Bhutan: land of stunning Buddhist monasteries, soaring Himalayan vistas, few tourists, many yaks and one very scary runway approach. You thought Innsbruck was spicy? Bhutan’s Paro takes it up another notch with the visual approach into runway 15. Back in 1997 yours truly flew from New Delhi to Paro on a DrukAir BAe 146. Prior to taxi the captain informed us that the 16,000 ft mountains which form a snug fit around the airstrip meant we had a one in three chance of pulling off the approach. If not, we would divert to Calcutta and try another day.
Since then the runway has been extended and is now served by DrukAir’s A319, but as you can see from the video below it’s still a hairy ride. How appropriate that the Airbus nearly touches the hillside prayer flags.