[[quoteright:300:[[Webcomic/GirlGenius http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/CastleWulfenbach.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:300:The only way to travel: by ''blimp castle''.]]

->''"[Airships] put me in mind of a man who invents a floor that is perfectly smooth, beautifully patterned, never requires cleaning, and never wears out. Unfortunately, [[AwesomeButImpractical the floor cannot be walked upon with nailed shoes or have anything dropped on it]], because it's [[MadeOfExplodium made of high explosive.]]"''
-->--'''UsefulNotes/AdolfHitler'''

->''" I love my airship! [[TravelCool It's the]] '''[[TravelCool only]]''' [[TravelCool way to fly!]]"''
-->--'''[[Franchise/CrashBandicoot Dr. Neo Cortex]]''', ''VideoGame/CrashTwinsanity''

While airships in general are cool, the CoolAirship turns this UpToEleven. Most of the time, it will have an [[AwesomeButImpractical impossibly cool design]] which would most likely be unable to fly in RealLife. Fortunately, fiction has {{Phlebotinum}} and/or [[HandWave hybrid designs]] (heavier-than-air airships that fly with some level of aerodynamic assistance from lifting bodies, wings, rotors, etc.) for that little problem. Cool Airships also tend to be exceptionally big, sometimes so big that they double as Main/{{Airborne Aircraft Carrier}}s or even [[FloatingContinent airborne cities]].

The CoolAirship is the preferred method of travel for SkyPirates and [[StupidJetpackHitler technologically-savvy Nazis]], and is extremely common in classic [[SpeculativeFiction scientific romances]] and SteamPunk. Technically, airships are far more DieselPunk, with regards to both style and overall use, but they were actually invented in the Victorian era. The first airship flew in 1852 and was propelled by, you guessed it, a steam engine. Yes, that means [[OlderThanTheyThink blimps were around before]] the [[OlderThanRadio radio,]] ''[[UsefulNotes/{{Evolution}} On the Origin of Species]],'' and [[UsefulNotes/AbrahamLincoln the Lincoln administration.]]

It's worth noting that not all airships are Cool Airships. For instance, the Goodyear Blimp is definitely ''not'' a Cool Airship. Like the CoolCar and the CoolPlane, the Cool Airship is exceptionally cool. Furthermore, it has to be owned by a major character, or otherwise play a prominent role, such as acting as the setting for a major scene. For massive cool points, it should be appointed like the ''Titanic'', with a casino, bar, and a sultry chanteuse on board for the entertainment of the passengers. Military or [[SkyPirates pirate]] vessels are known to carry an [[AirborneAircraftCarrier internal aircraft hangar]] and [[MoreDakka lots o' guns.]] Either way, any Cool Airship worth its salt usually boasts an UnnecessarilyLargeInterior[[labelnote:*]]which is actually justified, in RealLife large airships need the vast hull space for weight distribution[[/labelnote]]. It goes without saying that they are usually commanded by a BadAss of some sort.

Unfortunately, with the destruction of the ''{{Hindenburg}}'' in 1937, airships mostly died out in RealLife, so there are few examples in that category, with most modern airships being used for advertising, tourism and surveillance. See our UsefulNotes on [[UsefulNotes/{{Airships}} airships]] for more information on these craft and their history. Today, it's unlikely that they'll ever make a big comeback and overtake other aircraft, since modern jets are 4-5 times faster and helicopters are more nimble. Then again, even in their heyday airships were never common, seen more as the pinnacle or the titan of aircraft, something rare and newsworthy. However, there is a budding renaissance of Cool Airships being built and tested for niche applications, for example [[http://snafu-solomon.blogspot.com/2011/06/skunk-works-air-ships.html?m=1 replacing cargo helicopters at ten times the range and a tenth the cost.]] This is largely fueled by the new development of hybrid(heavier-than-air) airship technology, which gives them '''much''' higher payloads, greater speed and more resistance to foul weather. Some other good examples of hybrid airships would be the [[http://www.irconnect.com/noc/press/pages/news_releases.html?d=212481 LEMV]] and the [[http://www.aeroscraft.com/ Aeroscraft]].

See ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld for airships being used to help show the viewers that something is set in an AlternateUniverse or AlternateHistory. The two can overlap, but ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld are often just a background detail, and Cool Airships (including ones in SpeculativeFiction) aren't always used to hint at an AlternateUniverse setting. After all, some exist in RealLife.

A Cool Airship in fantasy or steampunk will often fall under ArtisticLicenseEngineering, especially when it's not modeled after real-world zeppelins; things like having one or two tiny propellers or tiny decorative wings as the only source of lift are not uncommon. Of course, sometimes [[AWizardDidIt it's just magic]].

A SubTrope of CoolShip, and so a SisterTrope of CoolBoat and CoolPlane. Related to the SquareCubeLaw, HollywoodDensity and {{Balloonacy}}, depending on how it falls on the MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness. If it's a LivingShip, it's probably also a LivingGasbag.

See also GlobalAirship for the video game-specific variant.

And remember... IT IS NOT A BLIMP, [[UsefulNotes/{{Airships}} IT'S AN AIRSHIP!]]
----
!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* The ''Goliath'' and the ''Tiger Moth'' from ''CastleInTheSky''.
** Laputa also counts.
** Also frequently present in numerous other Studio Ghibli films.
* ''Arcus Prima'' from ''{{Simoun}}''. Also an AirborneAircraftCarrier.
* The thieves' airship in ''Manga/TheDaughterOfTwentyFaces''.
* The Silvana from ''LastExile''.
** Hell, EVERY ship from ''LastExile''.
* ''MazingerZ'': Guru, Count Brocken's aerial fortress. It appears for first time at the episode 40.
** ''GreatMazinger:'' Mykeros and Demonika, Mykene army's flying fortresses and aerial carriers.
* The ''Gekko'' from ''EurekaSeven''.
