Archive for March 7, 2018
Lukla Airport (NepaL)
A huge mountain on one end, a thousand meter drop on the other. And it’s at 2900 meters elevation, so you don’t exactly have full power.
Lukla Airport is a small airport in the Town of Lukla in eastern Nepal. In January 2008, the government of Nepal announced that the airport would be renamed in honor of Sir Edmund Hillary, the first person to reach the summit of Mount Everest, who passed away on January 11, 2008. The airport is quite popular as Lukla is the place where most people start their trek to climb Mount Everest.
Madeira Airport (Madeira)
Madeira Airport also known as Funchal Airport and Santa Catarina Airport, is an international airport located near Funchal, Madeira. The airport controls national and international air traffic of the island of Madeira.
The airport was once infamous for its short runway which, surrounded by high mountains and the ocean, made it a tricky landing for even the most experienced of pilots. The original runway was only 1,400 metres in length, but was extended by 400 metres after the TAP Air Portugal Flight 425 incident of 1977 and subsequently rebuilt in 2003, almost doubling the size of the runway, building it out over the ocean. Instead of using landfill, the extension was built on a series of 180 columns, each being about 70m tall.
For the enlargement of the new runway the Funchal Airport has won the Outstanding Structures Award, given by International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering (IABSE). The Outstanding Structures Award is considered to be the “Oscar” for engineering structures in Portugal.
Barra International Airport (Barra)
Barra Airport is the only airport in the world where planes land on the beach. BRR is situated in on the wide beach of Traigh Mhor, on Barra island, in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. If you want to fly here commercially you will want to book with British Airways, which flies to Barra from Glasgow and Benbecula.
The airport is literally washed away by the tide once a day, and if you arrive on a late afternoon flight, you may notice a couple of cars in the parking lot with their lights on, which provides pilots some added visibility, since the airport is naturally lit. Needless to say you probably don’t want to hang out at Barra Airport beach, unless you are a aviation junkie, in which case Barra Airport has a fool proof system, as sign that reads: “Keep off the beach. When the windsock is flying and the airport is active.”
Gustaf III Airport (St. Bart)
Gustaf III Airport also known as Saint Barthélemy Airport is a public use airport located in the village of St. Jean on the Caribbean island of Saint Barthélemy. Both the airport and the island’s main town of Gustavia are named for King Gustav III of Sweden, under whom Sweden obtained the island from France in 1785 (it was sold back to France in 1878). The airport is served by small regional commercial aircraft and charters. Most visiting aircraft carry fewer than twenty passengers, such as the Twin Otter, a common sight around Saint Barth and throughout the northern West Indies. The short airstrip is at the base of a gentle slope ending directly on the beach. The arrival descent is extremely steep over the hilltop traffic circle and departing planes fly right over the heads of sunbathers (although small signs advise sunbathers not to lie directly at the end of the runway).
Courchevel is the name of a ski area located in the French Alps, the largest linked ski area in the world. It’s airport has a certain degree of infamy in the aviation industry as home to a relatively short runway, with a length of 525 m (1,722 ft) and a gradient of 18.5%. It’s so short that you have to land on an inclined strip to slow down and take off on a decline to pick up enough speed.
Who gets to land here? Well, Pierce Brosnan made the short list. This was the airport used in the opening seen of Tomorrow Never Dies. For the rest of us, private plane, helicopter, or charter are the only ways to go, and your pilot is going to need some serious training before he or she is allowed to land at CVF.
Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport (Saba)
Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport is the only airport on the Caribbean island of Saba, in the Netherlands Antilles. It is well known among experienced fliers for the way in which airplanes must approach or take off from the airport.
Yrausquin Airport covers a relatively large portion of the small island of Saba. Some aviation experts are of the general opinion that the airport is one of the most dangerous in the world, despite the fact that no major tragedies have happened at the facility. The airport’s sole runway is marked with an X at each end, to indicate to commercial pilots that the airport is closed for commercial aviation.
The danger arises from the airport’s physical position. It is flanked on one side by high hills, and on the other side and at both ends of the runway by cliffs dropping into the sea. This creates the possibility that an airplane might overshoot the runway during landing or takeoff and end up in the sea or on the cliffs.
Princess Juliana International Airport (Saint Martin)
Princess Juliana International Airport serves Saint Maarten, the Dutch part of the island of Saint Martin. It is the second busiest airport in the Eastern Caribbean. The airport is famous for its short landing strip — only 2,180 metres/7,152 ft, which is barely enough for heavy jets. Because of this, the planes approach the island flying extremely low, right over Maho Beach. Countless photos of large jets flying at 10–20 m/30-60 ft over relaxing tourists at the beach have been dismissed as fakes many times, but are nevertheless real. For this reason as well it has become a favourite for planespotters. Despite the difficulties in approach, there has been no records of major aviation incidents at the airport.
