Girl displaying her Mehndi (henna) on occasion of Islamic festival of Eid-ul-Fitr (Picture: Getty)
Eid ul Fitr marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan and the breaking of the fast from sunrise to sunset.
But Eid isn’t just a one-day celebration, events take place for several days with families and friends enjoying feasts and activities together.
When did Eid ul Fitr start?
The new moon was seen on July 5 in dozens of countries this year, making July 6 the end of Ramadan and the start of Eid ul Fitr.
The date Eid starts varies every year depending on when the new moon is spotted in the sky – with the naked eye. This new moon is called the Shawwal moon because it signifies the start of the month of Shawwal.
The new crescent moon was not spotted on the evening of July 4 – but it was seen in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, the Philippines, Yemen, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Qatar, Turkey, Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan and the UK on July 5 (making Eid July 6)
However, in most of India, Iraq, Morocco and Bangladesh Eid will be celebrated on July 7 as the crescent was not sighted. And in Pakistan, Eid is not expected to start until Saturday July 9.
How long does Eid last?
Eid ul Fitr will last for three days from Wednesday July 6 until Friday July 8, although some celebrations will be taking place over the weekend.
That includes a celebration at Trafalgar Square in London, organised by the London mayor Sidiq Khan, on Saturday.
What is Eid ul Adha?
Eid ul Adha is a completely separate celebration to Eid ul Fitr, taking place at an entirely different time in the year and signifying something different as well.
While Eid ul Fitr is a celebration marking the end of Ramadan, Eid ul Adha marks the Festival of Sacrifice or ‘Bakr-Eid’.
This is in September, falling on the 10th day of Dhu al Hijjah, and last for four days. The celebration is important (more so than Eid ul Fitr) because it honors the willingness of Ibrahim to sacrifice his son to God before the angel Jibra’il intervened.