Nothing lasts forever. This stands true with airports all over the world. Some airfields get reused for parks, convention centers, or are just left for Mother Nature to reclaim. Take a look at these stunning airports that were abruptly abandoned.
Ellinikon International Airport, Greece
Located four miles outside of Athens, Ellinikon was opened in 1938. The Nazis quickly took over the airport during World War II, using it as a Luftwaffe base.
Another View Of Ellinikon International Airport, Greece
A new airport was built in anticipation of the 2004 Athens Olympics, which ultimately led to the sweeping away of Ellinikon's remains.
Croydon Airport, England
Croydon was known as one of the three iconic pre-WWII airports in Europe. The runway crossed an active roadway, and a man waving a red flag was in charge of stopping the traffic. Croydon is also credited with being the first airport with air traffic control. The old terminal Airport House still stands, but everything else has been demolished.
Galeville Military Airport, New York
This small military airfield was built during World War II for use as a military academy. The two paved runways did see some civilian use, but not for long. It is now part of the Shawangunk Grasslands National Wildlife Refuge.
Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California
This airfield has some Hollywood history behind it. Scenes from the 1996 blockbuster “Independence Day” were filmed here.
Another View Of Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California
It’s fitting that this desert airstrip had part in the movie, since it looks exactly where extra-terrestrials would visit. El Toro was closed in 1999, but thankfully it wasn’t due to an alien invasion.
Gaza International Airport, Gaza Strip
Gaza International, also known as Yasser Arafat International, opened in 1998. This Gaza Strip airport helped ferry 700,000 passengers passing through annually.
Another Look At Gaza International Airport, Gaza Strip
Although, this success wasn’t meant to last. In 2001, Israeli forces shelled its radar station and control tower, effectively putting it out of operation. The runway was bulldozed shortly after.
Johnston Atoll Airport, USA
Johnston Atoll is exactly what the name suggests, a small atoll in the Pacific Ocean. This airport, located several hundred miles south of Hawaií, was used by the US military for most of the 20th century.
More Views Of Johnston Atoll Airport, USA
It was attacked by Japanese submarines during WWII, but ultimately survived until its closing in 2005.
Kai Tak International Airport, Hong Kong
Kai Tak was Hong Kong’s main airport from 1925 to 1998. It is surrounded by mountains and buildings, making it one of the world’s most dangerous landing strips.
More Shots Of Kai Tak International Airport, Hong Kong
Aircrafts were forced to make a severe 90 degree turn to land safely. Kai Tak was closed in 1998, when all traffic moved to the new Hong Kong International.
Robert Mueller Municipal Airport, Texas
Robert Mueller Municipal Airport was opened in 1928 and served the city of Austin until 1999. It was replaced by the Austin Bergstrom International Airport shortly after. The only visible structure left of Robert Mueller is its old control tower.
Nicosia International Airport, Cyprus
Nicosia International went from being the most important airport in Cyprus to a no-man’s land. Operations were effectively shut down after the Turkish invasion of 1974.
More Shots Of Nicosia International Airport, Cyprus
This airfield is now a buffer zone, where both Greeks and Turks are barred from entering.
Floyd Bennett Field, New York (1 of 2)
During the its glory days, Floyd Bennett Field was one of New York’s major airports. Amelia Earhart and Howard Hughes regularly flew out of this airfield.
More Views Of Floyd Bennett Field, New York
Floyd Bennett is now a public park, but still retains some of the historic buildings from the old airport.
RAF Binbrook, England
RAF Binbrook was used by bombers during World War II, and continued to be visited by the Air Force until the ‘80s. It is just one of many disused airfields found across the UK. You may recognize this airfield from the 1990 film “Memphis Belle.”
Castellón-Costa Azahar Airport, Spain
Although Castellón-Costa Azahar was officially declared open in 2011, no commercial flight has ever touched down. The most notable landmark of this airport is the €150 million statue honoring Carlos Fabra. Fabre was the local politician who was the main driving force behind the construction.
Castellón-Costa Azahar Airport, Spain
A view of the empty runway and baggage claim.
Stapleton International Airport, Colorado
Stapleton International served the city of Denver from 1929 to 1995, when it was eventually replaced by Denver International. The only things that remains to this day from Stapleton is an old control tower. The rest of the structures were severely damaged by a storm in 1997.
Don Quijote Airport, Spain
Don Quijote was conceived in the 1990s, but went bust in 2012. This was Spain’s first private international airport, made as an alternative to Madrid-Barajas Airport.
More Pictures Of Don Quijote Airport, Spain
But what’s the big deal about his deserted airport? It just happened to cost $1.1 billion to build.
Chanute AFB, Illinois
Rantoul, Illinois is home to Chanute AFB. Opened in 1917, Chanute served as training grounds for pilots during World War I.
More Views Of Chanute AFB, Illinois (2 of 2)
The base continued to be a major training center for another 75 years. Chanute started to close in 1993 and many of the buildings are still empty to this day.