The best Punta Cana helicopter tours (incl. air tours and excursions by plane)

Is there anything better than seeing Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic from the air? Hardly, so get prepared for some of the most spectacular excursions you can get: Punta Cana helicopter tours and air tours. As exploring the area from the air is not already amazing enough, there are 2 interesting facts about airplane and helicopter rides in Punta Cana: first, you are not only randomly flying over some beautiful parts of the country, you are actually visiting some of the most exciting attractions in Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic, among them the highest waterfall in the country, the oldest city in the Americas or one of the most gorgeous islands in the Dominican Republic. And second, a Punta Cana helicopter tour can be as cheap as 89 USD, so don’t be fooled by thinking that air and helicopter excursions are only something for the rich and famous. Having said that, get ready and pick your favorite among the best Punta Cana helicopter and airplane tours.

Are you interested in further Punta Cana tours? If so, check out our comprehensive Punta Cana Excursion Guide with the most exciting 35+ activities for your vacation.

Quick overview of the best airplane and helicopter tours in Punta Cana

If you just want to get a first glimpse of the best helicopter tours in Punta Cana and the best airplane excursions from your all-inclusive resort, you can check out the following table to see where you can go and which highlights in the Dominican Republic you can reach from Punta Cana by helicopter and plane.

(mobile users: please turn your device to landscape mode to enjoy the best view of this table)

  Punta Cana Helicopter Tour Saona Island Helicopter Tour Samaná Explorer by plane Santo Domingo airplane tour Bahía de las Águilas
Character of this air excursion panoramic flight of Punta Cana’s coastline beautiful Isla Saona by helicopter + beach club visit exploring the lush peninsula with more time on Samaná enjoying the heritage of Santo Domingo without being 6 hours on the road the most unique air excursion from Punta Cana: pristine Bahía de las Águilas
Type of transport helicopter helicopter small airplane small airplane small airplane
Price per person starting from 89 USD* starting from 289 USD* starting from 255 USD* starting from 230 USD* starting from 380 USD*
Tour duration 10-40 minutes 3.5 hours 10-11 hours 11 hours 12 hours
Group size small small small small small
Lunch + drinks included yes yes yes yes yes
Transfers from Punta Cana included yes yes yes yes yes
  Check excursion prices at Punta Cana Travel Blog Check excursion prices at Punta Cana Travel Blog Check excursion prices at Punta Cana Travel Blog Check excursion prices at Punta Cana Travel Blog Check excursion prices at Punta Cana Travel Blog
  All details in this table are for informational purposes only and can change without further notice. Please check the description of the tour offer for binding information. Punta Cana Travel Blog can’t be held responsible for any errors or changes.

Map of Punta Cana air tours and helicopter excursions

The best airplane and helicopter tours in Punta Cana

The best Punta Cana helicopter and airplane tours

There are many amazing activities and excursions in Punta Cana. Dune buggy tours, ziplining, catamaran tours or countryside excursions are some of the most popular things to do in Punta Cana. But nothing can compare to seeing Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic from above. Along with the unparalleled panoramic views you are getting a VIP experience and can reach your destination much quicker. That’s why we have put together the best air and helicopter tours in Punta Cana to give an overview of the best options.

1) Punta Cana helicopter ride along the coastline of Bavaro

If you have never been in a helicopter and want to get a first glimpse of how it is flying in one, this helicopter tour in Punta Cana is the best option for you. With less than 100 USD, it only requires a minimal travel budget and you can soak up all the beautiful views Punta Cana’s coastline has to offer. Turquoise waters, endless beaches, millions of palm trees, large resorts and plenty of boats – that’s what you can spot when seeing Punta Cana from the air. Furthermore, depending on which all-inclusive resort you are staying at (especially when staying in Bavaro, Arena Gorda and Cabeza de Toro), you might be able to see your hotel from above.

The flight doesn’t take too long but is a great introduction into flying with a helicopter in Punta Cana. It is also possible to book this tour as a 20-, 30- or 40-minute flight, so you can adjust it according to your preferences – check the button below for individual pricing. And if you have liked this tour, why not booking one of the other Punta Cana helicopter excursions mentioned in this article here?

