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Tokyo Narita spotting guide

Update; 10,Oct.2010

Tokyo Narita airport is the biggest and the busiest international airport in Japan. More than 200 flights take off and same number of  flights land on  in a day. And still more than 30% of the flights are operated by B747.  The airport has two terminals, Terminal One and Terminal Two, and two runway,  RW34L/16R (main runway) and RW34R/16L(sub runway).
How to get there
Two railways connect between the airport terminal building (Narita Kuko (Terminal One) station or Kuko Dai Ni Biru (Terminal Two) station and Tokyo city center. One is JR line from Tokyo, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro and Yokohama station and another is Keisei line from Ueno and Tokyo downtown. Also Keisei line operates the direct trains to/from Haneda airport via Tokyo Subway and Keikyu line.
JR line; Narita Express trains are operated every 30 min. from/to Tokyo, Shinjuku, Yokohama.  Rapid service trains from/to Chiba, Tokyo, Yokohama and Yokosuka are operated every 1 hour.
Keisei line; The company has two route between Tokyo and Narita, old main line and new Airport Access line.. Skyliner, non stop service from/to Nippori and Ueno via Airport Access line, are operated every 20-40 min and direct express trains from/to Ueno via old line are operated every 20 min. The direct express trains from/to Haneda airport via Airport Access line are available, every 40 min.
Click here to get rail-map and more information.
Bus services connect between the terminal buildings and major place and hotel in Tokyo area, and Haneda airport. See Limousine Bus Official site
Terminal connection
Free shuttle buses connect the arrival levels of two terminal buildings. You can catch it at bus stop No.6 in Terminal One 1F or No.8 or No. 18  in Terminal Two 1F.  The buses run every 10 minute and 10 minute journey between the terminals.
Bus Route; Terminal 1F > Keisei Higashi-Narita sta. > Terminal 2 1F> Domestic Terminal >Terminal 1   
Don't forget your passport: You need passport to pass the security check at the airport stations or at the entrance gates on the road.
Airlines and Airliners
Terminal 1 (South)
ANA; B777-300ER, B777-200ER, B767-300ER, B737-700ER, B767-300F, A320, Air Busan B737-400, Air Canada; B777-300, B767-300, Air China; B777-200, B737-800, A340-300, A321, A320, Asiana; B747-400, B777-200, B767-300,  A330-300,  Austrian; B777-200, Etihad; A330-200, EVA; A330-200, Lufthansa; A380, A340-600, MIAT Mongolian; B737-700, New Zealand; B777-200, Qatar; B777-300, SAS; A340-300, Singapore; A380, B777-300,  Shenzhen; B737-800, A320, Swiss International; A340-300, Thai International; B777-300, Turkish; B777-300,  United; B747-400, B777-200, B737-800, Uzbekistan; B767-300,
Terminal 1 (North)
Aeroflot; A330-300, MD-11F, Aeromexico; B767-200,  Air Calin; A330-200, Air France; B777-300, B747-400F, Alitalia; B777-200, Delta; B747-400, B777-200, 767-300, B757, A330-300, Garuda Indonesia; A330-300, KLM; B747-400, B777-200, Korean; B747-400, B777-300, B737-900, A330-300, A330-200, B747-400F, Virgin Atlantic; A340-600,  
Terminal 1 (Domestic)
ANA; B777-300, B767-300, A320, Air Nippon; B737-500, B737-700, ANA Wings; DHC-8-400, IBEX; CRJ200, CRJ700

Terminal 2(International)
JAL; B777-300, B777-200, B767-300, B737-800, Air India; B777-200, Air Macau; A319, Air Niugini; B767-300, Air Tahiti Nui; A340-300, American; B777-200, British; B777-200, Cathay Pacific; B777-300, A330-300, B747-400F, China Airlines; B747-400, A330-300, B747-400F, China Eastern; A330-300, China Southern; B777-200, A321,  Emirates; B777-300, Finnair; A340-300, Jet Star A330-200, Malaysia; B777-200, B747-400F, Pakistan; A310-300, Philippine; B777-300, A330-300, Qantas:  B747-400, A330-200, Srilankan; A340-300, Vietnam; A330-200, A321, 
Terminal 2 (Domestic)
JAL; B777-300, B767-300, JAL Express; B737-400, J-Air; CRJ

Cargo Airlines
Air Bridge Cargo; B747-400F, Air Hong Kong; A300F, China Cargo; MD-11, Fedex; MD-11F, B777-200F, Nippon Cargo Airlines; B747-400F, UPS; B767-300F


