Aircraft Spotting at Greater London's Airfields and Airports

Spotting locations, viewing areas and advice on access for airports and airfields in Greater London. Use the hotlinks above or scroll down for spotting information on spotting locations, airfield hangar access, aviation museums, preserved aircraft. Plus all the information has been plotted as Points of Interest and can be downloaded to your SatNavs and Google Earth to make planning your spotting trips abroad so much easier and helping you log many more

Spotting in the UK v1.5 out now
Planespotting at the UK's Airports and Airfields has been plotted on Google Earth and can be uploaded to your SatNav - click to download
Over 620 UK airports plus 170+ preserved and stored aircraft - their locations, viewing spots, hotels and preserved aircraft can be seen on detailed satellite images, making planning your spotting trip exceptionally easy. All these spotting points of interest can be uploaded to your SatNav to give you another excellent resource to make your trip that much easier and more enjoyable. Please read the Download Instructions for example screenshots and further details

PRESERVED & STORED AIRCRAFT IN GREATER LONDON - their locations are marked in the Spotting in the UK download


Spotting Info
On the B456 just off the A40 in Greenford is Vanguard Storage, who have WT555 Hunter, XK632 Vampire cockpit and XP745 Lightning stored in their warehouse. They are happy for you to view the aircraft but it's best to contact them in advance to arrange a visit to avoid a wasted journey.
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HEATHROW AIRPORT - TWR 118.5 & 118.7, APP 119.725 & 134.975

Spotting in the UK v1.5 - 620+ UK locations, hotels, viewing areas and 170+ wrecks and relics have been plotted on Google Earth's detailed satellite imagery and can be added to your SatNav - click to download. Planning your spotting trip has never been easier. Please read the Download Instructions for example screenshots and further details

Spotting Info & Public Transport
Off at J14 M25 or J4 M4 and follow signs, the viewing spots detailed below are all marked in the Spotting in the UK download. Bus services around the airport are free, useful as there aren't a lot of inexpensive places to take your car. Buses between Hatton Cross & T5 - 423 via northern perimeter road, bath road and Longford village, 441 between Central area and T5 via northern perimeter road, 482 (double decker) and 490 via T4 and cargo along Southern perimeter road. The free 285 bus from either Hatton Cross or Heathrow bus station drops you off outside the Heathrow Academy viewing area (get off at the Renaissance Hotel - ask the conductor if you're not sure) and parking for the day at Hatton Cross tube station is £11 Monday-Friday, weekends and Bank Holidays are £5. Visit for more information on using public transport around Heathrow, including details of the free buses.

Heathrow Academy (formerly the Visitor Centre) & North Side Spotting Info
Northside, if you are on foot and not airside, the best place is the Heathrow Academy. Great views of 27R and arrivals on 09L. Buses 105/111/140/285 all pass the Heathrow Academy, which is opposite McDonalds in the Bath Road towards Hounslow. Head through the tunnel and when you come out on the other side you will go onto the Bath Road. After you pass the Three Magpies on the right and a petrol station on the left, at the traffic lights there is a bus stop. Stay on the bus until the next stop and the Academy is on the other side of the road in front of 09L/27R. The New Road stop outside the Marriot hotel has a reasonable crossing point to gain foot access towards the Northern Perimeter road and you will see a well trodden path through the shrubs. There is no charge for these buses or any other around Heathrow - the limit being Harlington Corner or Hatton Cross. Both front (large staff) and back (small) car parks are available to spotters at weekends and bank holidays as the BAA staff don't use the front one. The large one gets opened around 0830-0900. The small car park is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as the barrier opens automatically as you drive up to it, both on entry and exit. It costs £1 per hour to park here, tickets can be obtained from the ticket machine in the car park, although it's not in use at the moment and therefore free to park.

With a good pair of bins you can read everything taxiing to 27L though heat haze may be a problem in the summer. There is a small viewing stand that will get you a little higher than ground level, no seats. Just 3 higher levels to stand on but it's enough to see over the fence and makes reading things off in the distance a touch easier. The stand has a high roof but no sides so unless the rain is coming straight down, you will get wet. The car park for the Heathrow Academy shuts promptly at 5pm, however if you are already parked by then, there are no problems getting out as the barrier is automatic. If you walk down the alleyway behind, this will take you back to the bus stops, or to the toilets in McDonalds but if you're not intending on making a purchase be discreet as we don't want to be banned. Alternatively, you can park at Hatton Cross station for £4 all day at weekends (£9 during the week though) and take a free bus round to the Heathrow Academy. During the week Hatton Cross station car park fills up very quickly but it's not too bad at weekends. There are usually more free spaces to the left as you drive in. The 'Explore Heathrow' centre is open at weekends from 1000-1600 as well as during the week, where you can buy hot drinks and food and you can spot from indoors if the weather is poor.

