Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world, is the crowning glory of the United Arab Emirates. Apart from the massive tower, UAE is known for its flavorful dishes, decadent deserts, intricate mosques and luxurious lifestyle. These attributes continue to attract tourists from around the globe.
If you’re planning to visit the country, here are 18 fun facts about the UAE you need to know to make the most out of your trip.
1. The United Arab Emirates is both hot and sandy
UAE, or the United Arab Emirates as it’s officially known, is a hot and sandy country in the Middle East.
2. Borders made out of land and sea
It is bordered by Oman to the northeast and east and Saudi Arabia to the south and west. It also has a coastline along the Persian Gulf to the north and the Gulf of Oman to the east.
3. For an ultimate United Arab Emirates experience follow these coordinates…
To explore the vast desert or the vibrant and bustling cities of Abu Dhabi or Dubai, head for the coordinates of 24.4667° N, 54.3667° E for your very own Emirati experience!
4. The UAE has an interesting terrain
The terrain here is flat and barren along the coastline, with mountains in the east and sand dunes covering the rest of the country.
5. The UAE is smaller than you might think!
The total land area of UAE is 32,278 square miles (83,600 square kilometers)…
…that’s roughly 1/3 of the size of the UK.
6. It’s quite sparsely populated…
The UAE’s population was 9.365 million in 2021…
…that’s less than 1/7 of the population of the UK!
7. It’s quite easy to guess the name of Emirates’ residents
Residents of UAE are known as Emiratis.
8. The UAE’s capital in numbers
The capital is Abu Dhabi; it covers an area of 375 square miles (972 square kilometers) and had a population of 1.45 million in 2018.
9. The United Arab Emirates climate is dry and… cool!
Most Emiratis enjoy a desert climate, with cooler conditions in the eastern mountains.
10. Dubai has the longest driverless metro…With a perfect temperature
The city of Dubai holds the Guinness World Record for the longest driverless metro system with a total of 46.35 miles of track. The temperature in the station is also maintained at a constant 20°C!
11. In fact, Dubai is also home to the largest shopping mall in the world!
Dubai also boasts two huge shopping malls; the Dubai Mall is the largest shopping mall in the world by total area and houses 1200 shops, an underwater zoo and an ice rink, whilst the Mall of the Emirates boasts an indoor ski slope, over 100 restaurants and cafes and 7900 parking spaces!
12. Emiratis speak Arabic
The official language of UAE is Arabic.
13. Catching criminals in style
The police forces in UAE have some rather extravagant cars to catch speeders; these include a Lamborghini, a Ferrari and a Bentley!
14. Be sure to exchange some spending money before visiting
United Arab Emirates Dirham is the official currency here.
15. A golden ATM!?
The Emirates Palace Hotel in Abu Dhabi has an ATM installed which actually dispenses gold bars! Yes, that’s right – real gold bars! You can choose from a range of 320 gold products, including gold bars and customised gold coins!
16. A healthy life expectancy!
The average life span here is 78.95 years (2020).
17. The UAE has diverse trade features
UAE grows dates, vegetables and watermelons; they also rear poultry and cattle, catch fish and produce dairy products.
Its industry consists of petroleum and petrochemicals, aluminium, fertiliser, cement, fishing, construction materials, commercial ship repair, textiles and handicrafts.
The main exports include crude oil, natural gas, dried fish, dates and re-exports.
18. The United Arab Emirates has plenty of oil!
UAE actually boasts the 7th largest oil reserves in the world!
FAQs about UAE
What is the national animal of the UAE?
It’s the Arabian oryx - it’s identified by its shiny white coat and dark long slender horns, and has been brought back from extinction.
Is the UAE safe to travel to?
On the whole, the UAE is considered a very safe country for travelers and visitors. It’s actually been ranked in the world’s top 40 safest territories.
Why is Dubai so rich?
Dubai thrives on its various industries - and it can survive without selling off oil reserves. It’s also a clear gateway for many into the wider east.
Do you know any fun facts about the United Arab Emirates? Share them in the comments below!
Are you fascinated with the countries of the Middle East? Check out these interesting facts about Saudi Arabia