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Scenery Review: FHSH - St Helena Airport for XP12 by Cami De Bellis

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FHSH St Helena_Header.jpg


Scenery Review: FHSH - St Helena Airport for XP12 by Cami De Bellis

By Peter Allnutt


Like me, you might get a twinge of recognition when someone mentions St. Helena, feeling that you should know where it is or something significant about it. Admittedly, it's been a while since my school history classes, and my memory didn't quite hold up. St. Helena is a tiny and remote island in the South Atlantic Ocean, famous as the final exile place of Napoleon in 1815. With a population of around 4,500, the island welcomed its first airport in 2016 and is the subject of this review.

Commercial flights began servicing the airport in 2017. Before then, reaching the island required a five-day voyage by ship from Cape Town due to its seclusion. Pilots face considerable windshear challenges when landing on runway 01, influencing special operating requirements at St. Helena. 

Keep in mind, due to the airport's unique location, pilots must have an alternative landing site in their plans, in case landing at St. Helena becomes untenable. For safety reasons, when an incoming aircraft is more than halfway to the airport, all other flight activities, including takeoffs and approaches, are put on hold to ensure a clear path for the arriving plane.




Purchase & Installation
You can pick up this scenery package from the Org Store for a reasonable $16.95. It doesn't just cover the airport; it encompasses the entire island of St. Helena, with approximately 80 custom objects and an enhanced terrain mesh. The download size stands at roughly 1.5GB and, once unzipped, it expands to around 2.7GB. Within the package, you'll find three folders, each of which needs to be copied to your Custom Scenery folder in X-Plane. No keys or activation is required, making the installation process refreshingly straightforward.

Included with the package is a concise document located in the “FHSH- St. Helena – Airport” folder. It outlines the installation process, lists the features, and offers an informative section pointing to online resources about the island and its airfield. The document also describes a method for enhancing the default X-Plane map with more detailed data. However, be aware that subsequent X-Plane updates may revert these changes, meaning they will have to be repeated.



FHSH - St Helena Airport
St. Helena Airport nestles on the eastern side of the island, on Prosperous Bay Plain. The runway stretches impressively, with the southern end elevated to reach the necessary length. Its unique location atop formidable cliffs, introduces the challenge of windshear, thus requiring pilots to undergo specialized training before landing in St. Helena.


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Within X-Plane, the airport melds seamlessly with the undulating terrain that extends beyond the airport's primary structures. 


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The terminal buildings, depicted with great attention to detail, both inside and out, bustles with life. 


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Intrigued visitors populate even the most hidden corners, including one particularly enthusiastic spectator on the first floor viewing area of the main terminal. 


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The control tower, too, boasts a nicely modelled exterior and interior.


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Beyond the main terminal lie various smaller edifices, including a finely modelled VOR. Dotted around these structures are numerous smaller items, from satellite dishes to storage tanks, all of which maintain a newness befitting an airfield less than a decade old. The sole exception is the runway, which bears the marks of some rather intense landings.


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The car park, mirroring its real-life counterpart, features landscaped gardens, and further along, a fire training area complete with a mockup plane and a storage tank facility. Though both are reasonably well modelled, the plane at the fire practice area could have benefitted from a touch more detail.


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Cami’s rendition of St. Helena strikes a fine balance, injecting life into the scene without overdoing it. The scenery retains a sense of calm, even as commercial aircraft arrive and depart, encapsulating the airport's serene atmosphere.

St Helena – The Island
Cami’s enhancements to St. Helena extends beyond the airfield to revitalize the entire island with photorealistic ground textures and an improved terrain mesh. The upgrade is a marked improvement over the default X-Plane 12 offering, bringing the island's rugged volcanic topography of peaks, ridges, and valleys to vivid life. The island's vegetation is portrayed with a sparseness that occasionally belies the ground textures’ suggestions of greenery, a slight mismatch that reflects a broader issue within X-Plane rather than this package alone.



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Longwood House, Napoleon’s final abode in exile and now a museum of notable poignancy, receives a nice custom model. Despite its significance, the house is a stark standout in the scenery, with the surrounding area not quite matching its detail.


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Jamestown's waterfront comes alive with Cami’s 3D touch, featuring bespoke buildings and a docked ship, lending character to the port. The inclusion of a fictional helicopter pad here, and another by Longwood House, provides opportunities for local flights. Yet, their presence feels as though it could have been better as an optional feature, particularly since the pad near Longwood House is already occupied if static aircraft are activated in X-Plane.


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While buildings across the island show a tendency towards repetition, and attempts at reorientation don’t quite solve the issue, this stands as a minor quibble, perhaps more indicative of X-Plane’s limitations than any shortfall in the scenery pack itself.


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Night Lighting
When night falls, the airfield dons a vibrant display of lights. The runway gleams with a full array of illumination, mirroring the well-lit terminal, its accompanying structures, and the car parks. Venturing away from the airfield, the lighting takes on a more understated quality, echoing the modest and dispersed nature of the island's population.


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Interestingly, the port maintains a lively ambience after dark, hinting at a nocturnal bustle.


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During my testing of this scenery, I encountered no issues affecting performance. Frame rates remained consistently high and stable, devoid of any noticeable lags or fluctuations. To give you an idea of my setup, I'm running X-Plane on an Intel i9 10900K with 32GB of RAM, coupled with an NVIDIA MSI RTX 3090 Suprim X graphics card, all on a Windows 10 Home 64-bit system.


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I’ve enjoyed exploring and flying around St. Helena Airport by Cami De Bellis / CDB Sceneries and Maps2Xplane. While the presence of more diverse vegetation and a wider array of generic buildings would enhance the scenery, these are minor points. In any case, they seem more indicative of X-Plane’s limitations than any shortfall in the scenery design itself. The airport and its surroundings, including Longwood House, are depicted with impressive accuracy, and the bespoke models, around eighty in total, contribute to a relaxed and authentic atmosphere.


Although the island's seclusion means you might not fly in or out regularly, piloting your favourite GA aircraft or helicopter over this picturesque landscape is an experience not to be missed.






St Helena Airport for XP12 by Cami De Bellis is now available from the X-Plane.Org Store here:


St Helena Airport by Cami De Bellis

Priced at US$16.95



  • Highly accurate scenery for FHSH -St Helena Airport with all buildings modeled. 
  • Over eighty custom objects all with Ambient Occlusion  
  • Terrain mesh created and modified to fix bump terrain and set and correct the topography of the Airport’s area 
  • Custom Terrain Mesh for the entire island of Saint Helena by Maps2XPlane 
  • Custom Overlay/Autogen Scenery based on CDB assets by Maps2XPlane" 
  • Photo real textures on buildings, vehicles, trees… 
  • Photorealistic ground textures based on a satellite image. 
  • Detailed airport objects and GSE vehicles  
  • Custom textured taxiways, runways, and apron  
  • Custom surrounding buildings  
  • Custom airport lights HD 
  • Custom Overlay   
  • High-resolution building textures – all in 2K and 4K  
  • Excellent night effects  
  • World Traffic 3 compatible 
  • Native characters created specially  
  • The terrain mesh is complemented with custom overlays: dense vegetation and country-typical autogen, as well as custom road networks with dynamic traffic. 
  • Two fictional heliports, for those fans of helicopters. One at the beautiful Longwood House, and the other on the shores of the island’s main port; Ruperts Wharf. 


X-Plane 12 (not for XP11)
Windows, Mac, or Linux
4 GB VRAM Minimum. 8 GB+ VRAM Recommended
Download Size: 1.5 GB
Current version 1.0 (August 28th, 2023)


Review System Specifications

Intel i9 10900K – 32GB RAM - NVidia MSI RTX 3090 Suprim X – Windows 10 Home 64 Bit



Scenery Review by Peter Allnutt
10th November 2023
Copyright©2023: X-Plane Reviews


(Disclaimer. All images and text in this review are the work and property of X-PlaneReviews, no sharing or copy of the content is allowed without consent from the author as per copyright conditions.





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Cami, outstanding work. Not just the airport, but the whole island. I loved the review, and seeing so many familiar faces from the CDB Library. An airport needs a bit of life in my humble opinion, and you set the perfect balance. I'm also impressed by the amazing skill you have at creating the 3D buildings, not just the exterior, but interior too. Just amazing work.

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