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Day 1: Little India and Chinatown

Signage and entrance of Komala Vilas
1 Komala Vilas

For breakfast, whet your appetite at Komala Vilas in Little India. This beloved vegetarian restaurant has been around since 1947, and serves up South and North Indian classics like thosai (savoury rice pancakes) and prata (South Indian flatbread).

Façade of the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple
2 Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple

Now that you’ve fuelled up, you can immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of Little India. Travellers fascinated by Eastern religions can admire the architecture and colourful interiors of the Sri Veeramakaliamman Temple, dedicated to Kali—The Hindu deity who vanquishes evil.

Wide shot of Singapore Flyer at dusk
3 Little India Arcade

Next, drop by Little India Arcade. This emporium of wondrous wares is home to vendors that sell everything from silk and saris (traditional Indian womenswear) to flower garlands and traditional Indian sweets.

If cultural insights and new stories are what you’re after, we recommend embarking on a tour instead. Gems of Little India (Thursdays) by Ruby Dot Trails and Dhobis, Saris & A Spot of Curry (Tuesdays) by Journeys are both led by veteran tour guides who’ll enrapture you with stories of the district.

Hawker Chan preparing several servings of Chicken Rice.
4 Liao Fan Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle

In the afternoon, hitch a ride to the district of Chinatown, with its lantern-decked streets and bustling byways. You’ll be having lunch at Liao Fan Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle, which boasts the world’s most affordable Michelin meal. Chinatown Complex houses over 260 hawker stalls, so feel free to sample the variety of dishes while you’re here.

Anthony The Spice Maker
5 Anthony The Spice Maker

Next, pay a visit to Anthony The Spice Maker. This third-generation store is emblematic of Singapore’s vibrant and diverse culture, stocking a range of spices used in Indian, Peranakan*, Chinese and Malay cuisines.

*The term is an Indonesian/Malay word that means “local born”, which generally refers to people of Chinese and Malay/Indonesian heritage.

Photo by: Anthony The Spice Maker

People enjoying a traditional tea appreciation session at Tea Chapter
6 Tea Chapter

To gain deeper insight into a facet of Chinese culture, make Tea Chapter your next destination. You’ll be able to learn about the nuances of traditional Chinese tea-making with the masters at this establishment.

A crowd of people at Chinatown Food Street
7 Chinatown Food Street

At dusk, take a stroll down Chinatown Food Street, and take in the sights and smells of vendors selling a smorgasbord of Asian delicacies. We recommend trying local favourites like satay (grilled meat skewers) and chilli crab.

Photo by Danny Santos

Day 2: Kampong Gelam

Plate of Roti Prata (soft and yet crisp flatbread) with curry
1 Zam Zam Singapore

Before you begin your foray into the district, grab a hearty meal at Zam Zam Singapore—the murtabak (pan-fried bread stuffed with meat and eggs) is famous across the island.

Singapore Sidecar Tours at Haji Lane
2 Tour: Art and Artisans of Kampong Glam by Singapore Sidecars

While Kampong Gelam can certainly be explored on foot, we suggest getting your bearings with a ride around the neighbourhood first. Art and Artisans of Kampong Glam by Singapore Sidecars will have you exploring the rich history of this traditional Malay enclave from the comfort of a vintage vespa sidecar—A treat for both history buffs and fans of retro culture alike.

Flatlay image of Hajah Maimunah dishes
3 Hjh Maimunah

When you’re done zipping around the neighbourhood, a kampong(traditional village)-style spread of local and regional delights awaits you for lunch. Hjh Maimunah is a Michelin Bib Gourmand-awarded eatery that showcases the diversity of Malay and Indonesian cuisine. 

Perfume bottles from Sifr Aromatics
4 Sifr Aromatics

Next, make a beeline for Sifr Aromatics. This local perfume store offers 30-minute workshops that’ll teach you the fundamentals of fragrance-making, and is perfect for visitors who’re looking to bring home mementos and gifts for their loved ones.

Shop alley at Haji Lane.
5 Haji Lane

You’ll be able to continue your shopping spree along Haji Lane. Hip fashion, traditional fabrics and charming trinkets are just some of the many finds you’ll uncover as you stroll along this narrow byway.

Items from the menu at Nox – Dine in the Dark
6 Nox—Dine In The Dark

For dinner, you’ll be embarking on an unforgettable culinary experience at Nox—Dine In The Dark. Helmed by head chef Mohammad Shahrom, this unique eatery serves up meals in pitch-darkness, so that diners can better savour the flavours of its dishes.

