World’s Most Thrilling Seaplane Journeys

by Jane Sophia
World’s Most Thrilling Seaplane Journeys

Where can you enjoy thrilling seaplane journeys in the world?

Seaplanes also known as flying amphibians, and floating planes are mainly employed for air-surveillance and to fight fire in high-rise buildings.

When things are calm, they are also used to transport passengers to remote islands quickly. Floating planes are much faster than ferries, and fast boats.

You can expect to travel around 250 kmph. These flying amphibians can go up to 1500 feet above sea level. The basic rule is to stay below the clouds.

Seaplanes can accommodate a maximum of 6 passengers. However, there are larger flying boats that can take 18 people.

There are no restrooms on board.

Is there any difference between a seaplane and a floating plane?

Yes, a Seaplane lands on the water on its belly, whereas a floating plane uses a pair of floats (pontoons) to land.

See the picture below.

Floating plane or floatplane,


Floating plane

Seaplane’s image is given above as the title image.

It is so appealing, that we cannot resist a chance to ride on a seaplane.

Nowadays, floating planes are more in use than seaplanes.

Places where you can enjoy a jolly ride in a seaplane.


Do you know the fuel of a seaplane? It uses ‘kerosene’!

World’s Most Thrilling Seaplane Journeys

  1. Norway

Fjords in Norway are the biggest attractions. While cruises are available in a fjord, an aerial view but at the same time, very close to the sea is much more appealing.

For this purpose, a seaplane or a flying boat is used.

These jolly rides on a floating plane last about half an hour. Since every passenger is seated near the window, he is thrilled to see the water so low from his seat.

Bergen, the second-largest city in Norway, has several fjords over which, seaplane tours are offered.

In addition to fjords, Bergen is known for glaciers too. Seaplane tours are arranged to fly near the glaciers. The close sight of glaciers from a flying boat creates an everlasting memory.

Ask around for seaplane tours to see the country’s numerous chains of islands. You will never get another chance. Such jolly tours in a seaplane over the islands near the arctic region are a once in a lifetime experience.

  1. Tavares, Florida

Do you know?

Tavares is Florida is known as the seaplane capital of the world.

It is also known as the ‘seaplane city of America’. It occupies the central region of Florida.It has three large lakes that are bustling with seaplane landing, and takeoff, mainly for tourism purpose.

  • Lake Eustis
  • Lake Dora
  • Lake Hariis

Mount Dora is shown in close-ups to you from a flying amphibian.

Sadly, these tours on floating plane rides last just 15 minutes.

Remember, these flying boats make a lot of noise, inside and outside too.

  1. Lake Hood

Lake Hood

Seaplanes are parked in Lake Hood, waiting for the passengers.

Alaska is home to many lakes, glaciers, and snow-capped mountains. So, seaplane tours are aplenty in Alaska.

Lake Hood is one such place that offers riddles in floatplanes.

Lake Hood is located just outside the city of Anchorage, in southern Alaska. Its seaplane terminus is so busy that it witnesses approximately 200 flights every day,

Even if you are not a passenger, it would be enjoyable to watch the traffic of the flying boats.

  1. Maldives

A total of 1192 islands comprise the Maldives archipelago. People live only on 187 islands. Seaplanes are used for transporting passengers in between the islands.

Especially, the COMO Maalifushi Island can be accessed only by a seaplane. It is so far off from Male, the capital of the Maldives that your seaplane flies for an hour to reach the strange-sounding island of Maldives.

The distance to be covered is 250 km! I think even the groceries, medicines, and emergency doctors depend on the seaplane only to reach the island.

However, if you are not destined to go to COMO Maalifushi Island, you can still enjoy a jolly ride in a seaplane. There are short tours.

Seaplanes in Maldives are big. They can accommodate 18 passengers.

During the 20 minutes ride, the floatplane will fly so low that you can watch the big whales come up for breathing.

The aerial view of the islands is always breathtaking. The gently lapping waves on the beaches, the coconut trees, the diving of huge seabirds, all these sights are mesmerizing. You will feel very lucky to be flying in a seaplane.

During the short ride, the flying amphibian will be parked on the water to enable divers, and snorkelers to go under the water to watch beautiful marine lives.

Lengthier floating plane tours can be chartered, either to drop you off at a private island resort or to go a tour of island hopping.

Yes, such chartered seaplanes are expensive, but the experience is simply awesome and unforgettable.

  1. Bora Bora Island

Bora Bora comprises 12 Tahitian islands. They are administered as French Overseas Territory.

The islands are known to provide accommodation on water and are known as overwater bungalows.

Bora Bora’s overwater villas have come up since 1970!

The seaplane is called a ‘water taxi’ in this part of the Pacific Ocean. For visiting the Bora Bora islands, you can join any organized tour operator who will accompany you in the seaplane tour.

A full day seaplane tours are available from Taha Island, one of the siblings of Bora Bora.

  1. Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island in Canada’s west coast is one of the best destinations for flying boat rides.

Victoria City, the capital, is known to offer floating plane rides.

