Mindil Beach Flying Display

The Royal Australian Air Force and international partners will return to Mindil Beach for the Exercise Pitch Black Flying Display between 5pm-6:30pm on Thursday, 18 July 2024. Set against the stunning backdrop of the Northern Territory sunset, this free, non-ticketed event will coincide with the regular Mindil Beach Markets.

Since 2012, this event has become a traditional part of the Exercise Pitch Black calendar, combining international visitors from around the globe with an iconic Northern Territory location. This event symbolises the close relationship between Defence and Exercise Pitch Black with the Top End community.

This year, over 45 military aircraft from Australia, Asia Pacific, Europe and the USA will perform flypasts and displays between 5:00 and 6:30pm. Highlights will include hover displays by the United States Marine Corps Osprey aircraft and the Italian Navy’s AV-8B Harrier and the show’s finale of an aerobatic display by a RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornet. As well as multiple fighters, you will see large aircraft such as Australia’s E-7 Wedgetail; the most advanced air surveillance aircraft in the world, and air-to-air refuelling tankers.

The aircraft will be visible flying in from East Point, past Fannie Bay to the display centre at Mindil Beach and Cullen Bay.

Commentary on the displays, including interviews with Australian and international aircrew will be provided by ABC Darwin Radio 105.7 ABC Darwin Live Audio - ABC listen

Mindil aircraft route map - Click image to enlarge.

Traffic and Parking

A Traffic Management plan with some road closures and other controls will be in place in conjunction with the NT Roads, NT Police and the City of Darwin.

However, please note there is likely to be traffic congestion and delays getting to and from the event, and for other commuters.

The Mindil Market carpark is expected to be full and closed by 4pm. We recommend ‘park n walk’ from other areas or utilise public transport, ride share and drop-offs as appropriate.

The Markets, including food stalls will remain open until 9pm after the flying display. If possible, we recommend staying for dinner and help the traffic disperse.

Traffic information will be available from: Road Report NT , ABC Darwin Radio 105.7 ABC Darwin Live Audio - ABC listen, and Traffic Visual Management Signs.

Please also refer to Air Force Social Media for other information about the Flying Display and the RAAF Darwin Open Day on Saturday 20th July.

Mindil Beach Flying Display Program

5.00pm – 5.30pm

  1. United States Osprey
  2. Australian “Tiger” helicopter
  3. Papua New Guinea PAC 750
  4. German Airbus A400
  5. Philippines FA-50PH Fighting Eagle
  6. Malaysian F-18D Hornet
  7. French Rafale Fighter

5.30pm - 6.00pm

  1. Italian Navy F-35B and Harrier
  2. Italian Air Force KC767, G550, Typhoon and F-35A
  3. Australian E-7A Wedgetail
  4. Australian F-35A Lightning II
  5. Thai Gripen Fighter
  6. British Voyager and Typhoon
  7. Republic of Korea F-15 Eagle

6.00pm – 6.30pm

  1. Singaporean F-16 Falcon and F-15 Eagle
  2. Japanese E767 and F-2 Fighter
  3. Indonesian F-16 Falcon
  4. Indian Su-30
  5. United States F-22 Raptor
  6. Australian F/A-18F Super Hornet and E/A-18G Growler

For more information, visit the Defence Aircraft Noise website or call 1300 DEFENCE (1300 333 362).

Flying schedule

  • Over 45 military aircraft will perform flypasts and displays between 5:00 and 6:30pm.

Related links