16 Most Dangerous Airports of The World for Runway Thrills!
We look into many things when planning a trip, the flights, the stay, etc. Even the nitty-gritty bits like what's available at the airport. But we have never look into the significance of the airport. With this list of the most dangerous airports in the world, the idea of an adventure begins at the airport itself. From iced runways to table-top landing at one of these most dangerous airports will have you saying more prayers than when on a roller coaster!
Here is the list of 16 most dangerous airports in the world -
1. Lukla Airport (LUA), Nepal
Located in Khumbu, Solukhumbu District, the Lukla Airport in Nepal was renamed to Tenzing-Hillary Airport in January 2008, in honour of the first two people to conquer Mount Everest. People visiting Mount Everest frequently use this Nepalese airport. The airport has been rated as the most dangerous airport in the world for over 20 years in a row. The airport is at an altitude of 8,000 feet (2,438 meters). The landing and take-off strips are very short, and the airport has very less electricity with virtually no modern air traffic control features. The landing is difficult, as the pilot has to navigate through the hilly region in harsh winds of decreasing visibility. Said to be the highest airport due to its location near the Mount Everest base camp, Lukla airport definitely ranks second!
2. Courchevel Airport (CVF), France
This airport in France is known for one of the shortest runways in the world with just 537 meters. The airport is for people who want to ski in the Alps and hence is located amidst mountains. In addition to navigating these mountains, pilots also need to land the plane at sharp angles for the aircraft to slow down.
3. Toncontin International Airport (TGU), Honduras
Toncontín International Airport (also known as Teniente Coronel Hernán Acosta Mejía Airport) is located 6 km from the centre of Tegucigalpa, Honduras. The Airport is a civil and a military airport. This dangerous airport was added to History Channel's list of most dangerous airports in the show "Most Extreme Airports".
Since the airport is situated in a mountainous region, the pilot has to make certain arrangements to avoid hitting the mountains. The runway is also extremely short and causes the plane to stop abruptly.
4. Barra International Airport (BRR), Scotland
Also known as Barra Eollgary Airport, the Barra International Airport is situated in Scotland at the northernmost tip of the Barra island at the bay of Traigh Mhòr. With a short runway, this uniquely dangerous airport also uses the beach as its runway and is undoubtedly the only airport in the world to do so.
Located in the union territory of Lakshadweep, on the southern end of the Agatti Island, is the Agatti Airport It is the sole airport in Lakshadweep serving 36 local Indian tourist islands of which, Agatti Aerodrome is a strip of land present in the blue waters. The strip is just 4,000 feet long, making it a risky area.
Kai Tak was the international airport of Hong Kong until 1998 after which it was closed and replaced by the Hong Kong International Airport.
It is one of the scariest airports with perilous landings and take-offs due to the crisscross winds blowing constantly. The fact that the airport is surrounded by a hilly region makes it even scarier and also a deserving spot in the list of most dangerous airports in the world!
7. Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM), Saint Martin
The Princess Juliana International Airport is the main airport on the Caribbean Island of Saint Martin. This airport is one of the busiest airports as well. Before landing, the planes fly over a beach and some roads, barely out of reach from the ground. A regular to a large-sized plane requires a minimum of 8000 feet of a landing strip where are this airport has only 7000, making it one of the most dangerous airports in the world.
8. Don Mueang International Airport (DMK), Thailand
Don Mueang International Airport is one of two international airports serving Bangkok. Previously known as the Bangkok International Airport, this airport is situated between two golf courses, making it yet another dangerous airport.
9. Congonhas Airport (CGH), Brazil
Serving the city of Sao Paulo is the Congonhas Airport (sometimes referred to as Sao Paulo Airport) in Brazil, this airport is the second busiest airport in Brazil. What makes the airport dangerous is the slippery runway that has caused several accidents. However, new runways with grooves to collect excess rainwater are being built.
