From awe-inspiring works of Mother Nature to marvelous man-made structures, these 10 places are best seen from the air. Grab a pen and add them to your aviation bucket list.
“A taste of Nordic culture, aurora-watching, history dating to the tenth century, out-of-this-world scenery, an exposure to volcanic geography, and English-proficient natives” are reasons why Iceland is the place to visit, according to AOPA Editor at Large Tom Horne, who toured the country.
As pilots, we’re usually looking skyward. But as you fly over the turquoise waters of the Bahamas, you might find yourself looking down more often, mesmerized by this part of the Atlantic Ocean.
Most pilots dream about flying in Alaska. Rugged mountains, glaciers, tundra, and waterfalls delight the eyes at every turn. This photo was taken on a stretch from Juneau to Ketchikan.
One of the best ways to observe Florida’s Everglades is from the air. AOPA Editor at Large Dave Hirschman describes flying over the changing landscape: “Watery rivers of grass stretch for miles; groups of mossy cypress trees tower 100 feet above the black swamp water; and shallow lakes reflect the sun. The watery surfaces are a playground for a seemingly endless variety of water birds.”
The Sea of Cortez boasts opportunities for scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, sailing, and more. Take some time out of playing in the sea to fly over it and also get outstanding views of Baja California.
You can fly through Denali National Park on your own, or you can take any number of aerial tours (some even land on glaciers). Denali and other mountains in the Alaska Range are a sight to behold. Here’s a pilot’s view of flying through Denali’s Misty Pass with sightseeing company K2 Aviation based in Talkeetna.
San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge is a visual treat from any vantage point.
Known as “The city that never sleeps,” Las Vegas boasts a beautiful skyline that you’ll want to fly over at night.
Yellowstone National Park is on many Americans’ bucket lists. While you’ll want to explore it from the ground, make sure you also take some time to fly over it. To get the full scope of the beauty of the Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone’s Midway Geyser Basin, you’ll want to see it from the air.