Very similar idea to my plan where I’m trying every capital city. I’m mixing the aircraft up as I’m also doing it with OnAir so I do get a bit diverted if there’s a good paying job
Country #2 ticked off!
The route across Greece took me via some great scenery (payware LKGS Santorini, and some amazing stuff from flightsim.to: a great Athens International and a whole package of other Greek airfields
And the approach to LGKS in the sunset is really quite something.
After flying across Greece, I made the quick flight from LGKR on the island of Corfu to Gjirokastër airfield in Albania. There’s no custom scenery for round here so far as I’m aware, which is a pity for two reasons really:
Gjirokastër sounds fascinating! It’s a UNESCO world heritage site and goes back to at least the 14th Century. Known as Αργυρόκαστρο to its sizeable Greek-speaking population, it became part of Albania in the 1920s. There’s an ancient fortress dominating the town, many buildings are build in a distinctive local style that’s earned the city the nickname ‘City of Stone’. It’s also the birthplace of the Albanian dictator Enver Hoxha.
MSFS is missing the airfield, though you can see where it’s supposed to be - with approaches between two stunning mountain ranges, this airfield would be a great addition! (Though in fairness, it’s a little unclear whether the airfield is still active…)
Next up is Algeria! It looks like the route will take me across the Adriatic to Italy and the island of Sicily, before hopping over to Tunisia and then along the coast…
Country #3 ticked off!
Albania to Algeria via Greece, southern Italy and Tunisia was a relatively simple trip of around 650 NM in a relatively straight line, with some lovely calm weather and just a hint of cloud.
Oh and some lovely freeware scenery for Lemezia, too.
This is the first time I’ve entered the continent of Africa on this trip - and the coast of Tunisia is pretty stunning, where the Atlas mountains meet the sea.
Once over the border in Algeria, I landed at Annaba in the east of the country - the third largest city, which dates back to at least the Phoenicians.
With Algeria ticked off, it’s on to Andorra next…as some of you may have noticed, it doesn’t have an airport, so this could be a challenge…
A belated update…
Country #4 ticked off
One of the big ones, this. Yes, that’s right: Andorra!
Now, Andorra is unusual for many reasons. First, it has a really unusual situation with its Head of State. Now, in most countries, this is pretty clear cut: it’s the Queen, or the President or some similar individual. Note: individual. In Andorra, they do things differently: the Head of State is two people! It’s shared between the Bishop of Urgell and the President of France. Known collectively as the ‘Co-Princes of Andorra’, this arrangement has been in place since 1278. Whatever works…
Second, Andorra is small, and…well…very mountainous! There is a helipad on top of the hospital (in real life if not in MSFS yet), but there are no airports. Not even an altiport so far as I can see. This presented problems for landing in the country in a Turbo Arrow.
So I made my own arrangements… I flew to the ‘local’ airport, over the border in Spain, Andorra–La Seu d’Urgell Airport (LESU). You might have flown here yourself on the Pyrenees/Alps bush trip. It’s quite an airport, plonked on top of a hill! Makes for quite the approach, though there’s plenty of runway for an Arrow.
But I felt this wasn’t close enough. I decided to try to land actually in Andorra itself, against all common sense, regulations, and laws (don’t do this at home…)
As I’ve mentioned, it’s pretty hilly (a bit of a theme for microstates - I’m looking forward to Liechtenstein) so finding any flat ground at all was tricky. I decided the best bet would be at the bottom of the main north-south valley leading from the border to the capital, Andorra la Vella.
And sure enough, a couple of spots presented themselves…so I landed at both. May just have interrupted a football game or two…
With that bit of flagrant rule-breaking under my belt, it’s off south to Angola, in what promises to be one of the longest legs so far. Stay tuned for cross-Sahara adventures!
Country 5 - Angola
This was a long trip south. A little over 4,000 miles, all told. Through Spain, Morocco, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, Benin, Equatorial Guinea… Through airports that were sometimes barely there and sometimes not there at all… Over desert and jungle… Through heat and thunderstorm…
You get the gist.
