Guide to London Gatwick Airport

Contributors: dan330, gregthompson, james094, UK321
Updated Monday 1st August, 2011

ICAO Code: EGKK
IATA Code: LGW

Latitude: N51° 9' 11"
Longitude W0° 10' 58"

Sunrise Today: 05:18
Sunset Today: 20:55

Gatwick is by far the worst airport to spot at in London and even one of the worst in the whole of the United Kingdom. Gatwick is however the second busiest airport in Britain and it contains a large variety of airlines and aircraft. The trouble is, is that there is nowhere at all really where you can view the aircraft, especially those at the stands where it's litterally impossible to see them. It's worth having a look round Gatwick too see if you can find anything if you are departing or have just arrived there. It's not at all recommended to make a special visit to the airport just to see some planes, as you may be very dissapointed.

Radio Frequencies Radio Frequencies

Approach: 126.825
Tower: 124.225
Ground: 121.800
ATIS: 136.525

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Light Rain London Gatwick Airport Weather

All times on the weather descriptions are local

Observed at 23:20 - (10 mins ago)

Light Rain

17°C

Light Rain
Clouds:
Wind: 340° at 06 knots
Visibility: Greater than 10km
QNH: 1016
Dew Point: 14°C
Runway in Use: Runways 26L

Movements

A sample of the upcoming movements for London Gatwick.

We do not current have any movements for London Gatwick Airport.

Photo Spot Spot A - End of runway, Fernhill Road

This is the best area to view arrivals to runway 26L which is used 75 or 80% of the time. The aircraft will approach over you but this spot is massivly set back from the runway threshold so aircraft are still reasonably high. It's so far back that the approach lights to runway 26L haven't even begun yet. This spot is not at all good from runway 08R so if that runway is in use then please go to spot B. From here you cannot see the airport at all, including the two terminal buildings and the control tower, therfore ground shots cannot possibly be had from here. You can still get some good shots of aircraft approaching however due to buildings and trees, you cannot see aircraft approaching until they are literally above you and then they dissapear behind the trees so you cannot see them land.

There is plenty of space to park your car on the side of the street and there are no car parking charges. The locals do not really like you parking here so it's best to not stay any longer than 30 or 40 minutes. As this spot is well set back from the perimetre fence, the airport staff have no issues with you parking here. This spot is not very good at all but is the best Gatwick has to offer for it's most common active runway.

Sat Nav Co-ordinates
(Some locations may not be next to a road but the sat nav should get you pretty close using these co-ordinates)

Latitude: N51° 9' 18" (N51° 9.307')
Longitude: W0° 8' 47" (W0° 8.775')

Photos

Photo 43903
Focal Length: 200mm
Photo 43902
Focal Length: 180mm
Photo 43901
Focal Length: 135mm
Photo 33235
Focal Length: 200mm

View more photos taken at this location

Photo Spot Spot B - End of runway, Lowfield Heath Road

This area can ofer some good views of aircraft. You can get some shots of aircraft on approach and lining up on runway 08R. This area is not at all a good place when runway 26L in in use. Unfortunately runway 08R is only used about 20 or 25% of the time so this spot is rarely any good. From here, you can't see into the airport as there is a large hedge all along the perimetre fence. The only way you can look through is through a small gap in the emergency gate.

There are no car parking charges but there is very little space to park and there are a numer of restrictions. Airport staff do not like you parking your car at the spot as it's a major emergency exit gate so you are very likely to be asked to move your car away, but there are double yellows all down the street. The best option is probably to park at a pub called "The Flight Tavern" and walk to the spot which takes about 15/20 minutes. Although this spot is often not very good at all, it's the best that Gatwick has to offer so it's recommended to avoid spotting at Gatwick if possible.

Sat Nav Co-ordinates
(Some locations may not be next to a road but the sat nav should get you pretty close using these co-ordinates)

Latitude: N51° 8' 41" (N51° 8.684')
Longitude: W0° 12' 56" (W0° 12.926')

Photos

Photo 41881
Focal Length: 90mm
Photo 39376
Focal Length: 300mm
Photo 39202
Focal Length: 250mm
Photo 39201
Focal Length: 187mm

View more photos taken at this location

Photo Spot Spot C - Top Level of Blue Short Term Car Park 1 (South Terminal)

If you are parking at the short term car parking for a day of spotting then this location is perfect. To get there by car drive around Ring Road S and then turn into the short term car parking. Go to the top level and if you go to the southwest corner of Blue Car Park 1 you can get some fantastic shots of 26L arrivals. The car park is also easily accessible from the South Terminal. You also get a fantastic view of aircraft touching down, as you are extremely close to the runway.

Sat Nav Co-ordinates
(Some locations may not be next to a road but the sat nav should get you pretty close using these co-ordinates)

Latitude: N51° 9' 20" (N51° 9.326')
Longitude: W0° 9' 32" (W0° 9.527')

Photos

Photo 33242
Focal Length: 130mm
Photo 33241
Focal Length: 200mm
Photo 33240
Focal Length: 175mm
Photo 33239
Focal Length: 135mm

