5 Scariest Airport Runways In the World

Flying can be thrilling, but have you experience an airport runway which scares you out? Here are five of the scariest runways in the world that test the nerves of even the most experienced pilots and adventurous travelers.


Tenzing-Hillary Airport (Lukla Airport), Nepal

Tenzing-Hillary Airport (Lukla Airport), Nepal

Considered one of the most extreme airports globally, Lukla Airport is nestled between a mountainous area and a deep valley. The runway is only 1,729 feet long, demanding precise landings and takeoffs amidst challenging terrain and often unpredictable weather.

Princess Juliana International Airport, St. Maarten


Known for its proximity to a popular beach, this airport's runway is so close to the water that incoming planes fly at alarmingly low altitudes, sometimes just 30-60 feet above sunbathers. 

Courchevel Altiport, France


Set in the French Alps, Courchevel Altiport's runway is integrated into the mountainside and spans just 1,762 feet. Only pilots with specialized training can land here, as the short and steep runway offers very little room for error.


4. Madeira Airport, Portugal


Madeira Airport's runway sits between a cliff and the ocean, notorious for its variable wind conditions. Though extended to 9,124 feet in 2000, much of this extension rests on a platform supported by 180 columns over the sea. This setup poses significant risks during adverse weather conditions.


Gibraltar Airport, Gibraltar


Built on a reclaimed land area, this runway requires pilots to navigate around Gibraltar's tall mountain before landing. The runway intersects with a main road that must be closed off for aircraft to land or take off, adding another layer of complexity and danger to operations.