South Africa Air Force Museums Swartkop & Ysterplaat

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South Africa Air Force Museums Swartkop & Ysterplaat

Post by mart »

The last 2 weeks I spent on a family vacation in South Africa.
During my stay I visited the SAAF museum at Ysterplaat in Cape Town and tried to visit the SAAF museum at Swartkop in Johannesburg.
As this year will be the next AAD in South Africa I expect some of you might go there and perhaps also try and visit these museums so I thought I would share my experiences.

Firstly a lot of the information on the internet is not correct.
Information found on and ... /locations is outdated and for as far as I can tell the telephone numbers are not available and the opening hours are not correct. Also the opening hours mentioned by Google are not correct.

I visited Ysterplaat on Saturday morning, as none of the phone numbers were working I decided to drive up their and ask at the gate.
The SAAF museum at Ysterplaat has a visitor center and a hangar. I was allowed to be escorted to the visitor center without to much trouble.
However once I got there I was informed that there is an issue with foreigners visiting the hangar. During the week this is apparently forbidden.
After a few phone calls and some friendly conversation I was allowed a guided visit to Hangar 4 together with a South African grandpa and his grand kids.
However I was told it would be better if I don't let the SAAF personal around (who were working on the planes including the Shack) notice I am a foreigner.

The Shackleton is currently not performing any engine runs.
The oldtimer showing me around said that they are hoping to do so again in the future and the issue is only permission to do so on base by SAAF(?).

At Swartkop I had less luck.
Again I drove here on a Saturday, however we encountered two guards who were in no mood for speaking.
As 2 SA Navy Lynxes landed behind them they told me that the museum is open from Monday to Friday, closed over the weekend and there is no way they will let a foreigner visit the museum on a Saturday.
The information that the museum is closed and only open on Wednesday and Saturday is outdated, and also the opening hours of Google are not correct.
I am not sure if these opening hours will remain like this, however if you plan to visit I recommend visiting Swartkop from 9am on a weekday.

Hope this information is of interest.

Kind regards,

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Joined: 17 Apr 2009, 21:02
Type of spotter: spotter and photographer

Re: South Africa Air Force Museums Swartkop & Ysterplaat

Post by GLF4 »

The 1st Saturday of each month is a flying training day at Swartkops (FASK). So you can get in on a Saturday. In the week I'd be there at just after 9. Haven't been to the museum itself outside of an airshow for awhile...

The National museum of military history in Johannesburg has some nice aircraft as well from the SAAF. Some older world war 2 types from the Luftwaffe are on display as well.
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