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Published August 8th 2023

The 20 Most Viewed YouTube Videos

Here are the most viewed videos on YouTube of all time, from music videos to viral hits.

From humble beginnings, YouTube now boasts billions of users, videos on every topic imaginable, and can take credit for a slew of careers that took their first steps on the platform.

It is now a media giant in its own right, and if a video goes viral, there’s a big chance you watched it on YouTube.

In its 18 years of existence, many different videos have held the coveted “most viewed” title, but which ones currently hold the crown?

Below we’ve listed the 20 most watched YouTube videos on the platform, so you can find out.

20. "Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)" by Shakira (3.6bn views)

To start things off, we have a song by Colombian singer Shakira featuring the South African band Freshlyground. “Waka Waka” was released on May 7, 2010 as the official song of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which was held in South Africa. 

19. “Sorry” by Justin Bieber (3.6bn views)

Justin Bieber was literally discovered on YouTube, so it’s perfectly natural for him to make the list. While his 2010 track “Baby” was itself a huge hit on YouTube way back when (2.9bn views at the moment of writing this piece), his more recent track “Sorry” has vastly surpassed it.

18. “Baa Baa Black Sheep” by Cocomelon – Nursery Rhymes (3.7bn views)

A classic nursery rhyme, showing just how influential child viewership will be on this list.

17. “Counting Stars” by OneRepublic (3.8bn views)

Next on our list is a 2013 video from American pop-rock band OneRepublic.

16. “Roar” by Katy Perry (3.8bn views)

Katy Perry grabbed the #16 spot on our list.

15. “Sugar” by Maroon 5 (3.9bn views)

Next up, we have Maroon 5.

14. "Crazy Frog" by Axel F (3.9bn views)

A blast from the past for people of a certain age, this song has inexplicably made a comeback in recent years.

13. “Dame Tu Cosita” by El Chombo, featuring Cutty Ranks (4.4bn views)

This strange and short video is up next. Depicting an alien-type creature dancing to “Dame Tu Cosita” by El Chombo, you would never guess it has over four billion views.

12. “Learning Colors – Colorful Eggs on a Farm” by Miroshka TV (4.5bn views)

We’ve reached our first non-music video on the list, an educational video for kids. This is an animation that uses anthropomorphized eggs to teach them about colors.

11. “Gangnam Style” by Psy (4.8bn views)

The archetype of viral YouTube videos, one of the oldest ones on this list, is the K-pop megastar Psy with “Gangnam Style.”

While it’s been usurped since it was released, it spent 1,689 days as the most viewed video on YouTube (that’s 4.6 years!). No one else has yet come close to that record.

10. “Masha and the Bear – Recipe for Disaster” by Get Movies (4.9bn views)

Now we have some kids’ entertainment again. This Russian video is from the Masha and the Bear series, all about a fatherly bear who looks after said Masha.

9. “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson, featuring Bruno Mars (4.9bn views)

Although from 2017, it’s one of the newer videos on this list. Here we have Mark Ronson with his global hit “Uptown Funk”.

8. “Wheels on the Bus” by Cocomelon - Nursery Rhymes (5.4bn views)

Another video on our list aimed at children.

7. “Phonics Song with Two Words” by ChuChu TV (5.4bn views)

Yet another educational one aimed at kids (and not the last one on our list). In this video, the song is used to help children understand words and the alphabet.

6. “See You Again” by Wiz Khalifa, featuring Charlie Puth (5.9bn views)

It’s back to music videos for now, with Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again”. Have a watch to transport yourself back to 2015.

5. “Shape of You” by Ed Sheeran (6bn views)

Ed Sheeran grabbed the #5 spot on our list of the top 20 most viewed YouTube videos. 

4. “Bath Song” by Cocomelon – Nursery Rhymes (6.3bn views)

Here’s another video aimed at children. This one is simply a kids’ song about taking a bath, with accompanying animation. We suppose this technically makes it a music video. Watch out Bieber.

3. “Johny Johny Yes Papa” by LooLoo Kids (6.7bn views)

An animation set to an old nursery rhyme, this video also went viral after it was endlessly memed on Twitter due to its slightly surreal and bizarre nature.

2. “Despacito” by Luis Fonsi, featuring Daddy Yankee (8.2bn views)

This huge track once held the top spot for 1,186 days and has likely been put on at millions upon millions of parties since it was uploaded.

1. “Baby Shark Dance” by Pinkfong Kids’ Songs & Stories (13bn views)

We reach our journey’s end, and what else could it be but a music video and a video for children? The combo that generates views with ease.

You’ve probably already heard this incredibly catchy song since it went viral worldwide a few years ago. It’s continued to rack up the views since.

Be warned – if you watch, you'll have the song stuck in your head for at least 72 hours.

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