Singapore is an interesting city – a mix of Chinese, Malay, Indian and Eurasian peoples blended together into a cultural melting pot.
Being one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world, Singapore has much to offer the tourist and visitor.
You can learn about traditional Malay culture, why the Chinese behave the way they do and why Indians celebrate Deepavali.
If you want to learn about the different cultures in Singapore, one of the best ways to do it is to visit the designated areas of the city where culture is abound.
Interestingly, there are many areas in Singapore, where, say there is a high proportion of Chinese compared to Malays or Indians. Similarly, there are areas where Malays out number Chinese or Indians, and where Indians outnumber the rest.
If you want to see how the Chinese in Singapore live, one of the best places to go would be Chinatown. Chinatown, which of course exists in every modern city in the world, is a nice representation of traditional Chinese shop houses and wares.
Photo by kifo Some rights reserved
Step into Chinatown and you’re transported back to a time when the Chinese traded their wares along the banks of the Singapore River and where traders displayed their goods in the give foot walkways.
Visit Jalan Eunos
To experience Malay culture, perhaps a good place to visit is Jalan Eunos. This residential area has a higher proportion of Malay citizens and it gives you an interesting peek into their lives and they way they live.
Visit Little India
To see how Indians live, you can visit Little India. This area is right in the centre of town and has been earmarked as a must-visit for tourists interested in Indian culture.
Photo by spo0nman Some rights reserved
You can find all manner of Indian goods in this place, from traditional saris, textiles and other souvenirs.
Experience The Religious Holidays
Another way to understand cultures in Singapore is of course to make yourself available during one of the religious holidays in Singapore. In January or February, there is the Lunar New Year, where Chinese celebrate the turn of the year, with elders giving red packets to younger ones.
For Malays, there is the Hari Raya Haji and Hari Raya Puasa holidays (usually early in the year and late in the year respectively). For Indians, there is Deepavali, usually late in the year. And of course, we have the good old Christmas holiday too in December.
Attend A Traditional Wedding
Know what I think? The other great way to experience Chinese, Malay and Indian culture is to attend one of their weddings! The Chinese tend to have interesting wedding rituals, such as delivering a roast pig to the bride’s house on the wedding day.
Malay marriages, on the other hand, have the bride and groom decked out in lavish traditional clothing and surrounded by festive lights, Indian weddings? Also very spectacular.
Well, hopefully this article has taught you a thing or two about how to experience the different cultures in Singapore. Going around and learning how the Chinese, Malay and Indian communities work in Singapore will give you precious insight into the way Singaporeans live. Happy holiday!