10. French — Number of speakers: 129 million
Often called the most romantic language in the world, French is spoken in tons of countries, including Belgium, Canada, Rwanda, Cameroon, and Haiti. Oh, and France too. We’re actually very lucky that French is so popular, because without it, we might have been stuck with Dutch Toast, Dutch Fries, and Dutch kissing (ew!).
To say “hello” in French, say “Bonjour” (bone-JOOR).
9. Malay– IndonesianNumber of speakers: 159 million
Malay-Indonesian is spoken – surprise – in Malaysia and Indonesia. Actually, we kinda fudged the numbers on this one because there are many dialects of Malay, the most popular of which is Indonesian. But they’re all pretty much based on the same root language, which makes it the ninth most-spoken in the world. Indonesia is a fascinating place; a nation made up of over 13,000 islands it is the sixth most populated country in the world. Malaysia borders on two of the larger parts of Indonesia (including the island of Borneo), and is mostly known for its capital city of Kuala Lumpur.
To say “hello” in Indonesian, say “Selamat pagi” (se-LA-maht PA-gee).
8. Portuguese — Number of speakers: 191 million
Think of Portuguese as the little language that could. In the 12th Century, Portugal won its independence from Spain and expanded all over the world with the help of its famous explorers like Vasco da Gama and Prince Henry the Navigator. (Good thing Henry became a navigator . . . could you imagine if a guy named “Prince Henry the Navigator” became a florist?) Because Portugal got in so early on the exploring game, the language established itself all over the world, especially in Brazil (where it’s the national language), Macau, Angola, Venezuela, and Mozambique.
To say “hello” in Portuguese, say “Bom dia” (bohn DEE-ah).
7. Bengali — Number of speakers: 211 million
In Bangladesh, a country of 120+ million people, just about everybody speaks Bengali. And because Bangladesh is virtually surrounded by India (where the population is growing so fast, just breathing the air can get you pregnant), the number of Bengali speakers in the world is much higher than most people would expect.
To say “hello” in Bengali, say “Ei Je” (EYE-jay).
6. Arabic — Number of speakers: 246 million
Arabic, one of the world’s oldest languages, is spoken in the Middle East, with speakers found in countries such as Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, and Egypt. Furthermore, because Arabic is the language of the Koran, millions of Moslems in other countries speak Arabic as well. So many people have a working knowledge of Arabic, in fact, that in 1974 it was made the sixth official language of the United Nations.
To say “hello” in Arabic, say “Al salaam a’alaykum” (Ahl sah-LAHM ah ah-LAY-koom) .
5. Russian — Number of speakers: 277 million
Mikhail Gorbachev, Boris Yeltsin, and Yakov Smirnoff are among the millions of Russian speakers out there. Sure, we used to think of them as our Commie enemies. Now we think of them as our Commie friends. One of the six languages in the UN, Russian is spoken not only in the Mother Country, but also in Belarus, Kazakhstan, and the U.S. (to name just a few places).
To say “hello” in Russian, say “Zdravstvuite” (ZDRAST-vet- yah).
4. Spanish — Number of speakers: 392 million
Aside from all of those kids who take it in high school, Spanish is spoken in just about every South American and Central American country, not to mention Spain , Cuba, and the U.S. There is a particular interest in Spanish in the U.S., as many English words are borrowed from the language, including: tornado, bonanza, patio, quesadilla, enchilada, and taco grande supreme.
To say “hello” in Spanish, say “Hola” (OH-la).
3. Hindi — Number of speakers: 497 million
Hindustani is the primary language of India’s crowded population, and it encompasses a huge number of dialects (of which the most commonly spoken is Hindi). While many predict that the population of India will soon surpass that of China, the prominence of English in India prevents Hindustani from surpassing the most popular language in the world. If you’re interested in learning a little Hindi, there’s a very easy way: rent an Indian movie. The film industry in India is the most prolific in the world, making thousands of action/romance/ musicals every year.
To say “hello” in Hindustani, say “Namaste” (Nah-MAH-stay) .
2. English — Number of speakers: 508 million
While English doesn’t have the most speakers, it is the official language of more countries than any other language. Its speakers hail from all around the world, including the U.S., Australia, England, Zimbabwe, the Caribbean, Hong Kong , South Africa, and Canada. We’d tell you more about English, but you probably feel pretty comfortable with the language already. Let’s just move on to the most popular language in the world.
To say “hello” in English, say “What’s up, freak?” (watz-UP-freek) .
1. Mandarin — Number of speakers: 1 billion+
Surprise, surprise, the most widely spoken language on the planet is based in the most populated country on the planet, China. Beating second-place English by a 2 to 1 ratio, but don’t let that lull you into thinking that Mandarin is easy to learn. Speaking Mandarin can be really tough, because each word can be pronounced in four ways (or “tones”), and a beginner will invariably have trouble distinguishing one tone from another. But if over a billion people could do it, so could you. Try saying hello!
To say “hello” in Mandarin, say “Ni hao” (Nee HaOW). (“Hao” is pronounced as one syllable, but the tone requires that you let your voice drop midway, and then raise it again at the end.)