The Australian International Air Show

Aka. The Avalon Air Show is held every 2 years at Avalon Airport just outside Geelong (In Lara, to be exact).

 

The retiring AP-3C Orion of the Australian Air Force trailing its replacement the P-8A Poseidon. (An Australian navy  MH-60R seahawk on the left)

 

The public show runs for 3 days at the end of February / start of march over Friday, Saturday and Sunday with Friday night attendees being treated to the “wall of fire” (A big pyrotechnic show).

The event is a must for any fan of planes and military hardware.  This year the event was billed “Air power in action,” which notably featured the Australian Air Forces first pair of F35A JSF’s and the Americans bringing a trio of F22 Raptors including a flying demonstration.

 

The Australian air forces newly acquired EA-18G Growler on display

 

 

The controversial F-35A making their debut at the 2017 air show and the first delivery for the first 2 for Australia.

Aside from the static displays of civilian aircraft like private jets (let’s face it, private jets are not nearly an interesting as 5th gen stealth fighters) and military might, there is an enlistment station if that’s something you’re looking into, interactive displays where you get to play with equipment such as putting on bomb defusal armour and booths in the trade area with set ups from the biggest names in defence.

 

 

Essentially a flying building, the Antonov AN-124. Yes, its same plane from Fast and Furious 6.

 

 

The American F-22 Raptor is always a crowd pleaser. This year saw the F-22 return to the skies for a demonstration

 

Prices, of course, are on the high side, given the few food choices in literally the middle of nowhere (expect to pay $5 for a bottle of water and $6 for soft drinks) and if driving… be prepared for some intense traffic. We had left 1.5 hours early and it still took 2 hours to leave the car park and reach the entrance road.

 

The massive American B1 Lancer with a crowd underneath looking at its opened bomb bays

 

Cost

Adult (15 years and over) $65.00

Child (5-14 years) $30.00

Children (under 5) Free

Family Ticket (2A + 4C) $130.00

Extra child (5-14 years of age) $10.00

Concession / Student* $50.00

Parking: $10

Getting there

  • Driving
  • Public transport on train and then shuttle bus
  • Private charter flights for you ballas out there

Pro tip

As the air show keeps getting record breaking attendance every time, the traffic nightmare will only get worse. Best park in Melbourne CBD and get a train out to Lara and get the shuttle bus. Save yourself the petrol money and stress.

There is absolutely no cover, I have been sunburnt (again) after applying SPF50+ sunscreen twice in 5 hours. Bring a hat or even and umbrella, in fact, bring a backpack with more sunscreen to reapply a lot.

Going with the family? Why not make some food beforehand and bring a picnic rug and have a family picnic with some jets roaring by.

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