Eindhoven Airport, called Welschap in the past, is a combined civil and military airfield with a lot of general aviation as well. Interesting traffic includes freight charters for the military and holiday charters. At the airbase, the transport squadrons of the Royal Netherlands Air Force are based with KDC-10, C-130 and the G-IV. Additionally, part of the NATO MMU (Multinational MRTT Unit) fleet operates from Eindhoven, which is its Main Operating Base. Civil passengers are served by Ryanair, Transavia, Wizzair and Corendon, to name a few regular visitors. The busy paint shop that used to be here is no more.
Of the historic runway layout, only the main runway nowadays numbered 03/21 remains. Most activities take place on either side of that, on the northern halve of the airfield. Only on the northern and southern parts one gets a clear view over the field, the rest is obstructed by buildings and trees.
During weekdays, a bus connects the airport to the main railway station of Eindhoven every half hour. An alternative is a taxi, also from Eindhoven station.
By car you can follow the signs towards the airport from the A2 motorway.
Around the Airport
One of the best spots at Eindhoven is at final 21. When the aircraft are landing at runway 21, drive towards the ASL hangar and turn left, just before the bridge. You are now entering the road called "Spottersweg" or in English "Spotters' Road"! From this road, perfect pictures can be taken of landing aircraft. The best lens range is 75-300 mm.
Follow the signs that guide you to 'P5'. Parking has a minimum fee of 12 euros, even if you drive your car in and immediately out again! This minimum fee may even rise in the future at the wish of the proprietor. Alternative parking is, for example, at the spotters' place of spot 1 followed by a stroll to P5.
P5's best spot to view activities or take photos is at the far side of the parking lot. Steps are required to take photos. Depending on how tall you are, your feet need to be at approximately 75 cm above ground level.
Be aware that spotting from the parking lot is generally accepted by the authorities, but if asked by airport personnel, military police (Marechaussee) or federal police to leave, one should definitely avoid discussion and follow their instructions. Finally, moving cautiously among parked vehicles is a no-brainer of course.
3Next to the terminal
Another spot is on the right side of the terminal. This is where most of the hangars are. Some have windows at the back, so you can take a look inside.
The civil terminal building has a glass wall facing the apron. From this spot, you have an excellent view of the apron. If you are lucky, the glass is clean enough to take photos through. Only the aircraft at the apron can be photographed from here, using a 75-300mm lens. The light is OK until 2 p.m. When standing in front of the terminal and facing it, there is a staff car park to your left. This car park borders the civil apron and offers a good view on the biggest part of the apron. Photo opportunities are also good here, especially for close-ups of aircraft and platform operations. Downside of this spot is that bigger aircraft may obstruct the view of taxiing aircraft. Steps are needed to take pictures over the fence, using 75-200mm.
Follow the signs that guide you to carpark 'P4'. Just like P5 at spot 2, the minimum parking fee here is 12 euros even when just entering and exiting again (and here too, fees may even rise further). Alternative parking is along the road in front of P4, in one of the designated spaces. Fees there are considerably lower or even nil, depending on time of day and day of week.
P4 has four levels offering good views over almost all of the air base and airfield, including splendid photo opportunities for the runway and even military apron East. Again just like at P5 (spot 2), responsible behaviour and respect for local authorities are expected from enthusiasts.
From the entrance of the air base, most of the aircraft mentioned under Preserved (panel on the right) can be seen. A better view on the "Lane of Fame" can even be had from the road parallel to the fence south of it, at the Park Forum. To get there from spot 6, use the cycling track along the fence or just leave by car and follow the signs to Park Forum. The relics will be at your right.
7Runway 03 - east side
When the aircraft are using runway 03, follow the road from spot 1 northbound and take the first left (direction Wintelre). Take the first road left again (direction Veldhoven) and drive a little bit further. You cannot miss it.
8Runway 03 - west side
Good for landing and taxiway shots, primarily after 14.00 because of the position of the sun.
When runway 03 is in use, you can position yourself best at spot 7. (Frank van de Waardenburg)
The view from spot 5, parking P4: A400M on final runway 21. (Manolito Jaarsma)
|121.930 / 335.750||Ground|
|131.005 / 241.550||Tower|
|122.100 / 123.180||Approach (RAPCON South)|
|132.530 / 379.925||Approach (RAPCON South)|
|124.530 / 265.975||Arrival|
|C-8||F27-300M, instructional airframe in one of the Apron West hangars|
|C-9||F27-300M used as fire and emergency trainer; moved in and out of sight every now and then|
|C-12||F27-300M, gate guard, as 'C-8' in airshow demo colours|
|K-85||F-84G, at the "Lane of Fame" on base|
|K-3068||NF-5A, also at the "Lane of Fame"|
|J-235||F-19A, instructional airframe in one of the Apron West hangars|
|J-238||F-16A, at the "Lane of Fame"|
|P-231||F-84F, also part of the "Lane of Fame"|
|50+95||C-160D, opposite EATC building on base (also centre of the "Lane of Fame"), in special blue/white/red colour scheme|
|H-15||Spitfire replica, pole-mounted in front of Officers' Mess|
|Eindhoven Airport||Official website|