Oliver Ephgrave Jan 16th 2017

The world’s largest aircraft is a sight to behold, especially when it visits Dubai World Central

It’s a special occasion every time the one-of-a-kind Antonov An-225 is in town.

Measuring an impressive 84m long and weighing 175,000kg, it’s the longest and heaviest aircraft ever built and has the largest wingspan in operational service.

The incredible flying machine is called Mriya, which means ‘Dream’ in Ukrainian, and has been in service for 27 years.

There’s a good reason for Mriya’s enormous size – it was originally designed to airlift the Buran orbiter and rocket boosters for the Soviet space programme in the 1980s.

Although this use was short lived, the aircraft’s spaciousness is pretty handy for carrying lots of cargo, and can hold up to 50 cars.

Mriya’s most recent visit was in May 2016, when it stopped off in Dubai World Central after a cargo trip to Australia. Check out this video.

We also got a look inside and took some cracking shots.

Needless to say, we hope to see the mighty Mriya again soon!

Download the latest issue of Time Out DXB
Subscribe to the Connect newsletter