The season of Ramadan is an integral part of every Muslim culture. It is a time when the faithful practice the teachings of the Prophet Mohammad.
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While Muslim countries celebrate this holy season, Qatar has its own unique traditions. Let’s explore what these traditions are.
Discover How Qatar Celebrates Ramadan
During this holy season, Muslims around the world follow certain traditions. However, in Qatar, there are unique customs not seen anywhere else. If you have the opportunity to visit or work in the country during this season, you can experience their celebration firsthand.
Here are the ways that Qataris celebrate Ramadan:
The firing of the iftar canon is a daily tradition during Ramadan in Qatar. This is a long-standing tradition in the country and is being fired before iftar. According to tradition, this canon will be fired to announce the beginning of Ramadan. Each day, the canon is fired again at the end of the day’s fast to announce that it is time for iftar to be served.
Free Iftar Tents
During Ramadan, many organizations in Qatar organize free iftar tents, as sharing is an important part of the season. In these tents, anyone in the community can participate in an iftar meal. Some Qatari families also sponsor free iftar meals.
The faithful wake up early for Sohour, a pre-fast meal taken during Ramadan. In Qatar, it is a tradition to have drummers, called Mesahar, walk around the community with their drums and chants to wake up the people for their pre-fast meal.
Children are also part of the Ramadan traditions, including fasting. To celebrate the end of their fasting, they celebrate Garangao on the 14th day of Ramadan. During this time, children wear their traditional clothes and walk in their neighborhood, singing and collecting candies and nuts in a special pouch from each house they visit.
Some parts of Qatar are adorned with decorations during Ramadan. If you would like to see them, visit Lusail Boulevard or Msheireb Downtown Doha. You can also go to Corniche and Al Zaman Plaza to see the Festive Lighting.
What to Expect During Ramadan
Is this your first time to experience Ramadan in Qatar? We have put together a guide to help you navigate this magical time, especially if you are non-Muslim.
- Working Hours
During Ramadan, you will notice that working hours are reduced. Government offices are open for only 5 hours while private offices have 6 hours of work. Additionally, some government offices may reopen at night.
- Mall and Banks
Similar to offices, shopping malls and banks will adjust their business hours during Ramadan. If you plan to conduct transactions during this time, it is advisable to check with your bank in advance regarding their schedule. On the other hand, shopping malls are usually open at night.
Restaurants are closed during the day and only open at sunset. Deliveries may also not be available while the sun is up. It’s best to check with the individual restaurants for their schedule during the season.
In sum, Ramadan is an important and solemn time for our Muslim brothers. We are expected to be culturally sensitive and respect their traditions.
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