Juancho E Yrausquin Airport
Serves: Saba (The Netherlands), Caribbean
Airlines: Windward Islands Airways
Dutch-owned Caribbean island Saba is home to Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport which boasts the world’s shortest commercial runway. At only 400 metres, just a quarter of a mile, the runway is only slightly longer than the average aircraft carrier and jet aircraft are banned from using the runway through fear of over or under shooting the strip and hitting the ocean.
The only airline currently serving the airport is Winair which operates daily flights to nearby islands Saint Martin and Saint Eustatius. The flight to Saint Martin takes just 12 minutes. For the airport’s Wikipedia site click here.
Moshoeshoe I International Airport
Serves: Maseru, Kingdom of Lesotho
Airlines: South African Airways (international), Mission Aviation Fellowship (domestic flights)
The Kingdom of Lesotho, entirely landlocked by South Africa, is served by Moshoeshoe I airport. While officially referred to as an international airport, the only non-domestic flights are to Johannesburg with South African Airways.
Passengers can while away the hours waiting for their flight in the airport’s gift shop, restaurant, bar and newsagent. The airport sits at an elevation of 1,630 metres and the shorter of its two runways is just over 1000 metres. For more information click here.
Luang Prabang Airport, Laos
Serves: Luang Prabang, Laos
Airlines: Bangkok Airways, Lao Airlines, Tonlesap Airlines, Vietnam Airlines
The airport’s runway currently measures a modest 2,200 metres, although an extension is planned to begin this year, which will see the airport capable of accommodating most large-sized planes except the Airbus 380. In the meantime, those frequenting the airport can enjoy shopping, restaurant and currency exchange facilities. For more information click here.
Morgantown Municipal Airport
Serves: Morgantown, West Virginia, USA
Airlines: United Airways (operated by Colgan Air)
Morgantown Municipal is used primarily for general aviation but is also served by one commercial airline that connects the town with Clarksburg, West Virginia and Washington Dulles International Airport in Washington, DC.
Not only is there free parking, free coffee and wifi, but patrons can also enjoy lunch in the restaurant – recarpeted in 2008 – while watching planes take-off from the 844-metre runway. For more information click here.
Serves: Barra Island, Outer Hebrides, Scotland
Barra’s Traigh Mhor beach is the only beach runway in the world to handle scheduled airline services. Despite being little more than a shack on the beach, Barra Airport offers travellers ample parking, car hire facilities and public transport serving the rest of the island.
Flight times vary with the tide so the airport is open for no more than two and a half hours between Monday and Saturday. The shortest of the airport’s three runways is a mere 680 metres. For more information click here.
By Andy Tweddle
If you have any pocket-sized airports you’d like to add to the list, then please leave your comments below.