There are a few skydiving centers that I’ve heard about ever since I started skydiving. These drop zones have more than just a nice view. They have history behind them. Narrowing it down to 10 drop zones is not an easy job, but this is a start and a very helpful guide for people just getting into the sport. Please add other drop zones in the comments if you think your Home DZ is missing on my list. Don’t forget to check our article about how to travel with skydiving gear before visiting one of these amazing dropzones.
An hour from “Theme Park Capitol” Orlando and 30 minutes from Daytona, this area is the worldwide center for parachute equipment development and manufacturing. The support of the local industry means that Deland is well-equipped with excellent gear. Additionally, you’ll find a full-service restaurant and bar on-site along with camping, showers, and laundry at the drop zone.
PRICES: tandem from $150- $199 AFF: $369 licensed jumpers: $19-$25 per jump
PLANES: Skyvan (tailgate exit), a Twin Otter, and two PAC 750XL
OPEN: every day of the year
EVENTS: Freakfly Festival – multidiscipline event innhopps and extra curricular activities are included.. 9 days with a day off and a boogie Dec 27 to Jan 5
This is less of a drop zone and more of a skydiving resort. Boasting an indoor wind tunnel, a restaurant, a swimming pool and lounge, bunkhouse, camping site, and top-notch rigging loft– this really is like a mecca for skydivers. At less than 90 minutes from San Diego or Los Angeles, this is an easy day trip or adventure-cation.
PRICES: indoor from $59, tandem starting at $159, AFF starting at $169, licensed jumpers- $25-$30 per jump
PLANES: 5 Skyvans, 3 Twin Otters, and a Douglas DC9 Jet.
OPEN: Mon-Fri 9-6, Sat-Sun 8-7
EVENTS: Christmas Boogie Party in Perridise 12/27-1/1
This is the world’s largest skydiving center, but that doesn’t mean they don’t provide top-notch experiences. Located right in between Phoenix and Tucson, in the heart of the Sonoran Desert, Skydive Arizona offers a wind tunnel, restaurant and bar, swimming pool, basketball hoops and pool tables, and the largest fleet of aircraft at any skydiving center in the world! Not to mention, mild enough weather for this drop zone to operate year-round.
PRICES: Wind tunnel: starting at $40, tandem from $169, licensed jumpers from $21
PLANES: 4 Super Otters, 7 Skyswans, 1 DC3, and a Pilatus Porter
OPEN: October 1 to May 30th: 7 days a week 8-5 June 1- September 30, office open 7 days a week, drop zone closed tues-wed
EVENTS: Patriot’s Boogie- A midsummer boogie benefitting the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. Including a buffet, pool party, and film screening.
Raeford, North Carolina
Just minutes from Fayetteville and Fort Bragg, this drop zone features a wind tunnel, a full-service bar and restaurant, camper hookups, shower facilities, and a gear store. Known for their exceptional staff and welcoming attitudes towards sports jumpers, this is a great drop zone for newcomers and old timers.
PRICES: wind tunnel starting at $64, tandem starting at $189, experienced jumper starting at $20
PLANES: CASA 212, DHC-6 Twin Otter, Shorts Skyvan, Cessna Grand Caravan
OPEN: 7 days a week, 8-6
EVENTS: XP Summer Classic, a 4-way FS & VFS and 8-way competition
Just 20 minutes from Seattle, this is one of the most scenic places in the country to go skydiving. The Snohomish River Valley is packed with outdoor activities, so this is just one more unforgettable experience to try. The drop zone facilities include backyard games to keep you busy while you wait, an on-site restaurant, camp sites, showers, and world-class facilities for licensed jumpers.
PRICES: tandem starting at $215, Experienced jumber boarding fee $13 + $1/per 1000 feet (3,000 to 13,000)
PLANES: Enhanced Cessna 182, Cessna Grand Caravan
OPEN: Mon-Thurs 9-6, Fri 9-7:30, Sat-Sun 8:30-7:30
EVENTS: none to speak of
Mile-Hi Skydiving Center
Located only 12 miles from Boulder and 35 miles from Denver, there are countless things to see and do in the area aside from jumping out of an airplane. The views are spectacular from 18,000 feet, and when you’re not jumping you can hit some of the most beautiful hiking trails in the country. This drop zone is quite welcoming to sports jumpers.
PRICES: tandem at $199, AFF level 1 $319, level 2-3 $209 each, level 4-7 $189 each, experienced jumpers starting at $18
PLANES: Dehaviland Twin Otter, Beechcraft King Air B90, Cessna Turbo 206
OPEN:Winter hours are Friday-Sunday 9am-sunset, Spring and Summer hours Thursday-Friday 9am -sunset, Saturday-Sunday 8am-sunset
EVENTS: while there are occasional fun jumps and small events, don’t expect any big boogies here.
Often referred to as “the world’s most beautiful skydiving center,” this skydiving oasis on Oahu’s North Shore certainly lives up to the hype. Don’t expect any solo or sports jumps here, which is just as well– with a view like this, you’re best off just enjoying the ride while someone else drives.
PRICES: tandem starting at $175 Military or student discount- $150
PLANES: honestly, not much information on this
OPEN: 7 days a week, 8-3
Poconos Mountains, Pennsylvania
Sky’s the Limit
Located only 75 miles from NYC, in the Poconos Mountains, some of the most beautiful hiking and biking in the Northeast is minutes away. An easy drive from the Big Apple, right on the edge of a state forest, this is a perfect drop zone for people looking to escape from the city and get a healthy dose of nature and adrenaline.
PRICES: tandem jumps from at $170, Licensed jumpers from at $21
PLANES: Cessna Super Grand Caravan 900HP, Super Otter, Cessna 182
OPEN: April 15th to October 31 10am till sunset, Closed on Tuesdays, Weekends 8am until sunset.
EVENTS: Mystery Boogie/End of Season Halloween Party
Zion National Park, Utah
I mean, this is skydiving in Zion, so I don’t even know where to start. Located next to one of the most remarkably beautiful geologic formations on earth, with a climate so mild that you can jump year-round, there is much to love about the location. Unlike most drop zones, this is a very small outfit that operates on an appointment-only basis. While that might not be convenient, the hands-on attention and care you’ll receive here is unlike anywhere else you’ve been. Coaching is also available.
PRICES: tandem starting at $215
PLANES: not 100% sure on this one
OPEN: by appointment
Monterey , California
Skydive Monterey Bay
There is so much to explore in the area–Big Sur, Carmel, San Francisco, and of course the aquarium in Monterey Bay. When you jump here, you’ll see views of San Francisco, San Jose, and Santa Cruz while the 18,000 foot drop allows you 90 seconds of freefall, which is a major bonus. The views are the main event here, and tandem jumps are the only jumps offered, so come prepared to enjoy the ride.
PRICES: tandem starting at $179
PLANES: Two Super King Air 200
OPEN: 8am to 8pm every day
EVENTS: None to speak of, but the big event here is the scenery
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