For the traditionalists, watching planes is not likely to be up there for the most romantic of activities. But if you and your partner are looking for something free and different to do on a budget then I couldn't recommend the Melbourne aircraft viewing area highly enough.
Tullamarine Airport boasts around 10 spots in close vicinity to the terminal where you can park your car and watch giant aircraft land and depart. The designated areas are clearly marked with signs and are easy to get to, which can make them a hot spot during summer.
Especially during the warmer months, Melbourne can put on a pretty beautiful sunset, so aim to arrive around an hour before sundown and you'll be in for something special.
My boyfriend knows just about everything about planes, and when I told him about the Airport viewing area he nearly ran to the car. There are several different areas you can go to, but my favourite is past the airport entrance on Sunbury Road. Here there is a big area for parking and often an ice-cream truck for a snack.
In our little Astra hatchback we put the back seats down and decked out the open boot space with a picnic rug and pillows, making our own little cosy alcove. With our feet dangling out of the boot we lay back and watched the array of colours in the sky interweave and mingle while listening to some chilled tunes and sipping on a glass of red.
Every few minutes a colossal A380 or 747 would come down right above our heads, an adrenalin rush that was so incredible to see at such a close proximity. Now by no means am I a tom-boy that's into planes and trains and automobiles, but something about the warm night breeze filtering through the car and the whole set up made for an incredible night.
So when you're bored on a summer evening and want something unique to do, grab some great company, a bottle of your favourite bubbly and head up to Tullamarine for a plane watching session. Trust me, it's really cool.
HOW TO GET THERE:
There are several different spots to view aircraft but these are the most worth while spots:
1. Operations Road - there are several spots along this road to stop, just follow the signs.
2. Oaklands Road - Go past the airport then turn right off Sunbury road at the Oaklands road intersection then immediately left.