Ramadan in Dubai

ramadan 2

Written by Salwa Ali, Transaction Services, member of our Race Equality Network

The cities are lit up, decorations are out, and the supermarkets have all the traditional foods on display and offer! Ramadan Kareem!

Born and raised in the Middle East, I have spent my entire life in the UAE and Ramadan has been a spiritual month of fasting with vibes that hit different.

Work and school hours are reduced. Most offices close by 3pm and there would be crazy traffic in the scorching heat until about 5pm. After that, the roads are dead silent. Everyone is home either praying or resting.

An hour before iftar (sunset - time to break the fast) the kitchens start getting busy. You can hear the sizzling sounds of food being fried (we love to have fried foods for some reason), the aroma of different kinds of dishes being prepared in the house and the tables start setting up.

Every family sits together to break the fast every day. Tents are setup outside mosques with free food served for people whose families are back home. There are special Ramadan prayers performed during the night that you can hear through the mosque speakers.

Now everyone is out and about. The malls and shops start getting crowded until midnight or even 2am. Roads are full, restaurants are filled up, people are running their errands and shopping. It feels like an early evening.

As the night passes it is time to have the last meal before the next fast begins which is a little before sunrise. All this messes up our regular routines but the spirituality felt in this month is like no other. We feel really happy and at peace. The month passes by really quick and we find ourselves waiting for the next Ramadan.

A Ramadan night market

Guide to Ramadan

A guide to Ramadan is available and has been produced in conjunction with Muslim colleagues, aiming to help improve understanding of Ramadan.


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