During my holiday in June, I visited Marseille Provence Airport 2 times. Here’s a little report that gives you an impression what you can expect when you visit this very nice airport.
First a little bit of history and information about the location: Formerly known as Marseille–Marignane Airport, this airport is located 27 km northwest of Marseille. It is the fifth busiest French airport by passenger traffic and third largest for cargo traffic. Marseille Provence Airport serves as a very important hub for Air France. In the summer of 2013, the airport served 132 regular destinations, the largest offer in France after the Parisian airports.
Except Air France you can find more than 35 other airlines that fly on Marseille such as: Aegean Airlines, Vueling, Tunisair, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Aigle Azur but also many flights from Air Algerie.
I hoped to catch some birds from the Sécurité Civile that are based here. When I arrived there, I saw 9 CL-415’s, so I was already very lucky. Unfortunately during the 2 days I was there none of these where seen flying. After some hours I was lucky to see a Bombardier Dash 8 from the Sécurité Civile coming in to land.
The main reason for me to bring a visit to Marseille Airport was because the main facilities of Airbus Helicopters have its headquarters in Marseille. I hoped to catch some recently build helicopters that made a testflight or some other nice visitors for the factory.
I was lucky, on the 2 days that I was there I saw: One testflight of an NH90, 3 EC120 Colibri testflights, 2 testflights from the H225, also seen was the EC175 from Airbus Factory. The visit from a British Chinook and a French Army Puma was a very nice addition for the two wonderful days I spend at the airport.
To conclude I would like to say that spotting at Marseille Airport gives you a lot of opportunities, with nice backgrounds and a diversity of planes.
Text & Photography: Dirk Geuns