Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2000 4:26 am

Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Wed Jan 09, 2002 1:01 pm

Okay, who wants to field this one? anyone that can give me some spotting tips on Brazil, particularly GIG and and anything nearby, Muchos gracias! (yes, i know, they speak portugese there...)

It looks like a buddy and me are going to head down to brazil for a few days just because we can and so i plan to spend hopefully a day spotting if i can find some good places. I've seen some views from that "sugar loaf hill" or whatever that look pretty frickin awesome, i would love to catch some shots like that...

Anyhew, let me know, anyone who knows anything about brazil or Rio in particular, now is your time to speak your mind  Big thumbs up

Thanks a ton in advance!!

Posts: 4281
Joined: Thu Jun 01, 2000 6:07 pm

RE: Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Fri Jan 11, 2002 12:31 am

Heres some info I found

Porto Algre

Airlines that can be seen here:
- VARIG B727-100F, B737-200, B737-300, B767-200, B767-300, DC-10F (B737-700 VERY SOON);
- TRANSBRASIL: B737-300, B737-400, B767-200, B767-300;
- VASP: B737-200, B737-300, A300, B727-200F;
- RIO-SUL: E120, B737-500;
- TAM: F100, (A330 VERY SOON);
- BETA (CARGO): B707F;
- UNEX: ATR-42;
- TOTAL: E120;
- PASSAREDO: A310, E120;


- A.ARGENTINAS: B737-200, MD-88, B747;
- PLUNA: B737-200;
- LAPA: B737-200;
- TOWER: B747;
- WORLD: MD-11;
- AEROCANCUN: A300, A310;
- LUFTHANSA: B747-400;
- RAF: C-130, NIMROD, VC-10;
- LAKER: DC-10;
- AEROFLOT: IL-18 (RA-75496)

Recife is about 2.900km far from Sao Paulo toward the north. Recife is the principal airport for small aircrafts coming or going to Europe. The name of the Recife's airport is Aeroporto Internacional dos Guararapes. It has a runway (18/36) with 3001X45 metres. It is possible to see An-124 form Heavylift and Air Foyle on route between Europe and South America; a lot of Brazilian airlines, like VARIG, VASP, TRANSBRASIL, Nordeste, TAF, TAM, Rio-Sul, Phoenix and etc...
There is a nice observation deck in the first floor where you can shot landings and takings-off terrific when runway 36 is in use. Another one is in front of the militar base entrace (because this airport has an air force base in the opposite side). Also beside the Votorantim's hangar and behind of the "incinerador" (on both you can stay at 5 metres from the taxiway "M".

Rio de Janeiro-Santos Dumont

This is the domestic airport of Rio, known because of it's shuttle flights to Sao Paulo. The airport has a civil and military part. A small observation deck is on the first level next to the restaurant. After 11 o'lcok photography is good with sunlight from behind.

Rio de Janeiro-Galeao
Galeao is the internation airport and has a military and civil part. In the terminal building are two observation decks on the third floor. There are windows but photography is good. Untill 3 pm the sun is from behind or on top, depending time of year.
RNWS: 15-33 is 3.180m x 60m; 10-28 is 4.000m x 60 (used mainly for take-offs)

SPOTS: There are two observation decks on the third floor of the Terminal 1. They are closed by glasses and they aren't usually very clean, but good photography is possible. Both the decks face the ramp, one face the international ramp and the other, the domestic ramp. There is also a good fast-food restaurant called Air Cafe, where ramp view is provided. This restaurant has the militar aviation as decoration. Aviation Videos and photos are showed. Good photos can be taken of planes landing on rnws 15 and 10. You just have to follow the road that takes you to the airport. Go to the very end of this road, it passes under two taxiway bridges. Police and Airport administration may bother you. Other very good spot is a car parking (taxi). You can see this parking from the observation deck, just leave the terminal and walk in its direction.


Varig : 737-200, 737-300, 747-300, 767-200, 767-300, DC-10-30, MD-11.
Vasp : 737-200, A300, MD-11.
TAM: Fokker100
TransBrasil : 737-300, 737-400, 767-200, 767-300.
Pluna : 737-200.
Aerol¡neas Argentinas : 737-200, A310, MD-80.
Lan Chile : 767-300.
Avianca : 757-200.
LAB : 727-200, 737-300.
Cubana : IL-62
American : 767-200, 767-300.
United : 767-200, 767-300.
Continental : DC-10-30.
Delta : 767-300.
Air France : A340
Lufthansa : A340
British : 747-400
Alitalia : 747-200
Swissair : MD-11
Aeroflot : IL-96
Iberia : 747-200, DC-10
Air Portugal : A340
TAAG : 747-300

Sao Paulo International (GRU)
Thanks Alexandre Polati, email for sending in this report

Sao Paulo International has many points to go, but most of them are so dangerous because there is a lot of slums around the airport. From the terminal 1 and 2, you will find four points. One the terminal 1, the best one is a restaurant called 'Bandeijao', that has a big window just in front of Apron "G". This apron is operated by VASP, United, Avianca, Viasa, Aerolineas Argentinas, Transbrasil, Air France, British Airways and other European airlines. To see the Apron "H", that is between terminals 1 and 2, you have to go to a terrace on the second floor. On this apron you will find lots of Boeing 737s from Vasp, Varig and Transbrasil. Apron "I" can be seen from a terrace on second floor, from McDonalds and also from a restaurant called THE POINT. It's difficult to get inside of it..... On terminal 2, Apron "I", you will se on the right some Varig's aircrafts, and other South America airlines like Pluna and Lan Chile. American Airlines can be found there too and KLM as well.
The only one outside point that I use to go, is the road close to the airport, where you can see major airlines on short final to RWY 09R. I use to go by car, but from the terminal 1, by foot, it takes about 20 min. To take pictures, the sun is good the hole day, and the best season is the winter. From 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM.

