Where to celebrate Hari Raya Puasa + things to note about Ramadan in Singapore

Where to celebrate Hari Raya Puasa + things to note about Ramadan in Singapore
May 03 05:36 2017

Hari Raya Puasa + Ramadan in Singapore: First off, here’s what you need to know

1. Hari Raya Puasa is a celebration to mark the end of the fasting month (Ramadan). During Hari Raya Puasa, families head to mosques to pray and seek forgiveness from their elders, and young children are given green packets of money. Families typically dress in the same colour as well.

2. When giving gifts to Muslim friends if you’re visiting their homes during Hari Raya Puasa, cookies and traditional Malay kueh are acceptable gifts. Avoid alcohol and pork.

3. The month right before Hari Raya Puasa is called Ramadan. It is the Muslim month of fasting and abstinence, occurring during the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is meant to help with soul-cleansing and cultivation of self-discipline.

4. Understand that your Muslim friends may be less energetic than usual during Ramadan as they typically wake up around 4 or 5am in the morning for early breakfasts during the fasting month– so cut them some slack where necessary.

5. Muslims will usually break their fast in the evening around 7.30pm, so don’t offer them food before they break their fast. It’s also a good idea to avoid eating in front of them.

6. If you join them for dinner (their fast-breaking meal is called iftar), don’t encourage them to overeat just because they fasted during the day. Ramadan is meant for Muslims to practice abstinence and self-discipline, and this includes modesty in eating.

Hari Raya Puasa + Ramadan in Singapore: Where to enjoy the festivities

1. Geylang Serai Bazaar

ramadan in Singapore

Geylang Serai Bazaar (image credit: @michaelawhiting on Instagram)

The Hari Raya Bazaar at Geylang Serai is long regarded as the best pasar malam (night market) in Singapore. The streets of geylang serai are illuminated by colourful lights as locals and tourists alike venture into the stalls selling an array of items from traditional Malay clothing to Persian carpets and electrical items.

But most Singaporeans head to the bazaar for one reason only– the food. The bazaar is known to be a foodie’s heaven: last year’s edition saw everything from local Malay kuehs, to fusion dishes like rendang tacos, to Brooklyn-style rainbow bagels and spicy Korean yoghurt.

2. Sultan Mosque

ramadan in Singapore

Sultan Mosque (image credit: Masjid Sultan Singapore Facebook)

Standing in the middle of the Kampong Glam district, the massive golden domes of the Sultan Mosque are impossible to miss. Join in one of the prayer sessions (be sure to dress modestly), or go on a guided tour to get a glimpse into the Muslim culture.

Also, take a closer look at the domes– the dome bases are decorated with glass bottle ends, which were donated by poor Muslims during its construction, so that all Muslims had a chance to contribute.

3. Kampong Glam & Arab Street

ramadan in Singapore

Kampong Glam (image credit: @mistermattday on Instagram)

While you’re there, check out the rest of the Kampong Glam and Arab Street area, which is not only a heritage area but also a place where many hipster cafes and quaint local boutiques have sprung up.

As you stroll along the shophouses, you’ll find a mix of the old and the new, with shops selling religious attire, and others stocking the latest trends. The graffiti-decorated streets also provide an interesting contrast to the historical domes of the Sultan Mosque a few lanes away, and the view of the sleek, modern buildings in the distance.

Need a bite to eat late at night? Head over to one of these awesome places.

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Singapore n Beyond
Singapore n Beyond

Sharing getaway and itinerary ideas in Asia and insider knowledge of Singapore

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