Flying is a lot like having a staring contest: even with utter concentration, you’ll never be better at it than birds. Go toe-to-beak with our winged companions with today's Groupon: for $150, you get two seats on a 30-minute helicopter tour from Raven Helicopter (a $300 value). Raven Helicopter spirits erstwhile earth-bound passengers skyward for a bird's-eye view of the city and surrounding sights. Like a luxury car that can't be held down by conventional notions of gravity, Raven's R-66 helicopter pampers passengers with its leather seats and open interior, and inspires envy in seagulls with its Rolls-Royce RR300 engine. Lifting off from Hancock Airport, the sky vessel sojourns south over notable landmarks such as Carousel Center mall and Onondaga Lake. The airborne gaze upon Syracuse like an ant surveying his amoeba colony, as the chopper cuts east toward the zoo, Carrier Dome, and Syracuse University. Passengers can snap aerial photos before circling back to land at Hancock Airport. Flights are available on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For more than a decade, Raven Helicopter's pilots have dazzled skyborne passengers with stunning vistas seen during aerial tours and chartered flights. During each journey, a certified pilot deftly ferries passengers through the skies in a striking, streamlined R66 turbine helicopter, outfitted with a wraparound bubble canopy for easy viewing of scenic landscapes, and a cargo hold for carrying skis, golf clubs, and other, smaller helicopters. Guests drink in the idyllic forests, hills, and lakes of the region as they snap pictures or roll film for posterity.