Enjoying Ramadan and Islamic holidays in Morocco is a unique cultural experience. It is an experience not to be missed. You will have the opportunity to discover the Islamic culture, and how Muslims enjoy Ramadan and Islamic holidays in Morocco.
In this article, we will share with you how Moroccans live and enjoy Ramadan and two of the most important Islamic holidays in Morocco: Eid Al Fitr and Eid Al Adha.
Ramadan in Morocco
The ninth month of the lunar Hijri calendar is Ramadan, which is regarded as the most sacred month in Islam. Muslims improve their level of spiritual and bodily subordination to Allah. Express their thanks, and ask for his forgiveness via strict fasting, discipline, reflection, and prayer.
The holy Quran have been revealed to Prophet Muhammad during this month by Allah through the angel Gabriel. From the break of dawn till the lowering of the sun, Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, smoking, any form of violence, wrath, and marital intimacy as a way of honouring this auspicious time.
A typical day in Ramadan
A typical day of Ramadan in Morocco begins when the Nafar, a town crier, blowing a horn to wake up families for Suhoor, the pre-dawn meal. After Mu’addin the caller to prayer proclaims the call to the Dawn Prayer, people must abstain from eating and drinking until sunset.
For Tarawih and Tahajjud prayers, Moroccan Muslims go to the nearest mosques to pray. People do Extra congregational prayers throughout this holy month dedicating themselves to Allah and reading Quraan.
The celebration of Laylat al-Qadr, which often occurs on the 27th night of the month, is one of the most sacred events in Islam. For this auspicious occasion, families get together to share customary dinners.
This is the only time of the month when kids who haven’t already hit puberty fast. Young girls dress up in upscale attire, add gold jewellery, and apply makeup and henna while Boys dress in brand-new djellabas and Balghas.
Iftar in Ramadan
Moroccan ladies prepare the Sellou and Chebakia for the entire month of Ramadan in the days preceding it. The Iftar, or Ftour as it is more widely known, typically consists of Harira, a tomato and lentil soup, tagine, fried fish, hard-boiled eggs, Khobz, a crusty Moroccan bread, pancakes, flatbreads, and various sweet and savoury desserts. To renew the energy for the next day, dates, milk, juices, and sweets are provided.
To break their fasts, families and friends frequently get together. As an act of brotherhood, community and social gatherings are frequently held.
Things to keep in mind during Ramadan
- Except in exceptional circumstances like pregnancy or illness, it is forbidden for Moroccan people and residents to eat and drink in public during Ramadan. It is advisable to eat quietly at restaurants or in private, even though these restrictions do not apply to tourists and visitors.
- Morocco bans the sale of alcohol ten days before the holy month. It is improper to drink in public, and the majority of hotels also stop serving alcohol during Ramadan.
- During Ramadan, it’s wise to wear modest clothing. Both men and women should always keep their knees and shoulders covered. Clothing that is too tight or too exposing is strictly forbidden, especially for women. Couples should also act appropriately because it is impolite to show affection in public.
- During Ramadan, the majority of the neighborhood cafes and eateries close during the day, with some remaining for the entire month. However, some restaurants keep their doors open for non-muslims.
After we shared the things you should keep in mind during Ramadan in Morocco, you may begin to think about whether it is worth visiting Morocco during Ramadan or not. Well, let me tell you something :
Travelling in Ramadan
- Travelling to Morocco during Ramadan will provide you with the chance to take part in celebrations and events that take place just once a year. The month of Ramadan is significant in Moroccan culture. Muslims use the month of Ramadan as a time for spiritual reflection, so visiting the nation at this time will give you a close-up look into Moroccan customs and Islamic traditions.
- What makes travelling to Morocco during Ramadan much more unique is the opportunity to take part in the Iftar breakfast and the surrounding activities. You will hear the sound of cannons signalling the conclusion of the day’s fast, observe throngs of people praying at their neighbourhood mosque, and see tables of food laid out to feed the needy.
