World’s Highest Civilian Airport in Tibet

The airport that’s above the clouds! World’s highest civilian airport opens in Tibet


PUBLISHED: 10:50 GMT, 17 September 2013 | UPDATED: 11:44 GMT, 19 September 2013

article-0-1BD99A3F000005DC-503_634x360 High flyer: A plane takes off from the terminal of Daocheng Yading Airport

The take-off from the newly-opened Daocheng Yading Airport should be a relatively short affair.

Standing at 4,411 metres above sea level it is already half the height of a plane’s average cruising altitude.

Perched in the mountainous Tibetan region of south-west Sichuan Province, China‘s newest hub has broken the record for highest civilian airport in the world.

article-2423327-1BD99A87000005DC-640_634x386 article-0-1BDF3B8C000005DC-312_634x407

Touching down: Local Tibetans wave hada, or traditional silk scarves, as they greet the first group of passengers at Daocheng Yading Airport. It takes the title from Qamdo Bamda Airport, also in Tibet, which sits at 4,334 metres.

Star appeal: Tibetans took pictures of themselves in front of the Air China flight

The first Air China flight arrived at the 1.58 billion yuan (£164million) airport on Monday to great fanfare and locals were seen taking photos of themselves on the runway.

The airport was built to connect the Garzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture with the capital of Sichuan Province, Chengdu.

Travel between the two used to take two days by bus, but has now been reduced to a one-hour flight.

article-2423327-1BDFA63E000005DC-836_634x365Mountain retreat: Yading Nature Reserve is a site of Tibetan pilgrimage

Designed to handle 280,000 passengers a year, China hopes the airport will encourage tourism to the Yading Nature Reserve, a mountainous area that is a site for Tibetan pilgrimage.

Three of the snowy peaks – Mount Yangmaiyong, Mount Xiaruoduijie, and Mount Xianairi – were sanctified by the 5th Dalai Lama and the area is known for being barely touched by outside influence.

The Chinese government hopes to attract 15 million tourists to the Tibetan regions by 2015, which would bring two billion yuan (£205million) into the country.

However, both the tourism plan and airport are controversial, as they help to further Chinese political control in Tibet.

The number of self-immolation incidents carried out by monks and protestors over Chinese rule has risen in the past two years, leading China to close the border to foreign visitors on several occasions.

Tibet declared its independence from China in 1913, but the Chinese army re-entered the country in 1950, bringing it back under Chinese power.

The Tibetan head of the Buddhist religion, the Dalai Lama, fled to India in 1959 and has since led calls from Tibet to regain its independence and for the protection of the Tibetan culture from Chinese influence.

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‘World’s Largest Building’ – New Century Global Center, Chengdu, China

Aerial viewBiggestOpening

Years ago I had the notion that the great shopping mall in Edmonton, Canada was the greatest. Then last summer, we visited The Venetian in Las Vegas and thought that this was even more fantastic. Now we see such similar structures as in Marina Bay Integrated Resort in Singapore or in Macau & Dubai. But nothing come anywhere near to compare with the greatest human structure of them all . . . the one & only “New Century Global Center” in Chengdu, China.

It’s China’s gift to the world!

It’s where history & modernisation harmonise!!

China’s fourth largest city may have problems with smog, but you’d never know it sitting at the urban centre’s beachside resort. Of course, Chengdu, doesn’t have a beach, and the resort is indoors.

The city has just opened the New Century Global Centre, a structure that China touts as the “World’s Largest Building.” The giant structure has 1.76 million square metres of floor space and is half a kilometre long, 400 metres wide and more than 100 metres tall.

iMax Screen

Contained inside is a 14m-screen IMAX theatre, two five-star hotels, a shopping village and a long stretch of offices. The developers claim that you could fit more than 20 Sydney Opera Houses inside the Global Centre.

We have borrowed a Japanese technique,” guide Liu Xun told the Sydney Morning Herald. “There is an artificial sun that shines 24 hours a day and allows for a comfortable temperature.”

Beachfront layout

The sun shines down on a manufactured beach-side resort built to hold over 6,000 people.


When people first enter into the massive structure, they are met with an 18-storey concourse, with giant escalators highlighting the building’s huge glass ceiling.


The entranceway alone is shocking in its opulence, the Guardian reports:

Lined with a stratified cream cake of hotel balconies and zig-zagging escalators, visitors are blasted with artificial sea breeze, designed to ‘make one intoxicated, as if he were enjoying himself in the fabulous heaven.’ Moving past aquarium walls and through a strange hybrid townscape of Polynesian huts crossed with a middle eastern kasbah, tourists arrive at the 400 m-long coastline, where the largest artificial waves in the world break in front of the longest LED screen in the world – on which ‘the alternating morning cloud and twilight afterglow extend the horizon limitlessly in the temporal and spatial directions.’

”It is Manhattan, not Chengdu,” Zhau Yun, who heads the British Chamber of Commerce, told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Zhau said that the city is building new superbuildings faster than Shanghai and that she hopes the city knows what it’s doing.

Of course, the Global Centre isn’t the only mega-building project in China. A few hundred kilometres away in Changsha, the Sky City project looks to erect the world’s tallest skyscraper — a building that will top the current champion, the Burj Khalifa, by 30 feet.

Now do you still think greatly of Miyazaki Ocean Dome: Largest Indoor Water Park in the World – Japan?