Sydney Airport

The busiest airport in Australia

The Location

Sydney Airport is an international airport that you will find in the suburb called Mascot, 8 kilometres from the city centre.

It was among the top 40 airports in the world in terms of traffic. Moreover, it has three runways and is the busiest airport in Australia.

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Nigel Love, a First World War pilot, wanted to build an aerodrome and an aircraft manufacturing company but lacked the proper land. This area was perfect for an airport, since the land was completely flat because it was used as a pasture for sheep and cattle.

The land went into the hands of the Commonwealth Government and the first regular flight happened in 1924.

It did not take too much time to construct three runways — it happened in 1949.

Also, it is one of the longest-working international airports in the World.

Sydney Airport Air Traffic Control Tower

Depending on the time when you are visiting Australia, you can watch races both in spring and autumn.

The ATC Queen Elizabeth Stakes occurs every April with the distance of 2000m and $4 million in prize money. The race happens on the second day of the Championships and is the most expensive 2000m turf race.

The TAB Everest takes place on the second Saturday of October as a part of the Sydney Spring Carnival. It is a 1200m Weight for Age Thoroughbred horse race, introduced in 2017. Also, it is the richest horse race with $13 million in prize money.


It is an air traffic control tower that is a part of the Commonwealth Heritage List since 2016. Since it was obvious that the tower No. 4 does not have a clear view of all the runways anymore, they needed another one.

The first thing that anyone notices about it is its one-of-a-kind design. It is the idea of a creative and well-known architect Ken Woolley. It took them three years to finish it — from 1993 to 1996.

The tower has a distinguishable doughnut-shaped base. Furthermore, the building is covered with aluminium and glass panels.

There have not been any significant modifications to the original construction, except for the extension of the entrance because of the bigger reception area.

This control tower is the only one in this country that is cable-stayed. Also, the central column provides the controllers with a better view, because of the circular cabin.

In fact, everyone involved wanted this tower to become a landmark one day. It is no wonder that they chose such a unique style.


Terminal 1

It started working since 1970 and it has gone through a wide expansion — it now has 25 gates. Moreover, it takes up the northwestern sector of the Sydney Airport. Also, here you can board both International and some domestic flights.

The terminal had a major makeover back in 2010 at the price of $500 million. They decided to improve the floor space of the terminal, to expand the shopping complex, and to centralize the customs operations.

There were additional renovations regarding the change of duty-free areas back in 2015.

Terminal 2

This terminal takes up the north-eastern section of the airport and is the busiest domestic terminal. The following airlines use this terminal:

  • Virgin Australia
  • Virgin Regional Airlines
  • FlyPelican
  • Tigerair
  • Jetstar
  • Regional Express Airlines

Terminal 3

At this one, you can only use domestic flights. Also, it is located in the same area of the airport as Terminal 2.

If you are interested in history, there is a “Heritage Collection” near Gate 13. There, you will find many interesting objects from the Qantas’ ninety years of dedicated service.

Sydney has a rich and vibrant history with many famous landmarks and places of interest. Read about the Sydney Harbour Bridge here.

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