Day 3: Joo Chiat/Katong

Wide shot of Fort Canning Park metal gate
1 Haig Road Food Centre

Begin your day with breakfast at Haig Road Food Centre, which houses stalls selling hawker classics like wanton mee (egg noodles with dumplings) and mutton soup. 

Tour guide showing artefacts in a heritage house, The Intan.
2 The Intan

To gain a deeper insight into the richness of Peranakan culture, sign up for a house tour of The Intan. This personal museum showcases a trove of artefacts from across the globe, and owner Alvin Yapp will be happy to share colourful stories of their acquisition with you.

Entrance of Sinpopo café
3 Sinpopo Brand

For lunch, pop by Sinpopo Brand—a quaint café that serves Western comfort food with an Asian twist. If you’re looking to bring home a taste of the region, the establishment also sells a scrumptious selection of cookies, with flavours like pulut hitam (black glutinous rice porridge) and salted egg with curry leaf.

The exterior of a vibrantly-adorned shophouse boutique
4 Rumah Bebe

Next, take a stroll down East Coast Road and pay a visit to Rumah Bebe. More than just a store, this traditional business will take you on a learning journey. Its owner—Bebe Seet— conducts in-house tours that will deepen your appreciation of Peranakan culture.

A bowl of laksa (spicy coconut milk-based noodle soup)
5 Tour: Peranakan Supper by Wok N’ Stroll

While it’s impossible to savour the sheer diversity of Peranakan cuisine in one day, you’ll be able to tantalize your tastebuds with a variety of flavours with the Peranakan Supper tour. Conducted by Wok N’ Stroll, this culinary jaunt through the neighbourhood fuses feasting with fascinating insights into dishes like laksa (spicy coconut milk-based noodle soup) and nonya* dumplings.

*Nonya cuisine is also known as Peranakan (meaning "local born") cuisine. The cuisine comes from people of Chinese and Malay/Indonesian heritage.

Day 4: Marina Bay/Civic District

Shot of the Artscience Museum with Marina Bay Sands in the background
1 The Maritime Experiential Museum™

Begin the day at Marina Bay Sands®, which dominates our city skyline. You can opt to have a traditional breakfast of kaya (a traditional jam made from coconut and eggs) toast and coffee at Toast Box, or have a Western-style breakfast at SweetSpot. The latter is located at the ArtScience Museum™, where you’ll have a scenic view of the waterfront.

Conservatory trail at Gardens by the Bay
2 Gardens by the Bay

Spend the rest of the morning amidst the rare flora, inspiring vistas and lush landscapes of Gardens by the Bay. The 101-hectare garden is separated into three distinct spaces and numerous indoor conservatories, from the mist-filled Cloud Forest to the rainbow-hued Flower Dome.

Array of dishes from National Kitchen by Violet Oon
3 The National Kitchen by Violet Oon

With its museums, art galleries and heritage sites, the Civic District is bound to bring out your inner art aficionado and amateur historian. Before you begin exploring, take a break for lunch at National Kitchen by Violet Oon, which specialises in classic Peranakan fare.

People viewing a collection of paintings in the National Gallery Singapore
4 National Gallery Singapore

The restaurant is located in the National Gallery Singapore, which houses one of the world’s largest collections of Singaporean and Southeast Asian art. Take your time to wander through its vast halls, and admire the inspiring works on display.

Entrance of the fort gate at Fort Canning Park
5 Fort Canning Park

Next, take a journey through history at Fort Canning Park. Once known as the Forbidden Hill, this tranquil park was historically the seat of Singapore’s Malay kings, and a significant site during World War II.

Exterior of the National Museum of Singapore
6 National Museum of Singapore

Alternatively, spend the rest of the afternoon learning about our island’s storied past at the National Museum of Singapore, or learning about the trade, traditions and treasures of the region at the Asian Civilisations Museum.

Wide shot of entrance of Raffles Hotel Singapore
7 Raffles Hotel Singapore

Round off your trip to Singapore with a visit to the Raffles Hotel Singapore. The hotel has played host to writers like Rudyard Kipling, celebrities like Elizabeth Taylor and royalty like Queen Elizabeth. The Raffles Long Bar is the birthplace of the iconic Singapore Sling cocktail, and the hotel arcade boasts a range of luxury retail stores for travellers looking to do some last-minute shopping.

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