Since I am a little kid I always wanted to fly with a helicopter. Enjoying incredible views from above, almost like a bird, while feeling energetic because you’re full of adrenalin. That’s how I imagined a heli flight. Whenever I heard from a friend or even just a random person I’ve met, that did it already, I was kind of jealous. It’s the same feeling I had before I did my first skydive in San Diego. And it was absolutely worth it! While I traveled through Brazil I had the chance to take a helicopter for two times: In Foz do Iguacu and Rio de Janeiro. So why didn’t I grasp this chance? Well, to be honest, I can’t really tell you this. I always had excuses. A problem many people (including me) have nowadays: There are always good excuses and we struggle to just take an amazing chance – which we may never have again. Anyways, last weekend it was my turn: I did my first helicopter flight in Switzerland. And I couldn’t have done it in a better place! I will now tell you everything I experienced on my own helicopter flight in Switzerland – and hopefully, take some of your excuses to not fly with a helicopter!
Lauterbrunnen – Top of Europe – Glacier Landing – Lauterbrunnen
I did my heli flight in a collaboration with Helikopterrundflug.ch, which is a company that mainly runs its flights in Switzerland, Germany, and Austria, but also serves some worldwide destinations. Our flight took place in one of the most scenic areas in Switzerland: The “Jungfrau Region”. We started our adventure in Lauterbrunnen, from where we took off to see the Swiss Alps from above. If you fly with a helicopter in Switzerland, this is a perfect starting location, because many of the most famous mountains of Switzerland are reachable in a short time. We then passed the “Jungfraujoch”, also known as Top of Europe, on a height altitude of almost 3’500 meters. If you think this was already the highlight you are wrong! We then landed on a remote glacier, that is almost impossible to reach without a helicopter. Also included in the route were the “Eiger”, “Mönch” and “Jungfrau”, probably the most-famous mountain ridge of Switzerland. Eventually, the plan was to get back to Lauterbrunnen, which we had to change spontaneously due to the weather conditions. I will tell you more about this later!
Adventure heli flight: My impressions
Now, after I told you the facts I will tell you the more important part, at least for me: How was it? I can give you an answer in one word: UNFORGETTABLE! But you should know me, I will talk a lot more about it than just one word. If you’re thinking about doing a helicopter flight in Switzerland or somewhere else in the future you should definitely continue reading.
I had big expectations for my first heli flight and got not disappointed at all. We had some fog around Switzerland that day and I was a little bit concerned about the views we will get, however, I had calls with the helicopter company and got updated regularly. If the weather is not great they will let you know and you can make the final decision. Well, when I saw the helicopter in Lauterbrunnen I started to get really excited, especially because I love this place already on the ground. Some minutes after we took off we were able to escape the clouds and the fog and were rewarded with a view of the Swiss Alps from above. I felt incredible. Like I am on the tallest, fastest and most incredible rollercoaster on this planet – while looking at a beautiful scenery. When we flew next to the “Top of Europe” on 3’500 meters I realized how crazy this actually is. Last time I was there I had to take a train up to this place – which took me over an hour. With a heli flight, you can reach this amazing place in less than 10 minutes and even have better views.
I’ve been to a glacier before and it was a special feeling. But landing on a remote glacier with a helicopter to take some pictures during sunset is on another level. Untouched nature, fresh air and being hyped after an amazing flight – a perfect combination. Just an example how excited I was: I needed 5 tries to make a story for my Instagram account because I misspelled simple words like “glacier” all the time. I love remote nature and a helicopter flight is probably the easiest way to get there. Definitely include it on your own flight in the future, it’s worth it!
When we were about to return to Lauterbrunnen we had to change our plans. The fog in the valley became too strong and we couldn’t traverse the sea of fog. Not a huge problem, because we just landed in “Mürren”, from where we could reach Lauterbrunnen pretty easily. Why I mention you that has another reason: Whenever you are doing a heli flight you are dependent on the weather. It’s possible that you have to change your plans spontaneous, maybe land somewhere else or your flight can be canceled. Still, the experienced pilot I met on my flight made all these little adjustments with ease and it didn’t affect our flight at all. Nothing to worry about, but still good to know.
Helicopter flight for photographers?
When you are a photographer there are some additional points I want to add for you. Just for a regular passenger on a helicopter, I’m sure you will absolutely love it! Yet, there are some challenges and experiences that can make the difference.
When to fly?
The views out of a helicopter are, for sure, always breathtaking. But imagine the peaks of the Alps in the lovely light of a sunrise or a sunset. No question about that: To take pictures these two times are adding so much to your pictures and you should definitely go for it. I did my flight during sunset and I was really happy about that!
A helicopter can reach incredible speed altitudes and it’s, therefore, harder to take sharp images – use a fast shutter speed to avoid that. Even if you do you will have some images that are not sharp, but you will keep it to a minimum. I also highly recommend to get yourself a seat with a window that you can open during the flight. The quality of the images is much better than photographing through the glass with its reflections. Other than that: Enjoy your flight!
I want to do it too!
Understandable! If you plan to join a flight with a helicopter in Switzerland I can highly recommend the company I used – everything was easy and well organized. And I don’t have to lose any more words about the flight itself I think 😉 You can find all their locations in Switzerland right here. I liked my flight a lot and will for sure do it again in the future! It’s worth every single second and $ spent on it and one of the best things to do in Switzerland in my eyes. If you have any questions or concerns just let me know or comment below!
Did you ever fly with a helicopter or do you plan to do it?