Bahrain is an Islamic country with several Islamic festivals and national events lining up the calendar every year. All the festivals are celebrated in a grand manner by Bahrainis.
Eid ul Adha:
One of the important festivals in the month of January is the ‘Eid ul Adha’ (Festival of Sacrifice), which is widely observed in Bahrain and all over the Islamic world. The festival commemorates the time of sacrifice by Abraham to his son Ishmael, for God. On this day, all Muslims in Bahrain offer camels, sheep and cows as sacrifice and a symbolic gesture. The meet is distributed among relatives, friends and poor.
Muharram (Islamic New Year) is another much awaited event in the list of major festivals and events in Bahrain. During Muharram, there is complete ban on alcohol and other such intoxicating substances in the Kingdom, to observe purity. However, even the Christian New year, which falls in the same month, is also celebrated by believers in Christianity, with big parties being thrown as part of this festivity.
This is one of the most celebrated events in February. It is particularly celebrated by the Shiite population in Bahrain, observed in memory of the martyrdom of Husayn ibn Ali. Some also observe this day as the foundation day of Kaba in Mecca. It is considered to be the day when Noah’s Art came to standstill and to correspond to the date when Ka’aba was built in Mecca and Prophet Abraham was born.
It is the most widely celebrated festival in Bahrain, and falls in the month of April Both Sunnis and Shias in Bahrain, celebrate this festival on different dates. Mila al-Nabi is celebrated as the birthday of Muhammad. Bahrainis rejoice by participating in several events that form part of this festival including, story-telling, feasting and processions. It is the most popular among Bahrain festivals and events.
It is the most important Holy month marked in the Islamic Calendar. It is the fasting period for Muslims. However, visitors to Bahrain may find it a little inconvenient during this month, as the daytime activities almost come to a halt during this period, as Muslims fast from dawn to dusk.
Eid ul Fitr
This marks the end of the Ramadan month. During the three-day festival, Muslims celebrate with their families and friends.
The National Day in Bahrain which falls on 16th December is called Eid al-Watani, which includes celebrations, processions and parades.
The Accession Day is celebrated on 17th December, with buildings well decorated and illuminated with pictures of royal family posted on billboards around the capital.
The festivals and events offer a glimpse of the vibrant culture of Bahrain.