Helicopter tour dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana helicopter tour: perfect for beginners and super affordable
What you will see: Punta Canas’ beaches and all-inclusive resorts
Flight time: 10-40 minutes, depending on your booking

Punta Cana helicopter tours - the best excursions to see Punta Cana from above

2) Punta Cana helicopter tour to famous Isla Saona

Isla Saona – do I have to say more? Just look at the photo below or the beautiful impressions in the extensive Isla Saona guide and you know what paradise is awaiting you. It might even be the most picturesque and gorgeous spot in the Dominican Republic.

The only downturn when booking a regular excursion to Isla Saona* (by bus and boat) is that the tour takes at least 10 hours. And this is where the Saona Island helicopter tour jumps in. This exciting air excursion from Punta Cana combines the best of both worlds: seeing the spectacular Isla Saona but limiting the time you need to a half-day so you have more opportunities to enjoy your all-inclusive resort.

Furthermore, you can enjoy a good lunch on the island, which outperforms the lunches served during your typical Saona excursion. After lunch, you can either have a few drinks while relaxing at the beach or explore the island a bit and walk to the neighboring beaches. As you can see on my detailed Isla Saona guide, Saonas’ beaches are simply awe-inspiring. Seeing them from above during a helicopter tour from Punta Cana to Isla Saona puts the icing on the cake. You can also see the ultra-turquoise waters from the air as well as the untouched areas of national park Cotubanama.

The total excursion time starting from the heliport in Punta Cana is 2.5 hours (25-30 minutes flying each way plus approx. 75 to 90 minutes on Saona Island), so adding the transfer from and to your resort shall bring you back to your hotel in 3.5 hours.

Helicopter tour dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana helicopter tour: combine the most famous attraction in the Dominican Republic with a helicopter ride and you get one of the most amazing helicopter tours in Punta Cana
What you will see: Isla Saona, Parque Nacional Cotubanama, Punta Cana’s coastline and a lot of turquoise waters
Flight time: approx. 2x 25 minutes
Further information: Excursion to Isla Saona – everything you need to know for your hassle-free Saona Island Tour 2021

The one and only Isla Saona, the most popular excursion in Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic

3) Punta Cana helicopter excursion: sightseeing to Salto de la Jalda and Playa Esmeralda

Do you prefer to have a helicopter ride in Punta Cana to some lesser-known attractions? In this case, you should consider the Punta Cana helicopter tour to Salto de la Jalda and Playa Esmeralda. It is by far not as prestigious as the Isla Saona helicopter flight, but on this excursion, you can explore 2 genuine hidden gems of Punta Cana and the Dominican Republic.

First, you fly to Salto de la Jalda, the highest waterfall in the Dominican Republic. This waterfall usually is only accessible by a 6-hour-hike, as you can read in my detailed Salto de la Jalda guide. The helicopter excursion gives you the chance to still see this impressive waterfall, even though you won’t land right at the falls. But the views from the helicopter, flying into the narrow gorge and admiring the lush vegetation, is an adventure on its own. You’ll also approach Salto de la Jalda super close, so you definitely can take photos of the waterfall.

For your Dominican Republic vacation

Travel resources

Punta Cana Airport Transfers: Info | Book It*
Santo Domingo Airport Transfers: Info | Book It*
All-Inclusive Resorts: Info | Book It*
Guesthouses & AirBnBs: Info | Book It*
Excursions: Info | Book It*
Rental Car: Info | Book It*
Road-Trips & Self-Drive Tours: Info | Plan It
Travel Insurance (incl. covid-19 coverage): Book it*

Afterwards, you head to Playa Esmeralda, one of the most pristine beaches in the Dominican Republic. It is impressive to see that just an hour away from the billion-dollar tourism industry of Punta Cana you can find a beach which is absolutely virgin. Here, you’ll have a break from your helicopter ride and enjoy a picnic which is getting served. During this hour, you also have the chance of walking along this absolutely pristine beach and take some stunning photos.

