Eid al-Adha is one of two major Islamic holidays (the other being Eid al-Fitr). It honours the prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son upon God’s request.
For Muslims all over the world, Eid al-Adha is a time to come together and celebrate with friends and family.
Eid al-Adha is an important date in the Muslim calendar (Hijri calendar). It is a public holiday for both the public and private sectors in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
In 2022, Eid al-Adha is expected to begin on Saturday, 9 July. It is a three-day holiday. The precise date is not determined until the crescent moon is sighted.
Eid al-Adha honours the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son. The prophet was prepared to obey God’s order, but an angel intervened and provided a ram as a substitute sacrifice.
In English, the words Eidal-Adha mean the ‘Festival of the Sacrifice’.
Eid al-Adha is celebrated on the tenth day of Dhu al-Hijjah, the last month of the Islamic calendar. It coincides with the end of Hajj, the pilgrimage to Mecca. Hajj is one of the Five Pillars of Islam and a religious duty that must be carried out by all able-bodied Muslims at least once in their lives.
Arafat Day, the ninth day of Dhu al-Hijjah and the day before Eid al-Adha, is also a public holiday.
Shoppers will find stores and shopping malls open later than usual. Restaurants and tourist attractions are open and bustling with visitors. A dry day (no alcohol served) usually starts the holiday. Firework displays are also held.
Most offices and government departments in Dubai will be closed.
Special prayers are held. A sheep or goat is sacrificed by Muslims. The meat is divided equally among family, friends, and the poor.
The Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar. It has 12 months, but only 354 days. It is shorter than the Gregorian (Western) calendar. The Islamic calendar and the Gregorian calendar differ by 11 days each year, so Eid Al Adha shifts ahead 11 days on the Gregorian calendar each year.
Eid al-Fitr is the other official Islamic holiday in the year. It is the first day of Shawwal, the tenth month of the Hijri calendar. It follows Ramadan, the holy month when Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.