When Ramadan takes place
Ramadan’s exact dates change every year. This is because Islam uses a calendar based on the cycles of the Moon.
In Spring 2023, Ramadan began on 22 March and ended on Saturday 22 April.
How is Ramadan celebrated?
For Muslims, Ramadan is a time to focus on their faith and perform generous acts. People raise money and donate supplies to help others in need. Many fast to remind themselves about those in the world who don’t have enough to eat.
Most Muslims fast between dawn and sunset. Fasting allows Muslims to devote themselves to their faith. It is thought to teach self-discipline and remind them of the suffering of the poor. Children, pregnant women, elderly people, and those who are ill or travelling don't have to fast.
During Ramadan, it is common to have one meal - known as the suhoor - just before dawn and another - known as the iftar - directly after sunset.
Almost all Muslims try to give up bad habits during Ramadan. It is a time for prayer, good deeds and spending time with family and friends.
Interesting facts about Ramadan
- Ramadan is a holy month of fasting, worship and prayer. It celebrates the creation of the Quran, which is the holy book for people who practise the Islamic faith.
- Children don’t usually fast until they are 14 years old.
- During Ramadan you can greet someone by saying “Ramadan Mubarak” which means “Have a blessed Ramadan”.
The end of Ramadan is marked by a big celebration called Eid ul-Fitr (the Festival of the Breaking of the Fast).
Muslims are not only celebrating the end of fasting but thanking Allah for the strength he gave them throughout the previous month.
Mosques hold special services and a special meal is eaten during daytime - the first daytime meal for a month.
During Eid ul-Fitr, Muslims dress in their finest clothes, give gifts to children and spend time with their friends and family. Muslims will also give money to charity at Eid.