Niagara Falls Bucket List Adventure: Jet Boat & Helicopter Tour

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Jet boating was high on my bucket list ever since I learned about its existence while curating a series of adrenaline-pumping activities a few months ago. When I saw this activity is available in Niagara Falls, I couldn’t resist booking a thrilling jet boat ride. Especially when “Class 5 whitewater” is in the description, I knew it was going to be a hell of a ride and a lot of fun! And to top it off, the tour provider, Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours, bundles it with a helicopter ride. Double the fun and save 30%? We certainly didn’t want to pass up that offer! This was the perfect chance to check off our Niagara Falls bucket list!

Niagara Falls Bucket List Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

Niagara Falls Bucket List Item #1: Whirlpool Jet Boat

Wet or dry, that’s the dilemma. On a wet jet, you’re guaranteed to be soaking wet. While it sounds fun, it is also going to be freezing cold! The jet dome takes you on the exact same route but keeps you dry. At first glance, the jet dome seems to be a perfect choice. But like my friend said, “You can’t eat a cupcake without the frosting. Go all the way and have fun!” I was convinced. Wet jet it is!

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

Wet Jet

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

Jet Dome

45 minutes before our scheduled tour time, we arrived at the check-in counter. We signed the participation agreement and waited to be transported to the dock. On the shuttle bus, our trip leader Natalie went over the safety briefing. Leave valuables in the locker, put on the poncho, wear a life jacket. You know the drill.

As soon as the bus came to a stop, everyone was quick to spring into action. Within minutes, we were all queued up, waiting to feel the power of the Niagara’s class 5 whitewater rapids!

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Niagara Falls Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

“The first 3 rows are the power rows where you will get the most water and impact. So choose wisely!” Natalie warned us. Without giving a second thought, we hopped on the boat and took the very first row. Crazy? I called this maximizing the thrill level 😛

Niagara Falls Bucket List Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

Engine, on and off we go!

Captain Mike started off by showing off the jet boat’s contrasting prowess. He deftly maneuvering the boat to give it a quick spin. The boat slid across the surface of the waters, doing a 360-degree spin, and stopped on a dime with a large spray of water. That’s Hamilton Turn! Our first stunt of the day! And this triple turbo diesel water jet, pumping out 1500 horsepower, was capable of making us fly!

As we headed deep into the upriver, spectacular vistas of the Niagara Gorge set in. It was hard to believe that this was where the mighty Niagara Falls stood 12000 years ago! All the way down here in the lower Niagara! The immensely powerful currents of the Falls’ carved its way through solid rock, over centuries, and this is how the 11 km-long gorge came into existence.

Natalie continued to fill us in on all the interesting facts about the surrounding. On the way, we saw Lewiston-Queenston Bridge, one of the 4 bridges in Niagara that connect Canada to the U.S., Sir Adam Beck Hydroelectric Power Stations that carry power to the whole southern Ontario, and Robert Moses Niagara Power Station right across the river, feeding power to Atlanta, Georgia.

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As we traveled further, we could see the walls of the gorge started to get narrower and narrower. The water became fierce and wild. We all knew what was waiting for us.

To ensure all of us would come out safe and sound, Natalie quickly reminded us of the whitewater safety. The boat started picking up the speed and when on cue, we locked our body in the safety position. Staring at the angry rapids, I could feel my heart pounding hard in my chest.

Fearlessly, the boat plunged into Devil’s Hole class 5 rapids. We bounced up and down with the raging waters like on a roller coaster. Then all of a sudden, a massive surge of water swallowed us all. Continuously, we hurtled through gushing bursts with barely enough time to catch a breath. When we finally reached a calm spot, we coughed and spluttered. No doubt, we all got completely drenched. We looked at each other’s bad hair and burst into laughter.

Niagara Falls Whirlpool Jet Boat Tour

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We did this over and over again for several times. More screams, more laughter, more waves, and more bad hair. Did we get tired of it? Not at all! We did, however, take a break at the swirling Whirlpool, where the Niagara River makes a sharp right-angled turn, forming a 38m-deep basin. Following the Niagara River, we saw the treacherous class 6 Whirlpool Rapids that stretch for 1.6 km and runs as fast as 9 m per second! Because the rapids are too dangerous to ride, we were only able to admire it from a distance.

To see how much fun we had, check out the video below!

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Niagara Falls Bucket List Item #2: Helicopter Ride

After a quick change into dry clothes, we made our way to the next Niagara Falls bucket list adventure – a helicopter ride over the Niagara Falls with Niagara Helicopters!

