Soaring Above West Maui & Moloka‘i – Helicopter Tour with Air Maui
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If you want the thrill of soaring above the magnificent natural wonders of West Maui and Moloka‘i, then you will love this exhilarating helicopter tour with Air Maui! On our last day in Maui, Kev and I jumped at the chance to go on our very first helicopter flight, and ever since, we couldn’t stop dreaming about the untamed wilderness and serene seascapes of West Maui and Moloka‘i! Hands down, it has to be one of the best activities in Maui we’ve ever done. Think I’m exaggerating? Let me take through our one-hour journey in the air and judge for yourself!
Welcome Aboard the West Maui & Moloka‘i Helicopter Tour!
We couldn’t hide our eager excitement when we arrived at Kahului Heliport. After checking in, we impatiently waited to hop on the flight. It was such a beautiful day and we couldn’t wait to immerse yourselves in all the beauty and splendor Hawai‘i has to offer. But safety first! The staff gave each of us a life vest to put on and briefed us on safety procedures before entering the helicopter.
Our pilot, Captain Kirk, greeted us with a big smile and a warm “Aloha!” as we stepped into the seats next to him. Prior to taking off, he ensured our seat belts were fastened, noise-cancelling headsets were in place, and for the one last time that we were familiar with the safety tips. And… off we went!
Up in the air, we flew! Soaring above West Maui, we looked down on the lush Waihe‘e Valley and the magnificent (and lesser-known) Wall of Tears, a series of 17 waterfalls near the summit of Pu‘u Kukui.
The magical beauty of Hawai‘i continued as we headed towards The Friendly Island, Moloka‘i! This tranquil island, with a population of 7400, preserves the rural Polynesian way of life, without much tourism development, and offers a taste of unspoiled Hawai‘i.
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We paid a visit to Moloka‘i’s oldest community, Hālawa Valley on the east shore. We followed the historic valley all the way to the end where we were greeted with the enchanting Moa‘ula Falls.
The northern shore of the Moloka‘i stretches 38-mile long and is the home fo the tallest sea cliffs in the world, dropping 3,315 feet to the Pacific Ocean. Nestled deep in the Papalaua Valley is one of Hawaii’s tallest and most jaw-dropping waterfalls, the 1,200-foot Pāpalaua Falls. Shortly after, Captain Kirk maneuvered the helicopter so we could snap a postcard shot of Moloka‘i northern shore.
The real gem lies on the southern shore, which boasts 30 miles of fringing reef that is truly pristine and unspoiled. The incredible colours of the ocean and rugged coastline left us in undeniable awe! I would want to swim, snorkel, and even paddleboard here!
Read more: Stand-Up Paddleboarding – Why You Should Try It On Your Maui Vacation
Our adventure almost came to an end. We flew above the ‘Au‘au channel in between Maui, Moloka‘i and Lana‘i as we slowly made our way back to Maui. These warm, shallow and protected body of waters between the islands offer the best place to see humpback whales in the winter months!
Before we touched back down at the heliport, we caught glimpses of the Kā‘anapali shore and the busy Lāhainā Town. What a perfect end to our Maui vacation!
Things to Keep in Mind
Isn’t this the best way to explore the stunning sceneries of Hawai‘i? If you’re going on a helicopter tour with Air Maui, I recommend you:
- book online to get internet discount
- choose the front seating for the best viewing ($50/person for the upgrade. Or, you can state that you prefer front seating when making a reservation; however, an upgrade is not guaranteed in this case)
- wear dark colored clothing for picture taking
- bring your camera and sunglasses!
- check in at the heliport 30 mins prior to the scheduled flight time
- For a little more excitement, book a doors-off tour! (only cell phone is allowed on this flight)
Even if you don’t get to go on a helicopter ride in Maui, there are many opportunities to do one in other Hawaiian islands, e.g., Novictor Oahu Helicopter Tours in Honolulu!
About Air Maui
Disclaimer: This post is written in partnership with Air Maui. As always, all opinions on For Two, Please are my own and I only recommend services that I 100% stand behind.
What a beautiful trip. I have seen the pictures of Maui from the air and it never fails to take my breath away. I have yet to book a helicopter tour, but I don’t think I could leave Maui without taking the trip. It looks absolutely stunning.
We were so glad we squeezed this tour in last minute before heading back home! No regrets!
Wow, this genuinely looks like such a fantastic experience and one that I’d be keen to try out if I ever made it to Hawaii! The tips at the end of the post are super useful (daark clothing – I’d never have thought of that!) and I thought your photos were so beautiful. All that contrast between green and blue was gorgeous. I’m inspired to visit for sure 🙂
I didn’t know about dark clothing too, until they reminded us in the email! This is hands down the best experience we had on the island!
One word is not enough to express and explain the beauty of this place. The green mountains from your aerial shots is amazing in every angle. The clear and prestige water is too inviting.
