Wales Airshow 2017: Preview
1st - 2nd July 2017
Excellent support for the show from the RAF
The Wales Airshow, once known as the Wales National Airshow, held in the natural amphitheatre of Swansea Bay, has previously been held every two years but became an annual show from 2016.
The displays can be seen along the entire 5 mile stretch of Swansea Bay from Mumbles Head eastwards past the University and towards Swansea city.
The RAF are very supportive this year, committing the Red Arrows, Typhoon, Chinook, Tutor and the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight one of only a few shows to get that whole set. The Lancaster was to have been included in the BBMF display, but prolonged winter maintenance has delayed the start of its flying season and it will not now be ready in time. The RAF's impressive lineup is complemented by a good mix of jet and light aerobatic displays including the incomparable Lauren Richardson in her Pitts.
On the ground look forward to an interactive military village as well as the usual trade stands, children’s entertainment, funfair and refreshments.
|Aircraft Due to fly (tap / hover over icon for more detail)
||Saturday at 16.30|
Sunday at 15.00
|Battle of Britain Memorial Flight Spitfire and Hurricane (LANCASTER CANCELLED)
|RAF Chinook||Sunday only|
|Bristol Blenheim||Both days|
|Vampire pair|| |
|Tigers Parachute Display Team||Both days|
||The Sea Vixen was damaged by a wheels-up landing following an hydraulic failure on return from Duxford on May 27th
|All appearances are subject to technical, weather and other constraints|
Getting to the Show
Swansea is just off the M4 with its links to the motorway network. Journey times are surprisingly short - about 3½ hours from London and 2¾ hours from Birmingham, for example. For sat nav use SA1 9SA but ignore the sat nav in favour of local signs when you see them. There are links to route planners in the 'Travel Advice' column.
National Express have coach services to Swansea from London, Gatwick and Heathrow, Yorkshire, the West Midlands, Bristol and Cardiff. You can book seats online. Click the National Express name to go to their web site.
Megabus coaches have direct serves to Swansea from London, Bristol and Birmingham and Greyhound coaches have services from Bristol Airport, Bristol City, Newport and Cardiff. The Baytrans website has guides for travelling to Swansea by public transport including by coach.
Swansea is very easily accessible by train. There are direct trains from South Wales towns, London (Paddington), Bristol (Parkway), Cardiff, Newport, Hereford, Shrewsbury, Crewe, Manchester and places in between with connections throughout the UK.
Click here to create a pocket timetable for your journey between any stations on the National Rail network.
The variety of rail tickets and fares can be very confusing. Trainline and Raileasy web sites list all ticket and fare options for the time and day of travel you choose, but they both levy an admin fee. Click either of the blue ticket agency names to go to their web site.
Accommodation near the show
It is best to book as far as possible in advance. This is not only because nearby hotels and guest houses tend get booked up well before the date of an airshow but also because prices can be better when you book early online.
There are plenty of booking agencies. We find that many of the well known ones are better at finding hotels from international or larger UK chains and may suggest hotels in main towns or cities quite a distance from the show site.
Between them, Expedia and LateRooms list a good selection of smaller, as well as bigger, hotels and will find accommodation in villages and small towns as well as the main centres. Expedia also give, and take, Nectar points.
Click either blue agency name for a list of hotels and guest houses near the show. The venue is already built into both links, so when the list comes up you just have to enter your dates.
Trivago will list competitive prices for a range of hotels, but they might not necessarily find them all, because some chains do not subscribe to their service. You may also get a better rate if you book direct with an hotel, especially if you are a member of a loyalty or rewards scheme.
The International Hotels Group have a Holiday Inn Express in Swansea East; there are three nearby Premier Inn hotels, one on the waterfront, one in the city centre and another just out of town in Swansea North.
Weather for the show area
The Met office seven-day forecast includes maximum, minimum and "feels like" temperatures, the likelihood of rain, wind direction, gusts and visibility: the latter can have an impact on the viability of displays.
The BBC's five-day forecast has overall conditions including temperatures, UV range and a description that may help to determine how pleasant the day will be for the visitor.
Click the blue-text link to go to the forecast. The location is already built into the links.