8. The Float (Marina Bay, Singapore)
With the capacity to seat 30,000 people, The Float in Marina Bay, Singapore is the world’s largest floating stage. The stadium has hosted many events since opening in 2007, including the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2010 Youth Olympics. It has also hosted concerts, fireworks displays, Football matches and parades. The construction was huge, as the stadium is 120 meters long and 83 meters wide. In 2007 – 2008 it was also a part of the Singapore Grand Prix circuit.
7. National Stadium (Beijing, China)
China’s National Stadium in Beijing was built to host the 2008 Summer Olympics and Paralympics. It has a current capacity of 80,000, a reduction from the capacity of 91,000 when used for the Olympics. The stadium was designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron based on Chinese ceramic modelling. It has been built with an apparently random steel framework, designed to conceal the trussed columns that provide strength to the structure. Since the Olympics, the stadium has been used for Football, motor racing, and the 2015 World Atheletics Championships. There are plans to build a shopping mall and hotel within the stadium precinct.
6. Ericsson Globe (Stockholm, Sweden)
The Ericsson Globe is shaped like a huge ball. It is the largest hemispherical building on the planet. Designed to be used in variable seating formations, Ericsson Globe can seat 16,000 spectators for shows and concerts, while the capacity is reduced to 13,850 for ice hockey. Since opening in 1989, the globe is primarily used for ice hockey, but has hosted a range of events and concerts, including Eurovision, Cirque de Soliel, a range of concerts, and even a papal mass!
5. Olympiastadion (Berlin, Germany)
Somewhat amazingly, this stadium is now 80 years old, having originally been built by Hilter as a showcase for the 1936 Olympics. While details vary with regard to the original capacity, it is estimated that between 100,000 and 110,000 spectators witnessed the Olympics. It was almost undamaged during World War II. In 2004 the stadium underwent major renovations, reducing the capacity to just under 75,000. While the primary use of the Olympiastadion is Football, it has also been used for American Football and athletics.
4. National Stadium (Kaohsiung, Taiwan)
The Taiwan National Stadium was purpose-built for the 2009 World Games, an event that features sports not included in the Olympics. A special feature of this 55,000 seat stadium is that it was the first stadium in the world to be powered using solar technology. The solar panels provide almost all the requirements for the stadium. Today, the National Stadium is primarily used for Football.
3. Soccer City (Johannesburg, South Africa)
Soccer City is the largest stadium in Africa, with a current capacity of just under 95,000. Located in Johannesburg, the stadium was upgraded to host the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The shape of the stadium was inspired by the calabash, a form of traditional African pot. It retains the colloquial name ‘the Calabash’. At nights, the base of the stadium is circled by lights, designed to resemble fire under the pot. Soccer City is technically known as First National Bank (or FNB) Stadium. It is primarily used for Football, but has hosted other sports such as Rugby Union. It has events including Nelson Mandela’s first public speech in Johannesburg following his imprisonment, concerts, and a Christian gathering of over 100,000 people.
2. Wembley (London, England)
The first Wembley Stadium was built in 1923. In 2007, the new Wembley Stadium was built on the site of the original, and is now the second largest stadium in Europe, having a capacity of 90,000. The stadium features a roof that can partially retract, and a huge arch, 134 meters high, creating a unique architectural design. The stadium hosts the FA Cup final, and is used for a range of sports including Rugby, Rugby League, American Football, and boxing.
1. CampNou (Barcelona, Spain)
Camp Nou was opened in 1957, and is the largest stadium in Europe. The capacity is just under 100,000. It’s the biggest stadium in Europe. The stadium is located in Barcelona and is the home ground of FC Barcelona. There have been plans for redevelopment and increasing the capacity, but events such as the Global Financial Crisis of 2008 have slowed these upgrades. The result is that the stadium is huge, but has a traditional feel to it. Current plans are in place to expand capacity and incorporate a canopy. In addition to Football, the stadium has been used for concerts, Rugby, and a papal mass with over 120,000 attendees.