Beijing Nanyuan Airport

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Beijing Nanyuan Airport
Nanyuan Airport Terminal.JPG
Airport type Public / Military
Serves Beijing
Location Fengtai District
Hub for China United Airlines
Coordinates 39°46′57″N 116°23′16″E / 39.78250°N 116.38778°E / 39.78250; 116.38778Coordinates: 39°46′57″N 116°23′16″E / 39.78250°N 116.38778°E / 39.78250; 116.38778
NAY is located in Beijing
Location within Beijing
Direction Length Surface
m ft
18/36 3,200 10,499 Concrete
Beijing Nanyuan Airport
Traditional Chinese 北京南苑機場
Simplified Chinese 北京南苑机场
Literal meaning "South Garden Airport"[1]

Beijing Nanyuan Airport (IATA: NAY, ICAO: ZBNY) is a military airbase that also serves as the secondary airport of Beijing. Located in Fengtai District, 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) south of the 4th Ring Road and 13 km (8.1 mi) from Tiananmen Square,[2] Nanyuan Airport was first opened in 1910, making it the oldest airport in China. It is the main hub of China United Airlines.

Nanyuan Airport will be closed once the new Beijing Daxing International Airport is completed, estimated to be on 1 October 2019.[3]


In 1904, two French light aircraft performed air shows above the Nanyuan training ground. This is the first time aircraft, as a symbol of modern science and technology, took off and landed in China.

In August 1910, the Qing government began to establish air transportation in China, and built a factory in Nanyuan to experiment with manufacturing aircraft. The government also built rudimentary runways in Nanyuan's YiJun training ground. Therefore, Nanyuan airport has become the first airport in China. After the Xinhai Revolution in 1913, Yuan Shikai, who followed suggestions from the French advisers, established the first official flying academy in China: Nanyuan Flying Academy, and purchased 10 French Caudron trainer aircraft for 300,000 silver dollars. After the Second Zhili-Fengtian War, the academy was closed. However, the more than 100 pilots that trained in the academy over 4 terms have played important roles in China's aviation history. Later on, some of them has become key persons in civil aviation.

During the Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese Army extended the airport, upgraded its air traffic control facilities, and changed the name to Nanyuan military camp. After the Surrender of Japan in 1945, Nanyuan Airport has become one of the most important airports for the Nationalist government and its air force. The private planes of Chiang Kai-shek and Fu Zuoyi have taken off from the Nanyuan Airport; many of Kuomintang's important military and government personnels have also boarded flights from Nanyuan. There was also an aviation accident happened at the airport in 1945.

During 1946 United States Marine Corps fighter squadron VMF-218 was based here.[4]

in December 1948, the People's Liberation Army took control of the airport. In August 1949, the first flying brigade of the People's Liberation Army Air Force was formed in here, and they participated in the People's Republic of China Founding Ceremony's flying missions. Since then, Nanyuan Airport has been supporting the training of air and ground forces in all of the subsequent National Day Show of Force events.

In 1986, China United Airlines was established as a military-owned civil airline with special authorization to use military airports. Becoming the first commercial airline to serve Nanyuan, it turned the airbase into its main hub. It has continued to operate out of the airbase despite its 2004 privatization and sale to Shanghai Airlines.

In 2008, Nanyuan Airport witnessed a high growth rate. The total number of passengers served increased by 80.1%, reaching 1,357,038; total freight loaded/unloaded reached 13,243 tonnes, which was a 65.6% increase from the previous year. Traffic movements also had a very strong growth rate of 72.2%, registering 12,245.[5]

Nanyuan Airport opened a new terminal in September 2013 with a designed passenger handling capacity of 6 million people.[6] The previous terminal was capable of handling 2.8 million passengers during 2011.

Nanyuan Airport will be closed once the new Beijing Daxing International Airport is completed, which is scheduled for 1 October 2019.[7] Following the closure, all flights which is only China United Airlines will be relocated to the new airport.

Airlines and destinations[edit]


China United Airlines Anshun, Arxan, Baicheng, Baotou, Bayannur, Bijie, Changsha, Changzhi, Chengdu, Chifeng, Chizhou, Dalian, Datong, Dongying, Fuyang, Guangzhou, Haikou, Hailar, Hanzhong, Harbin, Hengyang, Hohhot, Huaihua, Huizhou, Jinchang, Kunming, Lanzhou, Lianyungang, Linyi, Longnan, Longyan,[8] Manzhouli, Nanyang, Ningbo, Ordos, Qingyang, Qiqihar, Quzhou, Rizhao, Shanghai–Hongqiao, Shanghai–Pudong, Shangrao, Shenzhen, Shiyan, Songyuan, Tongliao, Tongren, Ulanhot, Ulanqab, Urumqi, Weihai, Wuhai, Xiamen, Xiangyang, Xilinhot, Xingyi, Yan'an, Yancheng, Yantai, Yichun, Yinchuan, Yongzhou, Yulin, Zhoushan

Ground transportation[edit]

Four shuttle bus services are available from Nanyuan Airport:[1]

Nanyuan Airport is also served by local bus services:[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b 北京南苑机场地理位置 (in Chinese). China United Airlines. Retrieved 2018-01-07.
  2. ^ 新联航本周南苑机场首飞 重塑支线航空霸主地位 (in Chinese). 2005-10-18. Retrieved 2010-07-28.
  3. ^ "New Beijing airport to open on Oct 1, 2019, able to accommodate 620,000 flights per year". The Straits Times. China Daily. 17 May 2018. Retrieved 20 May 2018.
  4. ^ Rottman, Gordon (2002). U.S. Marine Corps World War II Order of Battle - Ground and Air Units in the Pacific War, 1939 - 1945. Greenwood Press. p. 442. ISBN 0313319065.
  5. ^ 民航机场运输业务量(排序) (in Chinese). Civil Aviation Administration of China. 2009-03-16. Archived from the original on 2011-05-24. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
  6. ^
  7. ^ "New Beijing airport to open on Oct 1, 2019, able to accommodate 620,000 flights per year". The Straits Times. China Daily. 17 May 2018. Retrieved 20 May 2018.
  8. ^ 中联航北京-连城-佛山航线顺利开通
  9. ^ 南苑机场 (in Chinese). Mapbar. Retrieved 2018-01-07.