Niagara Falls Bucket List Helicopters Tour Ontario

It didn’t take us long to jump into a chopper for a ride. We buckled up and put on the headset as instructed. A few minutes later, we hovered up into the sky. 
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
I could see why this is such a popular tour. Soaring high, we caught a bird’s eye view of the entire Niagara Region. Starting from the Niagara Gorge, we followed the brilliant green Niagara River to the Whirlpool area. Remember that’s where we were at for our jet boat tour? It was a totally different experience looking down from above. I could now see how spectacular the gorge really is!
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
Soon after, Rainbow Bridge came into view, signaling the impending arrival of the American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. At the base of the waterfalls, Maid of the Mist boat courageously approaching the mighty Horseshoe Falls.
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
Over on the other side of the river, we saw Queen Victoria Park stretched below, accompanied by the iconic landmark – Skylon Tower. It was then, the chopper made a turn, following the curve of the Horseshoe Falls, and offered us stunning close-up views of the Falls. It was quite a sight seeing a massive amount of water cascading over the crest of the Falls!
Niagara Helicopters Tour Ontario
Before we said goodbye, the sun shone through the dense mist and we were rewarded with a radiant rainbow!

We had a blast experiencing Niagara sky high and river wild with Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours and Niagara Helicopters. If you’re in to get your dose of adrenaline rush during your time in Niagara, check out their H2Air Package! You will not regret it!

You can find more about Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours on their website. In case you’re curious, here are a few things to keep in mind when going on a wet jet boat tour:

  • Arrive 45 minutes prior to your departure time
  • Bring a change of dry clothes and towels
  • Leave all your valuables in the locker. Take only things you will bring into the swimming pool.
  • Bring a GoPro (with a wrist strap) or waterproof camera
  • Ladies, tie your hair up – if you don’t want to come back like a mad woman.
  • The tour at Niagara Falls lasts about 45 mins. If you’re booking it along with a helicopter tour, make sure you leave at least 2 hours in between. So if you book a 2 pm jet boat tour, make sure the helicopter tour is at 4 pm or after.

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Put these adrenaline-pumping activities on your Niagara Falls bucket list. Experience Niagara sky high and river wild with a jet boat and helicopter tour.



Niagara Falls Bucket List


 Disclaimer: This post is written in partnership with Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours and Niagara Helicopters. As always, all opinions on For Two, Please are my own and I only recommend services that I 100% stand behind.
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43 Comments Leave a Comment »

  1. BOTH of these methods look like totally awesome ways to experience Niagara! I’ve never been there but when I go I’d love to try one of these!

  2. What a fun adventure! I’m so with you – I would have jumped in the front as well! It sounds like a fun-filled, soaking-wet, whirlwind of a time! And who could resist taking a helicopter ride over the falls? You were right to put these items on your bucket list!

  3. Woah, it looks like you got the best of Niagara! I’ve never been, but these adventures are making me want go!

  4. damn. I didn’t know you can take a helicopter ride around Niagara falls! looks good cat!

  5. This is such a thrilling experience. I loved both the experiences. The exciting Whirlpool Jet Boat is so inviting. I am gone try this for sure. And the Ariel views of Niagara falls and the rainbow bridge was breathtaking.

  6. This looks like so much fun! I definitely would’ve chosen the wet boat too. And your pictures from the helicopter ride are amazing!

  7. This looks like an amazing double tour! I’ve never experienced white water rapids but this looks super fun and seems safer than other rafting tours. And the helicopter tour has just the most amazing views of the falls! so cool.

  8. Oh my gosh. LOVE the views from the helicopter ride. I had no idea how different the gorge would look from the air. That’s “an extreme thrill” enough for me. I love helicopters by Class 5 rapids??? Um…I don’t know…

  9. I think I’d definitely go for the jet boat. What better way to see the falls than to feel like you’re in them!

  10. You guys look like you had a blast! And also to save 30%, it’s a no brainer! I think I would defo stay dry and go with the jet dome! I hate getting wet haha! 

  11. Class V rapids are pretty serious stuff. Ironically, I was just walking along the San Diego waterfront and saw jet boat loading up people in rain jackets. I remarked how fun that looked, even on the flat water of San Diego Harbor they can get you wet. They saw you go 50 MPH and they pull massive, high g turns. I can only imagine the adrenaline rush of doing that in a class V rapid.

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  13. The helicopter provides a esky different perspective, the falls almost look flat! Really interesting thanks for sharing

  14. Great post! I’m off to Canada on Friday and plan on visiting Niagara. All your recommendations look great, especially the helicopter ride. I’ll be sure to look it up. Thanks for sharing!

  15. I love the idea of a helicopter ride! The views looks fantastic, and like they could rival a Grand Canyon ride! You have the best bucket list haha 🙂

  16. Reading this post brought back some memories on my trip there many moons ago. Love going on the boat and getting up close to the falls, that was my memory. Loving your photos.

