The running joke in Dubai is that it holds the world record for being the city with the most world records. From the world’s longest graffiti display to world’s biggest billboard, you cannot drive a city block without being faced with another one of Dubai’s extreme accomplishments. If a destination could be called an “overachiever,” Dubai would be it.
The following is just a small sampling of some of the most interesting world records Dubai holds.
1. Largest Fireworks Display
Two hotels, one lifestyle resort and the tallest building in the world, participated in Dubai’s attempt to break this record when the clock struck midnight on January 1st, 2014. And they succeeded when 78,000 fireworks successfully exploded (see photo above). Now, that is how you go out with a bang.
2. Biggest Mall
The Dubai Mall is the world’s biggest shopping mall—in terms of its floor space, not number of stores. It used to be the biggest in the world altogether until a bigger mall was built in Asia. Don’t worry though, Dubai saw their move and raised them. They are in the process of building an even bigger mall which will allow Dubai to take the title of World’s Largest Mall back. The Mall of the World will span eight million square feet.
3. Tallest Building
Hovering above the Dubai Mall is the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. You may recognize this sparkly tower as the one Tom Cruise scaled in Mission:Impossible—Ghost Protocol. The building alone, which is more than 2,700 feet high, holds seven world records including tallest free-standing structure and highest outdoor observation deck.
4. Longest Graffiti Scroll
This wall of graffiti broke the Guinness World Record for the longest graffiti scroll at just under one-and-a-half miles. The Crown Prince commissioned 150 artists—both local and international—to design and create artwork that reflects the achievements of the UAE.
5. Tallest Hotel
In 2012, Dubai broke another world record when they opened the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel. The five-star hotel is 1,164 feet tall, just beating the 1,092-foot hotel which held the record previously. Of course, that hotel is also located in Dubai.