Regarded as a multinational country in the heart of Asia and listed as one of the cleanest cities in the world, Singapore is an attractive destination for tourists for its rich mix of cultures like a sparkling kaleidoscope. For this reason, the country provides wanderers with various cultural locations to explore its diverse beauty. Let’s find out!

 

1.  Joo Chiat

Joo Chiat’s identity is shaped primarily by the pre-war architecture of the house – two storey high-rise shophouses (houses and shops) with colorful exterior design, and rows of similarly sized houses, with well-decorated facades, sophisticated patterns and wall tiles.

Street life in Joo Chiat neighborhood (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Street life in Joo Chiat neighborhood (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Walking through the neighborhood, you can admire the carefully preserved Peranakan shophouses, as well as colonial-style bungalows scattered throughout this vibrant neighborhood. This area is only about 10 minutes drive from the city center.

A small corner in Joo Chiat (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

A small corner in Joo Chiat (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Joo Chiat is also home to many Singaporeans who love the food here: you will be spoiled for exploring the trendy cafes next to the famous Katong laksa restaurant, kueh chang and other Nonya specialties.

Colorful decorated houses in Joo Chiat (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Colorful decorated houses in Joo Chiat (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

2.  China Town

Coming to China Town, you will be immersed in the blend of old and modern in this vibrant and colorful area of Singapore. From the first Chinese settlements in Singapore in the early 1820s, this bustling neighborhood will really delight you.

China Town Street during festival (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

China Town Street during festival (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

If you are interested in the shops that are preserved, try listening to the stories of early citizens, brothels and morgues that have appeared in Chinatown in the past. If you want to shop for something unique, Chinatown is also the place for you with one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

Mural Paintings in China Town (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Mural Paintings in China Town (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

3.  Little India

Little India at a glance (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Little India at a glance (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Start a new day with the vivid colors of Little India may brighten up your itinerary for sure. Any wanderer can enjoy browsing through the sidewalk where the merchants sell spices, jewelries, wreaths and exploring the “wet market” and stalls selling fresh fruits and vegetables, spices and fresh meat.

As its name revealed, you can truly experience the rich culture of the Indian community in Singapore by visiting temples around here and trying authentic Indian food.

A street corner of Little India (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

A street corner of Little India (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

4.  Haji Lane

Haji Lane is Singapore’s hippie neighborhood, where charming boutiques with beautifully decorated windows, pubs, cafes and restaurants.

The long line of shops and pubs in Haji Lane (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

The long line of shops and pubs in Haji Lane (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

And if you’ve been through all the clothing stores, take the time to take your Instagram photo at the brightly colored walls and graffiti street art.

Street art in Haji Lane (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Street art in Haji Lane (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

5.  Kampong Glam

Some people say the Kampong Glam area is really “glam” (locally means “glamorous”). The area has a unique mix of history, culture and super stylish living.

Mural painting displaying local life of Singapore in the past

Mural painting displaying local life of Singapore in the past (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

You can start at the Sultan Mosque, and wander through the small streets. Kampong Glam is a new cultural center in Singapore, which is rich with Islam culture.

Sultan Mosque in Kampong Glam (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

Sultan Mosque in Kampong Glam (Photo Credit: Nguyen Thu Thao)

The cuisine of Kampong Glam can also impress any tourists with its wide range from local specialties such as nasi padang and Malaysian kuih to Middle Eastern dishes, Japan, Sweden and even Mexican cuisine.

 

By Nguyen Thu Thao, ASEAN Correspondent from Vietnam

 

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