Whether you’re delayed, on a layover, or just checked in super early like I always do, it’s never fun when the airport you’re in is small, lifeless, or just plain boring. It always makes for a better trip all round when every aspect, even the airports, are exciting and full of things to keep you busy! Here are some that are considered to be the best in the world.
Popular travel site Lonely Planet featured an article on its website in March of this year, listing the “Most Highly Rated Airports Around the World From 2017” as revealed by the Airports Council International World. Included are the top airport for each continent, such as Abu Dhabi International Airport being the travellers’ favourite for the Middle East, and Sochi International Airport in Russia the most popular in Europe. According to the article, the overall top spot went to Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport in China. It is also noted that winners were not only recognised for size and the number of visitors each year, but customer service played a great part – reassuring, having friendly staff around to help when you’re tired and lost!
I won’t lie, having been lucky enough to travel to many different places around the world over the past few years, I’ve found that I have a couple of favourites of my own. First, Detroit Metropolitan Airport was particularly memorable in regards to it aesthetics; how could you not enjoy a layover at an airport with a large water feature, as well as a grand piano played regularly to entertain travellers while they wait?
Additionally, Hong Kong International Airport is different to any other that I have been to. It made a great first impression when I was greeted with the stunning view of traditional junk boats at sea from my window as my plane was descending. There were plenty of traditional restaurants (and a McDonalds for some home comforts), but the highlight was the shuttle train under the airport. It takes you from one end of the departure lounge to the other, saving your legs from the potential long walk – very handy after a long haul flight! With cultural items, such as traditional clothing also on display, it was easy to enjoy the culture of Hong Kong when unable to leave the airport itself.
Finally, I believe that our own airport deserves its own special mention. Newcastle International Airport can take you to 80 destinations direct around the world. It may not be the biggest airport, but its departure lounge still has enough amenities to keep you entertained. With a great range of pubs, bars and restaurants, clothes outlets to book shops and even a spa, there’s something to help everyone get their holiday started properly! Here’s hoping that you’ll be able to take a trip this year to let you experience the toon’s own airport for yourself!