If the car park is full, you can park on the double yellows at the front, just don't leave your car and keep an eye out for traffic wardens, though there's usually never a problem. Alternatively, you can park up on the residential roads behind the Sheraton and Marriott hotels on the other side of the A4. No parking restrictions, but just make sure the car is parked correctly.

Southside Spotting Info
Southside is Cains Lane (just off Hatton Road, 2nd road on the right past Hatton Cross station). From here you are close to arrivals on 27L and can also read off those taxiing to 27R, but again in summer, heat haze may be a problem to get those on 27R. No charge to park here but take extra care about how you park - those parked with one or two wheels even slightly on the verge or kerb or just off the road have been given £100 tickets; the same to those parking near any gates. Depending on who the tickets are issued by depends on whether they are an enforceable charge or if it's just an invoice to be ignored, but don't take the chance in the first place. If you're parked entirely on the carriageway they've no reason to give you a ticket, so if you do get one, appeal. Myrtle Avenue two roads to the north gives similar views, but you have to go round the back of the BP garage to get there. Has a nice park for a picnic in the summer but parking is extremely limited. Provisions and toilets are available at the BP garage opposite Hatton cross tube station. At the entrance to Hatton Cross Station car park is a lay-by to pull in quickly, that looks across to the 600 stands, but not the cul-de-sac obviously. The views are limited, you may only be able to read the closest one off, but you can see the tails and can note the types and colours to tie up later. Don't forget to drive around the whole perimeter as a lot gets tucked away round cargo, Terminal 5 and the fuel farm that you could miss. On the southwestern part of the airport, opposite the 09R threshold, the Esso petrol station has a lay-by for several cars and space to park. They seem to tolerate people stopping to watch the aircraft, not just spotters, so it gets busy quickly, just make sure you make the odd purchase.

Other Spotting Info
If 09s are in use, you can still park on the verge of Stanwell Moor Road just down from Terminal 5. The new curbs are very high so approach at low speed.

Terminal 5
Terminal 5 consists of three main passenger buildings - the main terminal T5A and the satellites T5B and T5C. Gates are prefixed with A, B or C depending on which building they are in. The ground level of T5A is the arrivals area, departures is on the third level. Once through security passengers can move between all three levels. Landside in the northern part there is a Costa Coffee lounge on the departures level with views of the threshold of 9L, most landing traffic can be read without bins. In the southern part there is a view of 9R threshold. You can't see both runways from either spot so it's your choice whether to monitor arrivals or departures. There are similar views from the ends of the short stay car parks, though it's only good if you're on foot as it's expensive to park in. The north end on the 5th floor by the drop off area is also good for 09L but the terminal blocks views of 09R. The south end also has views of the biz and cargo on and around stand 606 - you'll have to walk a little way past the 'No Pedestrians' sign on the ramp down, but there have been no problems doing this as long as you don't stay there. At the departures in your car, head towards the main exit but a quick stop at the end to read everything off should be ok. Alternatively you can park in the short stay car park, walk up and quickly log everything on cargo and drive out again for a few pounds. Level 3 is the best vantage point.

Once airside the best gate in T5A for viewing the northern runway is A7, which is in the northeast corner of the building. If landing on 27R then a good set of bins should allow planes to be read as they taxi off the runway - if they are using 09L then everything will pass by the window. There is an eatery in the southeast corner, but from the next gate A18 there is a good view of the cargo stands (but not the cargo cul-de-sac - you need the southern end of T5B and T5C for this) and a great view of the 09R threshold, but you cannot see much, if anything of action on 27R. You can sit in the middle of the terminal to monitor both runways but an SBS is required or tie up your sightings later as not all will be read off. There is a transit system between T5A and T5B but it appears one-way, that is departing passengers can go from T5A to T5B and arriving passengers from T5B to T5A only. If you are passing through T5 and are using gate A10, wait until the last possible moment - this is a bussing gate and is on ground level with hardly any views outside.

