Chinatown Singapore is a cultural neighborhood with evident Chinese cultural aspects and a Chinese population historically a part of the area. Large parts of the area have been declared heritage sites. The larger district which houses Chinatown is known as Outram; it is part of the Central Area close to financial districts and the city core. Chinese local refer to Chinatown as Niu Che Shui. It comprises five separate precincts: Kreta Ayer, Ann Siang Hill, Telok Ayer, Bukit Pasoh, and Tanjong Pagar. It is located just a few blocks from popular Orchard Road and just to the north of the central part of the city and attractions like Universal Studios.
The area between Smith and Pagoda Streets is largely showcased for tourists and there visitors will find an array of shops selling maps, souvenirs, and plenty of popular eats. Yuppie’s and expats alike frequent Club Street where there are a good selection of pub-style restaurants and eateries serving up tasty Western fare while Tanjong Pagar is a center for the area’s gay community. One of the best ways to see the area is by hiring a traditional trishaw to for a tour.
The main attraction in Chinatown isn’t one particular attractions but more the area as a whole. One could take days wandering in and out of the endless line-up of shops selling what seems to be everything under the sun with plenty of hidden gems and great deals. A few key points include the oldest mosque in Singapore called Jamae Mosque, Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, and Thian Hock Keng Temple
Chinese New Year in Singapore
Chinese New Year in Singapore is a monumental event best celebrated in Chinatown where most of the top attractions and events are located. From January through February each year the streets of Chinatown are readied for a major holiday; red lanterns hang in the thousands from street to street, special performances happen all over the district, and the food selection is about as good as it gets. Huge crowds come out over the two-month period, getting largest during the midnight countdown.