View more photos taken at this location

Comments Comments About This Airport / Guide

Posted by: Edgar Portugal
Sunday 3rd November, 2013 at 09:46 GMT
Hi all,
Planning to go to Gatiwck on next May, maybe arriving on the 28 (wednesday) for a 2 day spotting trip. I'm looking to Travelodge Gatwick airport and I wanna ask some of you, if may know, if the hotel offers some rooms towards the runway. According to the google maps, the hotel is quite close to the airport...
All the best y'all
Edgar
Posted by: katie United Kingdom
Wednesday 18th September, 2013 at 11:18 GMT
i love planes my life depends on them I also love Thomson airline s as I flew with them in may to rues it was brill so were the views
Posted by: Michael Hooker United Kingdom
Tuesday 4th June, 2013 at 09:56 GMT
(continued)...There is an active Watch scheme, and active local spotters group with printed magazine (Gatwick Aviation Society) as well as a Google Group which will get you lists of dues and a full list of movements - and I mean full, with times and ATC flight numbers, arrivals and departures. It's really time the summary was changed, it gives completely the wrong impression.
Posted by: Michael Hooker United Kingdom
Tuesday 4th June, 2013 at 09:38 GMT
The comments about Gatwick above are only a personal opinion, do not let them put you off visiting. Many come here and are not "dissapointed" (sic). The photos provided prove that you can see the aircraft, maybe not on stand, but so what? The guide also omits the best spot for landings on runway 26, which is simply along the inner road parallel to the A23, 10 minutes walk from South Terminal, which is accessible by train or bus - you don't need to park locally. You are right at the end of the runway and can take photos facing North, which is a vast improvement on the recommended car park from where you are facing into the sun. The former spot also has the blessing of police/security. There is an active Watch scheme, and active local spot
Posted by: Steve United Kingdom
Sunday 2nd June, 2013 at 18:03 GMT
Hi there, can anyone suggest what is the best hotel to stay at and if spotting from the hotel is possible?
Posted by: Luke United Kingdom
Sunday 5th May, 2013 at 16:05 GMT
Does anyone know if the Premier Inn, "London Gatwick (North Terminal)" offers a view across the airfield? I know the Travel lodge is good, but just wondering if anyone knew if the Premier Inn offered a better view of the terminal/runways.
Posted by: David Japan
Sunday 21st April, 2013 at 02:24 GMT
Hi Victoria
Thanks for the great info. I have just managed to book a good deal thru Travelodge. Looking forward to my first visit to LGW in over 20 years before my flight to BCN.
Posted by: Dave Lee Travis United Kingdom
Friday 19th April, 2013 at 10:13 GMT
Rolf so nice to know I'm not the only nonce with a rascal beard..welcome !!
Posted by: Kevin Webster from Corrie United Kingdom
Friday 19th April, 2013 at 10:07 GMT
Hi Rolf lets talk .......
Posted by: Rolf Harris United Kingdom
Friday 19th April, 2013 at 09:58 GMT
Just so you know guys Im available for baby sitting duties any time.
Posted by: Richard Barnes United Kingdom
Friday 12th April, 2013 at 10:40 GMT
Allan, Gail, Peter, Adam and Victoria I feel that your recent comments have lead to an extremely sordid, hurtful and irrelevant angle being cast upon what I consider to be a way of life for many. Since taking early retirement plane spotting has become a daily activity for me and I cherish the moments spent at the end of the runway gazing into the sky, watching a Virgin take flight. I was lucky enough to witness the graceful landing of the new Thompson Dreamliner just a fortnight ago and what a dream come true it truly was! I would like to reiterate my point; that this website is for the plane spotting community, to share their experiences not a website for you all to discuss extra martial affairs!
Posted by: Allan Beckett United Kingdom
Tuesday 2nd April, 2013 at 15:59 GMT
Good God Gail! I can't believe your humiliating me in this way! After everything I've done - remember I stood by you through your affair with Jim Davidson and Bruce Forsyth! All the blue tack molding classes. And I came to the naked crochet group! Peter - I sincerely hope your loyalties lie with me man to man.
Posted by: Gail Beckett United Kingdom
Tuesday 2nd April, 2013 at 15:52 GMT
Peter - are you free tonight? I'll bring a bottle..Allan and I are filing for divorce and I think I'll hit him where it hurts in the log books. I'll bring them over too for you to have a quick peek...
Posted by: Adam Leblanche United Kingdom
Thursday 28th March, 2013 at 09:11 GMT
That day out with Jimmy Saville & Dave Lee Travis .........
Posted by: Victoria Britton United Kingdom
Thursday 28th March, 2013 at 09:01 GMT
Hi guys, Vicksijet here! Just wanted to share with you all my latest endeavours. Peter & I have almost completed filming of 'Spotters- the true story'. I have certainly found filming my passion invigorating and wholly satisfying.Didn't quite get why I had to be interviewed in a bikini all the time but I suppose that's Peter's artisitc licence!
Posted by: Adam Leblanche United Kingdom
Wednesday 27th March, 2013 at 09:09 GMT
I really need to talk about that Jim'll Fix It show......
Posted by: Peter Grey United Kingdom
Wednesday 27th March, 2013 at 09:03 GMT
Allan, I appear to have caused a minor domestic rift at chez toi! on the bright side Gail I'm free tonight if you need a shoulder to cry on ?
Posted by: Allan Beckett Surinam
Tuesday 26th March, 2013 at 15:42 GMT
Gail, stop - please it's not my fault! It's Peter's it's all his! Peter, look what you've done!
Posted by: Gail Beckett United Kingdom
Tuesday 26th March, 2013 at 15:03 GMT
It's too late Grey, this marriage is over! You and Allan have ruined 35 years of blissful union with your careless public display of stupidity. You pair of fools!
Posted by: Peter Grey United Kingdom
Tuesday 26th March, 2013 at 14:44 GMT
Gail, I'm so sorry you were party to our furtive collaboration. Please accept my humblest apologies.Furthermore I noted you were invested in the midget circus and I must implore you to hold on to your investment. Myself I have a midget wife who has circus experience( which is why I married her) and as with plane spotting, the midget market is hot property at the present time. Think short.

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