Flights with Spectacular Scenery

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by Muerl, Jan 15, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Muerl
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    Muerl Gold Member

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    So there are clearly actual sight seeing trips which are not what I was looking for here. I am more thinking scheduled flights on Carriers which have simply wonderful views.

    I was posting pictures of my trip around OZ last spring and I remember just how wonderful QF 2503 was.

    The whole flight was over the great barrier reef and it was just amazing after amazing. It was also nice, because it was a small turbo prop segment so the altitude was not that high either allowing for wonderful views.[​IMG]
    I have a few more pictures posted here : http://blog.mattloveslauren.com/post/15901775085/the-next-day-we-woke-up-and-flew-on-a-very-small
    I am curious what other flights there are that as similar. Also, for the record we paid for the flight with BA miles, under the old system it was 12500 one way.
     
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  2. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Flew ABE-YYZ last fall in a Beechcraft 1900. I can't recall the altitude, but the view of Niagara Falls was lovely. Wish I had pics.
     
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  3. traveler
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    Coming back from London a couple of years back (I think on United) we flew directly over Yosemite national park continued on over Morro rock hung a left an proceeded down the Pacific to LAX. Almost made it exciting to be back!
     
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  4. MSPeconomist
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    I've enjoyed flying between Santa Barbara and the Bay Area. The flight hugs the coast in a small plane.

    Landings in San Diego or at the old Hong Kong airport are fun for the views.
     
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  5. jbcarioca
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    Kai Tak was one of the spectacular views of the world. I loved every single approach. I was so enamored of that approach that in the late 1970's I rented a Cessna 172 at the airport (there was a tiny Flying Club there). One had to be a licensed pilot to do that, and the entire trip was with a flight instructor but it was phenomenal. It was an overwhelming experience landing with all those 747's, and looking out through apartment windows. Nothing else comes close.

    Honorable mentions for me:

    SDU- one passes just over the Rio-Niteroi bridge and has a beautiful view of Guanabara bay, Sugar Loaf and Corcovado, as well as all the Rio beaches in Zona Sul. It is worth taking the flight just to land at SDU
    SFO- departures on a clear day. I am certain we all know that one
    LGA- when taking the river approach that follows the Husdon river north. You do need to be on the right side of the plane. They do not go so low as they used to. (the OP rules preclude taling about the wonderful private flight options. Not expensive!)
    NCE- leaving or arriving you have a view from Genoa to Saint-Tropez and further. Usually you fly low over the Alpes Maritime also. One of the all-time great sea views, including mega-yachts and Monte-Carlo.
     
  6. cennas
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    Unfortunately I only had 3 landings at the old Kai Tak. The first one was when I was 5 and too young to remember anything. The second time we approached the airport from the sea so it was nothing special. The third and final one was a thrilling runway 13 approach at night on a 747. I was seated on the upper deck and it was amazing to see how close we were to the buildings.

    I also really like the scenic approach to DPS' runway 09, especially when seated on the starboard side. As the plane starts its descent, you'll get to see majestic views of the volcanic peaks of East Java and the clear-blue waters of the Indian Ocean to the South. As you get closer to the airport, you can see the arid Bukit Peninsula, the luxury resorts set on the towering cliffs of Jimbaran Bay, and the seafood stalls on the beach. Then when it looks like you're about to hit the water, the airport perimeter fence suddenly appears and you touch down. Always a great start to my holiday.
     
  7. Mapsmith
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    TUS or PHX to LAS, SFO, SEA all take you over the Grand Canyon.
     
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  8. MSPeconomist
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    DCA is fun for the views of the Capitol, White House, Washington Monument, Tidal Basin, etc. This is especially nice in the fall when the leaf color is at its peak or during cherry blossom season.
     
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  9. MSPeconomist
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    I recall some STL-LAX flights over the Grand Canyon, including one where the TWA pilot got permission to circle around to show off the views.
     
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  10. mattsteg
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  11. jbcarioca
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    This YouTube video of the River Visual Approach shows it well
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dzNoJCh0qws
    Prior to 2001 the approach was lower and twistier and was glorious. I used to fly it in my own plane 7-8 times per year and it never failed to amaze and excite me. I should have included it in my list!
     
