Festivals in the Comoros are often tied to religious observances, particularly Islamic celebrations that follow the lunar calendar. National holidays include Independence Day and the anniversary of the death of President Said Mohamed Sheikh. Comorians observe two new years, the first which marks the start of the year, and the second, which follows the Islamic calendar. Traditional celebrations often involve music, dancing and cultural performances.
Both New Year’s Days (January 1st and the Islamic New Year) are celebrated with much gusto in the Comoros. The Islamic New Year is of particular interest as it is marked by a wide range of activities that embrace the local culture and traditions, including religious rituals.
Comorian independence is celebrated every July 6 to commemorate the nation’s freedom from colonialism. Like other events on the islands, the festivities are marked with good food, cultural presentations and merriment.
Eid al-Adha or the Feast of the Sacrifice is a celebration of Abraham’s willingness to give up his son (Ishmael) in obedience to God. It is an annual Islamic holiday observed by Muslims around the world and Comoros is no exception.
This feast marks the conclusion of the month-long fast (Ramadan) and is celebrated with all kinds of rituals, prayers, gifts, and lots of ceremonial food.
Christmas Day is observed by the Roman Catholic minority living in the Comoros with festive gatherings of friends and families.