Islamic New Year 2023 will give residents a long weekend from July 21 to July 23

The Islamic New Year, also known as Hijri New Year, is several days away. According to the president of the Emirates Astronomy Society (ESA), Ibrahim Al Jarwan, the Hijri New Year is likely to take place on Wednesday, July 19th. However, the list of official holidays was released by the UAE government at the end of 2022. Therefore, the holiday marking the Islamic New Year will take place on Friday, July 21st, creating a 3-day weekend in the UAE.

All Islamic holidays and events, including Eid al-Fitr that marks the end of Ramadan, and Eid al-Adha, also known as the Feast of Sacrifice, as well as the Islamic New Year, are held in accordance with the Islamic Calendar, which is based on the moon. Similar to the Gregorian calendar, the Muslim calendar consists of 12 months. The new month begins after the sighting of a new moon. The Islamic lunar year is 11-12 days shorter than the solar year, which is why the dates of Muslim holidays move forward each year on the Gregorian calendar.

The Islamic New Year marks the first day of the month of Muharram. The reference day of the Islamic era was set at the year of Hijrah, when Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and his followers migrated from Mecca to Medina. This took place in 622 CE, as based on  the Gregorian calendar. Therefore, this year Muslims will commemorate the year 1445.

When there are long weekends, the residents and guests of Dubai usually enjoy finding sales in the shopping centres. Families also gather in restaurants and cafes, enjoy traditional dishes, visit entertainment parks and go on short trips.  

Several holidays will come up in the next few months of 2023 in the UAE. Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) birthday will fall on Friday, September 29th this year, meaning another 3-day-long weekend from Friday to Sunday. In December 2023, UAE nationals will celebrate Commemoration Day, which is marked on the 1st of every December.UAE National Day will fall on December 2nd and 3rd. It will be the final long weekend in 2023.

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