A particularly disconcerting moment was trying to land at Tourisme/Kenitra Air Base in Morocco, a few miles north of Rabat.
It’s there in the Bing imagery, but for some reason MSFS has put the actual airport a little further south, on what I think is just a road in the real world.
After that, there was…a lot of desert to cross before making for the south coast of Cote d’Ivoire
It’s worth saying how spectacular the desert landscapes in MSFS can look at times. I’m not sure the screenshots really do it justice.
Another airport that wasn’t quite there…DNES is Nigeria, I believe.
Anyway, after a stop off on the pretty interesting volcanic island of Bioko (part of Equatorial Guinea) it was just another few hundred miles down the coast to my two stopping points in Angola: FNKU Joaquim Kapango Airport and FNLZ Cuango-Luzamba Airport, known, apparently, for its ‘uncovered wrecks’!
With Angola duly visited, next on my list is the Caribbean state of Antigua and Barbuda, followed by Argentina. So this is going to involve crossing the Atlantic… Traditionally in a plane like the Arrow, this involves heading all the way north to Iceland and Greenland…
But hang on a minute lads, I’ve got a great idea…
Country 6 - Antigua and Barbuda
An overdue update, this, for which apologies. You’ll recall that after visiting Angola, I was faced with the arduous task of crossing the Atlantic in the Turbo Arrow. I didn’t fancy heading all the way up north to do the traditional Greenland route, so - as this is a sim, after all - I decided to do something that would be highly inadvisable in real life.
Ascension Island is an isolated volcanic island in the South Atlantic, about 1,000 miles from the coast of Africa and a little more than that from the coast of South America. Fernando de Noronha is an archipelago about 200 miles off the coast of Brazil, which brings South America that crucial bit closer to Ascension Island.
You won’t find FHAW, RAF Ascension Island - or Wideawake Airfield - in the default sim, but fortunately superspud has kindly filled in this gap with scenery available on flightsim.to. And fortunately, FHAW is on FSEconomy, too (St Helena isn’t, which precluded that potential route).
It’s still quite the trek up the coast of Africa, and out across the Atlantic to Ascension Island, with some relief as the island came into sight.
Plenty of runway at Fernando de Noronha, and the first time I’ve entered South America on this trip so far (it certainly won’t be the last!) - there’s some great freeware scenery for this airport, too, including the island’s remarkable rock formations.
Now that this method of crossing the Atlantic has been tried once, I think it might come in handy on several future legs. So long as the engine holds out, and adverse winds don’t mean I run out of fuel, of course…
From Fernando de Noronha, it was a further 18 legs, hopping up through Brazil, Guyana and Suriname, and across the Caribbean to Antigua and Barbuda’s VC Bird International Airport.
And now it’s back down south - a long way down - to Argentina. Just the small matter of the entire Amazon rainforest to cross…
While I think of it… What should I see in Argentina? Where’s great to fly to? Anything I shouldn’t miss? Hit me up with your suggestions!
You should check out the Butch Cassidy Ranch while flying over Argentina
Also fly over some historic railroads because of the cattle trade
Another long overdue update…
Country 7 - Argentina
Just the simple matter of travelling south, across the Caribbean and the Amazon rainforest…
Fair to say there was some weather involved, too, particularly over the rainforest.
And plenty of flat prairie land, too.
On this occasion, I decided not to explore all the way down south in Argentina, but I’m sure I’ll be back to parts of it later, which Uruguay and Chile come up…
Instead, I headed straight back northeast, towards Armenia, the next country on the list.
So far, we’re just over 20,000 NM into this round-the-world trip, with 93 landings - and we’re not through the 'A’s yet.
Stay tuned: it’s Armenia up next!
Yep similar doing countries alphabetically, Currently Samoa to San Marino (I know San Marino doesn’t have an airport0same with a few other small countries. Just using closet) 650000nm so far.one stop per country basically the capital. Used the covid country list which had most anyway. Did separate UK and some protectorates…
Sounds like you’re way ahead of me!
