In just a few days’ time, we will be only two weeks away from the sacred month of Ramadan. As we welcome this much anticipated month we also have to prepare ourselves mentally, physically, and emotionally for what lies ahead. Although it is one of the most cherished months in the Muslim religion it also comes with a great deal of commitment and sacrifice which we eagerly do for the pleasure of the Almighty. While this article will feature information pertaining to South Africa only - a country found at the most southern tip of Africa please click on the link below to get more information regarding Ramadan from around the globe.
Ramadan in South Africa – depending on the sighting of the moon - is expected to begin on the 22nd of March. The first day of fasting will commence on Saturday the 21st of April. Due to the night preceding the day in the Islamic calendar, the first Tarawih is expected to take place on Friday evening.
Ramadan is expected to end on the 21st of April with the hope of Eid ul Fitr being celebrated on Sunday the 22nd of April. Again this is entirely dependent on the moon. In South Africa masses of people flock to Sea Point in Cape Town to view the new moon. Although this is the most common spot, the moon has been sighted in other provinces as well. The final decision though lies with the Islamic Body known as the Jamaitul Ulama who uses strict Islamic rulings and criteria to determine the credibility of the sighting
South Africa’s prayer times differ according to the provinces in which one resides. If you are closer to Cape Town the fasting period is longer with Gauteng and Kwa Zulu Natal being significantly shorter. In Pretoria, we will be fasting for just over 12 hours with Sehri beginning on the first day at 04:55 and Iftar at 18:16. However due to it being the beginning of our Winter season in the Southern Hemisphere; as the days progress our fasts will be getting shorter.
You can view the prayer times for the day, as pictured below. You can even for the whole month or year on our prayer times page.
The Qibla is the direction that Muslims face when performing their five times daily prayers. With technology, things have become significantly easier where we are able to download apps or use the compasses on our phones. However, in the past and still even today the Qibla can be determined by the position of the sun. The general Qiblah direction is NE but a more accurate portrayal of the direction in South Africa is:
The Prophet (S.A.W) said that we should search for the blessed night of Laylatul Qadr in the last ten nights of Ramadan. Many scholars believe that the Night of Light is on the 27th of Ramadan however based on the teachings of the Prophet (S.A.W) we can assume that Laylatul Qadr can fall on any odd night during the last ten nights of Ramadan.
The proposed date for Eid, based on the sighting of the moon, is the 22nd of April.
Last year although most of the world fast for 29 days due to the moon not being visible we fasted for 30 days. Again it will depend on the moon being sighted whether we will fast for 29 or 30 days.
Masjids are currently open and Tarawih will be performed at a number of venues. In South Africa due to the inspiring amount of Hafizul Quraans, Tarawih is not just performed at masjids but in many homes and Islamic schools as well to afford everyone the opportunity to lead the prayer.
South Africa: Mosque near me
The times for Sahur and Iftar differ depending on the various provinces. You can check the Sahur and Iftar timings for your location on our prayer times page.
South Africa: Halal Restaurants near me
During Ramadan, all chain stores are open well after Iftar, and takeouts and restaurants remain open until Sheri. Takeouts will be in full operation however avoid ordering too late on a weekend as many people choose this as their cooking day off and it could result in you receiving your food extremely late.
The CII (Channel Islam International) radio station can be found on the DSTV Audio bouquet on Channel 66. They have an entire Ramadan program with both a Suhor and Iftar slot daily. Alternatively, they can be streamed via their website.
During Ramadan, there are a number of spiritual upliftment classes that take place. These classes and programs are usually advertised via CII or can be found on social media platforms such as Ask Nanima on Facebook. Community groups also regularly advertise events taking place.