Victoria has several water airports and the seaplanes fly between these inner water taxi terminals.

In addition, they shuttle between some big coastal cities on the large Vancouver Island. The cities include:

  • Comox
  • Nanaimo
  • Whistler

In addition, jolly rides in seaplanes will hover over the Gulf Islands located in the Salish Sea, near Vancouver.

Even from mainland Vancouver, you can reach Victoria city on Vancouver Island by seaplane.

The water taxi takes only 35 minutes between these two destinations.

  1. Alaska

Alaska is known for glaciers, and remote islands that are literally unexplored due to poor accessibility.

They are ideal destinations to see from air. Seaplanes are very popular in Alaska.

The national parks in Alaska are great as wildlife watching destinations. Moreover, there are some lakes that are also located too far from mainland Alaska.

Some of the top tourist landmarks in Alaska that you can see and visit by flying boats include:

  • Denali National Park
  • Glacier Bay National Park
  • Tongass Narrows
  • Misty Fjords, Ketchikan
  • Juneau Glacier

This exciting amphibian tour lasts over 90 minutes!

  1. Sri Lanka

The Emerald Island is one of the highly visited island nations in the world. Its lengthy coastline is ideal for seaplane rides.

Koggala Town is where you can hope to enjoy flying in a flying boat.

A big lake exists in the same name. It comprises several lake islands. These islands are wonderful birding areas that you can visit by seaplane.

Even from Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka, you can enjoy a journey on a floatplane up toKoggala, the under-rated, and lesser-known tourist destination.

The guests who are heading to the enchanting beach resort called, ‘Unawatuna’, board the flying amphibian from Colombo airport itself.

Stilt Fishing.

Stilt Fishing

Nowhere in the world can you see this type of fishing than here in Sri Lanka. A very innovative idea of fishing without any recurring cost indeed.

While flying, you can watch wildlife, mainly elephants in Yala National Park, lush rainforests, tea plantations, thousands of coconut trees.

  1. Quebec, Canada

This is an aerial view of the picturesque Wapizagonke Lake, on the outskirts of Shawinigan City, Quebec, Canada.

Perched on the lake shores is the beautiful La Maurice Park, over which a seaplane will fly.

The amphibian vehicle takes off from St. Maurice River. The tour guide will show you the La Maurice Park, St, Lawrence Valley, numerous lakes, Lac Sacacomie Wildlife Reserve and Quebec Wilderness.

The tour will last more than an hour. The diverse landscape you see below exposes the real Canadian geography, which has no match in the world.

I strongly recommend this seaplane tour. For details, please get in touch with HydravionAventure Inc.

  1. Indonesia

The exact destinations in Indonesia to experience a fun-filled ride in a floating plane are Anambas, Bahwah Island resort, and Riau Islands.

They are located somewhere between Malaysia, and Borneo Island. The islands are surrounded by North Natuna Sea, an arm of South China Sea. The nearest popular destination is Batam Island.

You leave Singapore in ferry to reach Batam Island, Indonesia. It involves only half an hour sea passage.

From Batam, a seaplane will deposit you on Bawah Island resort. But this time, the floatplane journey takes an hour and 15 minutes!

Bawah resort is on a privately owned island chain. The resort is famous for overwater accommodations.

Please be aware that the Bawah Islands itself is a 6-islands chain, and they are part of Anambas Islands archipelago.

Bawah Reserve is accessible only by seaplane from Batam. The amphibian aircraft they use here has wheels to directly land on a paved runway, or land on water using its pontoons.

See its landing on water, and sliding onto a runway.

Bawah Reserve is an incredibly beautiful, remote Indonesian Island. It is part of 2470 acres of marine reserve. It is one of the biggest ecotourism destinations in Asia.

  1. Andaman Islands

This Indian tropical paradise is known for numerous water sports that include “seafloor walking”, and “Semi Submarine ride”.

The latest addition into their bag of water-based adventure activities is a seaplane ride.

The fun ride starts from Port Blair airport. The destination is Havelock Island’s waterdrome.

The spectacular aerial view of the Andaman Islands’ natural attractions includes:

  • Volcano on Barren island (it is an active volcano, buddy)
  • Radha Nagar Beach
  • Diglipur Beaches
  • Ross Island
  • Smith Island
  • North Bay Island
  • Saddle Peak National Park
  • Mount Harriet
  • Cellular Jail

The seaplane lands in the waterdrome off the shores of Havelock Island after 25 minutes from taking off.

The aerial view of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands will sweep you off your feet.

  1. Australia

We now move over to Australia, and that too to the Sydney Harbour, one of the highly mentioned places to see in Australia.

The Sydney Opera House at the backdrop of Sydney Harbour is one of the much published photos on the web.

The floating barge ride is of 15, and 30 minutes duration. You can choose anyone. The floating plane takes off from Rose Bay waterdrome (water airport).

Below is a picture of the water airport.


The aerial view of Sydney Harbour, the Opera House, the beautiful beaches below, and the high-rise residential skyscrapers paint a spectacular picture of Sydney’s waterfront.

