Ryanair is set to become the first airline to operate scheduled flights from the Spanish “ghost airport” of Castellón.

The Irish carrier will announce plans on Wednesday to fly from the airport, which cost €150m (£107m) to build but stood empty for almost four years and is widely regarded as a symbol of regional governments’ profligacy during Spain’s long-gone property boom.

As Alex mentioned in our last podcast episode, an airport built with the wrong runway measurements (the planes couldn't turn!), without fuel stations (what?!) and no operational future (besides serving the local football team) has finally found life.

Oh, and it has a statue that cost 300,000 EUR (Alex likes it, I'm not so sure I do).

El Hombre Avion (image credit: Sanbec / Wikimedia Commons)

El Hombre Avion (image credit: Sanbec / Wikimedia Commons)

A white elephant. A folly. An electoral promise (the man responsible is serving time for tax fraud). A target of the Spanish press as it encapsulates everything that has been wrong (their words) with Spain in the last decade.

Seeing the news, I remembered that Top Gear ran fast cars on an abandoned runway in Season 20 episode 3. 

I assumed it was the same airport but boy I was wrong. It's actually a different one, Ciudad Real Central Airport, which apparently cost more no less than 1 billion EUR. Another folly.

That one had Ryanair flying for 6 months but is now completely abandoned and looking for a buyer. If you have 80m EUR to spare—though Alex proposed that it becomes a HQ for Layovers. I like the idea.

We start episode 008 with a discussion about it all: