Just 144 Times Dubai Beat the Rest of the World

Jessica Milek

The United Arab Emirates has been racking up so many world records that the Guinness World Records decided to open an office in Dubai in 2013 – their only one in the Middle East. Here are the most amazing ways Dubai has beaten the rest of the world.
According to the Guinness World Records Middle East, the office was built in Dubai due to, “The huge demand and interest in new records in the MENA region. UAE in particular is one of the fastest growing countries in record breaking events.” It has been making about 30 new records each year with no sign of slowing down. As of 2016 Dubai has earned 144 records, compared to 176 in the UAE and a total of 501 in the Middle East. Besides world records, the city also has a knack for doing things first. The city is quickly rising as a futuristic and opulent city of monumental proportions.

UAE pride on National Day in Dubai

Mega structures

Dubai has been dubbed the crane capital of the world; it has the greatest number of active cranes and is speculated to have 25% of all of the world’s cranes. Iconic structures that have risen in the city include: the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa; 14 out of 20 of the tallest residential towers in the world; the largest mall in the world; the largest man-made island; and the world’s largest man-made marina.

Dubai isn’t stopping there though, projects that are currently in development include: the world’s first 3D printed building; the world’s first nature inspired mall; the world’s first underwater tennis stadium; and the world’s first temperature controlled city, Mall Of The World.

The Burj Khalifa

Luxury resorts

Dubai is a land of luxurious living, including, the first Versace Spa, the first Armani Hotel and the tallest hotel in the world, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai.

There are even greater things to come, on the hotel front. Dubai will soon be able to claim the title for the world’s largest underwater hotel and the world’s first hotel to have a rainforest- the Rosemont Hotel & Residences. This hotel will also feature a rooftop beach and robot staff.

Palazzo Versace Dubai, Culture Village, Al Jadaf, P.O. Box 128431, Dubai 020 3684 4822

Armani Hotel Dubai, Burj Khalifa Tower, Dubai, 888333 020 3684 4822

JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, Dubai 121000 020 3684 4822

The Jetson’s housekeeper robot

Trains, planes and automobiles

Get ready to start your engines, here are the top records that include trains, planes and cars: the longest driverless metro line; the largest fleet of A380s; the longest twin vehicle drift by Nissan and Prodrift Academy; the world’s fastest police car and most expensive police force.

Even more exciting still, Dubai will be home to the world’s first hyperloop. The high speed electrical propulsion system, built by Hyperloop One, will mean commuters will be able to get to Abu Dhabi from Dubai in 12 minutes instead of the average 100 minutes.


Extraordinary amusement

Take the family out for a day of fun in Dubai. This city has the largest indoor ski slope, the largest indoor amusement park, IMG Worlds of Adventure; the first ride within a ride and the largest slide by diameter, found at Atlantis Waterpark; plus the world’s first Bollywood Park.

The Dubai Eye is still under construction, but once completed, the Ferris wheel will be 260 meters tall, which will make it the largest in the world.

Atlantis WaterPark

Eyes bigger than the stomach

Dubai is known for its vast array of culinary delicacies, so it’s no surprise that the city has set gluttonous records, including: the world’s largest serving of mango sticky rice; the largest array of different desserts on display at one time; the largest tin of caviar; the most expensive ice cream sundae, which costs 817$ US; and the tallest chocolate structure, which was made using 4,200 kg of chocolate.

Extreme sports

Dubai has played host to ambitious sporting events and extreme stunts, including, the world’s first amphibious car race and the only Jetman formation flight with an A380 (seen below).

World records to beat include: the longest urban zipline in the world, the world’s highest BASE jump from a building, the greatest number of people to parachute from a hot air balloon, the world’s highest game of tennis, and the world’s richest horse race.

Community records

Dubai periodically hosts world breaking events for the community, charities and the arts, including: the world’s largest human transforming image and the largest human sentence in the world, both of which were created by students in honor of National Day; the world’s largest graffiti scroll, commissioned by the Crown Prince of Dubai and created by 150 international and local artists; the largest sticky note mosaic, created for autism awareness; and the world’s largest awareness ribbon made of flowers.

The weird records

All cities have their wacky records, here are the top ones to come out of Dubai: the record for the fastest text in Arabic blindfolded is held by Mohamed Ahmed Al Mulla; Majid Mohammad achieved the most amount of sand moved with a teaspoon in 30 seconds (his total was 194 ml); and the largest same name gathering, which included 1096 Mohammeds in 2005.

Powder on spoon

Monumental displays

Dubai has made headlines for creating extravagant displays, including: the world’s largest water screen projection; the world’s largest choreographed fountain; and the longest handmade gold chain in the world.

The city held the record for the largest firework display for 3 years before it was beaten by Manila, Philippines in 2017 when they set off 800,000 fireworks over the course of an hour. But when the sky lit up in 2014, the entire Palm Jumeirah, the Burj Al Arab, the Burj Khalifa and 397 other locations were choreographed to set off close to half a million fireworks in just 6 minutes. Dubai still holds the record for the most fireworks set off per minute. In 2015 the city then went on to earn the record for the largest pyrotechnic image and the tallest fireworks set off from a building.

Looking to the future

Dubai strives to be at the forefront of innovation. The most recent sustainable world record set was the most mechanical energy produced by pedalling on static bicycles in one hour.
Dubai has also made strides by creating a Minister of State for Tolerance and Minister of State for Happiness. So far they have promised to build the world’s first happiness city, built around its citizens’ well being. They have also recently put in motion the world’s first formal tolerance charter; created in response to Dubai’s populous landscape. Dubai is the most multicultural city in the world, when counting expats, who make up more than 90% of the population and bring the nationality count above 200.

Children’s hands on the globe

Culture Trip Summer Sale

Save up to $1,395 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

Edit article