Airside Spotting
Airside the piers have huge glass windows making viewing very easy. Terminal 1 looks north onto 09L/27R - gate 8 is at the eastern end so only good for 27R movements as arrivals on 09L will turn off before they get to you.

Places to Avoid
  • At the cargo centre on the southside, the multi-storey car park has views into the (difficult to see) cul-de-sac. This is a staff car park and is patrolled - if you're seen, you'll be removed so don't hang around if you really have to visit here.

  • Anyone seen spotting from the car parks around Terminals 1-3 are often swiftly told to leave so it's best to not bother and avoid the hassle. There are plenty of other and better options.

    G-CEAF B732
    Head west away from the airport on the A4 and over the M25. On the right is the Grunsdon waste disposal facility where the nose of G-CEAF B732 is stored and easily seen from the road in the bright yellow DHL colours.

    Planespotting Hotels - their locations are plotted in the Spotting in the UK download
  • The Jury's Inn room 647 (south facing) gives views of finals on 27L and all the way down the runway. It also has views of landing traffic on 27R briefly enough to read off most, and views of T1 area and maintenance. There are stairwells at each side, which also give good views of all arrivals but if 09s are in use reading arrivals becomes difficult, though outbounds are fine. Floors 5 and higher should give you the same views, plus T4 and cargo ramps if you get a room that faces west. Room 744 (the 7th floor being the highest) is north facing and looks out over 27R approach and distant views of aircraft taxiing and waiting for 27R departures. 27R arrivals are easily read off. No views of 27L though, but just turn left out of the front lobby and they are close to landing as they pass the hotel. Room 737 also has views of 27R. You can also see the far end of 27L as they clear the runway to the right for Terminals 1-3 and T5. The other batch of rooms (room 747 for example) are at a right angle to those mentioned above and look straight out onto 27L. You can see everything on that runway and also anything positioning for departure on 27R making these rooms slightly better than those facing north.
    The Jury's Inn features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Renaissance is expensive during the week, with all rooms with an airport view being Executive rooms. At weekends, they do a reduced 'Spotters Package' that is great value for money. It usually includes the use of the Club Lounge with views of the airport, free parking, unlimited tea, coffee and soft drinks, internet access and use of the health club. If you're not staying at the hotel, you can still use the Club Lounge for £35 a day. On checking in, they require a photo ID, or if you have none, then 2 other forms of ID. This is due to their proximity to the airport on orders of the Met. If you don't have any ID, it's up to the discretion of the Duty Manager whether you stay or not so make sure you take ID with you. Movements on 27R/09L are easily read off and you'll have distant views of 27L/09R. The eastern half of the hotel is set back from the western part, and therefore, when 09s are in use, this eastern half is no good at all and not great when using 27s. You'll need to be in a room as far west as possible for 09s, and keep an eye out for arrivals on 09L in front of you turning off the runway short and taxiing back to Terminal 3 and Terminal 5. However, if 27s are in use, a room a little further to the east, not including the eastern set back rooms, will give you the distant views of 27L required to log those departing and taxiing out to depart. The rooms in this front west section that provide good views are 4182-4190 inclusive, 4192-4216 (evens only) and 4217 and 4218. The top two floors (presumably 4th and 5th) are the Executive rooms used in the Spotters Package but the 3rd floor definitely (same room numbers 3182-3190 etc), and possibly the 2nd will also give good views. Photos are also possible through the windows. In the eastern set back section, rooms 4020-4044 (evens only) have airport views though the view is poor as you have to wait for aircraft to pass directly in front of you, and as such, can't be recommended. The Rewards lounge offers a great view too and you can pay to go in there for the day if you wish. Meals here are very expensive, the Three Magpies is a great alternative and a short walk west of here. Details are below in the 'Suitable Evening Meals' section. The Renaissance features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Holiday Inn London Heathrow Ariel at the threshold of 27R, twin rooms around 268 - 288 (even numbers only) give excellent views and the windows open wide for photos though the cold/noise/lamp posts may impede landing shots. All their single rooms face inwards and therefore have no airport views. Weekends are much cheaper than during the week. If they are on 09s though it's not as good as you will only see departures off 09R but it's only a short walk to the Heathrow Academy grandstand. The higher floors are Executive rooms, so a little more expensive but with only slightly better views due to the height advantage. If they're available, you can upgrade to an Executive room for £15 or £20 including internet in the room - very useful if you don't have SBS and want to use an online flight tracker. Just ask for an airport view, the staff are very familiar with our hobby and will accommodate if possible. If you wish to stock up, turn right outside the hotel's main entrance and head towards Harlington. The shops and takeaways will appear after around 5 minutes.
    The Holiday Inn London Heathrow Ariel features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Premier Inn is alongside, and thus has views of short finals for, 27R and is opposite the BA maintenance hangars on the Bath Road. Room 2083 has views of arrivals on both 27s with floor 3 being slightly better. 2073 and 2085 are very similar, with departures on 09 seen with the aid of SBS. Rooms 2070-2079 should also be ideal. Similar views can be had from their car park round the back. There is also a mound at the bottom of the car park with seats and tables - great for the warmer months. I believe the bar area is not bad for viewing and they have a good weekend rate. After booking, give them a ring and they will sort out a room with landing views.
