A guide to understanding the Canarsie Approach

Hello! Do you know this visual approach at John F. Kennedy International Airport? This Guide will provide some good information about it, from the history behind it, to how to perform it.

The history of the Canarsie Approach

In the New York area, there are three major airports, each one very close to the other. They are: John F. Kennedy (KJKF), La Guardia (KLGA) and Newark Liberty (KEWR).

If you thought about an ILS approach to runway 13L, it would not be possible, since you have LGA in the space, creating an insufficient separation. In this context, the Canarsie Visual was created in the 1970s.

This approach requires pilots to come in from the south west, overflying the Canarsie VOR and turning to either 13L or R on short final.

How to perform it [follow the image ahead]

[As the chart suggests] When cleared for Parkway Visual to Runway 13L/R maintain at or above 2000’ until abeam Rockaway Point. Remain west of Rockaway Point, thence east of Kingsborough Community College. Remain east of the Shore Parkway. Cross Brooklyn Coast Guard Air Station at or above 1500’. Remain east of the Shore Parkway until Canarsie Pier.

Since you crossed the CRI VOR, you should apply a 041 heading until you reach Jamaica Bay. In the case you are going to land at runway 13R, begin your descent. If you are going to land at runway 13L, keep the altitude.

Once you reach the red point, you have two ways:

i) 13R - You have already commenced the descent, so you just have to align to the runway and continue descending until you land.

ii) 13L - You have to start your descent now and you have to make a right turn, following the Crossbay Parkway until you reach the Shore Parkway intersection, although keep slightly south until you reach the Aqueduct Race Track, then align with the runway, keep the descent and land.

Last, but not least… have fun (with security)!

Some remarks

  • Weather minimums for the Canarsie Visual are 3sm visibility and 2500’ ceiling;
  • When winds are from the east 13L is mostly used for landing and 13R for take-off.

Thank you for reading it! Safe flights!


It’s actually called the parkway visual :)
Great guide though, it’s one of my favorite visual approaches!


Like these sort of posts! It is mostly about long hauls, liveries, etc., not so much about challenging airports/approaches, procedures and skills of flying.
Thank you for this information, I’ll give it a try soon.


I’ve done this approach IRL!

Lovely topic, and thanks for the advice!


Yes! Finally, somebody is willing to speak up and cover this thrilling approach! Great guide, always worth it to read!

Typically, you will perform the trademark visual after following the RNAV (GPS) Z approach for either runway.

00610RZ13L (skyvector.com)


Very nice! I’ve done too, but as a passanger. It is very nice! Thanks for reading it!


Wow! Thanks for this in-depth tutorial. I actually live close to JFK, and I see this approach done very often. Now I know how it is done. Thanks!!


My pleasure! Thanks for reading it!

Born and raised New Yorker now live in Florida but I recently flew up there and we actually were very close to airport (JFK) east of the parkway then did a sharp turn over the reach and landed but thanks for this much needed

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