** Which is also capable of [[CoolSpaceship suborbital/orbital operations.]]
* Millennium of ''{{Hellsing}}'' fame have three airships - the two Graf Zeppelins, one of which withstood fire from [[MoreDakka Harkonnan 2]], and the Hindenburg II, which dwarfed Buckingham Palace and contained an army of 1000 vampires.
* [[spoiler:Chao Lingshen]]'s airship in ''MahouSenseiNegima'', which served as the stage for the final battle in the Festival Arc.
** When the group gets to the Magic World, there are cool airships everywhere, although they're somehow combined with the FlyingSeafoodSpecial. [[spoiler: Haruna managed to get her hands on her own CoolAirship by drawing and selling dojinji to the lack of supply magic world and earned a fortune, and the Ala Alba uses it as their base.]]
* The [=AAA=] Wunder from ''[[RebuildOfEvangelion Evangelion 3.33]]''.
* ''{{Gaiking}}: The Legend of Daiku-Maryu'', the ship being the titular ''Daikuu Maryuu''. The ''Daichi Maryuu'' and the ''Tenkuu Maryuu'' are also examples, though the Daichi is more like a Cool Tank. And they're all shaped like dragons.
* Lawrence III's airship ''Hikōkyū'' (Japanese for "Flying Palace") from ''Anime/{{Pokemon 2000}}'' and Zero's Megarig from ''Anime/PokemonGiratinaAndTheSkyWarrior''; also the Battle Pyramid (inhabited by Frontier Brain Brandon) most likely qualifies as an airship. All three of these [[spoiler:crashed in pursuit of a Legendary Pokémon]], no less.
** In ''Manga/PokemonSpecial'', there's the Team Rocket Airship that can turn into a stadium with a push of a button. Giovanni probably designed it that way specifically for his rematch with Red.
** And Team Rockets' Meowth-shaped hot air balloon, which just happens to be their main form of transportation. However, after they TookALevelInBadass in the ''Best Wishes'' anime, they abandoned the Meowth balloon and replaced it with a simple purple hot air balloon with a stylized Team Rocket "R" insignia on it.
* LightNovel/ToaruHikuushiENoKoiuta: Some of the aircraft are actually pretty realistic. Others... not so much.
* ''Anime/YuGiOh'' gives us Seto Kaiba's airship, [[http://www.yu-jyo.net/002/081.shtml which]] [[http://www.yu-jyo.net/images/081-120/081/81airship_u.jpg bears]] [[http://www.yu-jyo.net/images/081-120/081/81airship_j.jpg resemblance]] to your stereotypical blimps or semi-rigid frames (although, considering what it was capable of, it was probably rigid). The gondola on the bottom was large and comfortable enough to host the Battle City finalists and their friends, as well as Kaiba and his employees. There was also a lift which took people to the top of the airship, where a large dueling arena was installed, notable for having Tristan and Duke almost fall off the edge. [[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries Yup, children's card games]] [[SeriousBusiness are just that important]].
** In ''Anime/YuGiOhZEXAL'', Yuma and Anna team up against Tobio and Umimi in one two-part episode, two duelists who use monsters that are Cool Airships; Tobio's monster is Supercolossal Airship Giant Hindenburg, while Umimi's is Supercolossal Unsinkable Superliner Elegant Titanic (which, despite being named after a boat, is also an airship). They later use both monsters to Xyz Summon the even ''cooler'' Skypalace Gangaridai, and then use it to summon the ''coolest'' airship of all, [=CXyz=] Skypalace Babylon. [[spoiler:Unfortunately, the last one is an evil card given to them by the Barians, making them their [[UnwittingPawn Unwitting Pawns]]; eventually despite all the coolness, they lose.]]
* [[spoiler:Hellywood]] from NowAndThenHereAndThere is a prime example of this trope. It also leads to the possibility that the world that this show is set in is actually a dystopian steam punk world, since this beast of an airship flies on water! But probably (and hopefully) not.
* The Takarabune (Treasure Ship) in ''Manga/NurarihyonNoMago'', which Rikuo and his hyakki-yako use to storm Kyoto after Hagoromo Gitsune. Apparently the old Nurarihyon has been holding out on showing it to his grandson.
--> '''Rikuo:''' ''(after he first sees it)'' No one's ever told me about that...
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* [[Franchise/SherlockHolmes Professor Moriarty]] and FuManchu attack [[VictorianLondon London]] with their {{Cool Airship}}s in ''TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen''.
** Well, Fu Manchu was working on a CoolAirship, but never completed it. The airships both ran on Cavorite, an anti-gravity element, and there wasn't enough to go around. Moriarity stole the element from Fu Manchu to run ''his'' airship, which Fu Manchu promptly attacked with an army of kite-men. It was pretty badass.
* The second Nite Owl in ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'' has a cool airship, named 'Archie'. It's noted as the only airship in the world that can maneuver between buildings, and ''underwater''.
** Just as the Nite Owls are {{Captain Ersatz}}es of the first two {{Blue Beetle}}s, Archie is based on Ted Kord's Bug.
* Both Classic and Ultimate {{Marvel}} universes have the [[ComicBook/{{SHIELD}} S.H.I.E.L.D.]] [[[[AirborneAircraftCarrier helicarrier]]. In the classic universe, it seemingly stays airborne 24/7.
** Except for its almost yearly crashing due to attacks.
** In ''Comicbook/{{Deadpool}} Pulp'', the equivalent of Comicbook/{{SHIELD}} is based in the Dirigi-Carrier.
* Lord Blackpool's gigantic airship ''The Helio Arx'' in ''ComicBook/LadyMechanika''.
* ''CrimsonSkies'' is essentially a world made up of flying airships, air commerce and air pirates in the 1940s. Used for cargo, transportation and carriers for smaller aircraft, there's no shortage of cool airships flying around. The novels and videogames also reflect this.