Schedule (in order of time)
Schedule (in order of airlines and equipment)
Also check
Narita Airport official site. You can get real time information.
Spring; March to May; warm but humidity is a little high and air is not so clear except May. The weather is changeable.
Summer; June to August; June to middle of July is rainy season and end of July to August is very hot and high humidity.
September to November; September is still hot and the weather is changeable. October and November are best season for spotting; cool, low humidity and clear.
Winter; December to February. Cold but clear and no snow. Good for spotting except the low temperature.
  temperature (degrees centigrade) total sunny time
total rainfall
average maximum minimum
Jan 3.3 9.0 -1.9 166 51
Feb 4.1 9.3 -1.0 163 56
Mar 7.4 12.3 2.4 152 113
Apr 12.9 17.8 7.7 158 112
May 17.5 22.1 13.1 137 113
Jun 20.6 24.4 17.2 81 145
Jul 24.0 27.9 20.7 116 129
Aug 25.6 29.9 22.2 162 108
Sep 22.2 26.1 18.9 116 201
Oct 16.5 21.0 12.3 131 155
Nov 10.8 16.1 5.9 137 94
Dec 5.6 11.6 0.0 158 39
above data is the average of last 30 years
Sunrise & Sunset
date Sunrise direction Sunset direction
1-Jan 6:49 AM 118.1 4:37 PM 242.0
1-Feb 6:40 AM 110.7 5:07 PM 249.4
1-Mar 6:10 AM 99.0 5:34 PM 261.3
1-Apr 5:27 AM 84.0 6:01 PM 276.2
1-May 4:48 AM 70.9 6:26 PM 289.3
1-Jun 4:25 AM 61.9 6:50 PM 298.2
1-Jul 4:27 AM 60.4 6:59 PM 299.6
1-Aug 4:47 AM 66.8 6:44 PM 293.0
1-Sep 5:11 AM 79.0 6:08 PM 280.8
1-Oct 5:34 AM 93.1 5:24 PM 266.7
1-Nov 6:01 AM 107.0 4:45 PM 252.8
1-Dec 6:30 AM 116.4 4:27 PM 243.5
Map & Aerial Image
Click here to get big map.
Where can you take Photographs?
The airport is very friendly for spotters. There are a big free observation deck which faced to runway in Terminal One and two free observation decks, one of them faces to taxi way,  in Terminal Two. They are open from 8 AM to 8 PM. The light condition for runway in Terminal One is good until 10 am. In the afternoon you can still take photographs of the airliners on taxi way to Terminal Two. When it is north wind, Aviation Museum  and Hatake point, located near RW34L end, are good. When it is south wind, Sakura no Yama park, located near RW16R end, is good. If you want to take photographs of airliners landing on and taking off runway B (16L/34R), Golf course side point is best  


Narita Tower; 118.20(RW A) 118.35(RW B), Narita Approach; 124.40 125.80, Narita Departure; 124.20, Narita Ground; 121.85(west) 121.95(east), Narita Delivery; 121.90(for US, Europe), 121.65(for South pacific, Asia) Narita Radar 120.20, 120.60 Narita Ramp; 121.60 121.75, Narita ATIS; 128.25  
Where can you eat, drink and buy?
Terminal one; There are many restaurants, first food and gift shops on 4F and 5F of center building. You can eat and drink at cafeteria on observation deck too. If you want buy any aviation goods, you can find a shop of Aviation Museum in 5F.
Terminal Two; Many restaurants, first food and gift shops are on 4F.
Aviation Museum; A observation restaurant is on 4F. The view at there is good but the foods is not good. I recommend you to buy some food before going there and eat at 5F observation deck. You can buy foods and drink at the convenience store on B1F and 5F floor in Terminal One before catch bus for Museum. You can buy aviation good at 1F gift shop in Museum.

Where do you stay?

 There are many hotels around airport. (see Narita Airport official site)  I recommend 'Marroad International Hotel Narita'. The hotel is located near RW16 end and easy access to Sakura no Yama park. If you get runway side room, you can see the airliners for the day from your room. Don't forget to request a runway view rooms which are higher than 7th floor and room number 91 to 96. All runway view rooms are single room.  
Do you want to buy Camera, Lens, films?
Don't think to buy a camera, lens or films in the airport. The prices are not so reasonable. Especially the price of films are double or triple of usual price in Tokyo down town. If you want to buy them, you should go to Shinjuku area. There are big discount shops, "Yodobashi Camera", "Camera no Sakuraya", "Bic Camera".  See Map
Air Shop in Tokyo down town
If you want to get any airplane model, books, magazines or air band receiver, you can buy them at "Norimono Club" near Ichigaya station. (click here to see map)  
Rent a Car
Rent-a-car is a idea going to spotting point, but you must drive on the left side of street in Japan and it is not so easy to find the way for spotting points. The rate for a car is JPY6,000 for a compact car to JPY8,500 for medium car par 6 hours.  
Rail Map for Narita Airport
Map of Narita Airport
 Spotting point in the airport
Spotting point around runway A
Spotting point around runway B
Bus route and walking route for Spotting Point 
Rail Connection between Haneda and Narita
Narita Airport Official Site
2008 Summer Flight Schedule 

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