Stadiums are not only architectural marvels but massive theaters of entertainment, celebration and passion. Among the largest fifty stadiums in the world, approximately half are found in the United States, a quarter in Europe and the rest are scattered in South America, Asia and Africa. Noticeably, the largest stadiums in the world host American college football teams. This list does not include stadiums that are now-defunct, such as the Strahov Stadium in Prague, which has a total capacity of 56,000 when seated (or 250,000 while standing) but is today only used as a training center.
Gigantic stadiums are known to host rugby, cricket and even martial arts festivals find their way into the list of the world’s largest stadiums. North Korea’s Rungrado 1st of May Stadium which is the world’s largest stadium with a capacity of 150,000 people hosts football games besides a festival called Arirang (gymnastic and artistic games). Australia’s Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) which hosts 100, 024 people and is primarily a cricket ground comes in at number 10 among the world’s largest. Twickenham Stadium (82, 000) in the UK mostly hosts rugby games and it comes in at position 31.
Majority of the world’s largest stadiums are found in the US. Eight out of the top ten largest stadiums in the world are in the US where they play host to American football and baseball teams. Some of them are Michigan Stadium (107, 601 people) in position two behind Rungrado, while Beaver Stadium (107, 572), Ohio Stadium (104, 944) and Kyle Field (102, 512) complete the top five. In total, 22 stadiums among the top fifty are all in the US where they host American football and baseball games. The two sports demand larger playing area thereby providing for the construction of larger spectator areas on the fringes of the pitch. The two games are wildly popular in the US and hence the big stadiums to accommodate the thousands of fans who turn up at almost every game.
Stadiums in the US and Europe are also increasing their capacities. For instance, Tiger Stadium expanded from a 92,400 to 100,000 capacity while Texas’s Kyle stadium will accommodate 27,000 more people from the current 82,000 stadium after its expansion. Wembley Stadium which comes in at number 19 among the world’s largest, was expanded from a 40,000 to a 90,000 capacity stadium in 2003 while Russia's Luzhiniki Stadium was expanded some years ago to the current capacity of 78,000.
Although soccer is the world’s most popular sport, it loses out in terms of its stadiums’ capacities. Only three stadiums are primarily known for soccer- Camp Nou (99, 786), Estadio Azteca (95, 500), Soccer City (94, 713) appear in among the top 15 of the world’s largest. In total only 15 stadiums know to host soccer around the world make it to the top fifty.
Africa and Asia contribute approximately 10 stadiums among the top fifty largest in the world. Several stadiums such as Indonesia's Gelora Bung Karno Stadium (88,306) and Congo’s Stade des Martyrs (80, 000) are an indication that the sports has gained root in the two regions and more big stadiums are to be built.
The United States dominates when it comes to having the largest stadiums in the world. The country's massive popularity of American football and baseball backed by the lucrativeness of the sports has seen many teams construct colossal stadiums for their home teams. Europe, which is the home of soccer has a significant number of large stadiums that play host to soccer matches. However, and in a unique twist, North Korea plays host to the world's largest stadium which can host up to 150,000 people.
Biggest Stadiums in The World By Capacity
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|1||Rungrado 1st of May Stadium||150,000||Pyongyang|
|2||Michigan Stadium||107,601||Ann Arbor, Michigan|
|3||Beaver Stadium||107,572||State College, Pennsylvania|
|4||Ohio Stadium||104,944||Columbus, Ohio|
|5||Kyle Field||102,512||College Station, Texas|
|6||Neyland Stadium||102,455||Knoxville, Tennessee|
|7||Tiger Stadium||102,321||Baton Rouge, Louisiana|
|8||Bryant-Denny Stadium||101,821||Tuscaloosa, Alabama|
|9||Darrell K Royal - Texas Memorial Stadium||100,119||Austin, Texas|
|10||Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)||100,024||Melbourne,Victoria|
|12||Estadio Azteca||95,500||Mexico City|
|14||Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum||93,607||Los Angeles,California|
|15||Sanford Stadium||92,746||Athens, Georgia|
|16||Rose Bowl||92,542||Pasadena, California|
|17||Cotton Bowl||92,100||Dallas, Texas|
|18||Memorial Stadium||91,471||Lincoln, Nebraska|
|20||Ben Hill Griffin Stadium||88,548||Gainesville, Florida|
|21||Gelora Bung Karno Stadium||88,306||Jakarta|
|22||Jordan-Hare Stadium||87,451||Auburn, Alabama|
|23||Bukit Jalil National Stadium||87,411||Kuala Lumpur|
|24||Borg El Arab Stadium||86,000||Alexandria|
|26||Stadium Australia||83,500||Sydney, New South Wales|
|27||MetLife Stadium||82,500||East Rutherford, New Jersey|
|29||Bobby Bowden Field at Doak Campbell Stadium||82,300||Tallahassee, Florida|
|30||Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium||82,112||Norman, Oklahoma|
|33||Stade de France||81,338||Saint-Denis|
|34||Estadio Santiago Bernabeu||81,044||Madrid|
|35||Notre Dame Stadium||80,795||South Bend, Indiana|
|36||Lambeau Field||80,750||Green Bay, Wisconsin|
|37||Signal Iduna Park||80,667||Dortmund|
|38||Camp Randall Stadium||80,321||Madison, Wisconsin|
|39||Williams-Brice Stadium||80,250||Columbia, South Carolina|
|41||Stadio Giuseppe Meazza (San Siro)||80,018||Milan|
|42||Guangdong Olympic Stadium||80,012||Guangzhou|
|43||AT&T Stadium||80,000||Arlington, Texas|
|44||Grand Stade de Casablanca||80,000||Casablanca|
|45||Beijing National Stadium||80,000||Beijing|
|46||Stade 5 Juillet 1962||80,000||Algiers|
|47||Stade des Martyrs||80,000||Kinshasa|
|49||Estadio do Maracana||78,838||Rio de Janeiro|