* In ''ComicBook/RedHoodAndTheOutlaws'' the team takes possession of Crux's airship after defeating him. It has enough features and gadget to make Arsenal ''very'' happy, including a cloaking device and vertical take-off and landing capacities.
--> '''Arsenal :''' Before anyone asks--yes, I'm in '''LOVE'''.
* In ''[[ComicBooks/{{Marvel1602}} Marvel 1602]]: Fantastick Four'', Doom has an airship that is literally a ship with a balloon over the top. He uses it to kidnap William Shakespeare.
* UsefulNotes/TheFrenchRevolution Comicbook/{{Batman}} in the {{Elseworld}} ''Batman: Reign of Terror'' has something similar, with [[{{Tropemobile}} a bat insignia on the balloon]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:FanFic]]
* In ''Fanfic/DungeonKeeperAmi''- due to an impending ritual by the cult of [[GodOfEvil Crowned Death]] Ami is forced to construct a fleet of these to conduct her forces across a quarter of the planet in less than three days, to prevent eight thousand innocents from being tortured to death. They also engage an [[GhostPirate undead navy]] in mid-air combat (due to undead warlocks levitateing the ships). They were (naturally) equipped with swivleing turrets for their mounted canons, Reaperbot repelling lines, and an [[VirtualReality entertainment system]] for Rabixtriel...
* ''FanFic/TheMixedUpLifeOfBrad'': Princesses Celestia and Luna have impressive private airships (''Solar Barque'' and ''Selenic Maiden''), both of which are so huge that they don't fit in any airship port and need to be anchored to the castle while they're in the capital.
* ''Plan 7 of 9 from Outer Space'' by Odon. In the {{zeerust}} future of 2009, [[StarTrekVoyager Captain Proton]] uses a vacuum-dirigible to travel across MysteriousAntarctica -- vacuum which being literally lighter-than-air gives it lift, and propulsion is via corkscrew driving planes encircling the dirigible.
* In ''Fanfic/TealovesSteamyAdventure'', Minty travels in a hot air balloon that, with the flick of a lever, can transform into a glider. Baron Zeppeli pursues them in his slightly-less-cool lead zeppelin.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* The titular school in ''Film/SkyHigh'' levitates, and constantly moves around to keep villains form attacking it.
* Franky's flying RAF base 'Manta Station' in ''Film/SkyCaptainAndTheWorldOfTomorrow''.
* Three guesses about which airship it is in the Czech film ''The Stolen Airship''.
* In ''Film/{{Stardust}}'', Captain Shakespeare pilots a flying ship, called the ''Caspartine''. Literally. Like a sea ship that flies. It also harvests lightning.
* The ''Luxembourg'' from ''Film/TheRocketeer''.
* The ''Hyperion'', the airship that carried the expedition in ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Island_at_the_Top_of_the_World Island at the Top of the World]]''.
* Valentine's flying, [[CompanionCube possibly sentient]] Tower from ''Film/MirrorMask''.
** Have to watch again to double check but didn't it just jump really high not fly?
* Franchise/IndianaJones and his dad escape from one in ''Film/TheLastCrusade''.
** Made all the cooler because it's a REAL Cool Airship, the ''{{Hindenburg}}''.
* Max Zorin's airship from ''Film/AViewToAKill'' may look like a boring old blimp, but does yours unfold from a construction shack and come with an [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HmQnEyiGdGQ integrated deathtrap]]? Max even gets to make a BondOneLiner.
* Lee Scorsby's marvelously baroque transport in ''TheGoldenCompass'' surely qualifies here.
* ''Film/TheGreatRace'' - Professor Fate has an exceptionally ''small'' Cool Airship - two-person, pedal-powered - this troper seriously wants one.
* The [[Film/TheThreeMusketeers2011 2011 version of ''The Three Musketeers'']] has a definitely cool British airship based (in-story) on a Leonardo da Vinci design. [[spoiler:Cardinal Richelieu's forces get an ever bigger one near the end of the film and use it to combat the former that the musketeers had hijacked. Both ships crash eventually, but TheStinger reveals Buckingham is back for a vengeance with a [[UpToEleven whole armada of airships]]]].
* [[PunnyName Al Oft]] the Lightyear blimp from ''WesternAnimation/{{Cars}}''.
* [[VincentPrice Ratigan's]] pedal-powered blimp from ''Disney/TheGreatMouseDetective'', as well as the Union Jack and sardine can-made blimp used by the heroes.
* The Gyro-evac from ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire''.
* Cid Highwind's new airship, the Shera, in ''Anime/FinalFantasyVIIAdventChildren''.
* The ''Skyship One'' from the ''Series/{{Thunderbirds}}'' SpinOff movie ''Thunderbird 6'' is a variation. Designed by Brains, it travels just like a regular airship but uses AntiGravity instead of buoyant gas.
* The airship "Italia" in the 1969 movie ''The Red Tent'', at least until it crashes in a storm, stranding its crew on the polar ice.
* The Raven from ''Film/{{Elysium}}'', Kruger's military transport that even fly into orbit.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Folklore]]
* At the close of the 19th century, decades before the modern UFO phenomenon started, there was the bizarre phenomenon of people sighting a mysterious, impossibly fast ''airship,'' all across the country. The Mystery Airship stories are all the more striking because of how closely they parallel the flying saucer stories of more recent times... except nobody claimed it was a spaceship; it was manifestly a ''blimp.'' A small percentage of people claimed to have actually made contact with the crew, and while they were often described as "foreign," they were consistently human. It all has a very Creator/JulesVerne feel to it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* Kenneth Oppel's books, ''Literature/{{Airborn}}'', ''Skybreaker'', and ''Starclimber'', are the very embodiment of this trope: they take place in an alternate history in which airships never lost popularity, despite the Hindenburg incident, thanks to the new element 'hydrium'. This changes technological advancement to an enormous extent (for better or worse being extremely subjective) and airships and ornithopters are now several hundred times more popular than any sea-going vessel. The main character (Matt Cruse, a name which immediately screams "adventure/romance novel") starts out aboard the Aurora, an incredibly luxurious, enormous airship. [[spoiler:Later on in Skybreaker, a very low-class ship is shown, and then another high-price ship that can also reach incredible altitudes. In the same book, the plot centers around an absolutely immense derelict airship.]]
