Take a walk around Singapore, and open your eyes to the cultures, nature, artistry and modernity contained in our lively metropolis. If you’d like to walk in the shoes of a local artist or devotee, join one of these recommended free walking tours, whose guides will reveal to you the diversity of the Singaporean tapestry.

View of a row of colourful shophouse windows with crowd in Chinatown

Take in Little India’s cultural facets
by Monster Day Tours
A close up view of the upper section of Tan Teng Niah House at Little India with colourful windows

Duration: Two and a half hours

Walk in the shoes of the early settlers in Singapore. Admire intricate places of worship like the Sri Veeramakaliamman and Shree Lakshminarayan Temples that Singapore’s pioneers built. Then, proceed to colourful landmarks like Haniffa Textiles on Serangoon Road, and the century-old former house of successful businessman Tan Teng Niah, whose stories you can hear from knowledgeable tour guides. Indulge in traditional Indian cuisine afterwards, such as richly spiced and colourful briyani (an Indian spiced rice dish with meat or vegetables) topped with papadum, an Indian crispy cracker.

Monster Day Tours’ Little India tour commences from the street level of Little India MRT Exit E at 9.30am on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Click here for more information.

Witness the daily hustle of Chinatown
by Monster Day Tours
A view of crowd at the Chinatown Food Street with people dining

Duration: Two and a half hours

Mingle with Singapore’s Chinese diaspora at landmarks like Fuk Tak Chi Museum, which was once the oldest Chinese temple in Singapore, and Thian Hock Keng, the oldest Hokkien temple in Singapore. Visit Chinese places of worship, such as the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple & Museum and Chinatown Complex, to learn more about this group of migrant people. Enjoy a wide variety of local dishes like barbecued stingray and oyster omelette at Chinatown’s food street, which gives diners a semblance of what early Singapore’s street hawker stalls looked like. Keep a lookout for Sago Lane—not many people know that this lane used to be called ‘the street of the dead’, back when the poor would come to ‘death houses’ here to live out their last days.

Monster Day Tours’ Chinatown tour commences from the street level of Chinatown MRT Exit A at 9.30am on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. Click here for more information.

See the evolution of one of Singapore’s first settlements
by Indie Singapore

Duration: Three hours

Walk through the old palace grounds of the former local sultan and admire the many murals that embellish Kampong Glam. Gain knowledge from native guides of how Kampong Glam, one of the island’s first settlements, transformed in recent years from a sleepy town to an epicentre of independent retail and gregarious revelry. Kampong Glam is a great place for witnessing the entrepreneurial spirit of both traditional family businesses and indie boutiques. In between checkpoints, sip on traditionally brewed tea or coffee brewed at modern roasters in this neighbourhood. Enjoy the traditional and modern arts and culture that call this heritage precinct home, and learn how the various ethnic groups of Kampong Glam contributed to find its unique mosque. You can also enjoy Arts performances at Aliwal Arts Centre, or watch local musicians at various bars in the area.

Indie Singapore’s Balik Kampong tour is held every Wednesday. Email Indie Singapore for details and registration. Click here for more information.

Admire early Singapore’s preeminent quay
by Indie Singapore
Night view of Boat Quay with crowd and the skyline in the background

Duration: Three hours

Guides of this tour expound on the lives of Singapore’s early settlers, and take participants through landmarks that once played important roles in these migrants’ daily lives. Admire the river’s carefully preserved shophouses, the contemporary sculptures that now decorate it, and the jubilant bars and eateries that now populate it. Learn about the different bridges, named after historical figures that visited this ancient port of call. Participants will surely enjoy the bank’s vistas of the financial district and Marina Bay Sands®.

Indie Singapore’s Riverfront Thursdays tour is held every Thursday. Email Indie Singapore for details and registration. Click here for more information.

Walk through the history of Singapore
by Sneak Peek Singapore
People dining at Maxwell Food Centre

Duration: Five hours

Stroll around the historical neighbourhoods and modern financial districts of central Singapore as Sneak Peak Singapore’s guides impart the history of our nation’s evolution. Sneak Peak Singapore’s guides provide snacks for guests, but feel free to feast on local treats at Maxwell Food Centre and Chinatown Food Street along the way.

Sneak Peek Singapore’s Singapore: Past to Present tour commences from the main entrance of the Asian Civilisations Museum at 1pm every Saturday and selected Wednesdays. Click here for details and registration.

Visit this ancient cemetery before it’s gone
by bukitbrown.com

Duration: Two and a half hours

See the tombs of Singapore’s founding fathers before Bukit Brown is razed to make way for a new highway. Ardent explorers can discover this ancient cemetery rich in history and teeming with sculptures, along with a diverse array of flora and fauna that are native to this lush area. In this tranquil setting, learn about the significance of each grave’s details, as well as the contributions of the pioneers that they honour.

The Bukit Brown tour commences from Lorong Halwa at 9am every first Saturday of the month and at 4pm every first Sunday. Click here for details and registration.

Experience the wild side of Sungei Buloh
by NParks
An observation pod on the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve coastal boardwalk

Duration: Varies for each tour

In the north-western corner of Singapore lies a diverse and untouched swamp. If you’d like to become a naturalist, acquire knowledge about the rainforest from the learned staff of the National Parks Board and take pictures of Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve’s many species. You can also soak in the serenity and get up close with nature when you venture through heritage sites like Macritchie Reservoir and Singapore Botanic Gardens, which played significant roles in World War II and the Japanese Occupation.

Click here for details and registration.