Muslims around the world celebrate the end of the fasting period of Ramadan with Eid al-Fitr (عيد الفطر; prounounced "eed al FIT-ur"), the Festival of Breaking the Fast. Eid al-Fitr is one of two main festivals in Islam; the other is Eid al-Adha, or the Festival of the Sacrifice.
Another name for Eid al-Fitr is Sweet Eid, and the festival is indeed associated with candies and confections. Typically lasting two or three days, celebrations center around family, forgiveness and giving thanks to God, along with merriment, good food and rejoicing all around.
Eid celebrations vary from region to region. In the runup to the festival, it is common to do a thorough cleaning of the home in preparation for visits from guests and relatives. In the Muslim nations of Southeast Asia, a yearly mass migration occurs when people return to their ancestral villages and cities to join with family for Eid celebrations.
On the morning of the Eid, observers typically brush their teeth, bathe and dress in new clothes purchased for the occasion. They then eat a small, sweet breakfast to symbolize breaking the Ramadan fast, after which they complete their morning prayers.
In the days following, children can look forward to receiving small toys and sweets as gifts. Women in many countries paint their hands and feet fancifully with henna. Donations to charity and gifts to the poor are encouraged. Families sometimes make visits to the graves of love ones lost. Greetings of "Eid Mubarak!" (Blessed Eid) or "Eid Sa'id" (Happy Eid) are exchanged with friends and strangers alike.
Eid al-Fitr is the one day in the Islamic calender when Muslims are forbidden from fasting. Families and friends gather to sit down and enjoy a sumptuous spread of the finest in regional dishes and desserts. Afterwards, evenings often end with a beautiful display of fireworks.