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  12. jbcarioca
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    Long, long ago the IFR system for airliners happened when two airliners collided while sightseeing the Grand Canyon, which was very popular then. This is the wiki about that 1956 accident

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1956_Grand_Canyon_mid-air_collision
     
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  13. MSPeconomist
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    Of course I forgot NCE on my list.

    In a weird way, I like the NRT TPAC approach. Sometimes one sees Tokyo Bay but even if not, I like to see the rural landscape and rice paddies on final approach. It makes me feel that I have arrived in the traditional Japan.

    Similarly, I usually arrive and depart SIN in the dark, but the ships that one sees remind me of the country's historical dependence on the shipping industry.
     
  14. jbcarioca
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    The day flights from nearby destinations usually are lower and often are routed in odd ways that give a great view of Malacca, the straits, northern Indonesia and Singapore itself. I really enjoy those flights.
     
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  15. cennas
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    Indeed. The approach to 02L and 02C during this time of the year is quite spectacular, with hundreds of ships waiting their turn to enter the port. It's quite interesting also to see the ships neatly facing the same direction.
     
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  16. MSPeconomist
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    To me, this sight really drives home the importance of the shipping trade in Singapore. The only thing comparable that I can recall is the tour of the port of Rotterdam. By contrast, seeing the Sydney container port, which tends to be occupied with a ship arriving and departing on a typical day, makes one wonder why more isn't happening there.
     
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  17. jbcarioca
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    Many of those ships are in transit too; the straits of Malacca are one fo the most densely traveled straits in the world, almost all of it visible in SIN. At Phillips Channel at Singapore the Strait is less than 3km wide and 50,000 ships pass through, all queued up to pass the choke point. It is no accident that piracy here has always been a big problem.
     
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  18. Muerl
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    Muerl Gold Member

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    Wonderful replies :)

    I agree about the Landings in SIN with all of the shipping (especially at night) was pretty impressive. I wanted to add REP to the list approach over ton sap was a surprise, I never realized how massive that lake is. Flying out saw a good bit of Angkor as well.

    SGN-DAD was also a stunning view, how lush and mountainous Vietnam is.

    I suspect HAN-LGQ would have been nice, but it was all clouds all the way in for us.
     
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  19. jbcarioca
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    I had many, many flight in and out of DAD. IT is really beautiful especially over the water, but the over water small aircraft approaches to HAN let you see all the islands and all the boats, spectacular!!

    That then reminds of two others that should be on the list LXA and KTM, both of which are in valleys and the plane must wind it's way around Himalayan peaks to finally land.
    This YouTube of LXA illustrates that one nicely: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAZMy90Wyyo
    My photos of Lhasa airport are not as good as this travel agency one:
    Landing-at-Lhasa-Airport.jpg
     
  20. Gardyloo
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    No matter how many times I've made it (a very big number) the last 15 min. or so of most approaches into ANC always have me glued to the window.

    I also love the long loop over the bay for most approaches into SFO. And, of course, final into LHR from the east, right over central London and Mrs. Q's pad.
     
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  21. MSPeconomist
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    I'm generally fascinated by any landing path that goes over water, such as SFO, ORC, JFK, and many other airports. Positioning runways this way tends to avoid the arguments from those who otherwise would have homes under the landing paths.
     
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  22. zpaul

    zpaul Gold Member

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    Flying out of SCL to any point east (EZE, AEP, MDV, MDZ, etc.) gets you spectacular views of the Andes mountains. At times they seem close enough to reach out and touch. Also, flying from SCL to PMC or points further south gives you a great view off the corridor of volcanoes as you fly along the Chilean coast.

    Of course, the reverse holds true for the above.
     
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  23. mynameismud
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    +1, love the Andes (especially in Chile) : one of the best scenery in the world
     
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  24. meFIRST

    meFIRST Silver Member

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    I would say, based on what I've flown

    LAX-LAS
    EZE-SCL
    RIo Santos Dumont - Sao Paolo Cogonhas
    LAX-Santa Barbara-SFO
    ATH-JMK/JTH
    XXX-MLE
     
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  25. icurhere2
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    I'm happy with a KOA-LAX or OGG-LAX at night, when I can actually see stars everywhere I look out the window.
     
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