Helicopter Joyride is the dream venture of the GTDC which is likely to be back on the track after its discontinuation for three years. The project was launched by the Goa Tourism in the year 2016 but was shut down due to different reasons. Heli-tour in Goa will be an icing on the cake for the adventure lovers. It will be an addition to the list of adventures in Goa. Surfing, Scuba diving, trekking, and river rafting have their own charm that tourists enjoy during a tour to Goa. But a heli-tour provides an unparalleled excitement. One can enjoy the bird’s eye view of a places from the comfort and convenience of a private helicopter. So the news of the restoration of the Helicopter Joyride in Goa has overwhelmed the travel enthusiasts. The restoration work will be commenced in October 2019 and the project will be completed by May 2020 as told by Allan Pereira, the executive engineer of GTDC. One of the leading equipment manufacturer company Rohit Equipment has been selected for this work. The total cost to bring the Heli-tour project back to the life has been estimated at INR 3.03 crore.
The Heli-tour was previously launched in 2016 when the ride was operated from a helipad at Fort Aguada in North Goa. But it was closed due to objection from the locals and was then shifted to South Goa and run from a helipad belonged to a premier hotel. The helicopter joyride was closed for the second time in 2017 and did not resumed for the last two years.
This time GTDC has planned to operate the helicopter ride from Ela in Old Goa. Goa tourism is hopeful to earn profit from the project as Old Goa is a popular tourist zone. Also, as the place is close to Panaji it is logistically an excellent place to transfer the tourists to the helipad.
GTDC has taken this project to promote helicopter tourism in Goa. The project under the Swadesh Darshan Scheme of the union ministry will cover an area of 20,920 sq. m. and the land belongs to the tourism department of Goa. The helipad here is already existed and is own by the Government but due to it remained unused for a long time it needs to be redeveloped.
The work to be carried out to reestablish the helipad includes creating vacuumed dewatered flooring (VDF) for the helipad, hot mixing of the approach road, compound wall, illumination, etc. as described by Allan Pereira.
Goa tourism already offers exciting activities like the hot air balloon ride which a popular tourist activity in Goa. And once the Heli-tour project is completed, the helicopter joyride in Goa will be back as an additional excitement to the Goa’s adventure tourism.