Florianópolis (FLN-SBFL) serves the Capital of the State of Santa Catarina, in southern Brazil and is named after an important local politician: Hercílio Luz. It is located about 15 kilometers from the city center and easily reached by duplicated highway in less than 30 minutes, with bus service, vans, taxis and vehicles by applications. In 2019 it handled approximately 4 million passengers and more than 30 thousand movements of landings and takeoffs.
In addition to serving the capital, it serves a region full of beautiful beaches and gives access to one of the hottest cities in Brazil, Balneário Camboriú, an important city that owned seven of the ten tallest buildings in Brazil and South America, all above 250 meters high. This city attracts, in the summer months, millions of tourists from Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile and Paraguay, so FLN receives many charter flights from these countries.
The airport has been managed since January 3, 2018 by Floripa Airport. The concessionaire is a subsidiary of Zurich Airport, a new passenger terminal was built, with a capacity for 8 million pax per year. The new terminal opened on September 28, 2018. During the 2015/2016 season, 312 extra national flights and 370 charter flights from other Latin American countries were allowed to land.
Azul, Latam, and Gol, as well as foreign companies, Aerolineas Argentinas and Sky do Chile, are regulate visitors. In the summer months, December to February, the number of charter flights are greater and the number of executive jets also increases, they would be the best months to photograph here, because besides the movement it is also the time of best sunlight, although it’s rainy season.
Latam Cargo flies regularly with the Boeing 767-300 to Miami.
The good news for the spotters is that the new terminal has an excellent terrace for observing the planes and is excellent for photos during most of the day (see spot 1).
We know that there are more places to practice spotting at Florianópolis airport, so we count on the collaboration of local spotters to help us enrich this guide.
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|14/32||2 400 mts (7.874ft)|
|03/21||1 500 mts (4.921ft)|
|Terminals||One terminal for all commercial passenger traffic|
|Ladder||You will only need a ladder at spot number two.|
|Car/Public Transport||location number 1 is the easiest, as it is at the airport, location number 02 and 03 you need a car, or you can go with application cars. We do not recommend taking public transport as it is not very good.|
|Restrooms||Only at spot 01 you will have a bathroom, in the others there is nothing.|
|Drinks/Food||Again only at location number 01 you will find something to eat or drink, in the rest you must take it, as there is nothing nearby.|
|Hotels||There are some inns near the airport, but good hotels only in the city of Florianópolis.|
|Season||During the high season, in the local summer months, the airport receives hundreds of extra flights, including charters, from countries like Argentina, Chile and Uruguay, and other regions of Brazil. So the best months are December, January and February.|
|Security||The region is relatively safe, we don’t know of any cases of violence against spotters here, but if you can go with some people it will be better than going alone.|
|14/32||Major runway and it is the most used track, in practically all operations.|
|Spot #1 – Airport Terrace|
|WHERE||The passenger terminal has a very nice open observation deck on the top of the terminal to watch the traffic on the runway and apron. To get there from the terminal, enter the passenger building, turn right inside and walk to a door where you will leave the terminal again. Once outside on the left there is an elevator to the terrace.
You can also go outside from the terminal, as soon as you arrive go through a lawn and you will be at the place that gives access to the elevator. Take it and the fun is guaranteed.
|WHAT||From the terrace you can photograph both landings and takeoffs, in addition aircraft on the taxiway. There is a cargo terminal in the background, but all planes have to pass in front of you, so you will not miss anything.|
|TIME||From October to April, the light is favorable from afternoon until sunset. The rest of the year the light is not favorable and you will face the sun.|
|MISC.||You are at the airport, there are restrooms and a snack bar there (due to the pandemic, they are closed, but will open again in the future)|
|FOCAL LENGTH||200 mm for airplanes on the runway (A320 – B737), and 70 mm for airplanes in taxi.|
|Spot #2 – Portal Parking Garage|
|WHERE||This place is in front of a well-known airport parking lot, named Portal Parking. The spot itself is the lawn that is next to a very busy highway. To get there from the airport, take the highway that goes to the city center and at the next roundabout, instead of going to the center, follow the signs to “Campeche” and soon you will see the Portal parking to the right. Park the car in the garage and go back outside. It will cost you 3 dollars an hour.|
|WHAT||You will practically take pictures of landings on rwy 32, you will be able to see the aircraft approaching from very far, and on a good day, it will yield good photos.The decolarens passed very high here.|
|TIME||Always in the morning, until about 11am|
|MISC.||There is a Military Police base nearby, so if a policeman disturbs you what you are doing, explain and you will have no problems. Avoid pointing the camera on the police base.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||160 to 200mm for Boeing 737, Airbus A320 and 250 mm or more for biz jets.|
|Spot #3 – Crash Gate|
|WHERE||This place is at the end of Osvaldo Bittencourt street at a crash gate. It is far from the airport, in a residential area, but the residents are very friendly and they are used to see spotters here. It is 8 kilometers from the terminal and to get here you will need a car. From the airport go towards the city center and when you see the post office, or an entrance sign for Street Aderbal R. da Silva turn left and make a turn (keep right) and drive all the way down to the airport fence along the Rua Osvaldo Bittencourt. Turn left and follow the street until the crash gate. Public transport is not recommended but you can go with application cars, which are very abundant in this region of Brazil.|
|WHAT||Landings on rwy 32, takeoffs on rwy 14 and aircraft taxi, that will take off on runway 32.|
|TIME||Practically every month from sunrise until noon/afternoon it is possible to photograph here.|
|MISC.||It is necessary to use a ladder, the fence is quite high, and there are no toilets or shade here. So bring what you need.|
|FOCAL LENGTH||160mm for aircraft type B737, A320 and 250mm for bizjets or smaller aircraft.|