  17. The views from your helicopter ride are stunning! I haven’t been on a helicopter in over ten years, but since Niagara’s close to us, it would be the perfect place to do it!

  18. I love this different perspective on Niagara. The jetboating looks brilliant (cupcake comment is too good!) and I so wish I had known about this when I was there, although I suspect it might not have been operating. The views from above are also awesome. Makes me want to go back

  19. What a blast! I bet you’ll always remember that jet boat ride, What a way to experience the falls! The helicopter view is amazing.

  20. That helicopter tour looks amazing! The wet jet, not so much. But good to know because if someone gives me cupcake frosting analogy I’ll be ready!

  21. This is perfect for adrenaline junkies! I’d love do all these when I get to Niagara Falls one day soon!

  22. Wow, these are such fun experiences! The view of the falls looks beautiful from above! Lucky you to have experienced this.

  23. What an adventure! Helicopter ride over the falls would be incredible. If I head back to Canada I will definitely keep this in mind.

  24. Perfect! The excitement of the class 5 rapids in the jet boat, and then a trip over the falls in the helicopter. Both of them sound like great experiences! I’ve always wanted to visit Niagra, and both of these sound like exciting activities.

  25. Oh wow! I didn’t know Niagara has Jet Boating too! I’ve heard of it on Thames River, in London, but didn’t have a chance to go on it! It would be so much going on Jet Boat close to the heavy Niagara Falls! I’d hop in, in the 1st row too!

  26. This looks like so much fun, I did the lady of the mist but this looks even better. The ‘would you have a cupcake without the icing’ is a brilliant expression, will be using that for sure! Your video is also so professional.

  27. I’m headed to Niagara next month and have been trying to decide on activities. I may just have to do a helicopter ride – this looks amazing!

  28. These experiences look absolutely incredible! I took my first helicopter ride last year and I’m hooked! I would love to do a helicopter ride over Niagara Falls! 

  29. OOOoo jet boating looks like so much fun! We would’ve picked the first row too for max thrill. I still haven’t gone on a single helicopter ride yet… hopefully soon!

  30. I didn’t even know you could do this at Niagara Falls! What an amazing experience!

  31. The Niagara falls are stunning and make for a thrilling experience on their own. If you throw in a helicopter ride, the adventure goes to another level altogether. It must be quite an experience to see the falls from the sky, the stunning views are really worth experiencing once in a lifetime.

  32. This is the first time I am hearing of something called ‘jet dome’. Looks like it is a nice option for people who want to enjoy the adventure without getting wet or people who are old and not fit enough to take the wet option. However, I would have opted for the wet one too, the fun is in getting wet!

  33. Admire your willingness to get wet in the jet and just enjoy the experience! I take your advice about the Go Pro too, did a helicopter ride at Gt Barrier Reef and wished I had a better camera haha!

  34. The helicopter tour looks so amazing with a breathtaking view. I would love to do that for sure. The jetboat looks so fun, would do that if I went there with a big group of friends. ?

  35. I was just thinking about taking a helicopter tour and wondering if I would be too scared to enjoy it — I’m such a wuss. But it looks like you had some amazing views and a great time. I’d be torn about the wet jet vs dry. On a hot summer day, I’d probably go with the wet, too, just for the experience of it. But then my timid soul might gravitate toward the dry jet, particularly if it got colder. Major kudos to you for jumping in with both feet and taking on the adventures!

  36. Wow! You are so adventurous. I am such a scaredy cat and don’t think I could handle the jet boat. It does sound like so much fun tho! I can only imagine how cold the water was and how soaked everyone got. I love the tip to tie your hair up. Hahaha, coming back as a mad woman wouldn’t be fun for the photo opts 🙂

  37. What an incredible experience! I think that you did the Niagra Falls in the right way. I visited in the winter so I didn’t have the chance to go on a boat ride. I had heard of the Maid of the Mist but Jet Boat Tour looks way more cooler. Will keep this in mind for next time!

  38. These both look so amazing! I was just at Niagra Falls last fall with my family and boyfriend and loved it! It would be so cool to see it from up above like that!

  39. I have always wanted to go to Niagara Falls it is to one of my bucket list items. Both the Whirlpool Jet Boat and the Helicopter Ride look like an amazing experience. That view from the helicopter is surreal. I have never seen pictures of Nigra Falls from above. How cool that you got to fly over from Niagara Gorge and then followed to Niagara River to the Whirlpool area – just breathtaking!

  40. This looks super fun but vert scary! I can’t swim so anything water really freaks me out but I can see that if you love adventure, this would be a great thing to do!

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