Ramadan celebration began this year in the second week of May 2019. About 1.6 billion Muslims around the world are observing it with great religious fervour.
During the entire month of Ramadan, after having a pre-dawn meal known as ‘Suhoor,’ people keep fast (sawm) until the sun shines and break their fast with a hearty feast known as ‘Iftar.’
In this month, restaurants are mostly closed in a majority of Muslim countries during the day time. The real Ramadan celebrations begin after the sun sets. People head out, with their friends and families, for iftar meals, dinners and shopping.
Charity in Ramadan
The tradition of giving charity in Ramadan in the form of Sadqah and Zakat also reaches its zenith. Zakat calculation and payment is a very important matter that must be dealt with proper care and attention. The spirit of Ramadan, according to Islam, emphasizes on the act of giving so that everyone living in a society can equally enjoy the season of festivities.
Ramadan Celebration in Muslim Countries around the World
Duration of fasting in Ramadan 2019 may vary from region to region. People in Russia observe fast for 20.45 hours, which is the longest interval from dawn till dusk. On the other hand, Argentina has the shortest duration of fast in the world, which is around 11 hours.
In this blog, we will find out how Muslim living in different countries celebrate Ramadan.
In Pakistan, Ramadan celebrations are carried out by making special arrangements not only for prayers but also for Suhoor and Iftar, which are the two most important meals of the day.
Food items like Khajla and Pheni that are best enjoyed during Sehri are available throughout Ramadan. Iftars are enjoyed with pakoras, samosas, sharbat, khajoor and fruit chaat.
In Pakistan, different rituals are followed during Ramadan. For example, after Isha prayers every night, men usually stay at mosque till late at night to perform Taraweeh and some additional prayers.
A fairly recent addition to the celebrations of Ramadan in Pakistan is television. Yes, you read that right. ‘Ramadan transmissions’ have become an integral part of the media diet in the country. A plethora of celebrities and religious clerics conduct hours-long shows on different channels, discussing religious ideas and Islamic history. Sometimes, these hosts also organize special events for people who wish to pray in a congregation on the odd nights of Ramadan.
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in Pakistan during Ramadan 2019 will be of 15 hours.
Saudi Arabia is a country that offers the most beautiful experience of Ramadan celebration to Muslims, as it is home to the two of Muslim’s holiest sites: Masjid Al-Haram with Khana Ka’ba in Makkah and Masjid-e-Nabawi in Madina.
The Grand Mosque (Masjid Al-Haram) in Makkah hosts one of the biggest suhoor and iftar gatherings throughout the 29/30 days of Ramadan. A similar set-up is organized every day at Masjid-e-Nabawi in Madina. A large group of pilgrims, both in Makkah and Madina, feast suhoor and iftar together at these holy sites. In addition, Saudis as well as people from across the world perform Umrah during this month. The blessings of performing Umrah in Ramadan are widely believed to be equivalent to those received during Hajj.
The bazaars and local markets in Saudi Arabia, especially in the holy cities of Makkah and Madina remain open all through the night. Spending Ramadan in Saudi Arabia is surely a beautiful experience for many.
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in Saudi Arabia during Ramadan 2019 will be around 14.5 hours.
In Iran, Ramadan celebration is carried out with full religious fervour and devotion. Apart from religious affairs, the love for food among the people of Iran in Ramadan also reaches its zenith.
Mashhad is a popular Iranian city among tourists. Shashlik Kebab, Shole Mashhadi and Dizi are some of the most famous dishes of Mashhad that people like to have in Ramadan.
The Iranian city of Mashhad is also famous for hosting the biggest iftar every year. The shrine of Imam Reza is the venue of this iftar arrangement. Iftar meals here are prepared for a staggering 12,000 people every day during Ramadan.
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in Iran during Ramadan 2019 will be around 15.5 hours.
Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi are the three major emirates in the United Arab Emirates. A majority of locals and expatriates celebrate Ramadan in these cities.
As usual, like in other countries, people fast all day long following different Islamic rituals. At night, the families here usually gather to have hearty feasts and spend time cherishing the blissful moments of Ramadan.
Harees, threed and gars, which is a favourite sweet dish of Emiratis, are usually enjoyed during the meals of iftar and dinner.
Apart from household Ramadan celebration, events like Bazaar Ramadan, Salam Ramadan Art Exhibition, Ramadan Majlis, Ramadan Mair and Ramadan and Eid Festival are also organized in the UAE during the holy month.
Ramadan Cannon is fired at iftar time in Dubai throughout Ramadan. Firing cannon at sunset is an age-old tradition of this region
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in the UAE during Ramadan 2019 will be around 14.8 hours.
Turkey has its own unique and colourful traditions to celebrate Ramadan. The streets and alleyways across Turkey during the darkest hours of the night echo with the sounds of thudding drums. This is how Muslims wake up for Suhoor in Turkey.
Life in Istanbul, which is one of Turkey’s most famous tourist destinations in the world, is very busy. People here fast and work all day long.
Thanks to the regional climate that never gets too hot, people don’t feel strained while undergoing their daily routines during Ramadan.
As the sun begins to set, the arrangement of communal iftars is made all around the country. The nightlife of Turkey during Ramadan becomes more festive.
Popular Turkish food items for Ramadan include Kuzu Tandir, Musakka, Kavurma Kaymak and Gullac.
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in Turkey during Ramadan 2019 will be around 16 hours.
Being a part of the South East Asian region, Indonesian Muslims have developed unique and colourful traditions of celebrating Ramadan.
Parades of people carrying torches displaying different colours along with activities like cleaning up the graves of relatives; this is how Indonesian Muslims welcome Ramadan.
Like other Muslim countries, the practice of sharing a meal in the form of communal iftar arrangements is followed in multiple cities of Indonesia.
Redang is a dish that is cooked in households and enjoyed by the whole family. It is a very important Indonesian culinary tradition for the holy month of Ramadan.
Duration of Fast: The longest fast in Indonesia during Ramadan 2019 will be around 13.5 hours.
The region that you are living in has a great impact on your lifestyle, culinary habits and the way you celebrate religious festivities like Ramadan and Eid.