Ramadan is one of the most important annual observances of the year for Muslims. Here is a guide to help you decide where to stay, what to do, where to pray, and how to stay up to date.
WHEN IS RAMADAN?
Ramadan 2021 will begin on either Tuesday, 13 or Wednesday 14 April and will end on 12 or 13 May 2021. Eid al Fitr 2021 will be on Thursday or Friday 13 or 14 May. The dates may vary according to the moon sighting. There is a uniquely South African tradition where “maankykers” (Afrikaans for “moon watchers”) gather in spots around the city to wait for the sighting of the moon. You can join in at Signal Hill, Three Anchor Bay, or most other sites that have a good view of the night sky. If you use Twitter, follow #MaanKykers for updates. Another good option is to tune into Radio786 or The Voice of the Cape for accurate and up-to-date information, and to make sure you don’t miss the announcements.
MOSQUES, AND PRAYER ROOMS
With a large number of mosques found across the length and breadth of Cape Town, the choice is wide. The two oldest Mosques in Cape Town are the Auwal Mosque, built in 1794, and the Palm Tree Mosque, established in 1807.
The city offers prayer rooms in major centres—including the V&A Waterfront and Canal Walk. You’ll also find prayer rooms at Cape Town International Airport and the Cape Town International Convention Centre. The Athlone Mosque in Gatesville draws big crowds for Laylat al-Qadr (the Night of Power), and is one of the best places to join the prayer in town.
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