- Additionally, there are unique Ramadan dishes available in Moroccan markets that are exclusively made during this month. Given that many of the special Ramadan meals are only prepared during this period, Ramadan is the ideal time to travel to Morocco if you are a foodie.
Besides Ramadan, there are many other Islamic holidays in Morocco Muslims enjoy. Two of the most important Islamic holidays in Morocco are Eid El Fitr and Eid El Adha.
Eid El Fitr in Morocco
Eid al-Fitr, also known as the Festival of Breaking of the Fast, is a significant religious holiday in Morocco observed by Muslims all over the world to celebrate the completion of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting.
The Prophet Muhammad and his followers observed the first Eid al-Fitr in 624 CE after winning the battle of Jang-e-Badar, a crucial turning point in Muhammad’s conflict with the Quraish in Mecca during the early years of Islam.
Eid al-Fitr is celebrated by many Muslims as a time to express their appreciation to Allah for providing them with the guidance and fortitude they needed to exercise restraint during the month of Ramadan.
Muslims pray on Eid Al-Fitr, which is known as “Salat Al Eid” in Arabic. For the Eid prayers, there is no loud call to prayer. Muslims will assemble at mosques or public areas to perform two “Rakat” prayers. After the prayers, the imam gives a sermon in which he begs for forgiveness, kindness, and peace for all Muslims around the entire globe.
It is traditional to dress in new clothes, eat something sweet like a date on the way to the mosque, and utter a brief prayer called a Takbeer.
Muslims frequently greet one another on this day with the Arabic word “Eid Mubarak,” which means “blessed Eid”. The appropriate response to Eid Mubarak is “Lah Ybarek Fik” which is “God bless you”.
Zakat Al Fitr
One of the most important elements of the Eid celebrations include offering alms to the needy known as “Zakat al-Fitr”; the amount to be donated depends on one’s wealth.
Before families can celebrate Eid al-Fitr, zakat al-Fitr, or charitable contributions, must be made. Although it must be done on Eid, most families finish their philanthropic work a few days before the celebration. On the day of Eid, payments must be made before Salat Al-Fajr, the first prayer of the day.
The family’s head is in charge of distributing the donations. Although additional necessities or money can also be provided, contributions should come in the form of essential food items like wheat or flour. As a general guideline, each member of a family should donate the equivalent of one bag of wheat.
Eid El Adha in Morocco
The “Feast of Sacrifice,” also known as Eid al-Adha, Eid ul-Adha, Id-ul-Azha or Id-ul-Zuha, is one of the sacred Islamic holidays in Morocco especially and in the world in general..
Al Eid Al Kabeer, which translates to “Grand Eid,” is another name for the celebration. Even though most nations observe roughly the same number of public holidays for both Eids, this Eid has a higher prominence in terms of religion because it lasts for four days as opposed to Eid Al Fitr’s one day.
Every year, this holiday is observed from the 10th to the 13th of the month of Zuul-Hijja. The Hajj (an annual pilgrimage by Muslims to Mecca), which is celebrated with the Eid holiday, takes place in the twelfth month of the year, Zuul-Hijja.
It marks the end of the Mecca Pilgrimage. Three days are dedicated to celebrating Eid al-Adha, which honours Abraham’s (Ibraham’s) willingness to submit his son to God.
Jews and Christians are both familiar with the same story that is told in the Bible. Muslims think the son was Ishmael rather than Isaac as described in the Old Testament, which is a significant distinction.
Ibrahim, according to the Quran, was going to offer his son as a sacrifice when a voice from heaven intervened and permitted him to offer something else as a “great sacrifice.” In the Old Testament, a ram is offered in sacrifice in place of the son.
Ishmael is regarded in Islam as a prophet and Muhammad’s ancestor.
Muslims sacrifice a cow or ram in remembrance of Ibrahim’s obedience on the Eid Al Adha holiday. About one-third of the dinner is consumed by the family, one-third is shared with friends and family, and the last third is given to the poor and needy.
Another important Eid al Adha custom is to donate to the needy or homeless by giving them money, food, or clothing.