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Photos: World's 10 Most Stunning Airport Approaches
CNN | Apr. 20, 2016

They don't have airplanes in "Game of Thrones" but if they did, there'd be no finer arrival in King's Landing than Malta Airport.

The spectacular walled city of Valletta, so familiar from the HBO show, rises up from the turquoise Mediterranean Sea, while airline passengers also get a bird's-eye view of the sister islands of Gozo and Comino, known for its Blue Lagoon.

No wonder Malta has topped a global survey of the world's most scenic airport approaches, conducted by PrivateFly, a booking platform for private jet charters.

"Flying into Malta is a truly special experience," says Adam Twidell, PrivateFly CEO and an experienced pilot. "It's a tiny island landing that packs a big punch."

When you're flying into these 10 beauties, which offer views of everything from mountainous landscapes to glittering skyscrapers, you're going to want to be in the window seat.

France's Nice Cote D'Azur Airport and New Zealand's Queenstown Airport came in second and third place in the 2016 poll, having topped the list in 2015 and 2014 respectively.

Malta made its debut at the top of the charts, while the other new entries were Los Angeles International Airport, at number 9, and Ireland's Donegal Airport, at number 7.

Los Angeles' LAX offers views of downtown, the Pacific Coast, Beverly Hills and the iconic Hollywood sign.

And at the other end of the scale, isolated Donegal Airport offers spectacular views of Ireland's rugged Atlantic coast.

The PrivateFly Best Airport Approaches 2016 poll was conducted in February and March of this year and received more than 7,500 individual votes, says the company.

A total of 115 global airports received nominations.

"PrivateFly's poll has become an annual checklist for the well-traveled, and this year's voting was the most competitive yet," says Twidell.

"The 2016 top ten includes the imposing city views of Los Angeles and London City; the stunning mountain scenery of Queenstown; the tiny island airstrip of Saba in the Caribbean [the world's shortest commercial runway]; and the unique beach landing at Barra in Scotland's Outer Hebrides."

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