* Every single novel in the ''Timeline Wars'' series by John Barnes involves a CoolAirship. The fact that the second book is named ''Washington's Dirigible'' is sort of a clue; that book ends with a climactic battle on the airship.
* ''[[Literature/{{Pellucidar}} Tarzan at the Earth's Core]]'' ([[http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0601071h.html available here]]). The 0-220, the airship used by an expedition to travel to the hollow center of the Earth through the North Pole entrance. Instead of hydrogen or helium, it used vacuum tanks for lift. There's a complete description at the end of Chapter 2.
* The ''Hieronymus Bosch'', the luxury airship that carries the scientific mission to the Amazon in ''A Season For Slaughter'', the fourth book in David Gerrold's ''Literature/TheWarAgainstTheChtorr'' series.
* According to ''Literature/TheAreasOfMyExpertise'', President Hoover spent the better part of the 1930s on his hoveryacht in the Caspian Sea. In [[Literature/MoreInformationThanYouRequire the sequel]], John Hodgman rides around in a zeppelin called ''The Hubris'', given to him as a gift by Emo Phillips.
* From the ''WarhammerFantasy'' adventures of GotrekAndFelix, the ''Spirit of Grungni'', built by dwarf engineer turned [[DeathSeeker Slayer]] [[ViolentGlaswegian Malakai Makaisson]] to fly into the Chaos Wastes. An airship, armed with gatling guns yet, in a world [[SchizoTech where most fighting is still done with sword and bow]] is cool indeed.
* Any and every sky ship from ''Literature/TheEdgeChronicles'' probably fits this trope, more or less looking like a typical [[SkyPirates pirate ship]] except capable of flight, and usually with a crew made up entirely of {{badass}}es.
** Not to mention they get their lighter-than-air capabilities from [[AppliedPhlebotinum magic floating rocks]].
* The ''Warlord of the Air'' by Michael Moorcock has one.
* In the 1981 book ''Literature/{{Megalodon}}'' by Robin Brown, the protagonists have to transport a sperm whale thousands of miles to their base of operations in the Pacific. They discover that the only aircraft big enough is a MK-10 Low-Altitude Helium Dirigible tank transporter. While the vessel itself turns out to be quite cool, it's agreed by all concerned that the addition of an underslung sixty-foot whale elevates it to CrowningMomentOfAwesome status.
* Not really an airship, but the ''Victoria'' from Creator/JulesVerne's first published novel, ''Literature/FiveWeeksInABalloon'', is cool because it is capable of having its altitude controlled without losing gas or ballast, and therefore of staying aloft for five weeks to explore the heart of Africa. It's kept aloft by a combination of heat and [[StuffBlowingUp hydrogen gas]]. The other characters point out how dangerous this is, but Ferguson, the inventor, is willing to take the risk. (TheOtherWiki's page on the book has an entire section about how the balloon's mechanism as described by Verne is scientifically impossible.)
* Creator/RudyardKipling's "With the Night Mail" was set on an airship which got its lift from [[AppliedPhlebotinum "Fleury's Gas," energized by "Fleury's Ray."]] This provided '''much''' more lift than hydrogen or helium, allowing the airship to be built with a more rigid structure and thus hit higher speeds. As in '''210''' knots at one point. (USS ''Macon'' maxed out at 76 knots.)
* RobertRankin's novel, ''Retromancer'', and the recent ''The Japanese Devil Fish Girl'' both feature different cool airships. The first plays music designed to herald the arrival of the ship by ''scaring the shit out of people.''The chapter that features the airship [[spoiler:attacking New York]] has diagrams as a chapter picture. The second crashes and burns. The second is touted as a fine example of British engineering. Make of that what you will.
* '70s novel ''A Game of Titans'' pits the Real Life Soviet aircraft carrier ''Kiev'' against the USAF nuclear-powered airship ''Grand Eagle''. The airship carries a contingent of Harriers. It also has cruise missiles and lasers.
* Creator/EdgarRiceBurroughs' [[Literature/JohnCarterOfMars Barsoom stories]] include airships lifted by 'Ray Tanks'.
* The ArthurCClarke novella "A Meeting with Medusa" features a couple of Cool Airships. The story opens with the protagonist as captain of a 1500-foot-long helium-filled dirigible, intended to serve as a flying luxury cruise ship. Unfortunately, the ''Queen Elizabeth IV'' is destroyed in a freak accident during a test flight over the Grand Canyon. The action then flashes forward to seven years later, with the protagonist now about to embark on a voyage in the story's ''second'' Cool Airship, a nuclear-fusion-powered hot-hydrogen balloon--that will be dropped into the atmosphere of Jupiter.
* Jonathan Howard's ''Literature/JohannesCabalTheDetective'' has one with a murder mystery onboard. It also doubles as an aircraft carrier, with gyroscopic small fliers on its flat top.
* The ''Literature/{{Leviathan}}'' from the eponymous novel, is a basically a [[LivingShip flying whale]] whose entire [[OrganicTechnology onboard systems are also an ecosystem]].
* ''Literature/TalesOfTheKettyJay'' is a series about steampunk airship pirates. The Ketty Jay manages to be a CoolAirship, despite being quite an old and outdated model at the time the novel is set. Apparently she's patched together in such a haphazzard way, that only Frey can really fly her to her full potential. The Delerium Trigger is a more straightfoward example, although while it's very big and powerful, it's not quite as fast as the smaller fighter ships.
