Copenhagen Kastrup Spotting Guide

Copenhagen Kastrup Airport, the home of SAS, served 25.6 Mio. passengers in 2014 and is always worth a visit. Furthermore you get some other interesting airlines, which you won’t get this easy at any other airports in Europe like Air Greenland, WOW air or Atlantic Airways. Also Norwegian, DAT – Danish Air Transport, Widerøe, Jettime are regular visitors in CPH, with Norwegian operating a large hub and the 2nd most flights after SAS. easyJet also has a strong presence and Ryanair has just started to start several routes from here. Other interesting carriers operating to CPH are Iraqi Airways, Egypt Airways, PIA or for example the black ATR from Alsie Express.

It’s a little bit tricky to get to the spots because they are far apart from each other and a car can be very helpful here. Sadly parking is very difficult at some locations and public transport (or walking by foot from the terminal) is also a possibility. And keep in mind, Denmark is not the cheapest country to live and everything is pretty expensive, especially the alcohol.

Written by Julian Mittnacht, Marlin Lehmann, Marcus and Jan Seba. Regular Visitors.

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Airline Variety
Photo Locations
Weather
Airport Informations    Runways 04L/22R 04R/22L 12/30
3.600 m (11.811 ft) 3.300 m (10.827 ft) 2.800 m (9.186 ft)
Terminals Terminal 1 Terminal 2  Terminal 3
Domestic flights
Norwegian & SAS
International Flights
all carriers
International Flights
SAS and Star Alliance carriers
Spotting Informations  Ladder Only necessary at a few locations.
Car Recommended as locations are far apart and switching RWY will take very long otherwise.
Restrooms Gas stations and restaurants around the airport (see map)
Drinks/Food McDonalds/Gas station (see map) and the Flyvergrillen
Hotels All around the airport.
Season Best time is between May and September with more sunny days. Also due to the RWY direction summer is a favorable season, as there are great locations for the early morning and late evening.
Runway Usage  04L/22R With 04 in use, this is the main landing RWY and with 22 in use it is the main departure RWY.
04R/22L With 22 in use, this is the main landing RWY and with 04 in use it is the main departure RWY.
12/30 Not often in use. Mostly it is used for landings on 30 with strong NE winds and also if ships are blocking the 22 approach sector.

Spot #1 – Parking Lots – 22L Arrivals
WHERE This spot is located on the north side of the airport and is next to the Long Term Parking Lots P17 (morning – afternoon) and P15 (evening). Its easy to find as there are signs showing you the way if you use the car. If you don’t have a car just use the shuttle bus to get to these spots. If you wanna walk (15 Minutes), exit Terminal 3 and follow the signs to Parking P12. Pass these until you will reach a roundabout. On the left hand side is a Statoil gas station and a McDonalds. Follow the ‘Kystevjen’ road along the SAS hangars to the right until you will reach the Parking Lot P15 first. You will see the planes on the left passing the ocean. Follow the road until you will see the signs for Lot P17. Cross the road and find a place along this unamend, dead end road.
WHAT You will get 22L arrivals only. The location is pretty close to the threshold, so you don’t need a long length. There are many light poles, so you have to struggle with these a little bit. You can stay at the mainroad as well but IMO you are too close to the aircrafts and you will get more belly like shots.
TIME The parking lot is perfect for spotting in the morning until noon.
MISC. There are no restrooms, benches, shops at this location. So please visit the facilities at the Statoil Station before you go to this location. You can use the shuttle bus to get there and return to the terminal if you need a restroom.
FOCAL LENGTH 130mm for an A320 and 85mm for an A343.
Spot #2 – Parking Lots – 22L Arrivals
WHERE Later the day, when the sun has turned, go back to parking Lot P15, which you passed before. Alternatively you can also spot directly from the street in the evening.
WHAT You will get 22L arrivals only. The location is pretty close to the threshold, so you don’t need a long focal length. There are many light poles, so you have to struggle with these a little bit. The sample pictures below were taken from the pathway next to the street.
TIME The location is perfect in the evening from around 5 PM.
MISC. There are no restrooms, benches, shops at this location. So please visit the facilities at the Statoil Station before you go to this location. You can use the shuttle bus to get there and return to the terminal if you need a restroom.
FOCAL LENGTH 130mm for a B738 and 90mm for an A343 from the walkway next to the street, but you can also move closer or a bit further away.
Spot #3 – Flyvergrillen – 22R Departures, 04L Arrivals
WHERE This is the most famous spot in Copenhagen. The Flyvergrillen is a small restaurant, with some benches and tables outside. Its a popular place for the locals and you will find not only plane spotters there. If you don’t have a car use Bus 35 from the airport. If you have a car, use this address for your GPS: Amager Landevej 290, 2770, Kastrup Parking is available directly at the Flyvergrillen.
WHAT Sadly this spotting location is only good in the afternoon but you will get enough action here as 04L/22R is one of the main runways in use. Either you get the planes taking off on 22R, or you see them passing by on the taxiway if 04L is in use for arrivals. The spot is pretty close to the Taxiway, so its a little bit tricky to catch the big birds while they are rolling by. Then a ladder can be helpful as the bushes are pretty high, otherwise you can see them on your pictures.
You can also get the 22L arrivals at this place as the planes exit the runway usually exactly opposite of the grill. But a long lense is needed and you have to struggle with heat distortion and this ist probably only good for the heavies. With 04 in use you can also shoot the departures on the taxiway very late in the evening when the heat haze is gone.
TIME Only okay in the afternoon (depends on the time of the year)
MISC. You get everything you need at the Flyvergrillen!
FOCAL LENGTH 20-300 mm, 140mm for the B738 on the RWY. 300mm for an A320 on the taxiway between the runways and 240mm for the B773 on the RWY 04R on takeoff. 250mm for the GRN A330 turning after landing on 22L.


