Travelling by air is an adventure in itself. Most of us still find travelling on an airplane a thrilling experience and prepare ourselves for air travel as much as we prepare for the vacation itself. Though we love travelling by air, the entire phenomena of taking off and landing is still a little nerve-wracking, especially if you tend to get airsick. Read on to get a closer insight into the nine most dangerous and spine-chilling flight take-offs and landings around the world which are guaranteed to leave you speechless.
Ice Runway – Antarctica
Like landing on the coldest part of the planet was not scary enough, this spectacular runway is made up of four inches of compact snow. This airport does not have a designated runway as the plane is expected to land in a vast stretch of plain slippery ice. The aircraft needs to be checked before landing into this region to see if the plank of ice can withstand their weight. They even need to be equipped with the appropriate landing gear to prevent them from getting stuck in the ice. Passengers travelling on this flight feeloverwhelmed as they watch the plane land on this crystallized runway complemented with an infinite blanket of virgin white snow.
Lukla Airport – Nepal
Landing in the Lukla airport is guaranteed to give you goose bumps provided you manage to keep your eyes open throughout the landing. This stunning runway is located at an elevation of 9,100 feet and has a 12 percent gradient. So, you will essentially be hitting a low point while touchdown, and travelling upward in order to land. If this was not scary enough, the runway ends with a hairpin bend, in front of a brick wall, making the landing nothing less than a roller coaster ride. Travelling to the Lukla airport is guaranteed to give you goose bumps as you are welcomed into the country with an expedition.
Yrausquin Airport – Caribbean island of Saba
The Saba International Airport features the world’s shortest commercial runway at a mind-boggling stretch of just 400 meters. It is known as one of the most difficult and dangerous runways in the world only seasoned pilots with tonnes of experience and knowledge about the tips and tricks of the industry will be able to land here. This risky landing strip is sandwiched between steep hills on one side, and the gushing ocean on the other side, making it a possibility for the plane to either crash into the hills or drown in the ocean.
Princess Juliana International Airport – St. Marleen
The Princess Juliana International Airport is the most dangerous commercial airport in the Caribbean. It has a short landing strip of 7,150 feet, which is quite a challenge to land in considering the fact that all commercial aircraft need at least 8,000 feet of runway space to successfully land. Owing to this, the planes tend to fly extremely low before hitting the runway, almost brushing against the neighbouring beach, fence and road. If you happen to be near the airport while a plane is scheduled to land, you will experience a hot gush of wind coupled with the fear of the plane hitting your head, all mixed up with a spike of an adrenaline rush. On the other hand, if you are travelling to this spectacular airport, you are left spellbound as you witness the extent up to which the aircraft can lower down without hitting the civilians. It is a euphoric feeling which can be ticked off your bucket list.
Leh Airport – India
The breathtaking Leh Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport is known to be one of the highest airports in the world at a spectacular height of 10,682 feet above sea level. The neighbouring Himalayan valley and a multitude of other snow-capped peaks around the airport make the landing at this airport a spine-chilling experience. Due to the fluctuating weather conditions and strong winds, this airport functions only in the early morning hours when all you can feel is a light chilly breeze.
Courchevel International Airport – France
The Courchevel Altiport is located amidst the snow-capped Alps range. Since it was primarily a ski resort, the runway has a natural gradient of 18.6% and has a strikingly short length of just 537 meters. Additionally, this landing strip has no landing procedure or lighting aids making it a Herculean challenge to land on this runway, especially during extreme fog.
Quito International Airport – Ecuador
The Quito International Airport, located in the capital city of Quito in Latin America, boasts of a quintessential 4.1-kilometer runway at the perfect elevation of 2410 meters. However, the intense Tababela winds in this commercial region are strong enough to sway the heaviest of aircraft in the winter months. Due to the chilly weather conditions, these colossal winds are often accompanied by thick fog, making the landing on this perfect strip every pilot’s ‘flightmare’.
Paro Airport – Bhutan
The spectacular runway at the Paro Airport of Bhutan is cradled between towering mountain peaks which are as high as 3000 meters. Landing at this strip is a challenge on its own as the aircraft is skillfully maneuvered between the stunning hills before it hits the runway. Due to this, the runway is not even visible to the pilot until the plane reaches proximity of 500 feet above ground level. During touchdown, the aircraft receives a solid thrust and needs to be handled very proficiently for a smooth landing. No wonder only eight pilots in the world are qualified to land here!
Isle of Barra Airport – Scotland
This one-of-a-kind runway is situated in the Traigh Mhor Bay in Scotland. As the runway tends to get submerged by water every evening due to the high tides, the take-off and landing needto be scheduled accordingly.
These above-mentioned airports are so spectacular that they are a must-visit for all adrenaline junkies. Whether you are planning a trip to the most beautiful villages around the world or opting for a tropical holiday to the unknown beaches across the globe, make sure you touch downat these airports for a thrilling ride. Head out to Akbar travels today and get the best deals on International flights and treat yourself to the ride of a lifetime.