The views made me want to jump into the ocean right away!
Such incredible photos of what you saw. Really enjoyed reading about your fabulous experience flying over this beautiful island. That reef is truly like nothing I’ve seen before. Guess you have to get up in a helicopter to ever witness some of this beauty. This would be a great adventure for a special occasion. Wow.
That ocean view alone made this tour worth it! You can’t possibly witness that other than hopping onto a helicopter!
Wow. Maui looks so gorgeous from Helicopter. I have always wanted to see such place from a hot air balloon or helicopter. A bird’s eye view is always better and exclusive experience. Lucky you!
I’m so glad we got to do this in Maui! You can’t leave the island without going on a helicopter tour!
What an amazing adventure! I’ve never had the chance to go on a helicopter ride and this looks like the perfect spot! What insanely beautiful views. We always travel with the kids and when they get a little older…this adventure is one we’d like to try!
This will be such a cool experience to do as a family!
What a thrilling adventure! I enjoyed reading your article and put this tour on my bucket list. The photos are awesome too. Thank you for sharing.
You’re welcome 🙂 Hope you get to experience this amazing adventure soon!!
I’ve never been on an helicopter before. It must have been one awesome experience. I must say the first time I heard of Maui is from the movie Moana! Maui looks just spectacularly gorgeous & green!
Going on this helicopter ride reminded me of Moana as well! The views left me speechless!
I think I have done this helicopter tour, isn’t this where Jurassic Park was filmed? You guys had the perfect weather, it was raining and cloudy when I took mine. Your photographs of the waterfalls are stunning. Good tips on how to book and get the front seat.
I believe so! I remember the pilot mentioned about Jurassic Park at one of the spots. We were very lucky to have a sunny morning. Too bad you went on a cloudy day, that means you gotta go back again for another ride 😛
OMG I’ve always wanted to do this! Those photos you’ve captured are AMAZING! I want to see Moa‘ula Falls and that dramatic cliffside meeting the Pacific. Wow, I am just speechless at how beautiful it is, I really want to go to Hawaii right now and get a helicopter tour!
Prior this tour, we were already on the island for 8 days and it still blew my mind how beautiful Maui is. Plus, revealing the magical beauty of Molokai!
Oh my gosh how lucky are you to get to do that! Just gorgeous! And the colour of that water!!! I’ve gotten to do a few helicopter riders here in Canada. Sounds like a must-do on the island, thanks for sharing your experience.
It is a totally different kind of experience than the one we can get in Canada. Hope you get to experience this in Maui one day!
Wow! Stunning views. If there’s a place to enjoy a great helicopter ride, it has to be Hawaii. These pictures really showcase some spectacular places.
Really want to try it!
I agreed! No better place to go on a helicopter tour than in Hawaii!
Never had a chance to ride a helicopter but would love to try one day. The view from above is astounding. Every photo you took are fascinating and eye candy to anyone. Loved this fresh perspective of Hawaii.
Thank you! It is such a memorable experience. They also offer different tours like the one over Hana and Haleakala – next time I’d love to go on that!
Wow, this is incredible! The views that you get doing something like this are amazing! Also, loved the tips at the end for this helicopter ride. Why do you recommend wearing dark clothing?
Because lighter colors reflect in the windows of the helicopter and will make taking photos difficult 🙂
This tour is super, hipper, giga awesome!! These views are breathtaking. Definitely going to book that kind of a tour when I visit Hawai one day.
Agreed! You can’t leave Hawaii without going on a helicopter tour!
Your pictures are absolutely stunning and are making me long for an island vacation! I love seeing things from the air and this tour looks like the best way to do it. Thanks for sharing that you can get a better rate by booking online, good to know!
No problem! Hawaii is the perfect place for an island vacation! If you do visit, make sure you go on a helicopter tour!
What a fascinating tour this is. The views from the helicopter are breathtaking. I am definitely doing this tour.
If you only have time to do one activity, make sure you go on a helicopter tour!!
What an incredible experience. Maui is one of my favourite spots to vacation to. I love exploring the island on ground, but to see these islands above ground would be such a memorable experience. The Moloka‘i shore is out of this world. Thanks for sharing.
Thanks, Riely! I agreed with you that it is a whole new level of experience. It wasn’t until this helicopter tour that I got to see the side of Maui that I didn’t get to explore on land, moreover, finding out the beauty of Molokai!
Beautiful photos, Cat! I’d totally shell out $50 for the front seat upgrade, the views from the cockpit are insane! Definitely signing up for a heli-ride the next time we’re in Maui. Will be playing the Jurassic Park theme song the entire ride 😛
Thank you, Ivy <3 Front seat is the way to go! This helicopter ride is definitely the highlight of our Maui holiday!
