Home Airport Spotting Guide Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace

Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace

by Matt Falcus
Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace

Schiphol Panorama Terrace

By far the easiest place to do some spotting at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport is on the Panorama Terrace situated atop the terminal building.

Few airports provide such a welcome facility these days, but Amsterdam has invested in their terrace and it’s always popular.

To access the Panorama Terrace, head inside the central area at ground level, which is for arrivals. Behind the rows of shops and cafes at the northern end, you’ll see a staircase and sign for the terrace. It ascends up to the departures/check-in area, and then up again to the floor above. An escalator whisks you to the top level (there is an elevator for all of this if you’d prefer).

Follow signs past the toilets, cafe and bar and you’ll see the rotating doors out onto the terrace ahead of you.

Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace

Immediately outside you’ll be confronted with preserved KLM Cityhopper Fokker 100 PH-OFE, which was winched onto the roof a few years ago and is now open to go inside, which the kids love.


Views from the Panorama Terrace

Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace

The views you have cover the north eastern portion of Amsterdam’s large terminal.

You’ll see good sections of piers C, D and E, with some aircraft parked right beneath you.

Beyond you have distant views of Schiphol Ooste and the KLM maintenance areas, and off to your right a glimpse of the eastern cargo apron.

Runways 06/24 and 18L/36R are in front of you and within 300mm range.

Runways 09/27 and 04/22 are visible but a little further away.

Depending on the runway patterns in use, traffic from out-of-sight piers will often taxi past the terrace after landing, or before take-off.

Garuda 777 from Schiphol Panorama Terrace

Sadly the Schiphol Panorama Terrace used to be much larger, extended around more of the piers, and you can get a fleeting glimpse of this extension beyond a partition fence today. Maybe it will return one day, but for the time being what you have is fine.


Opening Times and Prices

Schiphol Panorama Terrace Opening Times

The Amsterdam Schiphol Panorama Terrace is free to use and the Fokker 100 is free to enter.

It opens from 9am-5pm in Winter, and 7am-9pm in the Summer.

Depending on where you stand, it’s possible to pick up the free airport WiFi, enabling you to keep track of aircraft beyond binocular range.

The cafe and bar inside area great for all your sustenance needs, and there are many more downstairs in the terminal.




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[…] sheer size of Schiphol, with its six runways, can be a bit daunting to the spotter. The ease of the Panorama Terrace tends to be the natural draw to spotters since it is located on top of the terminal, and it is […]

Europe’s Best Cargo Airports for Spotters - Airport Spotting Blog April 30, 2019 - 2:24 pm

[…] go to any of these locations to see Amsterdam’s cargo traffic as they are visible from the Panorama Terrace as well as the other viewing locations around the […]

Rene Rozema July 16, 2019 - 11:29 am

Panorama terrace is closed until further notice due to construction works !!

Andrew Clarke August 16, 2019 - 9:25 pm

Is there anywhere around the terminal where I can spot and photograph at the moment with the terrace closed? I am visiting in two weeks and I don’t have a car

Yuri September 17, 2019 - 2:19 pm

Do you have any problems with backlight at the Panorama terrace or do you have the sun in your back the whole time

Matt Falcus September 17, 2019 - 5:31 pm

The sun is better on the afternoon, but it’s not bad.

Moe Bertrand December 26, 2019 - 10:43 pm

Has the terrace re-opened following the construction mentioned in the July 2019 comment?

Matt Falcus December 28, 2019 - 4:04 pm

Yes it has.

Keith Baker January 9, 2020 - 11:54 am

Hi There keith Baker here from kilkenny in Ireland Myself and my uncle are flying over to Amsterdam on Saturday from Dublin on KLM to do plane spotting we were wondering is the viewing lounge open on Saturday and If so what times is it open on Saturday
Thanks Keith Baker

Matt Falcus January 9, 2020 - 12:44 pm

Hi Keith, the Panorama Terrace on the rooftop at Amsterdam is open daily 9am-5pm (closes 9pm in summer).

12 Airports That Aircraft Photographers Love - Airport Spotting May 25, 2020 - 7:33 pm

[…] sheer size of Schiphol, with its six runways, can be a bit daunting to the spotter. The ease of the Panorama Terrace tends to be the natural draw to spotters since it is located on top of the terminal, and it is […]

Dean Russell June 3, 2020 - 5:48 pm

The nice part of spotting at Schiphol is the free terrace, (if only there was some thing like that at Heathrow ) when I go there I never think about going to McDonalds or try and find another spot, as by biding your time and at the end of the day, you will always leave happy with what you saw

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[…] Schiphol is geared towards aviation enthusiasts. It has a Panorama Terrace atop the terminal, plus dedicated viewing areas around the perimeter (the best are near McDonalds […]

Daniel Glover May 12, 2022 - 5:19 pm


Does the summer opening times end when the clocks go back at the end of October ? I’m going 3/4 October.


Matt Falcus May 12, 2022 - 7:59 pm

Yes I believe the end of October.

Aidan June 14, 2022 - 12:42 pm

This is old! The new route is at the end of departures 1 now, the 2 restaurants have fully closed and its gonna be 1 restaurant now!!!

Faye January 22, 2024 - 12:21 pm

hi Matt, is the terrace indoor or outside? i want to take my toddler to see some airplanes, is it currently open?

Matt Falcus January 22, 2024 - 2:18 pm

Hi Faye, yes it is open currently. The terrace is outdoors.


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