Hijri (Islamic New Year)

Hijri in the UAE is a public holidaywhich marks the New Year on the Islamic calendar.

Culture & Heritage | Faith & Spirituality


In UAE, as in many Muslim countries, Islamic New Year is a public holiday. It falls on the first day of the month Muharram, the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar, and is also known as “Al Hijra” (“flight”) because of the flight of Muhammad from Mecca to Medina on this day.

The flight followed the initial rejection by the people of Mecca of the Islamic religion, which Muhammad had brought to them, and is a major event in the history of Islam.

Islamic New Year varies in date from the perspective of the Gregorian Calendar used commonly around the world. According to that calendar, the Islamic New Year moves about 11 days per year. The exact date is never certain, since each country announces it based on moon sightings, but it can generally be predicted with great accuracy. Also note that Islamic New Year begins around 6pm, for the Islamic day always starts after sunset.

The first month of year, Muharram, is considered a time for remembrance of important events of the past and a time of mourning and reflecting on the wrongs of the past. The whole month is considered holy, so no one is permitted to fight during Muharram.