Potentially the most thrilling and striking commercial flight one can take is departing from Rio de Janeiro’s Santos Dumont Airport and landing one hour later in Congonhas Airport in São Paulo. Taking off from Santos Dumont, in the center of the Wonderful City, aircrafts bank around the picturesque Guanabara Bay, passing Sugarloaf Mountain and the Christ the Redeemer statue, giving passengers an aerial view of this geographically improbable city.
On approach to São Paulo — South America’s biggest city — planes descend into an apparently endless blanket of high-rise buildings. As the only airport in the city proper, landing in Congonhas can be a bit of a white-knuckle ride. After negotiating around corporate towers and apartment buildings, pilots finally can bring the craft down on the runway.
Now, these two airports — among Brazil’s busiest — are moving closer to being sold off to private companies.