The UAE National Day is celebrated on 2nd December every year to honor the union of seven emirates. It marks the day when the emirates joined together at Union House to form the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in 1971. The idea of united settlement in the UAE began after the British expressed their intention to withdraw from colonies of the eastern Mediterranean. A meeting held between Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum & Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who decided to unite and invited the other Gulf Emirates to come together for the union. Once the British left in 1968, the National Day celebrations began three years later in 1971. And since then the UAE National Day is observed on 2nd December.
In 2018, UAE will celebrate its 47th National Day. The military parades and air shows are conducted at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre on this day. The car rallies, dance shows, and fireworks are some of the common activities held across the country. All the buildings are decorated with red, black, white, and green colors of the UAE’s flag. People even decorated their cars with national symbols and colors. The grand celebration on UAE National Day shows the love & spirit of the people for their country that keeps them united.
We have prepared a list of interesting facts about UAE that will help you explore more about this country.
- The UAE formation occurred under the leadership of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who is also known as the father of the nation.
- The UAE has a literacy rate of 93%. Women in the UAE account for 70% of the university graduates and fill around 2/3rd of government jobs.
- Abu Dhabi is the largest Emirate that takes up 87% of the UAE’s total area. Ajman is the smallest Emirate that accounts for less than 1% area covering only 259 kms. While Abu Dhabi is the largest Emirate, Dubai is the most populated Emirate.
- The population of expats is more in the UAE compared to the local natives. There are more than 30,000 Americans residing in the UAE.
- Dubailand, the world’s largest theme park is being built in Dubai, which will be twice the size of the Walt Disney World Resort.
- You will be surprised to know that 25% of the world’s operational cranes are located in Dubai.
- The Burj Khalifa was originally called Burj Dubai. After Abu Dhabi offered financial help to Dubai during the recession, the building was renamed in the honor of Sheikh Khalifa.
- Masdar City in Abu Dhabi is the world’s first zero-carbon, zero-waste, and car-free city. It is completely dependent on solar energy and other renewable energy sources. Private vehicles are completely banned. Electric cars, clean-energy vehicles, and personal rapid transit pod cars are the major means of transportation in Masdar City.
- Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi is the current largest indoor theme park in the world that has the fastest roller coaster. Which accelerates to 140 km/hr in under five seconds.
- The Guinness Book of World Record states that UAE is home to the most date palm trees in the world. There were 42 million date palm trees when counted back in 2009.
- Every year about 12 million tourists visit the UAE. The tourism sector accounts for over 10% of the nation’s GDP.
- Dubai is known as the busiest foreign US Navy Port of call and Abu Dhabi is the Joint Air warfare Centre where both USA & UAE pilots train together.
- More than 750 US firms are present in the UAE. Every state in the US exports to the UAE, as well as the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia.
- In 1998, UNESCO named Sharhaj the ‘Cultural Capital of the Arab World.’
- Sheikha Lubna Al Qasimi, the Minister of Foreign Trade was appointed as the UAE’s first woman minister in 2004.
- The UAE became the first country in the Middle East to host the FIFA Club World Cup Tournament in 2009.
- The UAE hosts two leading international film festivals every year, including the annual Dubai International Film Festival & Abu Dhabi Film Festival.