Ramadhan is ninth month of the Muslim Calendar and usually lasts from 29 to 30 days, the period before Muslims celebrate EId-al-Fitr (Hari Raya Puasa in local language). It was observed by the Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting, prayer, reflection, and community. A commemoration of Muhammad's first revelation, which the Quran was first revealed to the Prophet Muhammad. The annual observance of Ramadan is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam.
The fasting ritual started from morning time sunrise to sunset for all adult Muslims except those are not acutely or chronically ill, travelling, elderly, pregnant, breastfeeding, diabetic etc. The predawn meal is referred to as Sahur, and the nightly feast that breaks the fast is called iftar (or simply called Berbuka Puasa here). Muslims not only refrain from food & drinks, but also tobacco, sexual relations, and sinful behavior such as lying, cursing and fighting as they strive for purity and strengthen the awareness of Allah (god).
As usual, the Muslims break the fast with either consume 3 dried or fresh dates. Why? because tradition told that the prophet Mohammed broke his fast with three dates and water. In common day, the fasting lasts for so many hours during the day, the body can develop mild health problems such as headaches, low blood sugar, and lethargy. To avoid such problems, dates are an excellent source of fiber, sugar, magnesium, potassium, and have carbohydrates which will aid the body in maintaining health. The carbohydrates found in dates also make the fruit a slower digesting food, much better than fried or fatty foods which digest fast and leave one hungry for more!
There are few reasons to visit Malaysia during Ramadhan month
Bazaar Ramadhan – A pop-up street food bazaars that turn the evenings into delicious fiestas. Not only Muslims community for break the fast purpose but also other communities will come here join the crowd to buy food. Hundreds of stalls are set up everywhere selling all kinds of foods – freshly grilled chicken, rice prepared in different ways and savory meats, Nasi Lemak (coconut rice), Satay (meat skewer) and many more . Local drinks such as Bandung drink (Rose syrup with milk), sugarcane juice, Teh Tarik (pull tea), Soybean milk, Corn juice and the others.
While the best of all are the many varieties of Malaysian kueh, some of which are next to impossible to get during other months. You don't usually see such an eclectic mix of sweetmeats on "regular" days.
Start as early as 4pm and ended before / after the Maghrib prayers (8pm)
The month of Ramadhan is a wonderful chance for travelers to soak up the festive atmosphere, try all kinds of delicious food, and get once-in-a-lifetime experiences that truly show the spirit of Malaysia.
There are few famous Ramadhan Bazaar that I could share from other recommendations below
Buka Puasa Buffets – If not prefer on street food, you can check out the buffet spread offered by hotels in the city throughout the month, with an expansive range of traditional and international dishes. Local restaurants and cafes also alternative options too.
Iftar in assigned spot - At this time every year, certain spot around the states in Malaysia will hold a mass breaking fast event. In George Town, the event will usually hold in front of Masjid Kapitan Keling. Held each weekend, people from all walks of life, regardless of religion, sit together on woven mats and wait for the call of prayer before tucking in. Everyone will be served a traditional meal, dates, bubur lambuk (spice rice porridge) and drinks.
Sales Bargain – Mega sales will take place in shopping malls during this period!
Mall Decorations – Many shopping malls in Penang (such as Queensbay Mall and Gurney Plaza) will come up impressive decorations to attract the crowds.
Raya Open House - Finally, once the month of fasting is over, Malaysians embrace in the beloved tradition of Raya open house events. Malay families invite their family and friends into their home to feast and celebrate Hari Raya. If you happen to be invited to one – it’s a good time to indulge your self in the culture!
In year 2020, the Ramadhan will start from 23 April evening. Which means Muslim community begin fasting on 24 April morning until 23 May. However for this year, due to Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, there will be no Ramadhan Bazaar to operate considering the safety and security of the peoples.