Usually, if you were to be visiting another country, your first step would be to book your flight. But not so fast—sometimes you aren’t just able to step on a plane and go anywhere in the world. Not if you want to visit the five countries below, for instance.
1. Vatican City
Vatican City, a city-state surrounded by Rome, Italy, is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Church. It’s home to the Pope and a trove of iconic art and architecture. Its Vatican Museums house ancient Roman sculptures such as the famed “Laocoön and His Sons” as well as Renaissance frescoes in the Raphael Rooms and the Sistine Chapel, famous for Michelangelo’s ceiling. We all know that the Vatican City is the smallest nation in the world, but did you know that this beautiful Vatican City does not have an airport of its own? The country is an independent city-state within Rome and covers a very small area of 109 acres. Travellers to Vatican City first need to book their tickets for Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport in Rome, and then take a cab or taxi to reach their destination. Vatican City is only 30 km from the airport.
2. San Marino
San Marino is a mountainous microstate surrounded by north-central Italy. Among the world’s oldest republics, it retains much of its historic architecture. On the slopes of Monte Titano sits the capital, also called San Marino, known for its medieval walled old town and narrow cobblestone streets. The Three Towers, castlelike citadels dating to the 11th century, sit atop Titano’s neighboring peaks. San Marino, which is also the fifth-smallest country in the world. The country does not have an airport of its own so those who wish to reach San Marino need book their air tickets to Federico Fellini International Airport in Italy. San Marino is only half an hour drive from San Marino as the distance between the two is only about 21 km. At the top of a mountain, the City of San Marino is full of old buildings, restaurants, and stores catering to tourists, as well as several small museums, and has beautiful views of the nearby towns and surrounding countryside.
Andorra is a tiny, independent principality situated between France and Spain in the Pyrenees mountains. It’s known for its ski resorts and a tax-haven status that encourages duty-free shopping. Capital Andorra la Vella has boutiques and jewelers on Meritxell Avenue and several shopping centers. The old quarter, Barri Antic, houses Romanesque Santa Coloma Church, with a circular bell tower. This is a nation full of gorgeous hikes and landscapes but the country does not feature an airport of its own. Another interesting fact about the country is that it’s capital city Vella, is also the highest-elevated capital city in Europe! But reaching Andorra is not an issue as there are five airports that are around three hours away from the country. These airports are situated in Spain and France. Andorra is situated right on the border between Spain and France. This gorgeous European nation is a paradise for adventure enthusiasts and nature lovers. One can enjoy hiking and trekking in the country. Also, do you know that the country’s capital city Vella is the highest-elevated capital city in the whole of Europe!
Did you know Monaco is the second smallest country in the world which does not have an airport of its own? Monaco, officially the Principality of Monaco, is a sovereign city-state and microstate on the French Riviera a few kilometres west of the Italian region of Liguria, in Western Europe, on the Mediterranean Sea. It is bordered by France to the north, east and west. The country is surrounded by France on three sides and has the Mediterranean Sea on one. Travellers wanting to explore Monaco need to take a boat or a half-hour car ride after landing at France’s Nice Côte d’Azur Airport. Monaco among the most luxurious tourist resorts in the world and have given it a fame far exceeding its size. The country has a mild Mediterranean climate with annual temperatures averaging 61 °F (16 °C) and with only about 60 days of rainfall. Monthly average temperatures range from 50 °F (10 °C) in January to 75 °F (24 °C) in August.
Liechtenstein is another European country that has no airport of its own, though this has never stopped travellers from exploring this gorgeous destination. People would have to book their tickets till the closest airport, which is St. Gallen–Altenrhein in Switzerland. From there, travellers would need either a car or boat to reach Liechtenstein. Or there is another popular option, which is Swiss or Austrian rail stations. It is also the smallest country in the world to border two countries, namely Austria and Germany. The climate of Liechtenstein is mild and is greatly affected by the warm southerly wind known as the foehn. Annual precipitation ranges, according to location, from about 35 to 47 inches (900 to 1,200 mm), though some areas in the mountains can receive as much as 75 inches (1,900 mm). In winter the temperature rarely falls below 5 °F (−15 °C), while in summer the average daily maximum temperature varies from the high 60s to the low 80s F (about 20 to 28 °C). These conditions allow for the cultivation of grapes and corn (maize), which is unusual in a mountainous area.