World’s smallest runway? World’s Craziest runway?
It’s not every day you nearly get a haircut by a passing aeroplane – but on St Barts things are a little different. .
Although the clearance is supposed to be 20ft, scooter riders and a man sitting in a car instinctively duck as a plane flies overhead. Pilots need a special licence to land at the small landing strip on the island of Saint-Barthélemy, or St Barts, in the French West Indies.
Despite the apparent dangers, there have been only two fatal accidents at the airport over the years.
At 2,133ft, the runway is one of the shortest in the world — equivalent in length to five football pitches.
Tourist websites are upbeat about arriving by plane, with one saying: ‘The landing, especially on a windy day, is an adventure in itself.’
The island, with a population of just 8,400, has become a hideaway for the rich and famous.
Visitors include the actor Harrison Ford and singer P Diddy.