Photo Essay; Views from a Plane Window

views from a plane window
Above: San Andres, Colombia

I’ve always been a bit of a plane geek and one of my favorite things is seeing the world go by from a plane window. So I decided to do a post dedicated to views from plane windows and invited fellow bloggers to contribute submissions. Within hours they started to flood
in, plane views of all kinds featuring a variety of landscapes and climatic conditions. I think I almost peed my pants in excitement :).

Have a look below at some of the interesting contributions.


Land Reclamation in Bahrain


“The big square is reclaimed land and they’re building like crazy out there, in the same vein as Dubai” – Hayley from Lovepuffin Travel Blog.



Golden Gate

SF-Golden Gate Bridge-from air-1-12-c2012 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

“This lucky shot of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco on a bright, clear day was captured as my Virgin America flight circled around the bay at the beginning of my flight from SFO to Los Angeles LAX” – Carole at Berkeley and Beyond.



Mt. Rainier

mt rainier “The photo we’re sending is one we took a few weeks ago on an Alaska Airlines flight from Seattle to Phoenix.  It was just heading into sunset at the end of a gorgeous day as we left Seattle, and our pilot flew us directly over Mt. Rainier. We could see down into the crater!!! It was definitely one of the most amazing views we’ve ever seen from an airplane” – Erin and Jeff from A Week or a Weekend. . .


.Jdombs-Travels-Seaplane-Maldives-3 “The Maldives are one of the most isolated groups of islands in the world. With pristine white sand beaches, incredible coral reefs, and colorful reef fish the Maldives are the ultimate dream beach escape. Getting a birds-eye-view flying over the island and reefs in a sea plane makes you realize just how remote this island nation is” – Jennifer at Jdomb’s Travels. .  




grand canyon

“This picture has been taken from the Twin Otter Vistaliner plane. The plane is STOL, meaning short take off and landing. It allows slow and stable flights, perfect for viewing above picturesque regions. It was on the flight from Las Vegas to South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park, back in June of 2010. The views over whole flight was amazing. Rivers, desert, canyons. But this just mesmerized me, how small and organized those houses looked!” – Marysia from My Travel Affairs Travel Blog.



Somewhere between Laos and Cambodia

Over SE Asia

“This shot was taken from a small propeller plane flying over the Mekong River between Laos and Cambodia. The rays of sun bounced off the propeller blades as it rose above the horizon and lit up the rugged countryside below” – Jules and Christine from Don’t Forget to Move.


Java, Indonesia


“Klaten, Central Java.  I was flying to get my tattoos hammered-in by headhunters.  The volcano on the right is Mount Merbabu, and the one on the left is Mount Merapi, which erupted in 2010, killing 350 people and sending rocks the size of busses into nearby villages. Crazy!” – Brad at My Wanderlist.


Flying into Medellin

Medellin Colombia

“Coming into Rio Negro, where the Jose Maria Cordova International Airport is located (the international airport that serves Medellin, Colombia). This airport is actually an hour’s drive away from Medellin, but has some of the most gorgeous green views coming into an airport that I have experienced” – Dani at Going Nomadic.




“I was flying home to San Jose, CA from Düsseldorf, Germany on AirBerlin when I took this picture of the ice sheets of Greenland out of the window of the plane” – Chris from Amateur Traveler.



Flying into Seoul

approaching Seoul

“This was my morning view from my Chicago to Seoul flight on Asiana as we approached ICN – my iPhone did a good job and the wind farm was so cool plus all the small islands along the way. Great way to end a 14 hr flight on my way to Melbourne” – Sue from Philatravelgirl.



Florida Keys

Florida keys

“An aerial view of the Florida Keys on the way from Miami to San Jose, Costa Rica” – Jodie at The Travel Accessory Store.





We were flying from Santiago de Chile to Buenos Aires on Austral, which is part of Aerolineas Argentinas. This was one of the most important trips of our life. We were working in New York and traveled to Argentina to visit the Patagonia, and had one night in Santiago de Chile on our return. During that trip, we saw so many amazing places that on our last night, we decided that we were going to return to NY, save money, quit our jobs and move for half a year to Buenos Aires to travel through South America, which we actually did 3 years later!” – Silvia from La Trotamundos.



Ayer’s Rock

ayers rock
“I debated looong and hard about dropping the hefty pile of cash to get to Uluru on my 3 week spin around Oz.  Normally a frugal backpack traveler, the nearly a grand price tag for the flight and 2 nts. lodging seemed breathtakingly high (this, after living in Vietnam for two years where $20/day is the norm).  Even as the plane neared the legendary monolith, my first glimspe was a bit of a “meh” and I seriously wondered if I might not regret the travel splurge.  Ah, but once we were on the ground, and I was able to walk in the enchanting shadow of this extraordinary “Rock”, trust me – it was all ever so very worth every penny!’ – Dyanne at Travelnlass.



