Here are some sights you should not miss out on – from the window seat – if you love traveling around the globe like I do and experiencing what the world has to offer. By James Foster, Chairman, AirlinePros.
1. Sunrise over the Indian Ocean
Almost all air carriers fly from Europe to Africa at night, and there is a good reason behind this. Those who book their seats on the left side of the aircraft are in for a treat as the glorious view of the rising sun on the eastern seaboard is a sight not to be missed. The entire cabin is engulfed in a never-before-seen hue of orange, which only gets better as the sun continues its course from east to west. Even if you are seated on the right side of the plane, staying awake at the break of dawn is the key to enjoying the moment of a lifetime. Trust me, losing some sleep is well worth it!
2. Wildlife alongside the runway
As you land in Windhoek, Namibia, the open, uninhabited spaces is the first thing that you notice. You are immediately greeted by antelopes, or kudu, locally, who run helter-skelter as the plane touches down. The larger variety of the kudu, called ‘greater kudu’ (what else!) is endemic to southern and eastern Africa, and you are unlikely to find these magnificent animals anywhere else in the world. The drive from the Hosea Kutako International Airport to downtown Windhoek is yet another enthralling experience – because of the unique nature of the soil, the ground literally glitters during the hour-long drive that takes you through some amazing scenery.
3. Palms in the air – a swaying welcome
Upon your final descent into Kerala, the southern state of India, you are nearly astounded by some lush greenery-dotted with palm trees. There are four international airports in Kerala, and the experience is relatively the same in all four. Swaying coconut trees on both sides of the aircraft welcome you to a state that has been nicknamed ‘God’s Own Country’. Little wonder then, that Kerala has been featured on TIME Magazine’s 50 Greatest Places of 2022. This is not a one-off occurrence, as Kerala constantly finds a place in every globetrotter’s itinerary as a preferred destination.
4. Crystal clear waters all around
The first thing you notice when flying over the Maldives is how clear the water is. The country does its best to keep it that way. Sunlight streams through the waters, giving you a glimpse of the white sands at the bottom. The Maldives is an archipelago of some 1192 islands, which means that wherever you choose to stay, you will more or less have the place to yourself. It is like relaxing on a private beach, while enjoying five-star hospitality at its best. And when you are not watching the fish swim in their natural habitat, you can go surfing, scuba diving or snorkeling.
5. A vast, wide, white expanse of unexplored beauty
When flying over Alaska, you are in for a real treat, whether it is summer or winter. During the summer, the landscape is amazingly spectacular and the waters so blue that it takes your breath away. And in winter, there is so much of white all around that you have to look closely to spot the natural features in the topography. Upon landing at the Ted Stevens International Airport in Anchorage – dubbed ‘the little airport on top of the world’ – it is hard to miss the towering Chugach Mountains which stand ever so regally flanking it.