Travel Story Sky's the limit for small-plane tours

UNUSUAL WA PLACE NAMES: Aerials of Monkey Mia. Picture: Trevor Collens 4 March 2008
Photo of Geoffrey Thomas

An Albany-based company offers small-plane tours from the southern town and the metro area.

Combining the excitement of exploring Australia on an outback adventure with personal service and a small-group air tour, Albany Aviation has some appealing options.

Typically flying in a four-passenger Beechcraft Baron, the tours started by chance in 2010 when a group approached Albany Aviation to fly to the then recently flooded Lake Eyre. The company had been conducting government, corporate business and private air charter flights from Albany for 28 years.

Owner and chief pilot Ian Williams said: “Rather than just fly to Lake Eyre and back I suggested a seven-day tour which extended to Birdsville before our return.”

Word of mouth spread quickly and by the time the tour returned another group was ready to go. 

The company was soon ferrying tourists to Lake Eyre. 

The small-group, private-plane concept took off and other offerings have evolved.

A 15-day Top End Tour includes Alice Springs, Katherine, Kakadu and Darwin and a 19-day Tasmanian Tour visits Port Lincoln, Kangaroo Island, King Island and Flinders Island.

While based in Albany, tours can be arranged to start from Jandakot or Mandurah and flights to places such as Broome or Monkey Mia are also an option for travellers.

All tours are fully escorted and Mr Williams, a keen photographer, also captures the majesty of each trip giving travellers a DVD at the end. Tours are for a maximum of four but single travellers or those in pairs can be matched up to form a party of four.

Tours fly no more than two hours on a sector before a comfort stop and normally no more than four hours a day.

All flying is done by day and in fine weather or at worst light scattered showers. 

Top picture: Monkey Mia is one of the options for Albany Aviation. Picture by Trevor Collens

Fact File

Go to Albany Aviation or phone 9841 5508. 

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