Chinatown in Singapore is a sharp contrast to the rest of the city, with low rise buildings and culture bursting out onto the streets, from the fragrant smells of traditional cuisine to the bold red and golden tones that run through the neighborhood. An area that is proud of its heritage, and has lots to display. The Chinese, Buddhist and Hindu temples, museums galore and plenty of opportunities to soak up in the bustling streets Here is what we can do in Chinatown.
Buddha Tooth Relic temple
A beautifully crafted 4 storey temple build on the Buddhist mandala style. The main hall of the temple is beautifully designed and decorated. Some other attractions are the bell tower and the drum tower. Fourth floor of the temple has the sacred relic in the two meter gold stupa. The roof of the temple houses a large prayer wheel, which the devotees turn while offering their prayers.
Sri Mariamman Temple
One of the oldest shrines in Singapore and a major place of worship for the Indians, in the country. The temple was built in honour of the goddess Mariamman the deity of diseases and protection.
Red Dot design museum
A small gallery showcasing various objects of day to day use, giving a clue on how stuff works. Though it is a small place but any techno geek will be able to spend a couple of hours easily.
These busy streets encapsulate all the sights and sounds visitors expect of Chinatown, with hundreds of stalls selling everything from silk robes to lucky cats. There are plenty of ‘Made in China’ goods on display and lanterns swaying in the breeze above your head. There’s also a fantastic range of street food carts amongst the shopping, with fresh dim sum and crispy duck. Remember to haggle with a smile if you want the best price. The market is open during the day, but it looks its most picturesque at dusk, with the lights shining brightly and the sound of hawkers tempting you to check out their wares.
Thian Hock Keng Temple
Thian Hock Keng, or the Temple of Heavenly Happiness, is the oldest and probably most interesting Chinese temple in Singapore. You can find this colourful temple along Telok Ayer Street, in the middle of Chinatown.
Singapore City gallery
Opened in 1999, it aims to teach visitors how modern Singapore came to be, and how the city planners continue to plan sustainably. The most impressive part of the gallery is the Central Area Model.
Chinese New Year celebrations
In case you are in Singapore around the Chinese new year then this is the best time to be in Chinatown, the celebrations start from the evening and continue late night with lots of performances, carnival parades, food, shopping and endless fun.