    The Premier Inn features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Travelodge near Terminal 5, although located over the other side of the M25, has good views down 09R/27L, the 600s cargo stands (but not the cul-de-sac), and distant views of Terminal 4 stands from rooms 443 & 449 on the 4th floor, and 528, 531, 532, 534, 535, 538, 539, 542, 543, 546, 547 and 549 on the 5th. 528 being closest to 09R. Obviously the 5th floor has slightly better views due to the increased height, but as usual, an SBS means you won't miss anything at all. Most departures off 27 can be read as they fly over the hotel with German and American airlines tied up later from the website below. When landing on 09s you can read them off as they cross the M25 and departures on 09R can be seen at the hold and on take off. Obviously with 27 ops it's no good but you're close enough to easily get to the various spotting areas. If you book during their special offer periods, you can get an exceptionally low nightly rate and if you ring them with your reservation, they are happy to accommodate you with your room requests, just ask for an airport facing or motorway facing room. They have a map of the rooms and layout at reception for you to look at, though they encourage you to use the touch screen to check in so you may have to insist on either a room change or ring before you arrive. Clean, tidy and basic - standard Travelodge fare. There is a shuttle bus but it costs £4 each way to/from Terminal 5 and the food and drink are expensive. If you have a car, it's £5 per night to use their car park. If you book far enough in advance, the nightly rates can get as low as £19.
    The Travelodge Terminal 5 features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Travelodge Heathrow Central is east of the airport but still off the A4 Bath Road. It's almost directly under the 27R approach and aircraft are just a few hundred feet above, making them easy to read off. You can see everything on approach for both 27s from an east facing room - 607, 609 and 517 for example. The south facing rooms might give a better, although still distant, view towards 27L. Room 353 looks straight down 27R, so all arrivals on 27R can be read and you can see the departed aircraft from 27L once they were airborne and above the buildings, with 4th, 5th and 6th floors providing more of a height advantage. Rooms 444-462 (evens only), 604, 606 and 608 provide the same views down 27R. Rooms 614 - 632 inclusive (evens only and on any of the upper floors) will give side on views of arrivals of both 27R and 27L. Buses 81 and 222 stop right outside the door to take you straight to the Heathrow Academy. Walking will take around 30 minutes including stops to log movements. Being slightly further away from the airport, it tends to be a fair bit cheaper. Free street parking is nearby, (hotel charges £5 per night), and a good Indian restaurant just 5 minutes walk away. If you're after a couple of drinks, The Jolly Waggoner pub is a very short walk up the road towards Hounslow.
    The Travelodge Terminal 5 features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • At the Ibis, from south facing rooms on the 4th and 5th floors, you can read off all arrivals and departures on 27s but you really should insist on the top floor if it's available as the views on the other floors are blocked by trees. If they are on 09s then, depending on the weather, you can log most of the arrivals taxiing in (those that turn off short and head back to T3 and T5 may be too distant) and all departures taking off on 09R - any you don't read off can be tied up later via the site below or by using FlightRadar24's playback. Free public transport to near the hotel available from all terminals. The main corridor of the hotel compromised decent views and therefore photos of aircraft lining up on 27R from room 503, so if photos are important to you, 505 and 507 would probably be better. 403, 405 and 407 would be adequate as well. Be advised these rooms are doubles, not twins. A 24 hour buffet bar provides food that can be taken back to your room. The windows are quite small, too small for 2 or 3 to stand side by side to spot and they're too grubby to take photos through. Fortunately they open inwards to a certain extent meaning you can lean out a touch to improve your view somewhat. Parking is £7 per night. They have a shuttle bus to the terminals, but it's expensive. If you book a month in advance you can often get a very good deal here.
    The Ibis features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Thistle Hotel has a balcony that is open to anyone, you just need to pay for the car park if you have your own transport. A nice location if they are using 09s. The rates are good, but the windows in the rooms are small. They'll often let you check in much earlier than the stated time if they're not too busy. Room 153 faces Terminal 5 and all the lines of BA can be easily read off. Odd numbered rooms up to 179 would probably have similar views. There is a large breakfast/restaurant/bar area which has doors out onto the large outdoor viewing balcony and the views are brilliant of arrivals on 09L. If 27R is used for arrivals most turn off before they get to the balcony. The balcony seems to be open from about 06:00-23:00 and is open to non residents. You can catch the free 423 bus from Hatton Cross which goes past the viewing area and then to hotel. If the weather is nice and 09s are in use the balcony is an excellent place to spot and photograph from - arrivals on 09L right in front and distant views of departures on 09R tied up through the below site or SBS.
    The Thistle Hotel features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Travelodge Feltham has good views of all movements from all northwest facing rooms on the 4th floor. The windows open slightly, meaning you can get photos with effort. It's in the middle of a shopping centre so there's lots of shops, cafes and take aways. Parking is £10 per night but if you give your ticket to the receptionist, they will validate it so it only costs £5.
    The Travelodge Feltham features on for reviews, prices and room availability

