The 15 Biggest Individual Landowners On The Planet

By on September 23, 2015 in ArticlesBillionaire News

There are 36.8 billion acres of inhabitable land on earth and 21 percent of it is owned by just a handful of people. Of course, this includes the Queen of England, who technically owns Australia and Canada. However, American billionaire and Chairman of Liberty Media Corp., John Malone, also makes the list with his vast land holdings in the U.S. These are the 15 Biggest Landowners in the World.

15. John Malone

United States

2.2 million Acres

Liberty Media Corp. Chairman John Malone (who is a good friend of Ted Turner) owns a million acres of woodland in Maine and New Hampshire, as well as two equestrian properties in Florida.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

Scott Olson/Getty Images

14. Sheik Hamad Bin Khalifa

Qatar

Owns All 4,415 Miles of Qatar

As King of Qatar Sheik Hamad Bin Khalifa owns his entire country. He is a surprisingly modern and Western-friendly force in the Middle East. He's been King since 1995.

KARIM JAAFAR/AFP/Getty Images

KARIM JAAFAR/AFP/Getty Images

13. The Irving Family

United States

3.6 Million Acres

James, Arthur, and John Irving own 3.6 million acres of land in Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. The three Canadian brothers inherited thousands of square miles of forest land. They are heirs to the J.D. Irving Group fortune. The forest land is used for paper and pulp materials in just one part of the family's very diversified business interests.

12. King Mswati

Swaziland

All 6,704 Square Miles of Swaziland

King Mswati is one of the last Absolute Monarchs in the world and as a result, he owns ALL of the nation he rules in Southern Africa. National law states that the throne is the sole landowner in the entire country.

Mary Altaffer-Pool/Getty Images

Mary Altaffer-Pool/Getty Images

11. Emir of Kuwait

Kuwait

4.4 million acres

The Emir, who inherited his throne, owns 4.4 million of the 7 million acres that make up the nation of Kuwait. Part of the land that the Emir does not own is the American military property that houses the largest American military base in the Middle East.

YASSER AL-ZAYYAT/AFP/Getty Images

YASSER AL-ZAYYAT/AFP/Getty Images

10. King Letsie III

Lesotho (South Africa)

All 11,718 square miles of Lesotho, including the diamond mines

King Letsie is in his second go around as the monarch of Lesotho. While the country's monarchy is mostly ceremonial, Letsie holds the legal title over the lands of his country – including the lucrative diamond mines.

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images

9. King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck

Bhutan

All 15,000 square miles of Bhutan

As King of Bhutan, King Jigme owns all of his newly democratic nation. King was educated in America at Philips Andover Academy and ascended to the throne in 2008.

Triston Yeo/Getty Images

Triston Yeo/Getty Images

8. King Abdullah II

Jordan

All 35,637 square miles of the Kingdom of Jordan

Jordan is one of the very few members of both the World Trade Organization and The Arab League. King Abdullah II is the heir to his father, the very popular King Hussein and one of the U.S.'s most important allies in the region. He was also once an extra on Star Trek Voyager.

KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images

KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP/Getty Images

7. King Gyanendra

Nepal

All 57,000 miles of Nepal, including Mount Everest

Nepal's royal family retains ownership of the country, despite a move to a Maoist Republic in the 1990s. King Gyanendra is the formal head of the country, but he holds no real power within the socialist government of Nepal.

DEVENDRA MAN SINGH/AFP/Getty Images

DEVENDRA MAN SINGH/AFP/Getty Images

6. Sultan Qaboos

Oman

All of the desert lands of Oman

Sultan Qaboos is the ruler of Oman and the head of the country's military. The largely desert nation includes the ports along the Coast of Sur, which is a major entry point for trade in the region. Qaboos is a pretty westernized leader compared to other heads of state in the region.

Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Chris Jackson/Getty Images

5. King Bhumibol

Thailand

All 128 million acres of Thailand

King Bhumibol has been King of Thailand since 1950 and in this role owns all of Thailand's acreage including the wildly popular tourist-friendly beach resorts. He is the longest reigning monarch in Asia.

 PORNCHAI KITTIWONGSAKUL/AFP/Getty Images

PORNCHAI KITTIWONGSAKUL/AFP/Getty Images

4. King Mohammed VI

Morocco

All 176.5 million acres of Morocco

As King, Mohammed VI, controls all of Morocco and its land, which has historically been the key point of trade between Europe and Africa, affording it a healthy economy throughout the decades. King Mohammed is the first champion of democracy in a monarchy that dates back to 1036.

ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/Getty Images

ISSOUF SANOGO/AFP/Getty Images

3. Pope Francis

Vatican City

177 million acres owned by Catholic Church

110 acres of Vatican City

The sitting Pope, in this case Francis, owns the land that Vatican City sits on as well as all of the land owned by the Catholic Church around the world, including the hundreds of Vatican embassies that act as independent nations.

Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Franco Origlia/Getty Images

2. King Salman

Saudi Arabia

830,000 square miles, making up The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

As King, Salman has total control over Saudi Arabia's oil rich 830,000 square miles. The GDP of Saudi Arabia was $618 billion last year.

FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images

FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images

Queen Elizabeth II

Great Britain

6.6 billion acres

Queen Elizabeth II technically owns all of the land that makes up Great Britain, Northern Ireland, Canada, Australia, the Falkland Islands, and a few other pieces of land around the world. England's longest reigning monarch commands the entire British Commonwealth. That basically means she gets to have her face on money all over the world.

Getty Images

Getty Images

Articles Written by Amy Lamare
Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based writer covering business, technology, entertainment, philanthropy, and pop culture. She spent 8 1/2 years covering the entertainment industry for www.hsx.com. She attended the University of Southern California where she majored in Creative Writing. An avid long distance runner, weekends she can be found running the streets of Los Angeles training for 1/2 and full marathons. Follow her on Facebook.
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