Ramadan marks the ninth month in the Islamic calendar and marks a time for Muslims worldwide to fast from dawn until sunset, pray, give charity, and travel to Mecca annually for pilgrimage.
Travellers of all faiths should observe these restrictions, so it is crucial that their travel plans remain flexible during this month.
Do your research
Before visiting any Muslim-majority country for Ramadan travel, it is vital that you conduct adequate research. Doing this will allow you to gain a better understanding of its culture, while helping prevent any embarrassing cultural faux pas that may put you into an awkward situation.
Additionally to educating yourself about prayer times and fasting hours, it’s also wise to become as familiar with your destination as possible. Knowing when restaurants and stores close for the day or what food options exist during lunch hours as well as celebration activities after sunset will make your trip all the more enjoyable! With this knowledge at your fingertips, your experience may become much more enjoyable!
Check local laws and regulations related to fasting. Some countries, for instance, prohibit eating or drinking in front of those fasting; furthermore, avoid areas with large populations of Muslims who haven’t broken their fast yet.
Considerations should also be given to the fact that many businesses, attractions and restaurants will operate with reduced hours during Ramadan – this is particularly prevalent among more conservative Muslim nations. Therefore, it would be prudent to stock up on supplies like water and snacks prior to afternoon closure of most convenience stores; and make sure your itinerary includes getting back home by sunset for Iftar (breakfast meal).
Many people may mistakenly assume that modest clothing is dull or lack style, but it is essential to remember that elegance lies at the heart of modest wear. Finding a balance between style and modesty takes practice – but there are numerous ways you can dress stylishly while dressing modestly.
As a starting point, try to avoid tight-fitting clothing as this could expose body parts that are inappropriate in certain cultures. Instead, opt for loose-fitting dresses and skirts in light colors or neutral tones which blend in seamlessly with local dress codes.
Reminders should also include religious sites which require women to cover their shoulders and arms – it would therefore be wise to bring along a pashmina or shawl as this will provide coverage while still allowing you to take in all the sights!
Make sure to pack a long-sleeved button-up shirt as this versatile piece can serve as a jacket, blouse, or even dress if necessary. Not only can it blend in easily with conservative areas while remaining fashionable – its compact dimensions also make it a convenient addition to your travel wardrobe!
Don’t eat or drink in public
Ramadan, or the ninth month in Islam’s lunar calendar, is an auspicious time dedicated to fasting, prayer, charity and family gatherings. Muslims believe it was during this month that Allah revealed its first verses from Quran – Islam’s holy book – to Mohammed. Furthermore, this month provides opportunities for reflection, community service and spiritual growth.
Muslims are required to participate in Ramadan, with certain exemptions given for illness, pregnancy or nursing, travel or menstruation. Those taking part observe a daily fast from dawn until sunset that restricts food and liquid intake (even water) until sunset; during which they focus on faith while trying to control negative thoughts such as jealousy and anger.
Muslims commemorate one of Islam’s holiest nights during Ramadan’s final 10 days – Laylat al-Qadr – when God sent Jibril as messenger from heaven to show Muhammad how to read and interpret its initial verses.
Eid al-Fitr is an annual holiday that marks the end of Ramadan and serves as a symbol for celebration, commemorating this month of fasting by gathering friends and families around for large meals together.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Non-Muslim travellers do not need to observe every aspect of Ramadan; however, doing so would show respect and open doors that would otherwise remain closed. Dress modestly and refrain from eating or drinking in public while tipping generously at restaurants or receiving exceptional service from others; doing so will be greatly appreciated by locals, and can even reduce its negative effect on tourism in their country.
Egypt, Jordan, and Morocco generally operate normally during Ramadan with reduced restaurant hours and food stalls; however, this varies from city to city, so it is recommended to double check before traveling online for exact operating hours.
At any point during the day, non-Muslim travelers are free to eat in restaurants that are open (though the shades will likely be drawn so Muslims won’t see their food being consumed), and tour guides who fast may still lead tours while others may require their guests to consume all food and beverages before returning back to their accommodation.
Experience Morocco at its finest with these two incredible cities of Morocco! Be captivated by its warm culture as you witness street vendors prepare sahur meals on the street and hear Adhan callouts at sunrise and sunset, all the while taking in its unique culture and welcoming spirit.