Ramadan 2022: Suhoor on the beach, iftar with lions; Abu Dhabi prepares for the holy month – News

Iftar tents have been set up at various locations in the emirate, including mosques and homes, after authorities approved

Photo: Supplied

Published: Thu 31 March 2022, 17:49

With Ramadan due to begin this weekend, Abu Dhabi is offering a host of Iftar options, including one under the stars and another at Al Ain Zoo in the company of wild animals.

Residents, families and businesses in Abu Dhabi are also preparing physically and spiritually to observe the holy month.

After two years of Covid restrictions, Muslim families are eager to observe Ramadan traditions such as Iftar and Suhoor in a big way. Gatherings, especially for iftar, had been strictly prohibited during the two previous Ramadans as a precautionary measure to control the spread of Covid-19.

“I am happy that the Covid-19 situation has improved. We are planning to have big Iftar and Suhoor meals with family and friends this time around,” said Egyptian father Muhammad Salem, owner of a business in Musaffah Industrial Zone in Abu Dhabi.

“Ramadan is a month of fasting, family reunions and the exchange of gifts. I have many relatives here and we are keen to return to our roots and traditions during Ramadan.

Ugandan expat Hassan Mulumba, a 28-year-old bachelor who has been living in Abu Dhabi for five years, says he is looking forward to visiting the Iftar tents to end his fast.

“I have no family here and have always broken my fast in Iftar tents except the previous two years when these tents were banned due to Covid-19,” Mulumba said, adding that he was glad that restrictions on Ramadan gatherings for Iftar and Suhoor had been eased.

“I always like to break the fast in a group with other Muslims. It builds brotherhood and portrays the spirit of Ramadan.

Iftar tents have been set up at various locations in Abu Dhabi, including mosques and near residences, following approval from authorities.

Shops, especially those selling food products, fruits and vegetables, stock up on food to meet demand during Ramadan.

Indian expat Rashid Kuttoth, 55, working at the Coast Star Fruits and Vegetables store along Muroor Road in Abu Dhabi, told the Khaleej Times they were ready to meet the demand for groceries.

“We have stocked enough produce for this weekend as we expect a high demand for fruits and vegetables during the first days of Ramadan,” he said.

“We have placed orders with our suppliers to ensure that fruits and vegetables are available in abundance for our customers.”

Kuttoth noted that watermelons are in high demand by residents breaking their fast.

Here are some good options to enjoy Iftar, Suhoor:

Suhoor on the beach at the Park Hyatt

The white sands, calm waters and starry skies of Saadiyat invite residents to enjoy a luxurious, Bedouin-style pre-Ramadan Suhoor experience at Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel and Villas.

On the menu of ‘Suhoor on the Beach’ from 9pm to 1am, gourmet Suhoor tea in Arabic or French style, accompanied by live Arabic music with Oud or Qanoon performances.


Iftar with the Lions at Al Ain Zoo

For the first time ever, you can celebrate Iftar with lions and other wildlife right in the middle of Al Ain.

The Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism has organized a special Iftar program to help people break the fast in the company of lions at Al Ain Zoo.

‘Iftar with the Lions’ in the world’s largest man-made safari park, promises an unforgettable (and incredible!) evening for groups of 4-12 people in a luxuriously wild setting for 30 days.


Charles P. Patton