Singapore is a highly cosmopolitan city. I was amazed at the diversity of cultures in its society. I live in an somewhat ethnographically homogeneous place. It was kind of a new experience for me to interact with different races.
For our walking tour of Chinatown, I wanted to see the multi-cultural facets in this old district of Singapore. Chinatown implies a place with strong Chinese influence. Beyond the main streets of Chinatown, we also got to see influences from other cultures.
It was cool to be able to visit a Chinese temple, Hindu temple, Mosque, and a Christian Church all in one day … and within walking distance from each other.
Singapore Central Business District
Walking past the Singapore CBD towards Chinatown
HSBC Building (86.95m | 21f)
Beside Fullerton Hotel
Clock tower of the Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall
Old Bank of China Building (62.35 m | 18f)
Loved the color contrast of this old building surrounded by the glass walls of modern skyscrapers
Republic Plaza (180 m | 66f)
Raffles Place MRT Station Exit
Loved this green carpeted open space
Chevron House, formerly called Caltex House (151 m | 33f)
Luxurious One Shenton Way Building clan in gold-colored glass windows. (50f)
Our first recognizable landmark we passed by that let us know we were already near the chinatown area was the Indian Chamber of Commerce Building.
Singapore Indian Chamber
Telok Ayer Street
We followed the Telok Ayer St., passing by Nagore Durgha Shrine (Muslim), Thian Hong Keng Temple (Hokkien), and Al Abrar Mosque.
Nagore Durgha Shrine (140 Telok Ayer Street). A shrine to a Muslim saint from southern Indi. Also known as Masjid Moulana Mohammad Ally.
Low-rise shop houses lorded over by modern skyscrapers
Telok Ayer Green
Thian Hock Keng Temple (158 Telok Ayer Street), the oldest Hokkien temple in Singapore. Dedicated to Matsu, Goddess of the Sea, Queen of Heaven and Patron of Sailors.
Heading towards Al-Abrar Mosque.
Al-Abrar Mosque (192 Telok Ayer Street)
Ang Siang Hill
Took a left turn and entered the covered pathways of Ang Siang Hill.
Entrance to Ang Siang Hill
Refreshing green park in the middle of the old district
Views from Ang Siang Hill
Loved the view of tiled clay roof and modern high-rises
Cool way to dry clothes. All the windows had built-in ports for the poles. Did not expect to find something like this in Singapore. I was reminded that I still was in South East Asia.
Chinatown Complex Foodcourt
From the other end of Ang Siang Hill, we followed Club St. and made our way to the Chinatown Complex, where we had our lunch (at the 2nd level foodcourt).
Lunch at the 2nd level foodcourt of Chinatown Complex. Lots of hawker stalls and local food!
Shrimp noodle something
Sri Mariamman Temple
After lunch, we passed by the Sri Mariamman Temple (Hindu) on our way to Pagoda St., which was the touristy center of Chinatown.
Sri Mariamman Temple (244 South Bridge Rd). Singapore’s oldest and most important Hindu temple and worth a visit for the intricately carved gopuram (statuary above the entrance), which gave adjacent “Pagoda Street” its name.
Jamae Mosque … the greenish building on the left side of the street
Singapore’s Chinatown is the traditional Chinese quarters of town, and while the entire city is largely Chinese these days the area does retain some of its own charm.
Buddha Tooth Relic Temple. Houses a 27-foot statue of Maitreya Buddha, and the scared relic itself, reputedly one of Buddha Shakyamuni’s teeth.
Pagoda St. in Singapore Chinatown
Chinatown MRT Station
We took the MRT from the Chinatown Station located at the far end of Pagoda St. We got back to Bugis at around 3PM. Packed our bags and continued our journey over to Malaysia. Always check for travel deals, especially when doing multi-country trips like this. Some times companies like Expedia will have cheap flights or packages.