Russian planes Sheremet'yevo Western planes









Click on the Sheremet'evo icon on the right to see the aerial view of the airport with all sites designated

NB! All information presented here was collected at Sheremet'evo international airport WITHOUT violating any security installations or passing through the restricted areas.

Site 1.

This is the bus stop (routes 851 and 817), which is located right between runways 25L and 25R. Advantages: features a good view of approaching planes; gives you an incredible impression when Tu-134 or IL-86 passes right over your head; easy to reach. Disadvantages: not suitable for taking pictures in the morning (on sunny days; example photo was taken in the morning); large angle of elevation of an airplane over an observer; high level of noise from the perimeter road; high probability of running in the police patrol.
See an example: 1

Site 2.

One more bus stop (the same routes), "Universitet grazhdanskoy aviatsii", is next to the University of civil aviation. From there you can see planes landing on the runways 25L and 25R or taking off from runways 7R and 7L. You can also photograph some planes at the parking lot of the University of civil aviation. Advantages: good side view of the landing and taking off planes; easy to reach. Disadvantages: noise from the perimeter road; high probability of running in the police patrol; not suitable for taking pictures in the morning (on sunny days).
See an example: 1

Site 3.

SVO-1 passenger terminal, used mainly for domestic flights and flights to former USSR republics. Photos can be taken through the spaces between vertical bars of the fence. Advantages: no advantages for photographer. As for just an observer, one can look closely at some of the planes that park at SVO-1. Disadvantages: a lot of the policemen walking around; no view of the airfield from the terminal building is availiable (unless you're going to fly somewhere).
See an example: not available, sorry

Site 4.

The field across from the perimeter road. Distance from the ends of the runways 7R and 7L is about 600-700m. Advantages: A fine view of the entire airfield (though powerful lens are needed to take pictures of the planes on the taxiways); no problems with the police at all; good view of the planes landing on 7R and 7L runways; noise from the perimeter road lower than at the Sites 1,2 and 3. Disadvantages: high angle of elevation of passing planes over observer (to eleminate this one should walk a bit to the south, closer to the road; still this would make you visible from the road and thus would increase a risk of being noticed by the police); no possibility to get a side view of a taking off plane (normally they are passing too high over this site).
See an example: not available, sorry

Site 5.

The same as site 4, just across the road. Advantages: all the same as for site 4; normally this part of field is used for growing corn so when you're there in summer none from the road is not able to see you. Disadvantages: all the same to site 4.
See an example: 1

Site 6.

A place by the airport fence. Advantages: the fence is concrete so you can not see what is going on in the airfield, but you have a very good frontal view of planes approaching runways 7L and 7R; no police at all (never encountered); silence and clean air (well, you will smell burned kerosene when planes will take off from 7L or 7R). Disadvantages: a long way to go from the nearest bus stop "Lokator" ("Radar") which is placed across the road from site 4; planes approaching runway 7L pass at a high angle of elevation over observer. Average walking time 15 minutes. You just get out of the bus and go along the road to airport until you cross the bridge over Klyaz'ma river. There you turn right, go down, climb up to the airport fence and follow it to the south until you see the fence turning 90 degrees to the west. You pass this point and go along the fence on. Site 6 is the straight portion of the fence that follows 90 degree turn.
See an example: 1

Site 7.

My favorite site for taking pictures at SVO. A very nice and quite place in the field. To get there, you just walk beyond site 6 and turn to the left, following the fence. You see a small shallow slope all covered with flowers (or snow :) and go up the slope until you reach it's top point. Now you're at the site 7. Advantages: no police; fine view of the planes approaching runways 7L and 7R, no noise (except that from taking off aircraft), no problems with sun angle from sunrise until late afternoon. Disadvantages: takes approximately 20-25 minutes of walking to reach (best to go from the "Locator" bus stop, as to site 6).
See an example: 1

Site 8.

Definitely the best plane spotting site at SVO, but the most dangerous. It is in the territory of the "Sheremet'yevo-3" terminal which is currently under construction. In the summer 2000 it was just a huge square covered with concrete layer with a single small two-storey maintenance building and small power transmitting facility. One can climb the roof of the maintenance building by the fire stairway on the eastern side of it. Advantages: from the point of view of plane spotter, the roof is perfect place for observer or photographer. It gives you clear unspoiled view of planes approaching, landing and doing landing run on the runways 7L and 7R and those that prepare to take off from these runways (actually, taking off planes enter the runway ad start take-off run right in front of you, 60-70 meters away). As well, you can see all the take-offs from the runways 25R and 25L. No problems with the sun except in the late afternoon when one has difficulties photographying planes on the finals to runways 7L and 7R. Disadvantages: available for spotting only during weekends when all workers leave the site. In fact, this building site is not protected by any security, and formally not closed for anyone. Still, appearance of non-workers there is not endorsed by the police. So, since you get there you'd better watch out and try to remain unnoticed. The problem is that once you're on the roof, you can be easily seen from any poin of the western part of the airfield, when standing. The optimal solution is to climb on the roof and lie there. This will not spoil you a good view but will make you almost invisible for an occasional glance at the roof. The perimeter road is passing right by the building, so you can see if any police cars are approaching it.
See an example: 1

Site 9.

Restaurants on the 4th and 5th floors of the SVO-2 terminal. Offer a nice view of the central part of the airfield but posess a serious disadvantage: dark windows require long exposure times. In addition, the restaurant on the 5th floor is normally full of securities, so the one on the 4th is preferrable for taking pictures. Nevertheless, when an "El Al" flight arrives, they'll find you anywhere, including WC (I believe), so watch out.
See an example: not available, sorry

Site 10.

Site 10 is a ramp that goes up to the second floor of the SVO-2 terminal. From there you can't observe the airfield but can make some nice close-ups of parked airliners (normally Aeroflot IL-86s, IL-62s, Tu-154s and Delta B-767 park by the site 10). Disadvantages: A policeman on duty in the apex of the ramp.
See an example: not available, sorry

Site 11.

A place between the perimeter road and airport fence. Advantages: good side view of planes on the finals to the runways 25L and 25R; sun angle allows to take pictures almost through the whole day. Disadvantages: nearby road: high noise level, probability of running into the police patrol, gas pipeline going right under the site.
See an example: 1



(Moscow, Russia)





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