A few weeks ago I posted an entry that included of a cool photo of a plane taking off at the St. Maarten airport. The plane looked dangerously close to the beach and this got me thinking about other possibly wild, scary and slightly dangerous runways. Quito, Ecuador has been a nailbiter for me at times, but that is nothing compared to others out there. Here are just a few from many interesting runways:
1. St. Maarten
Widebody jetliners fly over popular Maho Beach barely skimming a perimeter fence. The beach has become a tourist attraction with spectators stopping by just for the experience of having a jet fly over their heads or being blown off the beach into the ocean by departing flights. Check out the video here
2. Tegucigalpa, Honduras
After navigating through mountain terrain, planes drop a few hundred feet and then take a sharp U-turn before landing at Toncontin airport. You’ll definitely want to be buckled in tight for this ride. Here’s a video.
3. Lukla, Nepal
What sounds more fun….trying to land on a short uphill runway or taking off on a downhill slope that (if you haven’t picked up enough speed) you just drop off. Sounds like the Himalayan version of Six Flags amusement park.
4. Barra, Scotland
This airport is one of two in the world that use the beach as a runway. There are three runways, each identifiable by wooden poles at the end. The tricky part here, besides landing on sand, is that the flight times can vary with the tide. Fun!
5. Runways that are not meant to be runways
This is probably the scariest runway of them all, but it is also what makes travel fun!
Whether you’re the pilots trying to land the plane or the passengers in the back praying for a safe landing, I’m sure you’ve had your own adventures in flying. Share them in comments.