* The eponymous vessel in ''Literature/TheVoyageOfTheJerleShannara'' series is one of the coolest of the {{Magitek}} airships the Rovers have started piloting in the [[TimeSkip 130 years]] since the previous ''Shannara'' saga.
** The trilogy that follows features the EvilEmpire mounting [[MagiTek solar-powered magitek]] [[FrickinLaserBeams laser cannons]] on their airships.
* The ''Clementine'', from the novella of the same name by Cherie Priest. In fact her whole ''ClockworkCentury'' series is chock-full of cool airships.
* The ''Mark Twain'' from ''Literature/TheLongEarth''. Not only can it fly, it can also "step" between parallel Earths at a great pace. It also has a great deal of laboratories and robots for its AI captain, Lobsang, to experiment with.
** By ''The Long War'' 'twains' have become a standard feature of the Long Earth. Most aren't quite so cool as the ''Mark Twain'' (for one, most of them aren't captained by Lobsang), but the airships of the US Navy military flag-showing expedition West (especially the ''USS Benjamin Franklin'', as that is the one we see the most) and the Chinese test-bed ''Zheng He'' get up there.
* ''Literature/ChantersOfTremaris'' features an ancient spaceship [[spoiler:that was landed, converted into a city, and abandoned]].
* JackVance's ''Durdane'' trilogy, ''The Amome'' (aka ''The Faceless Man''), ''The Brave Free Men'' and ''The Asutra'', features passenger airships tethered to dollies on fixed ground tracks, thus making them an odd hybrid of airship and train.
* The ''Argo II'' in ''Literature/TheHeroesOfOlympus'', is a flying Greek trireme. While the ballistae that fire exploding bolts are cool, the best feature is the control systems, which include a keyboard and monitor, aviation controls of a Lear jet, a dubstep soundboard, and a [[UsefulNotes/NintendoWii Wiimote]].
* In several of the ''DocSavage'' novels, Doc employs a highly advanced airship of his own design that employs a lifting gas of his own invention, with a buoyancy greater than hydrogen but not flammable.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'': Spike has one. We don't know where he got it, but it is awesome.
* ''Series/DoctorWho''
** "The Age of Steel".
** The UNIT airship The Valiant featured in several episodes in 2007 and 2008.
* ''Series/TeamKnightRider'' has the heroes move around in one of these as well.
* ''Series/LazyTown's'' Sportacus not only travels in a cool airship, he [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvzKoO3Ppaw lives in it too]].
* The ''Aurora'' in ''Series/TheSecretAdventuresOfJulesVerne'' is the first dirigible in the world, owned by Phileas Fogg. It serves as the homebase of the main characters. Also, an episode is featured where villains make their own airship and arm it with heavy guns in order to support the South in UsefulNotes/TheAmericanCivilWar.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Manhua]]
* The Shengdi from the manhua series ''Manhua/{{Bloodline}}'', have these that act as their mobile bases of operations.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Pinball]]
* This is one of Professor Steam's Contraptions in ''[[VideoGame/ProPinballFantasticJourney Pro Pinball: Fantastic Journey]]'', and building it enables the Airship Adventure.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* SPECTRUM HQ in ''Series/CaptainScarletAndTheMysterons''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'':
** ''TabletopGame/{{Mystara}}'' has a lot of these and most of the world was introduced via travel logs of one. Bonus points for having a {{sourcebook}} named simply ''[[http://index.rpg.net/display-entry.phtml?mainid=5029 Top Ballista]]''.
** ''TabletopGame/ForgottenRealms'' [[TheMagocracy magocracy]] Halruaa has levitating sailing skyships.
** ''TabletopGame/{{Eberron}}'' has elemental airships, where elemental creatures are trapped in a crystal maze engine.
* ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'' had ''The Weatherlight'', a flying ship that could travel across the planes, and also served as the centerpiece in an epic plan to protect the world from extraplanar invasion.
** There was also its flying rival, ''The Predator''.
* "Airlords of the Ozarks," an adventure for ''{{Twilight 2000}}'', had the players, having returned to the U.S.A., recruited to investigate what turned out to be a neo-fascist movement using airships for raids to build a power base.
* ''{{Space 1889}}'' has many of these, usually of ''flying battleship'' variety. Some of them are actually regular navy ships modified for aerodynamics and fitted with anti-gravitic propulsion.
** Ditto for the ''Sky Galleons of Mars'', a tabletop game based on ''Space 1889''.
* ''Pyramid'' Vol 3 #64 "Pirates and Swashbucklers" includes an article called "Sailing the Open Skies", about using ''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} Spaceships'' rules to create MagiTek and SteamPunk airships, including examples: the ''Cloudclipper'', a "sailpunk" flying boat powered by magical solar sails; the ''Seahorse'', an assault cruiser with magical propellers, [[FlyingAircraftCarrier carrying]] ''Sand Flea'' Land, [[AmphibiousAutomobile Sea]] and [[FlyingCar Air]] vehicles, all powered by elemental furnaces; and the ''Stormrider'', a psychically controlled and powered [[LivingShip living airship]] created from the remains of a telekinetic LivingGasbag called a Cloud-That-Hungers.
* In ''TabletopGame/RocketAge'' they're used for navigating the atmospheres of Jupiter where a rocket-ship may ignite a gas pocket. There are also convertables, rocket-ships that can deploy balloons and propellers to become an airship. The Jovians one-up this by having airships that float without balloons. Their cities also count, being domed airships that hide deeper in the atmosphere.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Theme Parks]]
* Dramfinder's [[ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld zeppelin]] at DisneyThemeParks previous ''Journey Into Imagination''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The Kirov airship from the ''VideoGame/RedAlert'' series, sporting shark-decals and dropping extremely devastating bombs on the enemy.
