Ramadan 2021: When Is Ramadan?

The Meaning and Traditions of Ramadan

April 9, 2021

The holy month of Ramadan begins in the evening of Monday, April 12, 2021. Learn about how—and why—Ramadan is observed.

What Is Ramadan?

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is considered a holy month that honors the time when Allah, via the angel Gabriel, revealed the first verses of the Qur’an, the holy book of Islam, to a caravan trader named Muhammad.

When Is Ramadan? 

This year, Ramadan is expected to begin at sundown on Monday, April 12, and end at sundown on Wednesday, May 12. The final evening of Ramadan consists of a celebration called Eid al-Fitr, when the traditional month-long fast is ended with a feast.

The exact beginning and ending times of Ramadan are based on the sighting of the Moon. Specifically, Ramadan is said to begin at the first observance of the new Moon over Mecca, Saudi Arabia (or on a date pre-determined by astronomical calculation). Because of this, start and end dates are not set in stone and may vary by a day.

The dates listed below are based on expected visibility, so may differ slightly from those seen elsewhere.

Ramadan Dates

Year First Evening of Ramadan (fasting begins at dawn next day) Final Evening of Ramadan (Eid al-Fitr)
2021 Monday, April 12 Wednesday, May 12
2022 Saturday, April 2 Sunday, May 1
2023 Wednesday, March 22 Thursday, April 20
2024 Sunday, March 10 Monday, April 8

(Dates are according to the United States Naval Observatory and reflect North American regions.)

Traditions of Ramadan

Beginning at puberty, all Muslims (with certain exceptions, such as if one is ill, traveling, pregnant, elderly, etc.) take part in the month-long dawn-to-sunset fast that is the hallmark of Ramadan. Muslims believe that fasting cleanses the body, and the practice reminds them of the suffering of the poor.

Eating and drinking (including water) is prohibited from dawn to sunset, and the day’s abstinence is offset by a pre-dawn meal called sehri and a nightly meal known as iftar. For iftar, many traditionally break the fast by first eating dates, as the Prophet Muhammad is believed to have done to break his fast. Foods traditionally served at iftar vary; one such dish is the Kurdish Hot-and-Spicy Red-Lentil Soup. Food is often shared with a poor family during Ramadan.

At the end of the 29- or 30-day fast (depending on the length of the lunar cycle) is Eid al-Fitr (Festival of Breaking the Fast), when there is much feasting and celebration!

Share Your Traditions!

If you observe Ramadan, please share your traditions below!



Reader Comments

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Eid Al-Fitr is not part of Ramadan

Ramadan (the ninth month of the Islamic Calendar) is 29 to 30 days long. If the moon is sighted after sunset on the 29th day, it means Ramadan has ended and Shawwal (the tenth month of the Islamic Calendar) has started. If the moon isn’t sighted, it means Ramadan will complete 30 days, which will be until sunset of the next day. From sunset, Shawwal will start, and the first day of Shawwal is Eid Al-Fitr, not the last day of Ramadan.

I. Fast Ramadan.Penty of time. But. I'm. Following. All the.Rule

I'm. Fasting. For. Ramadan. Sun down. Is this. Right. Time. To. Eat!!

Angle Gabriel

Gabriel came to Mary mother of Jesus

There is a reward in sharing the word of God

Just to thank you once again for sharing the message of Allah especially during the month of Ramadan. You have done noble for yourself and I assure you that good rewards awaits you.May Allah accept our good intentions as act of Ibadah and overlook our errors and mistakes that we may make in the course passing the message of Allah and His Rasul Lahi SAW.


Thank you for sharing this article and for researching and making corrections. I'm Muslim ans I do observe Ramadan. I would just like to add that it is the most peaceful, humbling time of the year for us. We love and cherish Ramadan.

DAWN to sunset, not from sunrise to sunset

This is the prestigious Farmer's Almanac, but editors have made the common and ubiquitous mistake of saying Muslims fast from sunrise . . .
No. It's from DAWN which is earlier than sunrise.

This is the similar common mistake that claims Muslims "pray to the East." This is also wrong. They direct themselves toward Mecca, in Saudi Arabia, which, for example, could be facing northerly if one is in South Africa, or facing southerly if one is in the UK or westerly if one is in Japan.

Dawn to Sunset

The Editors's picture

Thank you for bringing that to our attention! We have corrected the article.

Ramadan Time end

On May 23rd what time does Ramadan end the time of the day or the time of the night

Concluding Ramadan celebrating Did Al Fitr

What do Muslim do between May 24 up to Eid Al Fitr?

Muslim “day” starts at sunset

Ramadan does begin at sunset, fasting would start at sunrise of the next morning.

Our Ramadan

All Praise be to God for the coming of this blessed month. In preparation for this special visitor, our family cleans the house throughout, collecting all underused clothing and household items for donation to thrift shops. Only the best things are collected, cleaned and packaged before delivery.

Preparing meals for freezing to spend less time cooking meals to eat at the end of the fasting day (Iftar) is an essential part of preparing for Ramadan. Along with organizing our home for greater efficiency, we try our best to clear our calendars of non essential activities to ensure time for reading 1/30 of the Quran each day and congregating for our daily prayers.

Each day our family works on personal goals and include meal-sharing or gifting for neighbors or confined members of our community. Our primary goal for each day is to observe all acts of worship while remembering and providing care to others regardless of their faith or social situations. We make these efforts to continue throughout the year to be of service.

Each year After sunset, we gather at the mosque for extra prayers, however, this year with the need for social distancing because of the Coronavirus, we will make those prayers at home. Our long day will end with prayers and preparation for the next. We thank our Creator for blessing us and our neighbors with success and pray for the best during our night.

After 1/3 of the night passes, we arise for night prayer asking for our personal and community needs. Returning to bed until time for the meal before dawn prayer (suhoor). Again, praying for and expecting the best of our day of fasting. God willing, we look forward to the day of sacrificing to please Almighty God. God willing, our typical Ramadan Day!


Thank you for your effort in explaining Ramadan, I actually appreciate your effort. but there are a few discrepancies in your article.

Muslims begin fasting at puberty so it could be at the age of 12 or the age of17 depending on when you started puberty.

We start fasting at sunrise and break our fast at sunset- usually starting with a few dates as our Prophet did- Peace be upon Him and all Prophets.
We don't all eat Kurdish food, I for one have never had that type of soup (although it sounds delicious) but logic dictates that you don't eat spicy foods to break your fast.
Finally, Ramadan could be either 29 or 30 days depending on the cycle of the moon.

I hope you take these facts into consideration, and amend the article.

article changes

The Editors's picture

Thank you for your feedback! We appreciate your suggestions and, after researching further, have revised the article concerning these points.

Ramadan 2017 Saturday May 27th

I would like to point out that Ramadan doesn't begin at sunset. Fasting for Ramadan 2017 begins at dawn on the 27th (allah a3lam), God knows best. Usually people eat a small meal called Suhhur before that time, to keep them going the rest of the day until Maghreb, sunset when they can break their fast again.


The Editors's picture

Thank you for your feedback! We have updated the table so that is clearer when fasting begins.

No intelligent being, not

No intelligent being, not even angels, know about the exact time of occurrence of any events in the universe except Allah (Azza-wa-jal). In other words, Allah (Azza-wa-jal) is the creator of “time” and only he knows about the date and the time of every affair in the universe.
To announce the beginning of Ramadan and the end day of Ramadan based on calculation and prediction is BEDDAH. Koolo Beddah fee Zalahal and Koolo Zalaalah fe Naar.
To be uncertain about the beginning of Ramadan and to be uncertain about the day of Eid is part of the Islamic faith. There is wisdom in attempting to sight the Moon. Books can be written about the wisdom of this subject.

Those who violate this important issue of seeking to sight moon, which is an important Sunnat of Rasaul, may fall into the class of Monaa-feqeen. The worst and the lowest section of Jahannam are reserved for this class of deviate people.

Come on man....

idk why ppl are this desperate for attention, its only an estimation...why go all serious on it ,can't u not see that ramadhan for the next year goes back by roughly 11-10-9 days.

Is this timetable applicable

Is this timetable applicable for every part of the world?

Worldwide Timetable

The Editors's picture

This timetable is only applicable to North America.


As Muslim we fast for 29-30 day depending on the cycle of the moon. The fast provides many benefits, 1. we are serving Allah (the G'd) 2. if we were not praying we are praying more 3. Satan is locked up and the gates of heaven are opened, this happens inside each individual who fast the devil inside of us is chained up by reading the Holy Quran daily and praying 5 times a day. When tis happens we are getting closer to living the way that G'd wants us to live. It is truly a blessed month for the Muslim as well as the non Muslim.

ramadam dry fast

Im not Israel/ Muslim But a Catolic.As of now are 03/2017 ive and ongoing undertake a soft dry fasting from the first sunrise to sunset since march-1-2017 till april-16-2017 cause ive knew march-1 through april-15-2017 Are Lent Holly days.So read thru comments here are gave me more knowleged of this sacred months for anyones who had lost their purpose in life and seeks god guidace like me.

istakbala Ramadan

Pray fast do good things help every body

Ramadan date for Shia and Sunni brothers

I wanted to know what is the date for ramadan for shia brothers and sunni brothers. Is there any change for the two or the date will be same for all.


The date for the begining of Ramzan in Saudi Arabia is June 7, 2016.And regarding your query-the date is same for Shi'a and Sunni sect. While it is different for Ismail'I Muslims that is three days before.
Hope the question is answered.

Ramadhan In June

India's Eid-ul-Fitr festival starts on the first day of the month of Shawwal (or Shawwl). Many Muslims attend communal prayers and listen to a sermon at Eid al-Fitr. Those have not given the charity known as zakat al-fitr during Ramadan do so during Eid al-Fitr. Zakat al-fitr consisting of a quantity of food, such as barley, dates, raisins or wheat flour, or its monetary equivalent given to poor people in the community.

Ramadan in June

Please tell me how faithful Muslims observe Ramadan if they live and are working in the Far North regions above the Arctic Circle when Ramadan month happens to occur during the northern summer. Same if they are in way south of South America or working in Antarctica when Ramadan happens in December. It is the very same sun. But, I and my brother have lived "North of 60 degrees" and far enough up you see the sun with NO sunset or night for up to 3 whole months. NO SUNSET to let you have a meal each day. Or, do Muslim folks only stay within day-night zones from the Equator and regard the polar regions as not part of the REAL planet Earth that Allah created for all? Winter can be up to 3 whole months and NO sun shining above horizon. Could it be a slight issue not known to a caravan trader in Arabia when he designed the special month? How about the indigenous people who have lived in polar regions for thousands of years? Are they not meant to partake of Ramadan and what Islam offers them? I am not being nasty. Just an old man wondering and looking for answers to reality...

Ramadan in June

@Robert: I used to have a co-worker whose husband was an observant Muslim, and he traveled a lot for work. When he had a summer assignment in Scandinavia, it was a great hardship for him to eat and drink enough to keep him h ealthy during the short hours of darkness; he used to call his wife so she'd talk to him and help him stay awake while he drank bottle after bottle of water.

So that's what one observant Muslim did in a place where the darkness was short. I don't know what happens where the darkness is nonexistent!

Hi robert,

Hi robert,
i have only one answer ,it is the belief that makes us to do it,God say fast in ramadan and we obey and do it,we cannot go into depth of how the weather would be in order to carry out the duties of Allah(God),is has been prescribed as such just how a doctor prescribed a tablet for our cure we cannot set our own inclination to alter it.In tunisia people are fasting in summer with a 48 degrees or more on their heads.....the flip side of it in uk ,in winter the days are short and the fasting is too easily ,shoild we not be grateful for that.We muslims follow a lunar calendar sio it is all good and in the accordance how Allah decree it.

Ramadan in June

Hi Robert,
I was looking for when Ramadan will be in 2016 and found your question sitting here. It is an interesting question and I am glad you asked it. Muslims who live in the areas which you described have a choice. If there is an actual sunset and sunrise (such as some areas in northern Europe) they may follow those timings for their fast (however difficult it is, many do choose to do this). Thankfully, there are other options for them that are easier. The first is to follow the timing of those who fast in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. The summer days are long there as well, but there is a good amount of time after sunset for eating, drinking, praying, etc. The other option that some Muslims choose is to follow the timing of a nearby location (city or country) that has a sunset, sunrise and time for eating, etc.
Muslims believe that God does not test a soul more than it can bear and that He is a merciful God. The fast was prescribed as a purification, not torture so these options are available to those who fast. Also, if someone is sick or travelling, the fast can be broken and the days "made up" later. You made an excellent point that God created the ENTIRE earth and man is encouraged to travel and get to know other nations and tribes. I would love to see that part of the world one day! I hope that my response answers some of your questions. Have a great day!

Hi. When this happens, you

Hi. When this happens, you just fast according to the timings of the nearest "normal" country. You can also use the timings of another country if you are fasting 22-23 hours or so, because it's extremely hard not to eat for that long.