Awal Muharram

national and public holidays in Malaysia Islamic holiday observed in several countries

Awal Muharram or Hijri New Year is celebrated by Muslims as the day symbolises two important events in the Muslim year

When is Awal Muharram?

Dates of Awal Muharram

Year Weekday Date
2019 Sunday September 1st
2018 Tuesday September 11th
2017 Friday September 22nd
2016 Sunday October 2nd
2015 Wednesday October 14th

Who observes Muharram in 2017?

Country Date Known as
Algeria Algeria 21 Sep Muharram
Bahrain Bahrain 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Brunei Brunei 21 Sep Al-Hijra
Egypt Egypt 21 Sep El Hijra
India India (regional) 21 Sep Muharram
Indonesia Indonesia 21 Sep Muharram
Jordan Jordan 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Kuwait Kuwait 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Lebanon Lebanon 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Libya Libya 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Maldives Maldives 21 Sep Islamic New Year
Morocco Morocco 21 Sep Fatih Muharram
Oman Oman 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Yemen Yemen 21 Sep Hijri New Year
Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina (regional) 22 Sep Hijri New Year
Iraq Iraq 22 Sep Islamic New Year
Malaysia Malaysia 22 Sep Awal Muharram
Tunisia Tunisia 22 Sep Ras el am el Hejri
United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates 22 Sep Hijri New Years Day

Awal Muharram or Hijri New Year is celebrated by Muslims as the day symbolises two important events in the Islamic year.

Awal means beginning in English and Muharram is the name of the first month in the Muslim calendar.

Islam has a calendar based on the revolutions of the Moon. Thus, it is only 354 days long. Islamic New Year is celebrated on the first day of Muharram, the first Islamic month.

Compared to Western calendars, the Islamic year goes backwards by about 11 days every year.

The date shown on this page is the date that most countries will observe. The date in some countries may vary by up to two days, as some countries use a lunar sighting basis to determine the date. Because of this, the offical dates may not be announced until close to the actual day.

The date for Islamic New Year in other countries for 2017 along with the name of the day in that country is shown in the table of countries to the right.

The day also coincides with the Prophet's journey from Mecca to Medina on the first of Muharram in 622AD.

To mark the occasion, Muslims attend various religious activities, spiritual singing, religious meetings throughout the country. The traditions and customs for Muharram vary for Shia and Sunni Muslims.

For both, the marking of the beginning of the new year is usually quiet, unlike New Year's celebrations associated with other calendars. It is a time for Muslims to reflect on the passing of time and their own mortality.

To mark Muharram, Muslims will recite Koranic verses and hold special prayers and sermons at public halls and mosques.

The New Year itself is known to Muslims as Maal Hijra.


In Malaysia, a 'Tokoh Ma'al Hijrah' is awarded to a Muslim personality to honour their contribution to Islam.

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