I think I might do a trip around disputed territories, protectorates and so on after this…
Country 8 - Armenia
It’s a long trip back from South America to the Caucasus, but much shorter than it might otherwise be, thanks to the Turbo Arrow’s range making the route via Ascension Island possible.
And here’s the approach to Ascension Island:
Back across across the Sahara in a very long leg, trying not to get lost in Libya out of range of various NDBs and VORs, before flying straight over much of Greece and taking several stops through Turkey, heading east towards the Armenian border - and earning some much needed FSEconomy cash in the process, of course.
And into Armenia itself - or Հայաստան as it’s written round here. It’s a country with an ancient cultural heritage, stretching back to at least 600 BC. From flying over the border with Turkey to the capital, Yerevan, it looks beautiful, too.
On the tarmac in Yerevan:
Though - as you might expect, perhaps - there are some patches of scenery around here that…aren’t the best.
There’s also a big tower block-cum-obelisk type thing in the centre of Yerevan, which should - I believe - be a large TV transmission aerial.
It would be fantastic if this part of the world got a little more treatment from all the great scenery designers out there, but I suppose it doesn’t feature at the top of many people’s lists - and the relatively tense politics (with disputed territories, a recent war with Azerbaijan and non-existent diplomatic relations with Turkey) of the area might well add to the challenge…
Now comes the longest leg so far: it’s off to Australia next!
The route for this is likely to take me across northern parts of India, then down through Myanmar, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.
I don’t think I’ve ever flown in Australia before (!) so I might take a trip around the country while I’m there. So your suggestions are super welcome: which are the great Australian airports? The challenging approaches? Great (freeware ideally) scenery?
Which parts of the country should I absolutely not miss? Let me know!
A proper update soon, but I’m working my way through Indonesia at the moment (via Aerosoft’s rather good Bali International).
Hit me up with your Australia suggestions - I think it’s going to be a bit of a figure-of-eight around the place…
So I took quite a little while travelling around Australia; it really is quite a big place!
Just a few little screenshots - a few postcards from down under…
But these don’t quite do justice to how much there is to explore - from island airstrips to some proper cityscapes. As ever, there is some amazing work on flightsim.to that brings some of the more remote/obscure airstrips to life.
Back on track now, heading back northwest towards my next alphabetical port of call: Austria. The route there will take me through Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, India, and plenty more stops after that. And just in time for the Austria World Update too!
So I’m not the only mad person who started this endeavour.
I began this in the waning days of P3D, about half a year before MSFS was released.
The idea is was to do this all in VR.
When MSFS was released I simply continued this journey on the new platform after the VR support was added.
I’m currently scheduled to travel the final “B” country on the list: Burundi.
I read up on the countries in Wikipedia. Not so much the part about history and politics, but concentrating on the physical geography and famous landmarks so that I have an idea where to fly and what to look for, and see how good or bad this is depicted in the sim.
I did wonder if it was just me, too! There’s quite a list of 'B’s, isn’t there? I think I’ll be quite a long way behind you for a good bit yet.
I’m finding the depiction of countries a little hit and miss in the sim (a few airports missing, and so on) - but generally not too bad. (And so much better than what I remember of some parts of the world in FSX!) And there’s really quite a lot of free scenery around, which is hugely improving things, particularly cities and airports. Looking forward to Austria, which is particularly well served in this regard with some amazingly detailed airfields, DEM, and so on.
Well that is far off for me, since Austria starts with an “Ö”.
And I feel like I have explored that quite extensively in real life and in the sim already.
Ah, the German version of the list! Some countries in very different places, definitely.
It’s been quite a while since I updated this - in which time, the Arrow has taken me from Australia, back across half the world to Austria; from Austria east to Azerbaijan, and then - into the 'B’s - across the Atlantic to the Bahamas.
There’s been quite a lot of flying over sand.
And some really quite spectacular weather.
I’ve made a slight detour on the transatlantic crossing to Isafjordur
and flown through the UAE two or three times…