The World's Most Unique and Awe-Inspiring Airports

Who knew compacted snow would be sturdy enough to brace an aircraft's landing?
Loukia Papadopoulos

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We tend to think of airports as transient destinations, simply transitionary spaces you go to when you need to head somewhere else. But airports can be so much more than that. Their large sizes allow them to be marvels of architecture and engineering showcasing some of the most advanced and futuristic designs in the world. In this video, we bring you 11 such airports and we dare you not to be inspired by them.

There’s the Madeira International Airport in Portugal that is considered one of the most peculiarly perilous airports in the world. It has a runway that extends into the ocean supported by 200 pillars. 

The Courchevel International Airport in France is an altiport serving Courchevel, a ski resort in the French Alps. The airport has a short runway of only 1,760 ft (537 m) with a slope of 18.6%, making it among the steepest runways in the world.

The Barra Airport in Scotland uses a tidal beach as a runway that disappears at high tides. It opened in 1936 and its only destination is Glasgow. And finally, the Williams Field airport in the US Airfield in Antarctica is built on compacted snow and ice that has been created to be sturdy enough to support the weight of airplanes. Now, that’s impressive!