Melbourne, Australia, City Loop Experience

I was encouraged to make this post in another Forum under the heading “unusual experiences in real-life flying” and thought it would be interesting here also. It’s great to do in the Sim as well.

Several years ago I was flying with a visitor north along the coastal VFR route towards Melbourne City CBD (Australia) and requested, for the first time ever, YMEN Essendon ATC for clearance to do a sightseeing clockwise city loop. It feels very unusual because you are really close to sky-scrapers at only 1,500 feet! There is usually no one else in the circuit so you feel unusually special, like you own the whole city! This occasion was even more unusual because the ATC controller really emphasised the need when starting the circuit to stay on the RHS of the Bolte Bridge, ie between the bridge and the city. On looking left I could see why - there was a “Queen of the Skies” Boeing “Jumbo” 747 on final for Rwy 34 at YMML Melbourne International, just on the other, ie LHS, of the Bolte Bridge! Needless to say, we focussed on the Jumbo for several minutes rather than the city skyline! I have since done the city loop several times, and while it always feels special and unusual, it never quite matches the very first one! Cheers.

Did a similar flight, on a number of occasions, around Sydney harbour…Flying adjacent to the bridge, over the Opera House etc etc…then exiting via the Heads…what an experience…as my license is out of recency…the nearest I can get now is in MSFS…and with the Orbx update…excellent.

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