After visiting Playa Esmeralda, you will fly back with the helicopter to Punta Cana.

Helicopter tour dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana helicopter tour: combining two off-the-beaten-track attractions with a stunning helicopter excursion
What you will see: Salto de la Jalda, Playa Esmeralda, Cordillera Oriental and Punta Cana’s coastline
Flight time: approx. 50-60 minutes in total
Further information:
Salto de la Jalda – the highest waterfall in the Caribbean
The 10 best beaches in Punta Cana [2021; incl. map]

Hike to Salto de la Jalda, the highest waterfall in the Caribbean

4) Punta Cana air tour to the beautiful Samaná peninsula

You can not only go on helicopter tours in Punta Cana, but you can also explore some of the most amazing highlights in the Dominican Republic on an airplane excursion from Punta Cana.

The most popular air tour in Punta Cana is the one to Samaná, where you’ll see a lot of the beautiful attractions the peninsula has to offer, among them the lush countryside, the picturesque waterfall El Limón and the famous island Cayo Levantado, also called Bacardi Island.

The Punta Cana to Samana flight takes place in a small Cessna (or a similarly sized airplane), allowing beautiful views from above on the east coast of the Dominican Republic and the Samaná Bay. After landing in Samaná you see a couple of countryside villages and get a few explanations about the traditions and the culture of Samaná. Your next destination is Salto El Limón, the gorgeous waterfall on the Samaná peninsula. Even though you most likely won’t be alone (read my article about Salto El Limón to know how you can enjoy the waterfall without other tourists), it still is a majestic beauty. Hop into the El Limón waterfall to cool down from the Caribbean heat.

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The author Chris in the Dominican Republic

After a home-cooked Dominican lunch, Cayo Levantado is awaiting you on this airplane excursion from Punta Cana. It is a quick ride to Bacardi Island from Salto El Limón by bus or safari truck and by boat. On Cayo Levantado, you have time to enjoy this beautiful Samaná beach and swim in the ocean. It completes a perfect Samaná adventure from Punta Cana. In the afternoon, your plane to fly back from Samaná to Punta Cana is awaiting you, which gets you back to your Punta Cana resort much quicker than the typical Punta Cana Samaná tours*. With this Punta Cana airplane excursion, you see Samaná in a much more relaxed and comfortable way.

Airplane excursion dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana air tour: Samaná is one of the most beautiful regions in the Dominican Republic. With this excursion by plane, you can explore Samaná on a relaxed itinerary and enjoy some spectacular views from above.
What you will see: Samaná, Samaná Bay, Salto El Limón, Cayo Levantado
Flight time: approx. 2x 30 minutes
Further information:
Salto El Limón from Punta Cana and for Samaná travelers – insider tips, excursions, hiking trails, etc.
The 22 most beautiful beaches in Samaná

Playa Esmeralda seen from above, during the flight from Punta Cana in direction to the Samaná peninsula

5) Whale watching excursion by plane from Punta Cana

A very special air tour in Punta Cana to Samaná (not with a helicopter ride, but with a Cessna) can be booked from January to March: a whale watching excursion by plane.

Whale watching is super popular in the Dominican Republic and this air excursion combines the best of both worlds: a flight from Punta Cana to Samaná in a small propeller-driven airplane and seeing the gigantic humpback whales during the time they give birth to their babies. This is one of the most impressive experiences when it comes to excursions in Punta Cana.

The itinerary for this airplane tour from Punta Cana is similar to the one described above visiting Salto El Limón and Cayo Levantado on the Samaná excursion by air. For this whale watching excursion by plane, the only thing that changes is that you first go whale watching by boat in the Bay of Samaná and afterwards head to Salto El Limón OR Cayo Levantado (depending on the day you book – Monday and Friday it is whale watching in Samaná and Salto El Limón, on Wednesdays the whale watching excursion is combined with Cayo Levantado; check the supplier’s description if this is still the case for 2022 before you book).

