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This article was written on 28 Nov 2017.

The most scenic flights in the world

There’s no denying that our planet looks amazing from above. Observing majestic mountain peaks, thundering waterfalls, and deep canyons from a bird’s-eye perspective makes you appreciate even more the vast and often remote wilderness areas left on our world. So be sure to request a window seat on one of the 3 following flights, which we consider to be the most scenic journeys on the planet.

1. HELICOPTER TOUR OVER THE ISLAND OF KAUAI, HAWAII

Kauai was the first of the major Hawaiian Islands to rise from the ocean floor and it was the first to become extinct some 5 million years ago. Sculpted by nature for millions of years, Kauai’s legendary and sensational natural beauty is epitomized by the Na Pali Coast – 14 miles (22 km) of sea cliffs ascending 3,000 feet (900 m) above untamed shoreline, with sheer-walled valleys and cascading waterfalls—and spectacular Waimea Canyon, the ‘Grand Canyon of the Pacific’. Kauai also boasts the wettest spot on the planet at Mount Wai’ale’ale and the tremendous rainfall has produced the most remarkable sheer valleys, razor sharp ridges descending to the sea and most amazing array of waterfalls to be assembled anywhere in the world.  Most of Kauai’s awe-inspiring sights are inaccessible from the ground and can only be seen and appreciated by helicopter.

2. SEAPLANE FLIGHT IN THE MALDIVES 

For most people, thé iconic image of the Maldives is that of a deep blue ocean interspersed by tiny palm islands surrounded by ridiculously clear lagoons and sugar white beaches. The only way to see that breathtaking view of 50 shades of blue is from the air, and although you will catch a few glimpses of the islands from your plane upon landing or departure at Male airport, the best vantage point for the breathtaking panoramas is offered by the waterplanes that take guests to their resorts. Most seaplane transfers in the Maldives are operated by Trans Maldivian Airways. Flying on board a seaplane in Maldives and admiring the picture-perfect archipelago from a bird’s eye perspective is one of the ultimate experiences that the destination has to offer.

3. LANDING OR TAKING OFF AT BUTHAN’S PARO AIRPORT

Travelers visiting the kingdom of Buthan have no other option (so far) but to fly to Paro Airport, the sole international airport of the four airports in the Kingdom of Bhutan. Located 2,4 km (1.5 mi) above sea level and with surrounding peaks as high as 5,500 m (18,000 ft), it is considered one of the world’s most dangerous airports. So treacherous is the landing, that only a select number of pilots (from Bhutan AirlinesBuddha Air, and Drukair) are certified to land at the airport. Flights to and from Paro are allowed under visual meteorological conditions only and are restricted to daylight hours from sunrise to sunset. Planes have to weave through the dozens of houses that are scattered across the mountainside – coming within feet of clipping the roofs. But if you are not too nervous about the perilous conditions, you will be rewarded with breathtaking views over the clear blue waters over the Paro river and the lush green foliage of the Himalayas.

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