In keeping with breaking world records when it comes to building impressive and mind-bogglingly huge constructions, Dubai plans to build the world’s biggest Ferris wheel. Set to sit 1.5 times higher than the London Eye, the gargantuan attraction – the Dubai Eye (natch) – is due to be unveiled in 2015, with work beginning in June 2013.
Part of a billion pound entertainment project, The Bluewaters Island, it’s hoped that the 690ft Ferris wheel will pull in more than three million visitors a year.
With its base securely nestled in the manmade island, the massive wheel will dominate the city skyline and offer stunning views over Dubai’s coastline and some notable landmarks, including Palm Jumeirah, Burj Khalifa and Burj Al Arab.
In its entirety, the ambitious project comprises a fake island, the Dubai Eye, retail and entertainment zones, and low-rise residential buildings – which will be added by 2016. The project has been approved by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and joins a cluster of other recently approved ambitious developments that includes a Universal Studios theme park and the world’s biggest shopping mall.
Ferris wheels around the world
The Dubai Eye will rob the Singapore Flyer’s of its present position as the word’s tallest observation wheel. Standing at a gigantic 165ft tall, the imposing Singapore Flyer started rotating in 2008 and has been attracting tourists on a mission to go sky high ever since. The views are spectacular and encompass not only a breathtaking panorama of Marina Bay, but on a clear day you can even catch a glimpse of neighbouring Indonesia and Malaysia.
The Star of Nanchang
Coming in a close second is the evocatively named The Star of Nanchang. Rising 160ft from the ground, The Star of Nanchang is located in the eastern Chinese city Nanchang, the capital of Jiangxi Province. Rotating since 2006, this mammoth wheel cost 57 Yuan to build and a full turn of the wheel – as with the London Eye – takes 30 minutes. In keeping with the region’s typical hot summers, the wheel’s gondolas are air conditioned, so you’ll keep your cool – even if you are scared of heights…
The London Eye standing proudly at 135ft tall, is Europe’s and the whole of the Western Hemisphere’s tallest observation wheel. Launched to great acclaim in 2000, the popular tourist attraction offers amazing views across the city of London and beyond – on a clear day you can even see Windsor castle. The London Eye has become a well-known and well loved party of the city’s skyline and has won over 85 awards for national and international tourism, outstanding architectural quality and engineering achievement. From marriage proposals and weddings to sky high dining and children’s parties, the London Eye has become an iconic emblem of our capital city.
New kid on the block, The Brighton Wheel, also know as the Wheel of Excellence during its construction, was erected in the popular seaside resort of Brighton & Hove in 2011. Sat right on the seafront near the Palace Pier it offers brilliant views across the city, it’s beautiful coastline and – weather permitting – the South Downs. The ride is 12 minutes long, while the wheel is 50 meters above sea level. Best of all? The commentary guide is by comedy genius (and Brighton resident), Steve Coogan.