10. Wellington International Airport (WLG), New Zealand
Wellington International Airport, located in the suburb of Rongotai in Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand was formerly known as Rongotai Airport. Situated 5.5 km south-east of the city centre, the runway of Wellington International Airport is only 6,351 feet, and its pathway seems to start and end in the water bodies. The pilot needs to be precise in knowing at the landing and take-off point to avoid the surrounding water bodies.
11. Kansai International Airport (KIX), Japan
Off the Honshu shore, the Kansai International Airport is an airport located on an artificial island in the middle of Osaka Bay, 38 km from Osaka Station, Japan. Designed by an Italian architect named Renzo Piano, this airport is built on an artificial island since the land is scarce and overpriced in the country. Inaugurated on 4 September 1994, Kansai was the ideal solution to relieve overcrowding at Osaka International Airport. Closer to the city of Osaka, the Osaka International Airport now handles only domestic flights. The Kansai artificial island 4 km in length and 2.5 km wide, exposes the airport to has many hazards, like earthquakes and cyclones. But those are not the only problems. It is said that in the next four to five decades, the sea levels are expected to rise due to global warming, which would cause the airport to submerge in the ocean water.
12. Gibraltar International Airport (GIB), Gibraltar
Gibraltar International Airport, also known as the North Front Airport is the civilian airport serving the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. What makes this one of the most dangerous airports in the world is the fact that the runway of the airport passes through the Winston Churchill Avenue, the busiest road on the island leading to the Spanish border. The vehicles have to stop every time a plane takes off. Therefore, there are barriers and signals to control the movement of the vehicles on that road.
13. Ice Runway (NZIR), Antarctica
Ice Runway, Antarctica is the main runway for the US Antarctic Program. The runway is capable of handling medium and large-sized flights. However, the problem is that there is no real runway. The flights land on a manicured snow and ice. The flights are to land gently to make sure no cracks in the paved road is formed to avoid any accidents!
14. Svalbard Airport (LYR), Norway
Svalbard Airport, Longyear is the main airport serving Svalbard in Norway. Located 1.6 nautical miles (3 km) north-west of Longyearbyen, it is the northernmost airport in the world with public scheduled flights. The first airport near Longyearbyen was constructed during World War II. Airport runways are directly built on thick permanent ice. The seasonal melting of ice requires consistent repairs and maintenance of the airport. Complete in 1975, the airport underwent major repairs in 1989 to solve most of the problems due to irregularities caused by global warming. However, a study shows that the phenomenon of global warming will soon lead to a serious distortion of the track and in the future, it will have to be shut down.
15. Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport (SAB), Saba
Named after their minister, Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport is an airport on the Dutch Caribbean island of Saba. This airport has one of the shortest commercial runways in the world with only 400 meters of runaway surrounding by the hills on one side and the ocean on the other. The island is truly a paradise for tourists and travellers, and they often risk their lives to get here. Obviously, the small runway makes it impossible for large flights to land, but they also make it difficult for small flights as well.
Located off-coast of the Portuguese sea is a small island of Madeira. The Madeira Airport is located 13.2 kilometres away from the Funchal, in Santa Cruz and is also referred informally to as Funchal Airport. On 29th March 2017, the airport was rebranded and renamed Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport in honour of the legendary football player born on this island. Relatively a small-sized runway, this area was built to meet common needs by using pillars. The runway was once infamous for its small size, but over the years, it has been expanding, and in the year 2000, the runway was of 2,781 m (9,124 feet) almost doubling the size of the original runway. The harsh weather conditions on the island make plane operations of landing and take off very dangerous.
We always plan a trip by considering the value of a place and the experiences we can savour on the trip. Well, frankly, never worry about the flights. Start your next journey with a thrill and an adrenaline pump by taking a ride to the world's most dangerous airports!
Have you EVER taken a flight to one of these airports? Do you wish to give it all for some thrill? Let us know in the comments below!