* A GlobalAirship is a frequent feature of [=RPGs=], often it will be an actual CoolAirship.
* The ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' games have all had airships right from the very first game. Having said that, some are a lot more notable than others:
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIII'' has four. The simple nameless airship owned by Cid, which is destroyed early on. The ''[[StarTrek Enterprise]]'', which starts as a normal ship, and is later modified to be able to switch between sailing and flying, and which is later shot down over Saronia. The ''Nautilus'', which is eventually modified to be able to go underwater as well. And last but certainly not least, the ''[[AwesomeMcCoolname Invincible]]'', a monstrously huge airship which, while lacking speed and the ability to go underwater, contains beds for healing, shops, and a [[ItemCaddy Fat Chocobo]], and can pass over mountain ranges. The ''Invincible'' is also the first airship in the series that you can actually explore as an area. Interestingly enough, you don't lose the ''Nautilus'' once you get the ''Invincible''.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'' has Baron's armed airship fleet, which is what enables Baron to become the most powerful nation in the game and gather the crystals from other places. Cid's Airship, the Enterprise is a basic model but [[spoiler:his second airship, The Falcon, gets a giant drill on the front to bore through the earth.]] Even better is [[spoiler:the Lunar Whale, while technically a ''CoolStarship'' only ever travels to the moon and otherwise behaves just like the airship as well as a portable inn & item storage]]
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV''[='s=] airship, while it doesn't get a fancy name (it's simply called "the airship" because it's unique), has the ability to change between airship, regular ship and submarine forms. And comes with [[PlayerHeadquarters its own helipad-equipped]] ElaborateUndergroundBase.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' has Setzer's ''Blackjack'', which not only is a speedy airship but also doubles as a flying casino (sadly no minigames) and bachelor pad. [[spoiler:The second airship found in the game, the ''Falcon'', is faster but significantly less stylish]].
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' has the Highwind, which in addition to serving as the GlobalAirship, also is used to air-drop the party into Midgar.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'' has two, sort of. The first is the Balamb Garden itself, which hovers above the ground a little and is fairly unique among airships in that its also a flying military academy... the coolness of the craft is debatable. However the second airship is the Ragnarok, which is much smaller than the Garden, but has a sleek design, a forward mounted gatling gun, and is capable of space flight, and serves as much more so the 'cool' ship of the game.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' has an airship that looks more ''CoolStarship'' than airship. You can walk it's corridors containing many characters or just use the GPS navigation system to get around the game world (no manual flying, sorry).
* ''VideoGame/SkiesOfArcadia'' has all kinds of airships, but by far the coolest of the {{Cool Airship}}s is the ''Delphinus'', a SuperPrototype battleship that your characters steal about halfway through the game. In a world where the majority of airships resemble old wooden sailing ships or World War I-era destroyers, the ''Delphinus'' is a sleek and angular death machine based on WWII-era battleships and armed to the teeth with cannons, ''magic'' cannons, torpedoes, and a WaveMotionGun to make the [[SpaceBattleshipYamato Yamato]] green with envy. Crew must also be recruited from around the world to man this fortress.
* The Airship Captain in ''VideoGame/{{Nox}}'' is, well, TheCaptain of a CoolAirship.
* ''VideoGame/WildArms3'' features [[spoiler:A quest to find and defeat a mystical dragon which actually turns out to be]] a giant flying, sleek, mechanical aircraft from the past [[spoiler:, possibly also a transforming giant robot]].
* An extremely prominent example of this trope is found in ''VideoGame/{{Wolfenstein|2009}}.'' The Zeppelin used by the occult-Nazis is like a dark, gritty, realistic version of kilometer-long Castle Wulfenbach, the page image. Naturally, it's also an AirborneAircraftCarrier, and becomes a literal example of ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld as it tears open a rift to another dimension.
* Orgrim's Hammer and the Skybreaker, airships used by Horde and Alliance as bases of operation in Icecrown in the new expansion to ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' are pretty cool. The Hammer boat with a pair of Zeppelin blimps tied to it with nothing but RuleOfCool, while the Skybreaker is essentially a large ship with propellers fitted on it.
** More ships of the same models appear in Deepholm in the ''Cataclysm'' expansion, the Horde's having been shot down when the Alliance's was taken over by cultists. ''Another'' Alliance airship is in the final battle with Deathwing, chasing him when he flees to the Maelstrom. It gets shot down and [[spoiler:crashes onto the Wandering Isle, bringing the peaceful Pandaren race into the Alliance/Horde war.]]
* The Pact airships of GuildWars2, built to shoot down dragons and the Pact flagship, an immense airship built with significantly higher tech equipped with a WaveMotionGun that chases down one of the BigBad dragon lords of the game in a sequence that is [[SarcasmMode entirely original.]]
* ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros3'' has an airship run for the Koopalings' fortresses! It's also the source of [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome one of the most epic themes in the series]]. Several of the game worlds also feature standalone airship levels that will appear on the map after some time.
* ''CrimsonSkies'' features flying airships, heroic pilots in tiny planes and a world centered around air commerce and piracy. The two videogames focus on protagonist Nathan Zachery, leader of the Fortune Hunters, who steals a flying airship named the Pandora early on and uses it as home base and a flying carrier for the rest of his adventures. Other groups are seen with their own cool airships.
* ''{{VideoGame/Drakengard}}'' doesn't give the player a cool airship, since they ride atop a dragon, however later air battles feature enemy airships which must be destroyed section by section, engine by engine.
