The United Arab Emirates is a fascinating country located in the Middle East. The UAE is comprised of seven Emirates, including Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Ras Al Khaimah, each with its unique culture and traditions.

The UAE has a rich history and is home to many ancient ruins and archaeological sites. Emiratis are proud of their culture and heritage, and the country is known for its luxury hotels, resorts, and shopping malls. The UAE is also home to some of the tallest buildings in the world, including the Burj Khalifa, which is currently the tallest building on earth.

There are countless reasons to visit the UAE, but we’ve rounded up some of the most interesting facts that might convince you to come and experience the country yourself. 

Here are 12 fascinating facts about the United Arab Emirates.

The UAE Population Is 9.8 Million, Made up of 200+ Nationalities

The UAE is home to over 200 nationalities, and the expatriate community far outnumbers the population of Emiratis, with Indians and Pakistanis being the largest groups of expatriates. 

There are also large numbers of Egyptians, Jordanians, Palestinians, and Syrians living in the UAE. Because of this varied population, the UAE is a “melting pot” of cultures, offering a mix of rich histories in one place.

The Official Language of the UAE Is Arabic

Although many residents speak English, the official language of the UAE is Modern Standard Arabic. The Gulf dialect of Arabic is spoken by most Emiratis, while Egyptian Arabic is also widely understood. However, most people in the UAE also speak English, partially due to the large population of expatriates.

There Are Seven Emirates in the UAE

The seven Emirates that make up the UAE are Abu Dhabi, Ras Al Khaimah, Ajman, Dubai, Sharjah, Fujairah, and Umm al Quwain. The UAE’s capital is Abu Dhabi, but its largest city is Dubai. 


While Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the best-known Emirates due to their city life, others, such as Ras Al Khaimah, can provide the perfect backdrop for a relaxing vacation with family or friends outside the bustling city centers.

The UAE Is the World’s Third Largest Oil Producer

The UAE is the third largest oil producer in the world, behind only Saudi Arabia and Russia. The country’s oil reserves are estimated to be around 98 billion barrels. UAE is also the world’s seventh largest natural gas producer. The UAE’s oil and gas industry plays a significant role in its economy, with citizens’ fuel prices heavily subsidized.

The UAE Has the World’s Highest Tower

The Burj Khalifa in Dubai is currently the world’s tallest building, standing at 828 meters (2,717 feet). The building reached completion in 2010 with a total of 163 floors. Many people come to the UAE to visit the Burj Khalifa and take in the incredible views from the top, including the city of Dubai and the Arabian Gulf.

You Won’t Find a River in the UAE

The UAE is a desert country with very little rainfall. As a result, there are no rivers or lakes in the country. However, during certain months you’ll find the unique wetland ecosystems known as wadis.


Wadis are dried-up riverbeds that fill with water after rainfall. If you visit at the right time, you might even be able to go kayaking in a wadi, but coming during the dry season will leave you with drained riverbeds that are still beautiful to see. Wadi Shawka, in Ras Al Khaimah, is a stunning example of this must-see natural wonder.

The UAE Is One of the World’s Richest Countries

The UAE has one of the highest GDP per capita in the world, at $37497.58. Such a high GDP per capita reflects the UAE’s extensive oil and gas reserves, high-income level, well-developed infrastructure, and thriving non-oil economy.

UAE Is Home to Many of the Tallest and Largest Attractions

The country is also home to the world’s largest mall (Dubai Mall), the tallest hotel (Gevora Hotel), the biggest Ferris wheel (Dubai Eye), and the longest driverless metro system, at over 46 miles long.

The UAE Has Existed Since 1971

The UAE was founded on 2 December 1971 when the British established the seven Emirates as independent states. The country officially became a federation in 1971, and the people elected Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan as the first president. 


Today, the president is Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. While presidents are elected, the nation has a hereditary government.

There Are Over 9,000 Mosques in the UAE

There are an estimated 9,123 mosques in the UAE, one of the highest per capita ratios worldwide. Their heavy presence makes sense since 76% of those living in the UAE are Muslim, and Islam the official religion in the United Arab Emirates. 

The rest of the population is 9% Christian, 10% Buddhist or Hindu, and 5% other religions. There are 59 places of worship in the UAE for other faiths.

The UAE Is Ahead of Its Time in Artificial Intelligence

The United Arab Emirates has invested in artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics for many years. They are known for being ahead of their time in this area. The UAE had a Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence elected in 2017, the first of its kind in the world. The government has plans to make AI responsible for many government decisions.

You May Find Luxury Fleets of Police Cars

The police force in the UAE is one of the most well-equipped and luxurious in the world. The Dubai police force has a fleet of luxury cars that includes Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Aston Martins, Bugattis, Bentleys, and more.

12 Reasons to Visit the United Arab Emirates

We hope these 12 fascinating facts about the United Arab Emirates have inspired you to add this destination to your travel bucket list. From its incredible architecture and luxury cars to its rich culture and history, there’s something for everyone here in the United Arab Emirates.

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