Travel

The coolest airports for a stopover

Have you ever found yourself trapped in an airport, waiting in a fit of boredom for your next flight? There you are, bumbling around and killing time, searching for ways to distract yourself until you can finally jet off to your dream destination.

If you’re a frequent flyer, it’s pretty much inevitable that you’ll find yourself stuck in an airport every once in a while. And, if it’s a frequent occurrence for you, you might even have found ways to stave off your boredom.

But, now picture the scene – you’re in an airport, but you’re not bored. Instead of a blank, vaguely purgatorial flight hub, you’re treated to a treasure trove of things to do and cool experiences to be had.

It might seem like a fantastical idea, but there are a number of airports in the world that are blessed with the coolest features. They’re almost enough to make your time in an airport a holiday in itself.

Stansted Airport, England

Situated just outside of London, Stansted is one of the foremost airports in the United Kingdom, offering a stunning range of services.

Stansted Airport, England

Stansted Airport, England

Some of the features of the airport include the Stansted meet and greet, a varied array of bars and restaurants, shopping facilities and even a regular showcase of super cars from car competition organiser Best of the Best.

Wellington Airport, New Zealand

Not many people knew too much about New Zealand until The Lord of the Rings films were made there, apart from that it was on the other side of the world. But, now, The Lord of the Rings is everywhere in this beautiful country as it capitalises on its success.

Wellington Airport, New Zealand

Wellington Airport, New Zealand

And, Wellington Airport is no different, with a frighteningly massive statue of Gollum, the creepy cave-dwelling husk of a creature, towering above its visitors.

It makes for quite an architectural surprise to see this limp face peering down at you, and is bound to make any fans of the films yelp with glee.

Abu Dhabi International, United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi has long been famous for its opulence and overblown sense of luxury, offering a series of manmade wonders that make it look like the biggest pleasure facility in the world – and its airport has followed that look down to a tee.

Abu Dhabi International, United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi International, United Arab Emirates

The real highlight of the place is the architecture, which offers grandiose curved roofs with arabesque patterns to allow the natural light in without the crippling heat burning through.

As soon as you’ve entered the airport, you’ve set upon a dazzling journey through this sea of shops and first class facilities as you await your flight.

Hong Kong International, Hong Kong

Hong Kong International is a veritable wonderland all of its own, turning a stress-fuelled layover into a relaxing experience.

Hong Kong International, Hong Kong

Hong Kong International, Hong Kong

Featuring an IMAX theatre, an entire theme park and even a golf course, you’ll feel like you’re tearing yourself away from this airport when your flight finally arrives.

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