* ''VideoGame/AceCombat3Electrosphere'' has the UI-series blimps; the UI-4052 Cralias (misspelling of Clarias, genus of catfish), which was hijacked by a terrorist group carrying a bioweapon, and the infinitely cooler UI-4053 Sphyrna (named after a genus of hammerhead sharks), which is a heavily armed and armored FlyingAircraftCarrier. It became the symbol of a late game terrorist organization and its de facto moving HQ. All endings require you to destroy this beast, and it houses two of the game's most powerful (read: toughest to beat) planes: the WaveMotionGun-equipped MacGuffin plane X-49 Raven and the BigBad's SuperPrototype UI-4054 Aurora. Part of the difficulty downing the blimp is that, unlike other airborne things in game, you need to target its weapons systems, sub-engines and finally main engine for it to go down, at least for the current mission.
* The Gravship air-unit chassis of ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' may not immediately appear to be an airship...until you realize that it's a heavier-than air airship ''using AntiGravity as a replacement for helium.'' Look at the model: giant ducted fans on either side--just like a real airship. At this point it becomes really impressive.
* ''The First Lady'' of VideoGame/BioshockInfinite is an example. It doesn't have much coolness on the performance side of things, except for being able to fly itself to any point on the planet, but it sure looks cool with its gold finish and the portrait of lady Comstock on the side.
** On the other hand, there is also Comstock's ship itself, the Hand of The Prophet, a gigantic battleship. In fact most ships in the game could count.
* ''VideoGame/GunsOfIcarusOnline'' is all about flying fantastic airships into battle with other cool airships.
* GuiltyGear has the Mayship, which belongs to [[ChivalrousPervert Johnny]] and his [[AmazonBrigade all-female]] BadassCrew, the Jellyfish Pirates. The Mayship's RuleOfCool is turned UpToEleven in May's new Insta Kill in '''X-Sign'', where she and April use its main cannon to ''[[OneHitKill shoot May's opponent off the stage]]'' and win the round.
* The ''Videogame/PokemonPeaceSquad'' series has had several of them. There's the [[FinalFantasyVII Highwind]], the Hunter Carrier, the Hunter Carrier II, the Rocket Mega Fortress, and also the Rocket Megaship.
** However, the most unusual of them all is the Flora Carrier in Chaos Adventure, which contains biosphere-like environments and hydroponic forests and jungles. One area even holds a massive tree containing its own maze-like forest!
** In Trinity, Team Rocket has a handful of high-tech airships that were used to transport Pokémon taken from Ghetsis in the form of missiles containing the Pokémon as data! In Infinity, there is the Rocket Gigaplane, which has a reactor core consisting of a floating laser-firing crystal held in place by gyro rings!
** There's also been the XD 001 Carrier from 1, the Stealth Carrier and Hunter Hydroplane from 2, the Flora Dirigible from Trinity, and even the Aerial Carrier from Endless Boundaries!
* In {{VideoGame/Nefarious}}, the VillainProtagonist Crow has a massive airship called ''The Sovereign,'' which acts as the game's central hub.
* In the online virtual pet game ''Francise/{{Neopets}}'', one of the plots involved a [[Main/CartoonCreature Lutari]] explorer who travelled in a pretty neat flying ship.
* The final level of the arcade shooter CarnEvil takes place aboard Ludwig Von Tökkentäkker's airship. You end up fighting him (and a large number of skeletons) aboard it.
* Flying Galleus and Flying Line Galleus in ''VideoGame/WarlockMasterOfTheArcane'' are haunted sailing ships that fly. They they serve as the undead siege unit.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* The page image is Castle Wulfenbach, mobile fortress, administrative center and war machine of the Wulfenbach Empire in ''Webcomic/GirlGenius''. It's roughly a kilometer long, has an entire fleet of additional airships to support it, and some of the people who work there haven't set foot on the ground in years.
* ''Webcomic/CrimsonFlag'' has the [[http://crimsonflagcomic.com/comic.php?comicID=15 Death Evan]].
* In ''Webcomic/AlienHandSyndrome'' the heroines Mina and Erin travel to Erin's homeland in [[http://ahs-comic.com/archive/page-13/ a large passenger airship]], [[http://ahs-comic.com/archive/page-14/ first class]], thanks to Erin's rich parents. The page image shows them with the airship in the background, cropped from a bigger image that can be found on Website/DeviantArt [[http://knullakuk.deviantart.com/art/Mina-Erin-Airship-310363361 here]].
* In ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'', [[LoveableRogue Julio]] [[TheObiWan Scoundrél]] is the captain of the ''[[MeaningfulName Mechane]]'', which [[{{Expy}} looks exactly like]] the ''Blackjack'' from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI''.
* [[Webcomic/TheNonadventuresOfWonderella Wonderella]] has an [[WonderWoman invisible]] blimp.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Original]]
* WorldDominationInRetrospect briefly featured Captain Flamebeard, whose CoolBoat could also fly the skies on sails of fire.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Disney's ''TaleSpin'' is a notable example for the Cool Airship called the Iron Vulture used by the Air Pirates & Don Karnage. Functions as a battleship & flying carrier in several episodes. Often has to be infiltrated by the heroes for one reason or another.
* The ''Dredgible'' in ''WesternAnimation/DrakPack''.
* The Excellsior of the "Skytanic" episode of ''{{Archer}}''. The captain of which even constantly corrects Archer that "it's a rigid airship!"
** While the Excellsior advertises itself as the "pampered luxury of a cruise ship [meeting] the smoothness of modern air travel," the impracticality of airships is noted by Archer, who points out that they are only marginally faster than cruise ships, and far slower than airplanes.
* The Fire Nation Airships in ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'', which can bombard enemy positions and even hurl bombs like missiles while defending themselves with conventional Firebending by the crews that pilot them. Also of note is the airship that serves as the personal flagship of Fire Lord Ozai in the Sozin's Comet finale, which is ''three times'' the size of a conventional airship and whose nose takes the form of an ornate golden phoenix while the rest have noses in the form of a dragon's head.
** In ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'', airship travel has become commonplace with more modern versions serving as patrol vessels for the police forces of Republic City and as transports for Equalist forces in their fight against benders.
