View from the clouds

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Liquid Library

Liquid Library

Don’t get stuck in traveling monotony. Venture outside enclosed, stuffy airplanes and forget about those gas-guzzling road trips. Take an adventure thousands of feet in the fresh, balmy air where San Diego’s dazzling cityscape can truly be appreciated. Soar through the clouds on a private, luxurious and undeniably glamorous helicopter tour.

Travelers of all types can add a little romance to a special date, put a spin on a casual day trip or treat themselves to an end-of-the-week stress release when they plan a helicopter tour. Water lovers will soak up the sight of crashing waves from a bird’s-eye view, altitude aficionados will relish in the city’s cascading mountains and adrenaline junkies can explore the skies at heart-racing speeds — all at an affordable price.

In partnership with Hawkins Productions, Corporate Helicopters of San Diego has taken residents and tourists to breathtaking heights since 1989. Launched by Ivor and Deann Shier, their goal was to provide the city with a full service helicopter company including everything from aerial filming and TV news to helicopters for sale and flight training.

But, it’s their scenic tours that they’re known for. Ranging from 30 minutes to three and a half hours, tours are fun, exciting and fully encompass all of San Diego’s landscape.

The “Diego Delight” tour takes flyers along the coastline, exhibiting beautiful Sunset Cliffs, Mission Bay and La Jolla, while “The Unforgettable” tour incorporates all of San Diego’s sights-to-see such as the North County coastline, Torrey Pines Golf Course, Del Mar Racetrack, Coronado Bridge, Petco Park, San Diego Zoo and Qualcomm Stadium.

Air adventurers can even go the extra step and devote an entire day to bask in nature’s beauty. On the “Winery Lunch” tour, vacationers can follow the coastline to Temecula’s renowned wineries, land and lunch at Thornton Winery just before hopping on a flight home.

“Lucky 7” takes big spenders on a flight to Barona Valley Ranch Resort and Casino where after spending the day, revelers can return home in first-class style in a luxury limousine. “Fly, Float, Feast” includes a tour and cruise ship landing where diners can stop to enjoy supper while relaxing on the high seas.

Want to go international? Corporate Helicopters also offers plush, air-conditioned flights to Baja California and Cabo San Lucas in Mexico.

From these heights, aspiring photographers and filmmakers are sure to beef up their portfolio and impress any employer by capturing miles of exquisite landscape with aerial photos and videos.

But for those in the mood to just cruise, a helicopter tour is the experience of a lifetime.
“I didn’t want the flight to end,” statistics senior John Hitchcock said. “It was like being on a ride at Disneyland, except way faster and way more fun.”

Hitchcock first went on a chopper tour with his family while visiting San Diego.

“I definitely would do it again,” he said. “But next time, I want to take my girlfriend on a day tour for our anniversary. I know that’s super cliché, but once you experience it, you understand why it’s so special. It’s really amazing to be that high. You get to see the city in a whole new way.”

One-person trips range from $149-275 while group trips up to five people are slightly more expensive, starting at $749.

For more information and to book reservations visit

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