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Ramadan in Fujairah

August 15, 2011

Posted by Kanga.

We are halfway through Ramadan and you might be wondering how Ramadan in Fujairah differs from Dubai. There is certainly less activity in the daytime. There is no public dining in restaurants prior to iftar (meal after sunset to break the fast). You can, however, get “take away” food from several restaurants. In the afternoon, there is temporary market area where one can buy food for the evening meal (Ramadan Food Market).

Even at iftar time, the restaurants don’t seem to be busy (unlike Dubai) and I assume that this is because most people are eating at home with family. The bars are closed for the entire month and their employees are on vacation or re-allocated to other restaurants.

Following the meal there are prayers at the mosque, so the town is still rather quiet until this is over. Then shopping and other social activities begin.

Around 10 pm, things start to pick up. The Maktoum Championships are in full swing, including a wide variety of sports competitions – swimming, bowling, cricket, football (soccer), motorcross, interactive games (video gaming),”women’s games,” basketball, volleyball, tug-of-war, and more. I don’t know what the “women’s games” are and will refrain from making a stereotyped joke against my own. It is just a chance for them to compete in a protected venue.

So, we stopped to watch the first two motorcross races Friday night. The first one started at 10:15 pm.

a motorcycle racer

There was a grandstand for spectators.

small stand for spectators

And, concessions.

a man with a bicycle cart loaded with snack foods

Down the road a ways was the cricket game.

cricket players on a lit field

So, there is actually a great deal going on. You just have to be willing to be a night owl to see it or participate in it.

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2 comments

  1. So, has school started? Do the kids go to school during Ramadan? Our kids come to school, but we have some trouble with dehydration and feeling ill. Maybe it’s because they all know that will get them out of class. I was just thinking if everyone is staying up until the middle of the night, maybe NOT doing much during the day makes that much more feasible.


    • This year school will start after Ramadan and Eid al Fitr. The last few years, classes began during Ramadan and it was very difficult for students. (I’m assuming readers know that Ramadan is on the lunar calendar, not the Gregorian one, so it moves on the Gregorian by 10 or 11 days each year.) Small children, the elderly, and people with health concerns are exempted from fasting. I’m not sure at what age fasting is expected.

      Yes, Ramadan tends to turn night into day and day into night. Working hours are reduced. Mine went from 7:15 am – 3:45 pm to 9:00 – 2:00 pm. Most working people head home for a nap. Those who don’t work are freer to sleep during the day. They may actually be staying up all night. If you are still awake at 2 or 3 am and you know that you will need to get up for prayer and breakfast before the sun rises again, why go to bed?



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