As you can read in my detailed whale watching article, whale watching from Punta Cana in the Bay of Samaná allows you to spot the whales very close while respecting the regulations of the Dominican government to protect the animals and the privacy of the whales.
Furthermore, you can spot the giant humpback whales with a success rate of nearly 100% – and usually, you see not only just one, you see lots of them. Hence whale watching in the Dominican Republic is really worth it – and if you take the excursion by plane, you save yourself a good amount of time AND can enjoy marvelous views from above.

Airplane excursion dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana air tour: whale watching in the Dominican Republic is already one of the most exciting excursions, but if you combine this with an air tour in Punta Cana, there is hardly anything that can compete
What you will see: humpback whales! Furthermore, Bacardi Island OR Salto El Limón, and views of the Samaná Bay from above
Flight time: approx. 2x 30 minutes
Further information: Whale watching in the Dominican Republic (Punta Cana/Samaná)

Whalewatching in Samaná, one of the top highlights in the Dominican Republic

6) Punta Cana airplane excursion to colonial Santo Domingo

Ok, we had a lot of nature attractions now to visit on a Punta Cana helicopter tour or an airplane excursion from Punta Cana, but how about history and culture? Punta Canas manifold excursions also get this covered!

If you love to explore the rich and centuries-old history of the Dominican Republic, you should hop on a plane from Punta Cana to Santo Domingo, which is already included in this airplane excursion. After the quick 35-minute flight, you get shuttled to the colonial center of Santo Domingo, which is one of the most important historic centers in the entire Caribbean and got awarded as a world heritage by UNESCO. But it is not only a simple bucket list item to tick off, the Zona Colonial in Santo Domingo is a genuine hidden gem with a super authentic vibe, combined with colonial charm, colorful buildings and historic importance. If you love to stroll around, visit decorative art shops, take a break at family-owned coffee shops and see the life of the Dominicans, this air tour from Punta Cana is for you. If you need more reasons why to visit the Colonial Zone, check out this article.

The best things to do in Punta Cana for an unforgettable vacation

TOP 10 Punta Cana Excursions

Isla Saona: Saona Info | Book it*
Dune buggy and ATV excursion: Buggy Info | Book it*
Punta Cana Ziplining: Zipline Info | Book it*
Party boat & booze cruise: Party Boat Info | Book it*
Scape Park Cap Cana & Blue Lagoon: Blue Lagoon Info | Book it*
Los Haitises National Park: Los Haitises Info | Book it*
Santo Domingo: Santo Domingo Info | Book it*
Samaná (Salto El Limón & Cayo Levantado): Samaná Info | Book it*
Helicopter & airplane tours: Helicopter Info | Book it*
Whale watching (Jan-Mar only): Whale watching Info | Book it*

Looking for more inspiration? Check out the 35 best Punta Cana tours!


After exploring the historic center of Santo Domingo, you continue your journey to Agora Mall, Santo Domingo’s largest shopping mall, 98% frequented by locals. Here you can shop like a king, but don’t buy too much, because you have a plane flight waiting to bring you back to your all-inclusive resort in Punta Cana or alternative accommodation like Airbnb.

The tour in total takes around 10-11 hours. The big advantage here is that you have a lot more time in Santo Domingo than when booking the regular Punta Cana to Santo Domingo excursion by bus*, where you spend around 6 hours on the bus.

Airplane excursion dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana air tour: exploring the historically important and very interesting Santo Domingo without spending 3 hours each way on the road sounds like an amazing deal
What you will see: you see the south of the Dominican Republic from the air and will explore Santo Domingo, especially the UNESCO awarded Colonial Zone
Flight time: approx. 2x 35 minutes
Further information:
10 reasons why you should visit the Zona Colonial of Santo Domingo
23 exciting things to do in Santo Domingo (and 5 NOT to do)
How to get from Punta Cana to Santo Domingo

The historic streets of the Colonial Zone in Santo Domingo

7) Punta Cana air tour to pristine Bahía de la Aguilas

If you are looking for the most unique airplane or helicopter tour in Punta Cana or if you want to surprise your loved one(s) with an absolutely extraordinary Punta Cana day-trip, this unique and spectacular tour with a twin-engine airplane is for you.

