Steep turns near the earth and runways abutting on the ocean, rocks or the abyss – just what people do not go to get to the most remote corners of our planet!
Madeira is a small island of volcanic origin. The terrain is such that the airport could be built only on its very edge, between steep slopes and the Atlantic Ocean. Moreover, the width of the flat coastal strip was not enough for a full-fledged runway, so part of it rests on giant piles.
This airport is named after the first explorers of Everest, and it is here that all those who want to repeat the feat of ascent arrive. The runway is inclined by 12%, the height difference between its two ends is 60 meters. In this case, one end rests on the steep slope of the mountain, and the other ends in the abyss. The fact that the only airport navigation equipment is a radio station adds to the thrill of sensation, so the pilots rely on and exclusively on their abilities and experience for takeoff and landing.
Saba Island is the summit of an underwater volcano, its area is only 13 square kilometres, but at the same time, it rises above sea level by almost 1,000 meters. On steep slopes it was difficult to find a flat platform, so the runway is very short, only 4 00 meters, and sandwiched between two steep cliffs over the ocean.
In appearance, this airport is not so remarkable, its strip is quite long, 970 meters. But landing approach requires pilots of jeweller’s precision, as the canvas is sandwiched between two fjords – when approaching it is necessary to keep in a narrow strip between the rocks. At the same time, the weather conditions throughout the year are quite harsh, in this place a strong side wind always blows and the plane must overcome the zone of strong turbulence.
The airport in the valley of the Paro River is located at an altitude of 2,000 meters above sea level and is surrounded by high mountains with 5,000 meters, therefore it is considered one of the most difficult in the world for takeoff and landing. In 2014, only eight pilots were accredited to make steep turns and land in this gorge. The airport works only in the daytime and with good visibility, however, in order to enjoy the views, one must overcome the desire to squint with fear.
To get to the tropical paradise of the Malaysian island of Tioman, will have to go through a few minutes of serious fear. The airstrip is located along the coast and rests against the rock, but this is not the main thing. Because of the peculiarities of the mountainous terrain, the pilot descends to go in for a landing, heading straight to a high cliff, and only at the last moment does the plane turn sharply 90 degrees.
This airport appeared in the James Bond film “Tomorrow Will Never Die Never” and made no less impression on the audience than Pierce Brosnan. Short, only 525 meters, the runway is located on a mountain under a strong incline – 18.5%. When taking off, the plane literally dives into the abyss, and then soars, carrying passengers over the spectacular scenery of the famous resort.
If you have ever thought: “That would be from an aeroplane right to the beach” – this is your chance. Barra – a unique airport on the seashore, light propeller planes, designed for only 12 passengers, land and take off from the sandy runways. The airport works only during daylight hours, but it can urgently take the plane at night, for which workers will set up signal lights. And it also closes at high tide, as the beach is hidden underwater for several hours.