ARE THESE PICS FOR REAL! (I know they are! but this was my initial reaction!) such stunning views! I am sold. The greens and blue are therapeutic to the eyes! 🙂 Cannot wait to do this. It is definitely worth every penny you spend!
Right?! Words can’t describe the beautiful scenery in front of me. I can’t believe such a place even exists! I hope you do experience this in person one day!!
What an amazing trip it must have been! Your post is awesome and so is your photography! Maui must be an amazing spot for a holiday
It really is! And whale-watching (rainy) season is the best time to visit! That’s the time when the waterfalls are flowing heavily and rainforests are lush!
Wow what incredible scenery. I have never been up in a helicopter and not sure I could stomach it if I am truthful as I am not a huge fan of flying but with views like this it would make me potentially reconsider. I just wouldn’t want to pay the often high-price tag for a trip I then had to back out of at the last minute through to flying fears.
Aww I understand your concern. I had my doubt before going on one too, but the experience turned out to exceed my expectation. I hope you won’t let your fear hinder you from this amazing experience!
OMGGG these photos look awesome!! Maui looks gorgeous! I want to go to Maui and Big Island next time I head to Hawaii. Definitely a helicopter ride would be awesome. We didn’t have time to the helicopter ride in Kauai, but definitely the next time we will do it!
Yes, definitely! It is a different experience and well worth it!
Hawaii is so amazing even from the sky. So much lush green and the shore lines are stunning! I’d love to experience it one day too
Hawaii is the perfect place to go on a helicopter tour! You should totally go on one when you visit!
What an amazing way to enjoy the Maui in an adventurous way! The waterfalls, the greenery all around looks so stunning. You captured the scenic ride where beautifully, this definitely a must do while in Maui.
There are so many other tours that Air Maui offers. I would totally go back and book a different one!
Wow, this looks like THE perfect way to see the beautiful island of Maui. The lush green mountains, cliffs, waterfalls, and shoreline are just breathtaking. Definitely on my bucket list now!
I couldn’t think of a better way to explore Maui’s beauty than seeing it from the air!
This looks EXCELLENT. It’s something I’ve never done but really hope to one day. I can’t imagine a better way to really see a place like Maui.
It let me see the part of Maui that I would not have otherwise seen!
great photos! really amazing nature when observed from the air
Helicopter tour lets me explore the island from a different perspective!
Can i just say holy shit to these pictures? Some literally look like a screensaver! I have never been to Maui, only Waikiki but plan on going back very soon! BTW, I am traveling around Canada next month alone so we should totally meet up!
Thank you! The views are stunning and we were so lucky to have such great weather that day! Yes, definitely! If you’re visiting Banff and nearby, send me a note!
How cool! I’ve always wanted to see that side of the island and all those waterfalls. Still with Haleakela, Maui remains my favorite island.
I am totally in love with Maui too – so many amazing spots! And now seeing the view of Molokai, I would like to explore this nearby island!
I am not really comfortable flying. But considering the kind of mind blowing views you got, I think I can try this out too. Some of these shots look straight out of movies…
I hope it doesn’t stop you from experiencing this! The views are truly mind-blowing!
Wow, stunning photos of Maui from the air, Cat! Never been on a helicopter ride and this account of your experience sure makes me yearn for one! 🙂
Thank you, Ragini! This is my first time on a helicopter tour and I’m glad I made the right decision to do it in Maui!
Wow, this looks absolutely incredible! The photos are beautiful. What an amazing thing to do in Hawaii!
Thank you! I still couldn’t believe what I saw! I kept asking myself if such a beautiful place exists on Earth?
Wow, the Waihe‘e Valley looks so green. Makes me want to listen to Hawaii 78!
It’s so lush and beautiful! This island reminds me of the Disney Movie, Moana!
Molokai looks gorgeous! It is the only Hawaiian Island I haven’t visited. Hālawa Valley and Moa‘ula Falls are stunning.
Its unspoiled beauty is so enchanting! If I go back to Hawaii, I want to visit Molokai next!
Looks beautiful. I would like to try this when I visit!
You should! It is worth it!!
What an incredible place for a helicopter tour! Adding this to my bucket list
A helicopter tour is one of the best ways to explore the beauty of this Hawaiian island! Hope you get to do this soon!
My husband and I took this tour with Air Maui! AMAZING! If I ever go back I want the doors off your. Words cannot describe the beauty and the incredible sea cliffs. If you don’t do any other excursion, do THIS!
So happy you did, Lynoitte! It was one of my best experiences in Maui and I still dream about it when I think back to our time on the island. And I’d totally go back and do the doors-off too! It sounds a little bit more adventurous 😛
Wow the sights here are truly phenomenal. You know I would’ve loved if you had the chance to get down into that fringing reef to show us the sights down there. I can’t believe his name was Captain Kirk too, how good is that!
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