Aerial Photos

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Whenever travelling on an aircraft these days I try to bring my camera with me and to see what I can see. Aeroplane windows, as we are all aware, are generally fairly grubby with sweaty head marks and condensation inside the panes, but if luck is on my side and it is a clear day and window, some nice results can come about.

"Where the sun always shines"

Except if it's night time of course...the best bit about taking off from Aberdeen is that you know the sun is just above the perpetual clouds!

"Such a beautiful horizon..."

Coming into land from the north east at the amusingly monikered El Prat International Airport, we are treated to an excellent view of the entire city of Barcelona.

"A bright day in Brighton"

Is this Brighton? No. Since originally posting this picture, I have figured out that it is in fact Eastbourne, not so far along the coast.

"The London town"

Central London is often clearly visible from flights coming in to Heathrow from the east, this shot includes the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace at the top right.

"Second city of the empire"

Glasgow city centre is not so often visible through the Scottish cloud, but one day I was treated to this crystal clear view on a flight from Edinburgh to Paris.

"Model mountains"

A natural barrier to the French cloud, the sugar icing covered Pyrenees west of Andorra are a sight to behold.

"Glacier flow"

A glacier makes its way from a high ice field in the Alps - possibly Switzerland, possibly Italy, this was on a flight from Gatwick to Bologna.


On a flight from Los Angeles to Frankfurt, I happened to be sitting on the right side of the plane to see the Grand Canyon from thirty thousand feet. Although unfortunately due to haze and grimy window conditions, the best shot I could get was of the periphery.

"Sim City 2000"

Coming in to land in Phoenix, Arizona, it struck me that "Sim City" must have been designed around this town, a great grid of housing with a couple of little mountains here and there, abruptly giving way to desert at the edge.

"Gatport Airwick"

I saw this quite by chance on a flight from Nice to Luton, Gatwick Airport south of London. Just after this photo was taken I watched a plane landing far below.


This is Southampton on the south English coast, an important port where the Titanic sailed from in 1912.

"Millbrook Proving Ground"

Millbrook Proving Ground was built by Vauxhall/General Motors in the UK as test facilities for new cars. Of the multiple test tracks, most clearly visible is the ring-shaped high speed bowl, occasionally featured on the BBC's Top Gear.

"Silverstone Circuit"

The British Grand Prix still takes place at Silverstone race track, and the old layout of the circuit is still quite clearly visible, especially from this angle.

"Southern North Sea oil platforms"

The southern North Sea is peppered with oil and gas platforms, the abundance of gas fields and the shallow water combining to drive the industry.

"Forth Bridges, Edinburgh"

Back up north near to Edinburgh, the Forth Bridges span the river Forth, with the mighty rail bridge cantilever complemented by the graceful road bridge. An additional road crossing will be completed to the right of this shot in 2016.

"Ocean sunset"

Taken on a flight down the California coastline from San Francisco to Los Angeles, this is the last remnants of the sun setting into the Pacific Ocean.

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Copyright © Ross Wattie 2003-2015