  1. New Zealand

The water body from where the floatplane ride starts is Lake TeAnau. It’s a large lake, measuring a staggering 61 km by 10 km in length and width respectively.

Lake TeAnau is located on South Island, New Zealand.

The focus of the seaplane ride is the three fjords of the lake. Please be aware, man, these are inland fjords, not the coastal fjords that we have heard about.

The lake and its fjords comprise the Fiordland National Park. The joyride over this stunning geography lasts just 15 minutes.

The nearest big city to reach Lake TeAnau, is Queenstown at 75 km west.

  1. Bahamas

Seaplanes rides must have first started on Bahamas Islands. More than a couple of airlines offer seaplane rides to various distant locales, and nearby islands in Bahamas.

Seabird Air is the highly recommended source for booking your first floatplane ride over the Atlantic Ocean.

Tourists to Bahamas wish to be taken directly to their resorts located on private islands.

Seabird Air will arrange a pickup for you from Bahamas Airport to take you to the seaplane boarding point.

Invariably, flying barges make frequent trips to Long Island, Conception Island, Ragged Islands, Rum Cay, and Samana Cay.

For inquiries, contact

I believe for the rides to different islands and resorts from Nassau hotels, and airport, you have to charter an amphibian aircraft.

  1. Adirondacks

Adirondack Mountains are not a mountain range but a massif with several peaks. It has 46 peaks that stand at an altitude of over 4000 peaks.

The circular formation of the mountains is unique. Within its borders, you can spot 200 lakes. If you are able to extend your view, there are as many as 3000 water bodies!

Wouldn’t that be a terrific sight if viewed aerially?

But, how do you do that?

A seaplane is the best mode of transport to show you the mountains, and the lakes at close range.

The exciting seaplane tour begins from Long Lake, but, lasts only 20 minutes!

The knowledgeable pilot will point out the following breathtaking attractions from his seat:

  • Lake George
  • Lake Tear of the Clouds
  • Mirror Lake
  • Lake Placid
  • Lake Flower

Reaching the Long Lake.

Albany, the capital of New York State, is only 195 km away north.

The region’s rich and diverse wildlife attracts millions of hikers and wildlife travellers.

  1. San Francisco

The San Francisco Bay is one of the coveted tourist landmarks in the west coast of the United States.

There is a seaplane tour here. The aerial view is said to be something spectacular. Fortunately, your tour in the amphibian aircraft lasts 45 minutes!

The takeoff point is Richardson Bay, an extension of the scenic San Francisco Bay, the Pacific Ocean.

Top sights include the world-famous Golden Gate Bridge, Stinson Beach, San Francisco Downtown, Angel Island, Mount Tam, and the Muir Woods.

For booking, search for Bay area seaplane tour or Golden Gate aerial tour.

  1. Vancouver City

Vancouver City is one of the largest cities in Canada, on its west coast facing the Pacific Ocean,

One of the ways to see the city aerially is undertaking a ride on a seaplane.

Two recommended tours involve a 20-minute, and a 35-minute flight. Both these tours are offered throughout the year. The floatplanes takeoff from Coal Harbour.

The downtown of the city is an ultra-modern city with numerous towers. Some of the highlights of the ride include views of:

  • Lions Gate Bridge
  • English Bay
  • Sea Wall
  • Stanley Park
  • North Shore Mountains.

The majority of the tourists to Vancouver are not aware of the seaplane tour of the city. If you don’t want to miss, look up in

  1. Thailand

Thailand’s tourist attractions need no prelude. The Siam country receives millions of tourists every year.

The country recently launched amphibian plane tours to private islands, resorts, and some of the nearby islands.

Being an amphibian plane, it departs from Bangkok airport.

The best tour is a 90-minute round trip to KohPhaNgan, a picturesque tropical island.

A shorter duration ride is available. It lasts just 30 minutes. The destination is Jomtien Beach, near Pattaya. I hope the tour is opened for the public by the time you read this post.

  1. Vietnam

Truly fantastic sight!

Halong Bay is a stunning coastal area in Halong, near Hanoi city, Vietnam. The Ha Long Bay cruises are in good demand.

Look below, an aerial view of the modern Ha Long City, sitting right on the Ha Long Bay.

Are you impressed with the view? If you go on a floating plane ride from the World Heritage city, you can enjoy the scintillating view.

The floating barge tour starts from Hanoi, located 175 km west of Halong.

After taking off, it lands on the water of Tuan Chang Marina Port. The duration is 45 minutes.

The aircraft is quite spacious with well-spread out 12 seats.

The floatplane flies over a whopping 1600 islands, and islets.

The seaplane looks brand new with plush leather seats.

  1. Palawan, the Philippines

This is an aerial view of the stunning Palawan. How about viewing it in person while flying in a floatplane?

Palawan is one the island provinces of the Philippines. It is the foremost destination if you undertake a tour to holiday in the Philippines.

The seaplane tour lasts a total of 10 hours including, pick up and drop at your hotel, sightseeing, snorkeling, and dining in El Nido.

How do you like these 20 places in the world where you can enjoy a seaplane ride?

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