This Punta Cana air tour brings you to Bahía de las Águilas, one of the Dominican Republics’ most pristine, beautiful and remote beaches, far in the southwest of the country. While you can reach the other destinations presented within the airplane and helicopter tours above via alternative methods of transport (usually with a 1-3 hour boat and or bus ride), taking a plane from Punta Cana to Bahía de las Águilas is the only mean of transport to get there, as long as you don’t want to go on an exciting and adventurous road-trip in the Southwest of the Dominican Republic to tackle the 9-hour drive to Bahía de las Águilas.

Bahía de las Águilas is a legendary beach due to its remote location and its 100% undeveloped area. There is not a single hotel or any bar or restaurant at this beach, which stretches for miles with turquoise water and its bright white sand. Ask any Dominican about Bahía de las Águilas and he or she will tell you that it is either the best beach they have ever seen or one of the journeys they definitely want to go on in their life.

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This plane charter to Bahía de las Águilas is also the longest of all air and helicopter tours from Punta Cana, as you fly roughly 200 miles each way, resulting in a flight time of approx. 2 hours in total (1 hour each way). This brings you a lot of unique views of the Dominican Republic from above, especially considering that each seat has a window in this small aircraft.

Once arrived at Bahía de las Águilas, you can enjoy a picture-perfect beach, crystal-clear water, snorkeling, a typical Dominican lunch, a boat ride and an open bar. Especially when visiting Bahía de las Águilas during the week, it is also very likely that you have the whole beach for yourself which is not comparable with some of the busy beaches in Punta Cana. Everything is prepared for an unforgettable excursion by airplane in the Dominican Republic!

Airplane excursion dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana air tour: Usually there is – due to the distance – no chance of seeing the Bahía de las Águilas, one of the Caribbeans’ best beaches, from Punta Cana, but this airplane excursion makes it possible.
What you will see: the fantastic Bahía de las Águilas + a lot of views of the Dominican Republic from above
Flight time: approx. 2x 60 minutes

The beautiful beach of Bahia de las Aguilas in the Southwest of the Dominican Republic

Special: Helicopter proposal Punta Cana for couples

Ok, this was a list of the best air and helicopter tours in Punta Cana, at least those which are easily bookable. Of course, you can charter any plane or helicopter and fly wherever you want in the Dominican Republic, but usually, those private charters easily cost 1000 USD and more.

But wait, there is another special thing you can do in Punta Cana by helicopter: propose to your loved one! With a helicopter proposal in Punta Cana, you will certainly impress your future spouse for the rest of her life. Just imagine her eyes when you are going to fly over the beach and she is reading “will you marry me” in the middle of the Caribbean.

With this Punta Cana helicopter proposal package, you are getting a short flight to the pristine part of Cabeza de Toro beach, the preparation of the setting just for the two of you, a meal right at the beach and drinks to cheer on your life you are going to spend together, hopefully for the rest of your life. Obviously, this helicopter tour in Punta Cana is a completely private excursion.

Helicopter tour dates: check availability*
Why it is the best Punta Cana helicopter tour: is there a better way to ask the love of your life if she wants to marry you than with a Punta Cana helicopter proposal at the beach? I don’t think so!
What you will see: a glimpse of Punta Canas’ beaches and the “will you marry me” question at the beach.
Flight time: approx. 5-10 minutes per way

Punta Cana helicopter tours - the best excursions to see Punta Cana from above

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The face behind Punta Cana Travel Blog: Chris

CHRIS

Author, Travel Coach & Punta Cana based digital nomad

Hey, I am Chris, a born and raised German, travel-addictive and Caribbean Soul. Since 2011 I have been living in the Caribbean, among them 5 years in the Dominican Republic. Punta Cana is my home-base here in the country and I’d love to tell you more about how to experience Punta Cana off-the-beaten-track and give you all the advice you want to know for your vacation in Punta Cana.

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