the Gray Line tours there are two more money saving options, booked through CitySights NY, that combine open-top bus tours with helicopter tours.
Click the tour in the chart, or scroll down, to see a brief description and booking link.
Liberty Helicopters Tours NYC – New York, New York
Your tour begins down the Hudson River, flying by Manhattan's Financial District for a birds eye view of the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, Ellis Island and the Verrazano Bridge.
Continue up the Hudson River towards Midtown where you will see all of New York City's most famous skyscrapers including the Empire State Building, Met Life, Woolworth and Chrysler buildings along with the USS Intrepid, Central Park, Yankee Stadium, St. John the Devine Cathedral, Columbia University, George Washington Bridge and the Palisades of New Jersey.
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Liberty Helicopter Tours of NYC – The Big Apple
See the United States' most famous landmark, the Statue of Liberty, so close you can almost reach out and touch her!
Your flight continues as you pass the Empire State Building, Chrysler, Woolworth, and Met Life buildings, Ellis Island along with New York harbor, the George Washington Bridge, and the world-renowned Central Park.
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Manhattan Helicopter – Deluxe Manhattan Tour
The Deluxe Tour treats you to excellent photo opportunities and best views of New York City from the Statue of Liberty to Uptown Manhattan.
Depart from the Downtown Manhattan Heliport, see Governors Island, Ellis Island & Statue of Liberty head northbound for views of Intrepid, Empire State Building, Central Park, Harlem and Columbia University, George Washington Bridge and more.
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Money Saving Combination Helicopter Tour and Bus Tours
All Around Town Tour + Liberty Helicopter Tour (The Big Apple)
See New York City from double decker busses that travel throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn, see it again from the water on a 2 hour City Highlights Harbor Cruise from the Statue of Liberty to the United Nations and back, then see it once more from the air on the 15 minute Big Apple Helicopter Tour. In between visit the Museum of the City of New York.
The All Around Town Tour + Big Apple Helicopter Tour includes 48-hour unlimited hop-on & hop-off access on a double-decker bus that you can use to both see the city and use for convenient transportation during your visit.
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Downtown Tour + Manhattan Helicopters – The Deluxe
The sky is truly the limit with this private helicopter tour. You will circle Manhattan, fly over Central Park and all three bridges and get up close to the famous New York City skyline. This tour provides the perfect romantic setting if you wish to propose or are simply planning the date of a life time.
Along the way you'll see the Brooklyn Bridge, Manhattan Bridge and Williamsburg Bridge, plus fly over Prospect Park and enjoy aerial views of Central Park. This tour is available in Spanish, Hebrew, Italian, German, French and English.
Website and all photos copyright © 2001–2013 Lee W. Nelson