Doha (Qatar)


“As our Qatar Airways flight departed from Doha, Montreal-bound, we were able to observe the impressive contours of the city below. Doha’s urban development is most impressive as seen from above, where you can witness how it was built as if it had risen from the sands. It was a fascinating sight, and after visiting the United Arab Emirates, we left with our eyes full of the unbelievably fast architectural sprawl of these great desert cities” – Catherine at The Go Fever.



San Francisco sunset


“As we flew out of San Francisco, we caught sight of the setting sun and witnessed a glorious golden sunset. As the plane turned on its flight path, we were lucky enough to see both the Golden Gate bridge and the Bay Bridge together over the Bay!” – Trupti at Exploring the Blue Marble.


Marseilles, France

marseilles-France 2

“We frequently fly into Marseilles and LOVE the views- here’s the Vieux Port on the left. Circling the turquoise bay, we also had views on the Isles of Frioul (right)” – Anne at Music and Markets.




jet blue

“The sunset outside my JetBlue window seat.  I was flying back into the USA from Colombia, and this is the sunset that I saw from above the clouds” – Dani at Going Nomadic.



Somewhere over Bangkok 2 - Jennifer Dore Dallas - Moi, mes souliers

“This photo was taken in June 2013 over Bangkok as we were flying to Koh Samui on Bangkok Airlines. I had just been reunited with my boyfriend after 5 months on the road solo through South America and we were off for a week of relaxation at the beach”  Jennifer at Moi, mes souliers.





“This photo of the Alps was taken by Jose when he was coming back home to Spain from Siberia (where he was working offshore)” – Inma and Jose from A World to Travel.


Arriving in Helsinki


“Last February we were on our way to Koh Samui, Thailand. Dreaming of flip flops and shorts we looked up the cheapest flights – and of course the best option had to be a Finnair flight with a stopover in Helsinki! It was freezing and coming from Austria we were not especially looking forward to more ice and snow. However, Finland knows how to win over its visitors and greeted us with this view – the frozen ice over Helsinki islands!” – Irene & Stefano from Freelancers on the Road.





“This photo is from my Southwest Airlines flight from Las Vegas McCarran airport to Burbank airport in LA. The sun was setting but there was also a storm happening. The clouds were the fluffiest I’ve seen but it looked like the sky was burning underneath” – Arnette from Round the World Girl



Mount Merbabu and Mount Merapi

firsta - discover your indonesia

“This is picture of Mount Merbabu with mount Merapi behind it. These two volcanoes are located in Central Java. Mount Merbabu is a dormant volcano while Merapi is an active one (probably the most active volcano in Indonesia). On the right of the photo you can see some more mountains that are located in East Java” – Firsta at Discover your Indonesia.



Maldives (again)

maldives jon

“My girlfriend and I were off on a (cheap) romantic trip to the Maldives, which turned out to be quite expensive. We flew from Singapore on Tigerair. It was pretty soon after the Malaysian Airlines plane disappeared, and on the flight home they announced that they had to turn back to Male because of Sri Lankan airspace issues, so it was a bit scary until we landed 15 minutes later. It gave us another chance to see the islands from the air though!” – Jon at Jon is Travelling.



 New York at night

New York at night

‘This is New York Harbor when I arrived on a red-eye flight at 6am. A very interesting sight!’ – Daniel at Frayed Passport.




Lukla 1

‘I just returned from the Mount Everest Base Camp Trek, this trek includes a return flight from Kathmandu to the Tenzing-Hillary Airport in Lukla also known as the most dangerous airport in the world. The flight only takes about 30 minutes but the views over the Himalaya are absolutely stunning” – Freya at Holiday Nomad.


Thanks to everyone for their photos and stories. I love this post, it was my first collaborative project and ended up being a great way to get to know some fellow bloggers. I’d like to do it again sometime in the 2nd half of the year – please keep me in mind if you’re lucky enough to get a great shot from a plane window!