Sao Paulo Congonhas (CGH)
Thanks Alexandre Polati, email for sending in this report, Renato Salzinger for additional info

At Congonhas is a lot of RioSul, TAM, Varig, Vasp and Transbrasil, and also other smaller airlines the you can see there, like Helisul. There are two terraces, one has a big roof in front of it, so this is not perfect. The other belongs to a restaurant, and it opens from 11:00 AM. At Sundays you pay 1 Real to get in. This terrace is very good, with a lens 200mm you can take great pictures. The sun is good just after 1:00 PM.
There is a hotel very close to the airport. Rooms at the 8th floor with numbers ending at 14,16 and 18 overlook the taxiway and runway. Very good photos are possible as this photo proofs. The name of the hotel is "Golden Flat". Roomrate is expensive.

The hotel also has a website with online reservations (in Portuguese) at: and can be e-mailed at: which is probably the best option from Europe. Recommended are the pizzas in the hotel restaurant  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

The hotel phone number is 55-11-5536-9488 (55 for Brazil and 11 area code for Sao Paulo), but don't expect good english.

Current Rates/Current exchange rates (as per January 2002): During weekdays:
Single room: R$ 108,00, around US$ 45,00
Double room: R$ 156,00, around US$ 65,00 for the room(32,50 per head)

Weekend rates(from 00:00 friday until 00:00 sunday)
Single room: R$ 95,00, around US$ 40.00
Double room: 136,00, around US$ 57,00 for the room(28,50 per head)

Best rooms:
1010 and 910 are the best suited rooms for spotting and photos

There is also a third airport in Sao Paulo, called Viracopus (VCP). This is about a 2 hours drive from Sao Paulo and the movement is not good, just cargo airlines, like FEDEX, operate here.


118.400 - Guarulhos Tower
118.700 - Marte Tower ( General Aviation )
118.900 - Campinas Tower ( Viracopos )
120.600 - Sao Paulo ( Congonhas ) traffic
121.600 - Marte ground
121.900 - Sao Paulo ( Congonhas ) ground
121.900 - Campinas ( Viracopos ) ground
127.750 - ATIS ( For all airports - CGH / GRU )
129.000 - Sao Paulo Control
129.750 - Guarulhos final aproch
132.100 - Congonhas Final aproch
133.850 - Sao Paulo Control
134.900 - Sao Paulo aproch
135.750 - Sao Paulo aproch

Sao Jose dos Campos is the place where Embraer produces it's aircraft

Posts: 2379
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 10:55 am

RE: Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Fri Jan 11, 2002 12:45 am


check with Thomas Fischer, e-mail link on his photos....he was just down there a couple of moths ago.

Btw....for a college kid, you have a pretty good life!!!!

Posts: 916
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2001 2:04 pm

RE: Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Fri Jan 11, 2002 1:43 am

Hello Chris,

Regarding Rio de Janeiro: forget about it.

Rio was indeed the main international gateway for Brazil, but this was true until the mid 80´s when Sao Paulo´s new international airport was opened. In less than 10 years it overtook Rio in passangers and movement numbers.
Since Sept.11 this situation grew worse and many airlines cancelled their Rio de Janeiro services, so today the nickname of the airport among us Brazilian spotters is "Ghost City".

So, take my advice, if you wanna real spotting came down to Sao Paulo, is not the best season for photos on the international airporto (GRU) due light placement but you can go back home hands full with Brazilian stuff if you stick to Sao Paulo downtown airport, here you see a few exemples of what you can make:

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Renato Salzinger

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Propfreak

(geee..Olav´s photos..I guees I was with him this day)

Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © Roger Almeida

If you are not looking only for spotting but also beaches, take a plane down to Florianopolis starting at 100 us$ roundtrip..not so expensive as Rio and on top of that very nice place..

Needing some further advise, don´t hesitate in contact me,



PS.Work e-mail:

"ad astra per aspera"
Posts: 1372
Joined: Sun Jul 09, 2000 4:26 am

RE: Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Sat Jan 12, 2002 2:29 am

Hey guys, thanks a million for the info, i wasn't sure i would get much, Thanks!!

Hopefully the trip works out, im looking forward to it..

Btw....for a college kid, you have a pretty good life!!!!

yeah i can't complain; i just try and take advantage of my opportunities... one day at a time.

Posts: 760
Joined: Fri Feb 16, 2001 2:49 am

RE: Rio, Brazil, Etc...

Sat Jan 12, 2002 2:56 am

Hi Chris,
contact Thomas Fischer. He showed us some of his GIG slides last December, and they were really very interesting.
Regards from snowy FRA,

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests

Popular Searches On

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos