Located in Hanoi’s Hoan Kiem district, Al-Noor is the only mosque in north Vietnam. This is where Islamic people both at local and foreign come to pray.

The mosque was built in 1890 by Indian Muslims who originally went to Vietnam on business.

The mosque faces west to Mecca, the holiest city in the religion of Islam.
Haroon Rashid is a Pakistani businessman who has been working in Hanoi for seven years. He goes to Al-Noor every Friday at noon.

Muslims pray five times a day: in the morning, at noon, late afternoon, sunset and early night. The Friday noon prayer is the most important.
Before saying prayers it is necessary to wash the parts of the body that are generally exposed. This is called wudzu, or ablution.
When praying together, they pray shoulder to shoulder, facing towards Mecca and recite the Quran. Their proximity to each other demonstrates unity.

Islamic women are not obliged to pray at the mosque. However, there is a separate area for them whenever they visit the mosque to pray, showing their respect to Allah.

To Islamic people, Ramadan is one of the most important festivals in the year. It takes place in the ninth month of Islamic calendar and marks the month in which the Quran, the central religious text of Islam, was first revealed.

During the month, every Muslim has to fast from dawn to dusk. It is a chance for Muslims to review their actions over the past year, correct their mistakes and do good deeds.

Vietnam is home to more than 70,000 Muslims who are practicing their religion at 89 mosques and places to worship.-VNA