Ramadan refers to the act of fasting from before sunrise to sunset. Any Muslim with good health, who are not pregnant or traveling are required to observe the Ramadan month. The Ramadan month is the 9th month of the Islamic lunar calendar. This period of time is marked by fasting, prayer, and spiritual cleansing.

The length of the daily fasting is determined by the number of hours between sunrise and sunset. This period of time receives a huge impact from the season in which Ramadan occurs. In the summer, the days are longer. So, if Ramadan falls on summer days, the fasting hours will be longer. The duration of the day greatly depends on the climate. In countries where sunset and sunrise are less than 3 hours apart, fatwas (an Islamic legal opinion) is issued allowing Muslims to fast according to the timings of the nearest city that has distinguishable timings.


In Europe, Iceland is the country with the longest fast (21 hours). Spain, Turkey and other countries have around 16 hours in average. Other European countries have a fasting time ranging from approximately 20 hours to 16 hours.


Located in the north of this part of the world, Greenland has the longest fasting time with 21 hours and 2 minutes between sunset and sunrise.Whereas, Argentina claims the shortest fasting time with only 11 hours and 32 minutes.

Middle East

Among all the Arab countries, Sana’a, Yemen has the shortest fast while Iran has the longest of around 16 hours.


In Asia, Cocos, Keeling Islands has the shortest fasting time of 12 hours and 47 minutes. Kazakhstan has the longest fasting time in Asia with 18 hours and 12 minutes between sunset and sunrise. In comparison, Malaysian people have quite short fasting time – 13 hours and 29 minutes. Generally, most Muslims in this region will fast for 14 to 16 hours.


The fasting time for New Zealand is 11 hours and 37 minutes while that for Australia is 11 hours and 35 minutes.


Nigeria, Ghana, and Kenya experience a fasting duration of 13 hours and 50 minutes, 13 hours and 43 minutes, and 13 hours and 17 minutes, respectively. Zimbabwe seems to have the shortest fasting time in Africa with only 12 hours and 26 minutes.

It’s worth mentioning that these timings are calculated using prayer timings in major cities and they only apply to the first day of Ramadan, which is May 27.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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