Every once in a while, another blogger’s post inspires me to spring one of my own from the confines of the drafts file and set it free.  You are looking at the most recent example of this unintended influencing.  Blog buddy iFlyMSP recently published this year’s ranking of the best airports around the world and I noticed Seoul’s Incheon Airport sitting comfortably in fourth place.

While I’ve barely scratched the surface of Earth’s international airports (the US alone has over 100—none of which made the top 10, by the way), I feel confident saying that Incheon deserves its lofty place on this list.

Sylvan ambiance

A while back, just before all our lives were indelibly altered by the viral menace, the husband and I took our long-awaited R.E.I. trip to Laos and Cambodia. Both the outbound and return journeys included nearly 5-hour layovers at Incheon, and it definitely lived up to my Korean-American colleagues’ ravings.

This isn’t the nap zone, honey. It’s a hallway. #tootiredtocare

After a 13-hour flight from Minneapolis, we were ready for a nap, but first we needed to get some feeling back in our butts.  Enter the digital gym:

Challenging for both the body and the mind.

All the winning (me) and losing (the husband) made us sweaty, so it was off to the bathrooms for a shower:

As nice as many hotel bathrooms.
Thank goodness for this sign, otherwise who knows what kind of mischief I might have gotten up to.

Then, because even though it was midday to Koreans, it was the wee hours for us, we slept:

Just moments from “zzzzzzz” . . .
. . . which is Korean for “zzzzzzz.”

All of these things are free for everyone—no hoity toity first class lounge access required.  The airport offers several other perks we didn’t have time to partake in: massages (definitely not free), relax zones, mini concerts, cultural performances, walk of the royal family and changing of the royal guard, the Korean Traditional Cultural Experience Center, a museum, and several art installations.

See for yourself: Incheon Airport 

Our most unfortunate miss, though, was food.  Maybe our body clocks were off, but we just weren’t hungry.

Lucky for us, the bibimbap served in Delta’s Premium Select seats was outstanding.

For most of us, price, number of legs, and time of arrival and departure are the most important factors when we book flights.  Rarely do we choose a flight based on where our layover will be.  But if you are ever in a position to choose, I would highly recommend a stopover at Incheon.  Whether your layover there is by happenstance or design, you’ll now have one more thing to look forward to on your trip.

Until we meet again, Incheon!

What’s your favorite international airport?

23 thoughts

  1. I usually just use airport as transit spots and don’t really take the time to check out their amenities…I will say, though, Incheon’s looks spectacular! I’ve heard great things about Singapore’s, too, a place that I’m dying to go to post-pandemic. Looks like you two had a lot of fun in South Korea!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. How fun, you certainly made the most of a long layover! I believe Narita airport in Japan has some similar accoutrements but I’ve never checked them out, always ready to get out there and get to the world outside. Did you make a fan at Incheon?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Damn. I think I’d make a trip to South Korea just to stay in the airport! Who needs a hotel or restaurants when you’ve got all that at Incheon?

    I haven’t done much international traveling, so my experiences are confined to U.S. airports. As far as those go, PDX takes the cake (though it’s still nowhere near the same league as Incheon).

    Also, if that airport only ranks #4, what do the top three look like?!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Your captions really add that little spice to all your articles. I need to up my caption game too. Also, it’s so cool that we’ve once been in the same places (from Korea to Laos to Cambodia), even though we’re technically strangers on the internet.

    Liked by 1 person

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