From Palma to Dragonera in a Robinson 44. “Have any of you ever been up in a helicopter before?” asks Johnny Greenal, our pilot for the afternoon. The three of us sheepishly shake our heads which seems to please him immensely. Flying in helicopter is a totally new experience for all of us. 

As we follow him out onto the tarmac in our “hivis” jackets he informs us that Son Benet still belongs to AENA and was once the airport on Mallorca. It’s hard to believe when you compare what is basically a runway with a few outbuildings to the sprawling metropolis of the current international airport.

Ready for Take Off

“That’s what we will be going up in today”, he says and gestures across the runway to a Robinson 44. I must admit I’m curious as to how Johnny and I, being the fine specimens of men that we are, will both be able to fit in the front together.

After some checks to the helicopter, a security briefing and some very professional sounding radio talk with the air traffic controllers, we take off. My immediate reaction is how gentle the whole experience is, far different from that of a plane.

Flying in Helicopter

The magic now begins as we see Mallorca from a perspective we have never experienced. Our 30 min trip takes us across Palma towards Dragonera. From there we follow the coastline back to the limit of Palma airspace. Johnny takes great delight in giving us an informative yet fun account of many of the properties we see below us. He is even throwing in some “I’ve been reliably informed” for good measure.

Mallorca’s climate makes it a fantastic place not only to see by air, but also to get a pilot’s license. Flying in helicopter is something which many people are investing in, and I can see why, it’s highly addictive! As we gently land back on ground we look at each other all thinking the same thing – I will be doing that again.

Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return. – Leonardo da Vinci

Balearic Helicopters
Aerodromo de Son Bonet
www.balearic-helicopters.com 
Writer: Paul Robinson
Photography: Pernilla Danielsson

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