** By Book 3, Team Avatar travels around in their own airship, provided by Asami.
* The Idea Men from ''WesternAnimation/TheTick.''
--> '''Tick:''' "Cool! They got a blimp!"
* The WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles have the Turtle Blimp.
* The airship in ''WesternAnimation/TheAdventuresOfTeddyRuxpin''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Real Life]]
* The ''{{Hindenburg}}'' is an example. Stunningly luxurious, it was a massive commercial airship made for Trans-Atlantic voyages. It was-and remains to this day- the largest and most spacious aircraft ever built(the A deck ''alone'' had more floor space than an entire Airbus A380).The Hindenburg boasted a [[FoodPorn dining room served by four chefs from gourmet restaurants,]] a bar with a glass floor, promenades with huge tilted windows that could be opened in flight, staterooms reminiscent of the sleeping car on a luxury train, a double grand staircase, a smoking lounge [[StarshipLuxurious inside its own airlock]], a small library and writing room, a huge stylized mural of the world with moving ships and Zeppelins that tracked the journey of the airship, and even a [[PianoDrop piano lounge.]] It also carried unusual cargo, such as live animals, a luxury car [[http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1955&dat=19360521&id=DuUxAAAAIBAJ&sjid=zuIFAAAAIBAJ&pg=4908,4360787 and even Jimmy Haizlip's]] [[AirborneAircraftCarrier racing airplane]]. In 1936, it was the fastest and most comfortable way across the Atlantic, and was considered [[{{Irony}} the airship to end all airships.]] Unfortunately, it was filled with [[MadeOfExplodium extremely flammable Hydrogen]] instead of the inert Helium it was designed for. We all know how it ended.
* The ''Graf Zeppelin'' is the memetic god of this trope. Built in the late '20s, she was a prototype airship intended to train crews and test the viability of a transoceanic airliner, something that had never been built before. To illustrate her focus on prototyping rather than commercial operations, she carried a mere 20 passengers in Pullman-style luxury, contrasted with the crew of 40 or more. However, the ''Graf Zeppelin'' ended up going on spectacular adventures she had never been designed for; she circumnavigated the globe several times faster than the ''airplanes'' before her, she went on a journey to the North Pole, she explored remote and uncharted areas, she visited cities and monuments around the world, eventually she would settle into the first commercial transatlantic route, flying from Rio to Berlin. After more than a decade of service, she was the most successful Zeppelin of all time, flying more than a million miles and transporting tens of thousands of passengers in perfect safety, despite being filled with the [[MadeOfExplodium hydrogen]] that doomed the ''Hindenburg''.
* The US Navy operated six rigid-hulled airships, all but two of them were lost in a variety of accidents or bad weather. Three of the better known to this day are the USS ''Macon'', USS ''Los Angeles'' and USS ''Akron'', which were also [[AirborneAircraftCarrier Airborne Aircraft Carriers]].
** While none of the rigid-hulled airships stayed in service long enough to serve in UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, a wide variety of non-rigid blimps served in maritime patrol duties throughout the war, keeping an eye out for German U-Boats that preyed on Allied shipping. They were spectacularly successful, and had the best mission readiness of any air unit in the military at the time. A large part of what made them effective was the lack of German airpower in the Atlantic.
** In fact, in the modern day, airship-like balloons called aerostats are used as floating radar towers. Essentially a blimp without engines, they are tethered to the ground, allowed to rise up to about 15,000 feet above the ground, and scan for aircraft or ground vehicles for hundreds of miles in all directions. Unlike an Airborne Early Warning System plane, they don't need fuel or crew to stay aloft, so they are very cost effective as long as you don't need to move them.
* Modern hybrid airships being built, like the examples in the page description. These are just the tip of the iceberg, eventually the companies building them are going to scale up to large airships that will be used as cargo ships, cruise liners, firefighting ships, and long-endurance surveillance vessels.
** Some cool hybrid airships of note that are about to be flight tested from around 2013-2015 are the Lockheed-Martin "Skytug," which serves the same role "as a supersized cargo helicopter, but at a tenth the cost," the HAV "Airlander 50" cargo ship, the solar-powered "Solar Ship," and the "Aeroscraft" variable-buoyancy airship.
* The ''Norge.'' in 1926, it became the first ever aircraft of any kind to make the grueling, dangerous trek to the North Pole in an epic exploration of uncharted lands. The Norge itself was a relatively small semi-rigid airship, unlike the leviathan ''Graf Zeppelin'' which later explored the Arctic, which makes the feat even more impressive.
* The British ''R34'', though fairly plain compared to some fictional examples and, going by accounts from its crew, somewhat unpleasant to live on, nonetheless deserves a mention here due to its place as one of the unsung heroes of aviation history. It was the first ever aircraft to fly east-to-west across the Atlantic, making it from East Fortune in Scotland to Mineola, Long Island after 108 hours of flying against the prevailing wind and putting up with a stowaway, terrible weather and troublesome engines.
** ''R34'' was longer than a dreadnought battleship. Her unofficial name? "Tiny." She also had a resident tabby kitten named "Whoopsie" and the sailors liked playing jazz on the ship's gramophone. I wouldn't call her "fairly plain"!
* There used to be a Californian firm that owned an authentic Zeppelin and would allow its customers to pilot it (after some training, naturally.) [[http://chicagoboyz.net/archives/34159.html Sadly, they've now gone out of business]] - their Zeppelin failed to secure an advertiser, their primary source of revenue. The airship is being shipped back to Germany. On the bright side, Goodyear is currently building three authentic Zeppelins of a similar type.
* UsefulNotes/RonPaul, one of the 2012 candidates for the republican nomination leased a Skyship 600 for his campaign, one of the largest, fastest, most luxurious blimps on the market. It is essentially the private jet of blimps, and definitely a CoolAirship.
[[/folder]]

----
AIRSHIP!
----