Salzburg W. A. Mozart Airport Spotting Guide

Salzburg Airport is extremely busy on the weekends from December till March as the airport meets lots of charter flights in the winter time. During the year, few flights are operated by Austrian, Niki, Turkish, InterSky, Air Berlin and Sun Express. In the winter, charter flights are operated by Thomson, Jet2, EasyJet, Ryanair, Rossyia, Norwegian, Transavia and Thomas Cook. Few years ago there were lots of Russian charter flights but it’s less and less.

There is just one runway and it’s offers many pictures opportunities. There is also an observation deck open on the roof of the terminal. Weather depends but there is usually snow in the winter time in this area, you must have luck to get sun. There is also the “Red Bull” museum with some interesting flights operated in the good days. The airport consists of a terminal located west of an oriented runway 15-33. There are no cargo flights but many business jets. In preparation of your upcoming trip you can download the timetable (including charterflights) at the homepage of the airport.

An important commercial centre just 10 minutes walking from the terminal buildings to the west offers food, shopping opportunities and also cheap motels.

Written by Cédric Valence, Severin Hackenberger and Marlin Lehmann (Last Visit : January 2017)

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Airline Variety
Photo Locations
Airport Information    Runways 15/33
2.750 m (9.022 ft)
Terminals Terminal Hall
Used for all flights
Spotting Information  Ladder You might need a ladder at some spots, check the particular MISC box to each spot below to receive detailed information
Car A car is advisable at Salzburg Airport, however, some spots are in easy walking distance from the terminal buildings or from a bus station which you can reach by public transport.
Restrooms Restrooms are limited at Salzburg Airport, there are some publicy accessible buildings nearby some spots.
Drinks/Food There is a McDonald’s in easy walking distance from the terminal buildings, it is located next to the Designer Outlets Salzburg Airport.
Hotels There are a few hotels situated nearby the airport, the closest to the terminal are Hotel Salzburg, Airport Hotel Salzburg or ibis budget Hotel Salzburg Airport for example.
Season Salzburg is definitely best to visit around New Year’s Eve, the winter schedule is full of ski charters from the UK, Russia, Germany, France or the Netherlands e.g. whilst the summer’s traffic is rather off-peak time.
Runway Usage  15/33 Sometimes subject to the winds but very often, air traffic control directs planes into the airport, regardless of the wind’s direction. It is likely that airplanes take of via 15 and 33.

Spot #1 – Observation desk on the roof of terminal
WHERE The spot is located on the official observation deck of the terminal. Its open from 9 till 10pm and is free of charge. There are now windows.
WHAT It gives very good views on the ramp, taxiway and runway.
TIME Light is good from noon till the evening. Fantastic night shots are possible there too.
MISC. It’s possible to buy some food and there are toilets in the terminal.
FOCAL LENGTH Use 18mm for A319 at the front and 200mm on the runway.

Spot #2 – Long-term parking P3 at DC-3
WHERE Spot 2 is situated directly near the displayed DC-3 of Austrian Airlines. It is right on the large parking lot for holiday parkers. Please note that this long-term parking is not free of charge so you either have to pay for it to park directy on site or you have to park your car a bit off the beaten track. This spot is not far from Spot 3 but it offers a completely different angle
WHAT From here you have a good view onto the airport’s apron and this spot also offers a nice runway view. However, the runway view is blocked at some parts with some obstacles disallowing a complete view onto the landing and take-off strip. Airplanes will taxi past this spot very closely so you might need a short lens if larger traffic comes past you.
TIME You can use this spot from about 11am until sunset on winter days for runway views. However, due to different angles possible, spotting from here is actually possible the entire day.
MISC. You must either have a ladder to take a look over the fence or take your photographs through the airport’s perimeter fence.
FOCAL LENGTH Boeing 747-400: 38mm; Dash 8 Q400: 70mm; Airbus A319: 55mm; departing Boeing 737-800 at 90°: 210mm; departing Ryanair: 350mm; parking Boeing 737-700 Transavia: 70mm
Spot #3 – Spotter mountain
WHERE At the corner of the taxiways and parking, there is a spotter isle where it’s possible to get fantastic shots. You’ll join by foot from the terminal along the fence, it takes about 10 minutes. With the sand mountain, you may take pictures over the fence. By car park at spot 2 or 4.
WHAT You have a great view on the runway, the taxiway and the parking.
TIME To the parking the light is good from the morning till 2PM, to the runway and the taxiway from noon till the evening.
MISC. You will find everything you need inside the terminal.
FOCAL LENGTH You‘ll use 18mm for B737-700 at the taxiway and about 150mm on the runway.

Spot #4 – Mehrgutweg/Perimeter Fence
WHERE This is the most popular spot at SZG. From the terminal just walk along the fence to the left as to go to the small hill (spot #3). Continue along the perimeter fence until spot #4. You need 15-20 minutes.
Possible access also by road and you can even park next to the location. You need a ladder to take pictures in optimal conditions. Otherwise it is possible to shoot through the mesh of the fence. Some stitches have also been widened in places.
WHAT At spot #4 you see all runway 34 operations and you are just meters from the taxiway, so you’d be able to touch the planes! A wide angle lens is highly recommended for those kind of shots.
TIME The light is ideal from noon till sunset.
MISC. There is no toilet and no shop, if need go to the terminal.
FOCAL LENGTH Use 18mm for Dornier328 at taxiway and 120mm for a 320 on the runway.

Spot #5 – Kendlerstraße
WHERE The spot is located east of the runway, right the other way to Spot 4. It is very easy to get there: you can also quickly get there if you need to change your position. The spot is situation at the end of a small byroad from the Kendlerstraße. If you are coming from west and you pass the approach path of runway 33, the Kendlerstraße will slightly bend off left. There are aplenty of houses to the right of the street… Take the very first possibility to turn left (there are two traffic islands on this turn lane so just for your orientations). Drive down the street to its end and there you go.
WHAT You can observe incoming planes into runway 33 as well as all departures on the same runway. Arrivals and departures onto runway 15 can be seen as well from here.
TIME We recommend taking photos from here from sunrise to about 11am.
MISC. You might need a ladder here. Please remember that you are in a residential area so behave appropriate.
FOCAL LENGTH IL96: 180mm; Boeing 737 reversing: 180mm; A320 taking off: 90mm; Boeing 757: 165mm; Norwegian B738 taking off: 320mm; landing Fokker: 115mm
 Spot #6 – Fire Gate
WHERE At the other side of the runway you may take picture from a crash gate. For more comfort use a 2 steps ladder. To get there from terminal, walk about 40min trough the runway’s tunnel or take the trolley bus to “Karolingerstasse”. Take the little street close of the gas station and walk to the fence. If you arrive by car, don´t block the gate and park somewhere next to the neighbourhood.
WHAT Great spot for RWY15 arrivals. 33 departures are possible too but the planes are already in the air.
TIME The light is good from the morning till noon.
MISC. You may buy drinks and there are toilets at the gas station at the main road.
FOCAL LENGTH Use +- 100mm for a 737.
Spot #7 – Line-ups Kröbenfeldstraße
WHERE The spot is located at the northern tip of runway 16. When you head up on Kröbenfeldstraße northwards, the road will snap off to the left once it is close to the taxiways. At this point, there is a lay-by right of the street, where you can stop your car. When coming from the terminal building, simply turn right from Christian-Doppler-Platz. Once you have done so, you have merged with Innsbrucker Bundesstraße. Take the next left immediately and you are on Kröbenfeldstraße already. Follow the street’s course for about 1km until the road snaps off.
WHAT A good view onto taxying aircraft for a 15-departure as well as landing planes on runway 15. Furthermore, airplanes having landed on runway 33 usually vacate the runway at this point, coming along very close to you as well. You can also see planes departing runway 33 from here, however, smaller aircraft can already be high up at this spot. It actually covers all runway movements.
TIME You can use this spot from about 11am until sunset on winter days.
MISC. There is a trash bin which you can use to take yourself to a higher position so you therefore need no ladder.

Travelling there by public transport is possible limited only, you can use bus lines 180, 260, 913, 914 and 918 and dismount at Salzburg Airport (Kröbenfeldstraße) from where you have to walk another 11-15mins.

FOCAL LENGTH Landing Thomson B757: 155m; Landing Transavia B737: 250mm; Norwegian taxiing: 20mm; IL96: 90mm; Avro Malmö: 140mm; Norwegian taking off: 110mm
Spot #8 – Siezenheimer Strasse – 15 Arrivals
WHERE This spot is located at the roadside of Siezenheimer Strasse around 50m just before crossing the A1 with a tunnel. Park your car inside the residental area or if you just stay here for a few miutes by the roadside.
WHAT All arrivals on runway 15.
TIME From sunrise till 10am in winter months and 12:30pm in summer days.
MISC. No ladder needed. You’ll find a Lidl a few houndred meters awa<y, but apart from that nothing here – take everything you need with you!
FOCAL LENGTH 70 – 300mm

A320 – 90 Degree = 150mm / A320 – with mountains = 200mm

Spot #9 – Höglstrasse Hill – All activities on Runway 15/33
WHERE The spot is located east of the runway, nearby Spot #5. The spot is situatied on a little dirthill just next to Höglstrasse. The easiest way to get here is to use Kendlerstrasse and to exit it to Höglstrasse, then follow this little street for about 200m. If you see the above mentioned hill on your left just park your car by the roadside and climb this hill.
WHAT A good view onto taxying aircraft for a 33-departure as well as their departure. Bigger planes landing on runway 15 should be ok, too.
TIME From sunrise till 10am in winter months and 12:30pm in summer days.
MISC. Nothing nearby, no ladder needed.
FOCAL LENGTH 50 – 300mm

B738 – taxiing = 270mm / B738 – departure = 120mm / B735 = 135mm

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