Spot #4 – Tømmerupvej – 04L Arrivals
WHERE This one is placed next to the approach lighting system of 04L. If you start at the Flyvergrillen, make a left turn into the ‘Tømmerupvej’ and stay on this road for 4,5 km until you have reached the end of the runway, so follow it until you see an empty area on the left (check the map). Do not park your car in the area, as this is private property and will cause problems with the police. There is a small grass strip in front of one of the ‘Parking prohibited’ signs, on which it is still allowed to park. There is space for about 3-4 cars here. For shooting you can move along the road, but stay close to it and do not go onto private property. For those who know the location from the past: The overhead power lines are gone! You can get to the location by bus, but the bus only comes every 1-2 hours.
WHAT Only good for Arrivals of 04L.
TIME Light is good in the morning until noon.
MISC. Its in the middle of nowhere so you will get nothing here. Try to use the facilities at the Flyvergrillen before you get here or visit one of the supermarket or gas stations which you have passed before. Behave and smile to others who live there that spotting remains tolerated at this point. Danish always say ‘hej’ by courtesy and in deference to you – greet them back.
FOCAL LENGTH 180mm for an A320 and 85mm for a B773.

Spot #5 – Tømmerupvej – 04L Arrivals
WHERE The location is found along the Tømmerupvej right next to (or behind) a bus stop. It is prohibited to park anywhere along the street, so turn into the side road Nøragersmindevej and park on the left side of the road between the road and walkway. Alternatively you can also go a bit further and park in the Tillburg Alle. From there just walk to the bus stop and you can spot from here. The bus only comes every 1-2 hours, so you won’t disturb anyone here. This also means that this it is difficult to get to and from this location with public transport and you would need to plan your journey in advance.
WHAT Only good for Arrivals of 04L.
TIME Good photo location in the evening from around 5:30 PM.
MISC. Its in the middle of nowhere so you will get nothing here. Try to use the facilities at the Flyvergrillen before you get here or visit one of the supermarket or gas stations which you have passed before. Behave and smile to others who live there that spotting remains tolerated at this point. Danish always say ‘hej’ by courtesy and in deference to you – greet them back.
FOCAL LENGTH 180mm for an A320 and 110mm for an A343.

Spot #6 – Cargo Area – 04R Departures
WHERE Its located pretty close to Spot 1 and Parking Lot P17. Just follow the road until you will see an big, empty parking area. Turn right here and park in the middle of the place. Stay next to your car as its private parking.
WHAT If you don’t have a ladder and want to get the 04R departures, this is the place to be. Smaller aircrafts are already a little bit too high at this spot, but its okay for the heavies. You will see the aircrafts very late as the cargo building is on your left side and obstructs a view of the runway. So be always ready to make your picture and listen to the aircraft sound.
TIME Best in in the morning hours until noon (depends on the time of the year).
MISC. There are no restrooms, benches, shops at this location. So please visit the facilities at the Statoil Station before you go to this location.
FOCAL LENGTH 200-400 mm
Spot #7 – Dortheasmindevej – 22R Departures
WHERE If you come from any direction, go the same way as set out at Spot 3 just follow the street course for about 600m and turn left into Dortheasmindevej. Follow the street for about 300m and a horse ranch will appear on your left. Choose a suitable and comfortable place for you.
WHAT Heavy departures from runway 22R are visible from here, we can recommend this spot for the Air Greenland A330 departures which is at 09.00am every day. Air Greenland is usually on time so do not bid for delay if you are late. The runway is visible as well in the distance making it possible to prepare for it.
TIME From sunrise until noon.
MISC. There is nothing to mention at this spot. Behave and smile to others who live there that spotting remains tolerated at this point. Danish always say ‘hej’ by courtesy and in deference to you – greet them back.
FOCAL LENGTH 70-300 mm – Airbus A330: 280mm; Boeing 737-800: 310mm
Spot #8 – Tunnel Entrance – 04L Arrivals
WHERE This spot is located right along the airport fence in Englandsvej. This road is very busy so parking is illegal! You can park your car in the next town (Store Magleby) for example if you turn right from Englandsvej into Søndre Kinkelgrade or left into Nordre Kinkelgrade and use the sidewalk to reach the perimeter fence.
WHAT You have a view of the runway 04L arrivals and 22R departures but you need a ladder here.
TIME From sunrise until 1pm in the summer
MISC. There is nothing to mention at this spot. Behave and smile to others who live there that spotting remains tolerated at this point. Danish always say ‘hej’ by courtesy and in deference to you – greet them back.
FOCAL LENGTH 70-300 mm

The team unfortunately has no pictures from this yet. We will hand them in later respectively as soon as possible. We have checked this Spot for you and can insure that it is possible to take photos from here. A ladder is required however, but you can also spot through the fence when you are not able to bring stairs along.

Spot #9 – Magleby – Line-up 04R
WHERE To get here, you have to drive into the town Magleby and turn left at the big crossing (if you are coming through the tunnel). Follow the road almost until the end and turn left before the road turns to the right. Park your car next to the airport fence here or on the small grass area on the left side. Do not drive straight through to the spot, as driving there is prohibited. Instead take your ladder (3 steps should suffice to shoot through the wires, 4 steps to shoot over) along the paved path until you reach a convexity in the fence.Take up location here. When the sun goes around more, you can also go further along the fence to have better light on lineup.
WHAT You will get the line-ups using the last taxiway onto RWY 04R. These are mostly heavy aircraft or those flying a long distance (for example to the Canaries). Sometimes also smaller aircraft flying short distance come here, but that’s a rare occasion. Sadly sometimes even heavies like Qatar can take a taxiway earlier onto the RWY, but this is rare as well. You might face strong heat haze at this location, especially in summer around noon and if the winds are too calm.
TIME Best light is from around 11 AM to 5 PM.
MISC. There is nothing here.
FOCAL LENGTH 150mm for a B738 and 75mm for a B773 from the marked spot.

Spot #10 – Field – Touchdown 04L
WHERE The spot is in the corner of the airport fence along the Tømmerupvej, a dirt road in the fields. Unfortunately it is strictly forbidden to enter the dirt road with your car. Police passes by regularly, so it might be clever to park your car in the village of Store Magleby at the Strøbyvej and walk to the spot. As you need to take your ladder with you and it’s a 1 km walk, use a light ladder or take a handcart to carry it. Don’t park at the riding club as your car might be towed.
WHAT You can get all touch downs on 04L. Nothing else.
TIME From early morning until noon.
MISC. There is absolutely nothing here, so bring whatever you need. Sometimes police will approach you. So carry your ID and smile..
FOCAL LENGTH 80 mm for A330 and 150 mm for A320

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One thought on “Copenhagen Kastrup Spotting Guide

  1. Bengt S

    Going to Copenhagen Thursday Jan 5. Where is the best place to spot the A380? Arr 12:20, dep 14:20 – these are the correct? Thank you!

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