It’s been a busy week with the Summer Solstice, Kadir Gecesi and the end of Ramazan tomorrow. Today we’re bringing you an update on what’s happened this week and what’s to come.

Summer Solstice and Kadir Gecesi

This year, the Muslim holy month of Ramadan coincides with the summer solstice. (Ramadan’s dates vary each year, but in 2017 it runs from May 26 to June 24.)

Sunset over Fethiye

Whilst the sun set on the summer solstice, the longest day, Muslims around the world were getting ready to celebrate a very special night in Islam.

Sunset over Fethiye Bay
Sunset over Fethiye Bay – Photograph courtesy of Steve Parsley
Summer solstice and the Holy Month of Ramadan
The sun sets over Çalış on the longest day of the year – photograph courtesy of Ahmet Sava

27th night of Ramadan  – Kadir Gecesi (Qadr)

The 27th night of Ramadan is called Kadir Gecesi, the Night of Power.

It’s the night on which the first verses of the Koran are believed to have been revealed to Prophet Muhammed in Mecca in the year 610 AD.

The anniversary of that night or the birthday of the Koran, became the holiest moment in the Muslim calendar (Kadir Gecesi).

Click here to read more about Kadir Gecesi

Celebrating Kadir Gecesi in Fethiye

Erasta AVM plays host to Ramazan entertainment every year and, once again, shoppers stopped to watch the performances.

Whirling Dervishes

We wrote in detail about the Order of the Mevlevi (Whirling Dervishes) last year. Click here to read the full article.

Too good to miss

We went along to take some photographs, enjoy the atmosphere and watch the performance of the mesmerising Sema.

Whirling Dervishes at Erasta Shopping Centre in Fethiye from fethiyetimes on Vimeo.

You really have to see it to experience the surreal feeling of the age old sema being performed in this modern shopping centre.

Summer Solstice and the Holy Month of Ramadan

They glide effortlessly in circles, their white robes rising and falling, thinking all the while of their act as a bridge from God to earth.

Summer Solstice and the Holy Month of Ramadan

This week also sees the end of Ramazan.

Ramazan Bayramı (Eid-al-Fitr)

Ramazan Bayramı (Ramazan Feast) is a three day holiday that marks the end of Ramazan. It’s a time for visiting relatives and paying one’s respect to older people. Many Türks give away sweets and desserts during the festival (you may have noticed shops and supermarkets piled high with all sorts of sweets and chocolate)

Şeker Bayramı (Sugar Feast)

Ramazan Bayramı has an alternative name in Turkey, Şeker Bayramı (the Sugar Feast), because people treat their guests to sweets and traditional desserts during the festival.

Şeker Bayramı
Sweets are given away during the festival
Şeker Bayramı
Sweets and desserts are enjoyed during the festival

It is customary to visit one’s relatives, especially older ones, and kiss their hand as a sign of respect. Children may go door-to-door, kissing hands of the grown-ups and receiving sweets and small amounts of money in return.

Things you should know

Ramazan Bayramı starts on the eve of Saturday 24 June (Arefe) The call to prayer at sunset marks the end of Ramazan.

Phptograph courtesy of Candace Rardon

Banks, offices, businesses and some shops will be closed until the 28th June.

Many people travel to the coastal resorts during the holiday so we can expect the area to be very busy over the next few days.

Summer solstice and the Holy Month of Ramadan
Traffic on the way to Ölüdeniz
Summer solstice and the Holy Month of Ramadan
Busy beaches during last years Ramazan Bayramı

People greet each other by saying Bayramınız Kutlu/Mubarek Olsun, meaning “May Your Feast Be Blessed”. If you’re new to the Turkish language it is perfectly acceptable to say İyi Bayramlar (Ee-ee bay-ram-lar) meaning literally Good Holidays

Bayramınız Mubarek olsun!