McCarran Airport Observation Lot: Watching the Planes Take Off in Las Vegas

Plane landing right next to the McCarran Airport Observation Lot

McCarran International Airport (LAS) is one of the busiest airports in the country, with people flying into Las Vegas from all around the world. For those who love to watch huge jetliners taking off and landing, or for those looking for something free to do in Las Vegas, McCarran Airport has a free public viewing lot.

McCarran Airport Observation Parking Lot next to the Runway

The lot is a great place to watch aircraft taking off and landing, as it runs parallel to McCarran’s two longest runways. You will be parked less than a couple hundred feet from the action; you can literally smell the burning rubber as the planes come to a quick stop right after landing.

Once you’ve found a good spot, tune your radio to FM 101.1 to listen to conversations between the air traffic control tower and the pilots as they prepare for takeoffs and landings.

Photo of Allegiant Airlines Jet landing at McCarran Airport take from the Observation Parking Lot

Korean Air Jet taxiing down runway

Photo of Spirit Airlnes Landing at McCarran International Airport

The viewing parking lot is popular with Las Vegas locals and photographers who go there to get shots of the aircraft with the Las Vegas strip serving as a one of a kind background.

Area 51 Sightings at McCarran?

Yep, you heard us right; AREA 51!!!

JANET Airlines taking off from McCarran Airport

If you’re lucky, and you know what to watch for, you might even get to see a couple of aircraft from an airline that doesn’t officially exist takeoff — the infamous unmarked Boeing 737-600 and 737-200 from the nonexistent JANET Airlines.

Due to its classified nature little is known about the airline, but it is rumored that the United States Air Force and the Defense contractor AECOM run the airline to transport workers to and from the infamous Area 51.

JANET is said to stand for ‘Just Another NonExistent Terminal.

Where is the McCarran Airport Viewing lot Located?

The plane spotting lot is located on Sunrise Rd., just east of Las Vegas Blvd (in between the Paradise Rd. and Eastern Ave). It’s completely free and the lot is open from 5 AM to 11 PM every day.