Related: Plane Travel and the real ‘Dick move’ (includes more window photos)



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  1. Such an awesome collection of photos here! Thanks so much for getting us involved. Love the post!
    Jules and Christine recently posted…We Reveal Our Best Budget Travel Tip!My Profile

  2. What a great post you put together – all pictures are amazing! Thanks so much for including us!
    Irene recently posted…Snorkeling with Wild Sea Turtles in AkumalMy Profile

  3. Definitely some awesome plane views in this roundup! Thanks for including us!
    Jennifer recently posted…The Magic of Formula 1 Grand Prix de MonacoMy Profile

    • Thanks for contributing Jen! Maldives look great and I guess we better get there before they sink under the ocean…

  4. Great post! Loved going through all the photos and reading the descriptions – I felt like I was on a trip around the world getting to see some amazing views from the plane. Thank you for including me & Exploring The Blue Marble! I have some new photos of the Greek Islands as seen from a plane for your next roundup 🙂
    Trupti Devdas Nayak recently posted…Safari on the Sonoma SerengetiMy Profile

    • Great Trupti – look forward to seeing those. I’ll definitely do one of these posts again later in the year.

  5. Great post, Frank! I always get a window seat and love airplane pictures. Reminds me of my many trips to who-knows-where, staring down at a Martian landscape while trying to figure out what I’m about to get myself into. Thanks for sharing and including me.
    Brad Bernard recently posted…The 50 Best June Travel ExperiencesMy Profile

  6. Planeography is so much fun and if you’re mixing it with phonography you’ll be amazed at the wonderful shots you can get. Love the prop shot. Kudos!
    Maria recently posted…Anything Like MineMy Profile

  7. Great idea for a post and some really beautiful photos. Java and Doha look incredible. I’d also love to see the Maldives at some point.
    Sara Hardman recently posted…Travel and Trip Advisor – Speaking to Sky NewsMy Profile

  8. Loved the post! Amazing pictures! Thank you for including me. Cheers!

  9. Wow – seeing the Golden Gate from above makes it look totally different
    Mic – UDrive recently posted…5 Tourist Attractions in Preveza, GreeceMy Profile

  10. WoW amazing photos ! Doha and the Maldives look stunning. Thanks for including me.
    Freya recently posted…10 Amazing Active Vacation DestinationsMy Profile

  11. Wow, these are all really great shots! This is definitely feeding my wanderlust right now. I need to start taking shots from the plane!
    Jessica Hill recently posted…Visit Colorado: I’m a Whitewater Raft Guide!My Profile

  12. Love the post Frank!! The photos are amazing 🙂 Didn’t think there would be so much, of such diversified places. Thanks for including me!
    Catherine recently posted…Travel Fail: Dune-bashing in DubaiMy Profile

    • Thanks Catherine for contributing! These were photos I received over 2 days, I actually had to turn people away. Just goes to prove I’m not the only geek taking photos from a plane window. Yes, I love the diversity – as I said, I’m going to do a follow up later in the year, I love these photos as well as the interesting little stories from other bloggers.

  13. What a fun post Frank! I really like the collection of random window impressions that we all know so well from our flights. Some views are really amazing, but I am always finding that my photos never turn out as good as the actual scenery did and I always get the wing or the turbine on it no matter what I do. But on the other hand that actually makes the photos look like a real action shot… 🙂
    Dennis Kopp recently posted…11 Curiosities making Myanmar so SpecialMy Profile

    • Hi Dennis – I actually prefer part of the plane in the photo, partly because I’m a plane geek and I like to see the airline/type of plane, but also because it gives a here and there perspective.

  14. Andes looks amazing! I love the window seat so I really enjoy reading this post. 🙂 Thank you for letting me be a part of it.
    Firsta recently posted…Goa Jomblang: An Amazing Caving AdventureMy Profile

  15. Thank you for sharing my photo!! Such a great post! I will never tire of looking out the plane window.
    Arnette RTW recently posted…Taking Better Selfies and Selfie Tools For Your iPhoneMy Profile

  16. Looks like a great time. Lovely pictures, I love seeing travels from different perspectives. Magnificent pictures, thank you for sharing!
    Sara Chukoian recently posted…Cycling South Koster Island, SwedenMy Profile

  17. Wow an impressive set of photos. I love a good view of a city from a plane window. Although my favourite view was flying Bangkok to Koh Samui and seeing the crystal blue sea and tiny runway. So exciting. The view of the Burj Khalifa is very impressive as you fly over Dubai too.
    Helen recently posted…Bamboo Tattoo in Thailand – What, Where, Why and How Much?My Profile

  18. What a great idea for a post! I love the Indonesia one and the Maldives one with the wing of the plane looks almost identical to one of my Maldives ones – that San Francisco sunset is a beauty too!
    Shikha (whywasteannualleave) recently posted…A Buenos Aires Street Art Walking TourMy Profile

    • Frank (bbqboy) says:

      Thanks Shikha! I have to do one of those posts again, really was a lot of fun getting people’s photos. By the end of the year for sure!

  19. What a great idea for a post, fantastic views especially the first one!

  20. I love this series! It reminds good memories, on the plane, on the way for a new trip…

Thanks for reading! Feedback is always appreciated!


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