Salt Air adds floating helipad barge for tourism ops

Salt Air adds floating helipad barge for tourism ops

2-Nov-2010 Source: Salt Air

An innovative new tourism product for the Bay of Islands has just been launched by Salt Air which includes a barge, a helicopter, a boat and stunning island beaches.

Salt Air have purpose built a floating heli pad barge that will be anchored out amongst the islands from Paihia. Visitors to the Bay of Islands can opt to helicopter out to the barge, then get dropped off by boat to an island of their choice to enjoy snorkelling, fishing, swimming and island walks at their leisure. They then return to Paihia via the Salt Air boat. Alternatively, they can take the boat to the islands and then helicopter back from the barge.

Grant Harnish, CEO of Salt Air is excited about the opportunities the new barge will provide for both visitors and for Salt Air to work in with other tourism operators to provide a combination of heli flights and cruising in the Bay of Islands.

“We designed this product with flexibility in mind so that a variety of vessels can drop off their passengers on our barge for a helicopter flight, opening the door for some exciting tours and packages across the Bay of Islands”.

Companies such as Fullers Great Sights will work in with Salt Air using their vessels the Excitor 3 and Ipipiri to meet with the barge for helicopter flights. The Heli Cruise Island Escapes are now available to book for the 2010/2011 season onwards.

About Salt Air

Salt Air was established by Grant Harnish in 1992, initially operating from the Paihia waterfront offering scenic flights around the beautiful Bay of Islands. Now also renowned for the Cape Reinga ½ Day Tour, Salt Air has grown to become one of the premium experiences for visitors to the region. This tour, which involves flying up to an airstrip at Cape Reinga (top of New Zealand) and then a vehicle tour before returning to the airfield and flying back to the Bay of Islands proved to be immensely popular.

In 2001 Salt Air introduced a helicopter to the operation. As well as offering scenic flights over the Bay of Islands from the Paihia waterfront, the helicopter is also available for charter flights to exclusive lodges, golf courses and secluded destinations in the Northland region. The sole charter helicopter Cape Reinga option has been well received as an alternative way to explore Northland from those properties equipped with helicopter landing areas. In addition to the scenic flights a large amount of charter work to various airports in the North Island has increased Salt Air’s profile in the tourism and charter aviation scene within New Zealand. Salt Air also operates scheduled passenger services between Auckland’s North Shore, Whangarei and Kerikeri airports.

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