Short holidays won't dampen Kelantan's Aidiladha spirit

Kelantanese reflect on past Aidiladha celebrations and traditions.

16 Jun 2024 03:01pm
Photo for illustration purpose only. - File photo
Photo for illustration purpose only. - File photo

SHAH ALAM - As Aidiladha draws near, Kelantan is gearing up for the celebrations with great enthusiasm.

Known for its rich culture and traditions, the people of Kelantan are eagerly anticipating the festivities, which include taking a break, preparing for prayers, and enjoying a grand feast.

Sinar Daily reached out to the people of Kelantan to learn more about their preparations and celebrations:

Raya Break

During Aidiladha, many people take a break from work to spend time with family and friends, enjoy delicious meals, and participate in traditional activities.

Faza Nazahah, 26, shared that as a Kelantanese, she only gets a brief two-day break, making it challenging to balance work and family celebrations.

Despite the short holiday, she longs for the familiar Aidiladha vibes filled with family gatherings, laughter, and joy.

Syazwan Abdullah, 35, mentioned that he would be returning to Kelantan for four days, which he believes is sufficient for the celebration.

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However, he noted that the festive atmosphere might be less enthusiastic this year due to many people being unable to take long holidays.

Nurul Izzah, 25, expects the celebration atmosphere to match previous years as Kelantanese wholeheartedly embrace festivities.

She is thrilled to return home to Kota Bharu, planning to savour every moment with family and friends and enjoy traditional cuisine during her four-day break.

The first day will primarily revolve around Qurban activities, followed by various festivities and gatherings for about a week.

Preparation and Prayer

Muslims usually perform the Sunnah prayer known as the Hari Raya prayer in the morning, and many people clean their houses to welcome guests during Aidiladha.

Syazwan shared that his family typically wakes up around 5.30 or 6am to perform the Fajr prayer before heading to the nearby surau or mosque.

He added that the Qurban ritual, involving the sacrifice of cows and goats, plays a significant role in the festivities.

Nurul Izzah said that in Kelantan, preparations for Aidiladha typically involve cleaning and decorating homes, organising special feasts, and participating in communal prayers and charitable activities.

Her household follows the tradition of hosting and attending open houses for seven consecutive days.

Faza highlighted that as the festivities approach, people get busy gathering ingredients for large communal cookouts, ensuring everyone is well-fed, and distributing portions of meat.

The importance of togetherness in their celebrations stands out the most.

Qurban Activity

Qurban, a religious ritual in Islam, involves the sacrifice of livestock during Aidiladha.

The meat is distributed to the less fortunate, family members, and friends.

Faza stressed that the sacrificial ritual is diligently performed, with most Kelantan residents mutually sharing the meat.

Nurul Izzah noted that she has never seen her community so busy, with everyone participating in Qurban.

The abundance of meat ensures countless delicious recipes to prepare and enjoy throughout the festivities.

Community Feast

Faza clarified that in Kelantan, the sacrificial ritual is a community event deeply rooted in their culture.

Families gather to ensure the traditions are kept alive, sharing the meat generously with those in need, spreading unity and kindness throughout the neighborhood.

Syazwan emphasised that in his village, after the Qurban, everyone gathers for activities like meat butchering, group cooking, and organising small feasts with neighbours.

They typically prepare 'Gulai Daging' as the main dish, followed by 'Sup Daging' or 'Daging Goreng' the next day.

Nurul Izzah shared cherished memories of past celebrations in Kelantan, revolving around joyful gatherings, visiting homes, and enjoying traditional dishes like 'Nasi Kerabu,' 'Ayam Percik,' 'Dodol,' 'Ketupat,' and 'Lemang.'


Kelantan, along with Terengganu and Pahang, is known for celebrating Aidiladha more joyfully compared to other Malaysian states.

Syazwan attributed the lively celebrations to the majority Malay Muslim population and the tradition of giving meat to neighbors and relatives who participated in Qurban, fostering a strong sense of community.

Nurul Izzah noted that Eid celebrations in Kelantan are known for their rich cultural heritage and strong community spirit, creating an unmatched atmosphere of liveliness and festivity.

Her family attends open houses typically hosted by relatives, family members, and friends, continuing the celebrations until it’s time to return to work.