A new Fleurieu Peninsula based scenic and charter flight operation is creating lifelong memories for flyers while sharing the beautiful scenery of the region.
Goolwa Air now offers tailored experiences in and around the Fleurieu with the flyer having the ability to customise their scenic flight anywhere from the Barossa, Aldinga, or Kangaroo Island.
Part owner and pilot of Goolwa Air, Tom Longbottom said flyers will get to see the Fleurieu Peninsula in a whole new way.
"You'll get to see varied coastlines, from the cliffs around The Bluff to Horseshoe Bay," Tom said.
"Down to the Coorong, Murray mouth and hopefully some wildlife along the way. It's a varied experience and the flight is customised to the passenger. The sunsets right now are also amazing to witness over the sea."
Tom's worldly experiences as a pilot have brought him to the Fleurieu and he loves creating these memories for flyers.
"I've been flying for nearly 30 years and used to fly for Ansett," Tom said.
"I lived overseas for 20 years and worked for Dragonair which merged into Cathay Pacific and several other airlines. I was then made redundant about 18 months ago.
"My partner and business partner, Tiff Tasker came back to Goolwa and thought about what we could do. There's been no real commercial flying at Goolwa Airport for about 20 years.
"There's been training and gyrocopters, but no fixed wing flying in 20 years. We thought 'let's give scenic and chartered flights a go' and we began at the start of 2022.
"Tiff does all the hard stuff: Admin, PR, Marketing and my expertise is flying, so I get to do the fun stuff.
"We're looking to create a life down here and enjoy the beautiful region."
With people already taking the opportunity to fly the sky with Goolwa Air, the reaction to this unique experience has been positive and early flyers are seeing some wonderful wildlife included in the flight.
"We're getting really great reviews and people are loving it," Tom said.
"It's a real buzz when people tell you this is the best birthday they've ever had or an experience they've witnessed.
"I've flown all over the world and this is the most rewarding. It's hard to let people down when we're all having so much fun.
"We're starting to see some whales now. We do have a Marine Mammal Permit and it came from the Environment, Water and Natural Resources, but we're more focused on scenic flights.
"We don't circle or shadow whales and we have a minimum altitude we adhere to. We wanted to make sure we did it the right way.
"We want to be on top of all the rules, regulations and hot spots they don't want us to fly over.
"But making people's day is amazing and people remembering the experience for the rest of their lives is a good feeling."
Besides offering the best seat in the sky to see the beauty of the Fleurieu Peninsula, Goolwa Air will also be offering flight training in the near future. There will be no experience needed, just a passion for aviation.
"We have a training aircraft, but we're just waiting on a few hurdles to get approved and we'll be ready to train people in the next few months," Tom said.
"It will really depend on what level of training the person wants to get to. You can do basic training, move up to cross country and then onto bigger planes."
To book your Goolwa Air experience, please head to: www.goolwaair.com.au
You can follow Goolwa Air on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/goolwaair
You can also follow them on Instagram at @goolwaair
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