Consider this scenario: you arrive at the drop zone giddy with anticipation, and your heart starts to race as you watch others leap into the unknown. You are just about to jump out of a plane that is likely 10,000 feet (or more!) above ground level, and you keep hoping your parachute will open in time. Nothing else in the world seems to matter at that point. Like a free bird, you jump out of the plane. The passage of time is stopped.
To participate in this intense adventure sport, one must be willing to take risks, but the rewards are much greater than you could ever imagine. You have to experience the sensation of floating just above clouds and then seeing the world’s beauty through the eyes of a bird to believe it. If you are willing to venture, below are some of the most popular skydiving sites, also known as drop zones, around the world, each with its spectacular view to enjoy as you drive through the atmosphere.
1. Palm Jumeirah, Dubai
Dubai, a relative newcomer among the world’s leading drop zones, has been catching up, hosting one of the largest annual international skydive championships, sponsored by The Emirates Aero sport Federation (EAF) and Skydive Dubai. Dubai is a city jump, unlike the rest of the landing areas on the list. You will fly over the Palm Jumeirah, an artificial archipelago made of reclaimed land that juts out from Dubai’s urban marina, with a breath-taking view of the Persian Gulf and the entire city.
2. Fox Glacier, New Zealand
New Zealand, a mecca for extreme sports and arguably the best country in the world for skydiving, perhaps the farthest of all, has a plethora of breathtakingly beautiful drop zones. A perennial favourite is Fox Glacier, an 8-mile-long mountain range in New Zealand’s South Island’s inaccessible Westland Tai Poutini National Park. Admire the view of the wild coastline along the Tasman Sea and the snowy, rugged peaks of the Southern Alps as you free fall, knees in the wind.
3. Hawaii, United States
Many people would argue that Waialua is the best place to skydive in Hawaii, and while this may be true, you might argue that anywhere in Hawaii is the best place to skydive in the world. The views from 8,000 feet up are breath-taking, with craggy coloured coastlines and vast palm tree-lined valleys, as well as hidden swimming holes and awe-inspiring volcano sites. Skydiving in Hawaii, whether from Oahu, Kauai, Honolulu, or anywhere else, will provide you with memories that will last a lifetime.
4. Interlaken, Switzerland
Interlaken has a long history as a centre for adventure sports, and many divers consider it to be one of Europe’s most scenic drop zones. Interlaken skydiving is a thrill for beginners and experienced divers alike, with views of Italy, France, Germany, and Austria stretching out past the snow-capped peaks of the Jungfrau and the Matterhorn in the Alps. Andrew Price, a first-time diver, says, “Barrelling down on the Swiss Alps at near terminal velocity speeds is a ride I will never forget.” And, as one would expect from Switzerland, the dive operations run as smoothly as a cuckoo clock.
5. Mount Everest, Nepal
Take on the risk of a lifetime by jumping out of an aircraft with a tandem instructor, or if you are feeling brave, try a free fall from Mount Everest. The sight of the great Himalayas makes this not just the world’s highest drop zone, but also by far the most scenic. It is even more exciting and challenging because it is at a height of 29,500 feet. Only four skydiving trips are available each year from Mount Everest, but they are also extortionate. If you would like to experience an adrenaline rush like no other and jump from the world’s highest peak, make your reservation at least six months before your actual plan. The four jumps are scheduled for October.
6. North Wollongong Beach, Sydney, Australia
One hour south of Sydney CBD, you will find the drop zone of Australia‘s finest skydiving location. The waters off North Wollongong Beach are brimming with whales and dolphins, and seeing them from 14,000 feet above the ground is a total dream come true. Skydive Sydney Wollongong provides tandem and solo jumps, as well as landings in the ocean or on the beach. It costs about 250 USD approximately. The best time to visit North Wollongong Beach is from December to February.
7. Pattaya, Thailand
One of the only skydiving destinations in South East Asia and one of the finest places to skydive throughout the globe, this place is a paradise if you want to combine a skydiving experience with Thai cuisine and Thai massage. Thai Sky Adventures Co. Limited, located one hour south of Bangkok, ensures the best possible experience. It is one of the greatest locations on the planet to skydive, providing tandem jumping. It costs around 300 USD. Best time to skydive here is from November to February.
8. Namib Desert, Namibia
Here is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to satisfy your wanderlust. It is not very often that you get to stare down at a desert’s vast expanse and rolling dunes and to the sea’s edge. Choose a skydiving adventure in Namibia to see everything from 10000 feet above. You surely want to cross something off your bucket list right now by landing amid a landscape. The best time to visit is from March to December, other than on days while there is a lot of mist. It costs around 178 USD.
The thrill of skydiving in Hawaii is not for the faint-hearted one can choose from altitudes ranging from 8,000 to 22,000 feet. It is worth keeping an eye out for the variety of perspectives that a jump here offers. You will see Hawaii’s many beaches, rainforests, mountains, islands, and other natural wonders. Transcend the skies and then jump to capture continuous aerial views of the entire island.
Do you want to know what makes this dive environmentally friendly? Hawaii skydiving companies use energy-efficient planes to help you minimize your carbon footprint by up to 40%.
10. Denarau Island, Fiji
Seeing the stunning Fijian Islands and coral reef from the air is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Book a skydive and freefall from over azure blue ocean to take things to the next level. The islands are served by Skydive Fiji and Free Fall Fiji. Jumping from as high as 14,000 feet and landing on the islands below is possible. Skydive Fiji’s youngest guest was seven years old, and their eldest was 92 years old!