Pilots are always out for a new adventure. General aviation pilots want to enjoy the freedom to fly and explore new places along the way. So Lightspeed asked our GA pilot community to share about their favorite GA airport and what makes it special to them and the pilot community it serves.
Enjoy reading about these notable GA Airports from the following international pilots.
Eero Jyrkkio: Finland
My PPL training airport EFHF in Helsinki Finland, is due to being demolished by the city of
Helsinki in favor of housing development, even though over half of the residents oppose. EFHF is
a very historic airport, being one of the first in the world to be designed as an international airport
from the ground up.
The grassy fields of the airport are home to many rare species of wildlife and the functionalist
architecture of the round main terminal building from the 1930’s is a rarity in itself. The terminal
building and the surrounding taxiways and runways were designated as ‘Heritage at Risk’ by
ICOMOS in 2019. Being the only GA airport in the vicinity of Helsinki, it was a fantastic base for
flight training and for visiting pilots with quick flights to the Baltic countries.
Friends of Malmi Airport are still fighting against the plans to demolish the airport, but I believe
that time is running out for this fantastic historic airport. I still do wish that I could fly out of EFHF
at least once more.
Aaron Burton: Victoria, BC, Canada
The Victoria International Airport is quite the unique airport. Located just north of Victoria, British Columbia Canada it is right next to the US/Canada border making it easy and quick (minus customs time) for pilots to cross between the two countries. Within a 30–60-minute flight radius from CYYJ pilots have a very wide range of airfields and landscapes to explore. From the hilly Gulf Islands as you depart, to the mountains of Vancouver Island and farther east and north the Rockies, or the desolate west coast beaches and blue/green glacier lakes. There is a special location for any adventurous float or wheel equipped aircraft!
Home to some great pilot groups the Victoria Flying club, along with formation pilots, and those looking to rent aircraft for time building. For the pilots looking for a good fly and dine spot CYYJ has you covered. The Dakota (Best Won Ton) or the Spitfire Grill, both with plenty of aircraft parking right outside or Mary’s Blue Moon a five minute walk away. You are spoiled for choice if you are hungry! While enjoying lunch right next to the active taxiways you can enjoy the numerous arriving and departing aircraft. From GA to airlines and the odd military bird there is rarely quiet hours during the sunny days, which means great spotting for those aviation photographers. After lunch take the quick walk to the amazing BC Aviation Museum and get lost even more in BC’s history!
Pimpi Reyes: Spain
My home airport, Maspalomas El Berriel, is on the island of Gran Canaria (Spain), one of the 7 islands that form the Canaries.
It has a 25-07 runway. When you leave from runway 25 the first thing you see below you is the beautiful Maspalomas beach and its famous sand dunes. Following the coastline, you can enjoy all the different beaches and resorts. But the scenery can change in a blink: turn towards the center of the island and you can enjoy the impressive sheer cliffs: It is said that we are a miniature continent.
There are just one flying school (CANAVIA)and our flying club(Royal Airclub of Gran Canaria), so traffic is sparse. Very close is the Gran Canaria International Airport, public and military, if you want more fun. And yes, you can fly all 365 days.
There is no such thing as an FBO, but there is always someone there to help.
As for food, we are not famous for hamburgers, but nearby there are some very good restaurants, three of them Michelin-starred.
You can also visit the 6 other islands in just an hour or so to the most distant, and explore very different sceneries, beaches and restaurants. From the leafy La Gomera o La Palma to the sandy Lanzarote o Fuerteventura.
Plenty of options!