  • The Ramada tends to have good nightly rates but be warned, the food there has been repeatedly reported as terrible.
    The Ramada features on for reviews, prices and room availability

    Suitable Evening Meals
    If the hotel food and drink are too expensive, the food hasn't received great reviews, or you fancy a change of scene, here are some alternatives. The Three Magpies pub is a favourite amongst spotters and is just west of the Renaissance on the A4 Bath Road. If arrivals are on 27L you may prefer The Green Man pub the other side of Hatton Cross. Take any free bus listed above to Hatton Cross station, at the traffic lights with the interchange with the A30 go straight across onto Fagg's Road and follow this round to the left for about a 1/4 mile. Fagg's Road then goes round to the right and Green Man Lane forks off to the left. The Green Man pub is on the left. If it's a nice evening you can sit outside and the aircraft are as good as straight over the top.

    Heathrow & Gatwick Airport Movements, Heathrow Aviation Enthusiasts Email Group
    Last reported March 2013. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    Well signposted from the M1 and surrounding area. Free entry though donations are welcome. A large and fantastic collection of aircraft spread throughout various halls and exhibits. When planning your visit here, the Grahame-White factory, housing the oldest aircraft in the museum, closes from 1200-1330 each day, and the Battle of Britain Hall doesn't open until 1200.
    RAF Museum Hendon
    Last reported November 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    Heading north on the A22 towards Whyteleafe, turn left into Salmon Lane adjacent to Whyteleafe station. Head up the hill along the narrow lane for about a mile to the mini roundabout at the top and turn left onto Whyteleafe Road. Turn right into Salmon Lane West after about 100 yards and after another 200 yards or so there is a right turn with a big sign for the VGS, you can't miss it. Head down here and through the gates onto the airfield. Surrey Hills Gliding Club hangar is on left, 615 Volunteer Gliding Squadron is the large green hangar on right. The gliding club fly during the week and the VGS operate at weekends.
    Last reported November 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    Alongside the River Thames in Battersea and signposted from the A3205. Difficult if you have a car but if you're arriving by train, leave Clapham Junction by the northern exit from the station underpass, signposted Grant Road exit. Turn right outside the station entrance and at the T-junction turn left onto A3207 Falcon Road. Follow this to the major crossroads and turn left onto A3205 York Road. At the first set of lights turn right into Lombard Road and the heliport is the first left. Walk down here and the Heliport entrance is straight in front of you that has a security gate, so presumably no access. There is a tight mesh fence that surrounds the heliport, so whilst you can see through it to log everything, it's no good for photos. If you walk to the left past Hotel Verta, then turn right and walk to the river, then right again behind the hotel, you again reach the heliport, with a view right across it. Back to Lombard Road, turn left and continue until you reach a block of flats with a small piece of land on the left hand side of the road next to the river with a footpath and some trees. There are benches here where you can sit and you will see clearly all heliport movements. No facilities here so in the station use the shops for food and drink supplies and the toilets. Walking time from the station to the benches is around 30 minutes and whilst there is a quicker route through some back streets, this area is not safe so you are strongly advised to stick to the main roads. Alternatively, there is a bus that runs from outside Clapham Junction north entrance to outside the entrance in Lombard Road. On the other side of the river there is a Sainsbury's to park up in but views are distant. It's worth checking the London Heliport website for their special event days as it gets very busy. Weekdays are obviously busier than weekends, but you still only get a maximum of 4 or 5 movements per hour and they rarely stay any length of time as there's limited parking - 2 large helis or 4 small ones. Any major event nearby will boost movements, Royal Ascot, SBAC Farnborough Air Show, the Derby, British F1 Grand Prix etc. Quite often if something is due, cars with chauffeurs, or taxis will be parked in the heliport entrance.
    Last reported May 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report

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    LONDON CITY AIRPORT - TWR 118.075, APP 132.7

    Spotting in the UK v1.5 - 620+ UK locations, hotels, viewing areas and 170+ wrecks and relics have been plotted on Google Earth's detailed satellite imagery and can be added to your SatNav - click to download. Planning your spotting trip has never been easier. Please read the Download Instructions for example screenshots and further details

    Spotting Info
    Alongside the River Thames in North Woolwich, these viewing spots are marked in the Spotting in the UK download. As this is a commuter airport it shuts Saturday 12:30pm to Sunday 12:30pm and the best times to visit during the week are 0700-1000 and 1630-2000, but there are movements throughout the day and Sunday afternoon has been known to be busy also. If you are driving you can park up in Armada Way just to the north of the 28 approach or in the Ramada Hotel and Premier Inn car park north of the airport, though the hotel car park costs £2 per hour from 0930-1730 - it's free outside of these hours. However the pub car park next to these hotels is free but often busy. Alternatively, the car park at the Travelodge below is open to the public at just £1 per hour. Alternatively, parking down Thames Road on the south side (just up the road from the Travelodge and very near the Esso garage) is free all day, no parking restrictions and just a short walk to the biz parking area and bridge. Northside Richard House Drive similarly has no parking restrictions and is just a 5 minute walk up over the main road to the northside viewing area and Royal Albert DLR. If you're after the British Airways A318s, if they are running on time then they'll both be on the ground between 1030am-1230pm, as will most of the Embraers, though the Embraers should all be there in the evening. If you're just dropping by to see what's parked up over the weekend while the airport is shut, you're not always guaranteed an A318 as it goes to Gatwick for maintenance but you'll see some E170s. Travelling by bus, bus 473 (from Stratford) and bus 474 (from Silvertown and East Beckton) both stop at the Royal Albert DLR. London City airport hosts an annual Fun Day in the summer that's free to attend.

    Northside Spotting
    The easiest option is get on the DLR (which is easily reached via the tube from London Mainline railway termini and also the DLR connects with mainline trains at Lewisham, Canning Town and Stratford stations). You need to go to Royal Albert DLR station north of the airport across the river (on the Beckton line). You'll see the airport so head towards and you'll see the benches by the river. No toilets but there is a coffee bar with extra seating - they don't mind us using their seats during quiet periods as long you keep buying things every now and then. A great place for photos as there's no wall or fencing in the way. There's no cover so if it's raining stay on the westbound platform as you can get a good view of the airport. From here, the airport is fully visible and the movements can be easily seen and photographed - there is only a stretch of water between you and the runway. You are looking south but can still get good photos. A walk to the airport terminal will probably take 10-15 mins but there are no views from inside the terminal (landside). If the weather is good and the wind direction is right, you can view Heathrow and Biggin Hill inbounds as well. Towards the western end is a Chinese restaurant on the first floor with an outdoor balcony. As long as you make the odd purchase they are happy for you to stay there.

    Terminal & Southside Spotting
    No views from inside the terminal but in front of the car park east of the terminal, there is a covered walkway from where you can see all the arrivals and departures. No problems staying here all day and photos of movements are good as you are facing north. Aircraft on the terminal are not visible until they come out to take off.

    Airside, there are lots of windows to view all movements and pictures are possible as the aircraft pass very close by, however the glass is tinted and filthy. If you go down to the BA gate area, near gate 23, the glass is newer and therefore cleaner.

    Bizjet Apron
    To get a good view of the bizjet park, take bus 69 or 473 one stop to the bizjet centre (or turn right out of the terminal and walk) and walk up the road. Turn right, there is a wall to sit on and they're right in front of you. From the other direction, walk from the Regatta Centre towards the airport, cross over the footbridge and a public footpath takes you past the stands. The operators of the biz terminal are a little sensitive so don't hang around here as you may be questioned and moved on.

    Planespotting Hotels - its location is marked in the Spotting in the UK download
    At the Travelodge, ask for a high floor room at the front of the hotel (facing north towards the airport). If you're high enough you can see the biz ramp and movements depending on wind direction and have decent views of aircraft taxiing on or off stand. Rooms 503-509, odds only, and 513 are excellent examples of this, and remember when booking to request a family room even if you are on your own or you may not get a north facing room. The windows don't open fully, but do open wide enough to use a telescope or camera lens. Looking south from the hotel you can see Heathrow arrivals if they're using 27s and an SBS will certainly help you tie them up. Food and drink at the hotel is expensive - turn left out of the hotel, follow the low fence round and you'll see a petrol station on the roundabout selling food and drink. The hotel reception also has a takeaway menu for a local Indian food takeaway that delivers to the hotel and they'll supply plates, forks etc if you arrange a delivery. The car park is open to the public at just £1 per hour. If you book during their special offer periods you can often get exceptionally low nightly rates, especially on Sunday nights. The Travelodge features on for reviews, prices and room availability

    London City Airport, London City Airport Enthusiasts Email Group
    Last reported February 2013. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report

    NORTHOLT AIRPORT - TWR 120.67, APP 130.35

    Spotting Info
    Aircraft nearly always visit weekdays 0800-2000 unless on Government business and the airport is closed on Bank Holidays. Head east along M40/A40 and you'll see the airport on your left, with Hurricane replica BAPC-219 marked "L1684" next to the road. Exit at the Polish War Memorial (first exit past the airport) and turn left at the roundabout onto the A4180. Drive past the end of runway 25 and the main entrance is on the left, beyond which you should be able to see pole-mounted Spitfire replica BAPC-221 marked "EN526".

    Turn round to head back south on the A4180 and park in the Texaco garage. Walk to the runway 25 approach and in the middle of the long hedge there is a wooden fence by some electrical boxes to look over - this is the only place you can see the eastern end of the ramp.

    Head back to the A40 roundabout and turn right to head west on the A40 towards the M25. Very shortly, you'll be able to pull in on the left, at the entrance/exit to the farmyard. You can walk down along here for better angles onto the apron - this is the best spot for logging anything parked out on the main apron. There are a couple of small hangars and a small apron the other side of the runway, in the northwestern part of the airport - this may be the only place to see anything parked over there.
    Northolt, Farnborough and Northolt Airport Email Group
    Last reported February 2013. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    The Science Museum is on Exhibition Road in South Kensington, London SW7 2DD. It's just off the A4. Their museum website details their exhibits.
    Last reported November 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    At the moment, parts of the museum are being renovated and as a result, most of the aviation exhibits have been moved to the Imperial War Museum at Duxford. At the moment, there are only 3 aircraft still present at this museum, and they are hanging from the ceiling of the atrium. Once work begins on the atrium, these will also have to be removed.

    Alongside the A3203 in South Lambeth, the Imperial War Museum London has some great exhibits, entrance is free and is open daily 1000-1800.
    Last reported November 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    Head in to Aveley on B1335 and head north on Aveley road signed to Upminster. A few hundred yards after a crossroads (Warwick Road and Bramble Lane) you will see a couple of houses on the left. There is an RVP sign - turn here for the strip. Down the side is a small road with a barrier, which is often closed but there is room to walk past. The strip is beyond the gate. Don't forget the two individual lockups south of the main area and near the runway. They're hidden by the hedge and aren't easily visible as they are hidden by a dip. Just follow the main taxiway down and they're on your right. Very friendly, ask for access.
    Last reported October 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report


    Spotting Info
    From Damyns Hall above go back to the last junction and turn right onto Warwick Road. Take the second right Berwick Pond Lane then right into Little Gerpins Lane. At the next minor junction (by a one way sign) the strip is on your right with the hangars on your left.
    Last reported March 2012. Want to update or confirm the information is still correct? Send in a report