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Plan Your Trip to Singapore: Best of Singapore Tourism

About Singapore
This tiny island city-state is famous for its unique blend of cultures—Malay, Chinese, and Indian communities, among many others, are well-repped. It's exactly this mixing of influences that gives Singapore a vibe all its own (and makes for a pretty amazing dining scene, too). There's world-class restaurants, sure, but you can't miss checking out the street food at any one of its famous hawker centres. At these large food courts, you can sample everything from iconic noodle dishes to Michelin-starred plates. As for the rest of the island, the scenery can't be undersold—it's a place where lush parks sit alongside futuristic skyscrapers and luxe shopping centres. We recommend starting with the Gardens by the Bay or the MacRitchie Reservoir Park to see some of the green spaces, and be sure to grab a ferry to one of Singapore's 64 outlying islands (Pulau Ubin is a fave). We've got more recs below.

Travel Advice

Essential Singapore

How to do Singapore in 3 days

From gardens to art galleries to food markets
Read on

Singapore food: the best hidden gems

I’m a born-and-bred Singaporean who is obsessed with food and its intersection between history and culture. As a young immigrant nation, Singapore is a major melting pot—with flavours from across Asia served everywhere from hawker markets to haute restaurants. Here are my favourite hidden gems that are off the tourist trail, places where you’ll get a truly local experience.
Bao Lin C, Tiong Bahru, Singapore
  • Marguerite
    10
    Housed in the Flower Dome, Marguerite feels like a lush enchanted garden. The imaginative tasting menu embraces produce and the craft of chef-owner Michael Wilson. My pro-tips: Request a table with a view of the open kitchen, and order the temperance pairing of clarified juices and fermented teas that showcases Wilson’s artistry.
  • Province
    5
    Province is a love letter to the rich and diverse cultures of Southeast Asia. The tasting menu highlights the flavours of the region, featuring ingredients from local and regional farmers and producers. The intimate chef’s table setting allows diners to interact with the young, affable, and passionate chef-owner Law Jia-Jun, who honed his craft in California and is one to watch.
  • Bonding Kitchen
    11
    The Peranakans are an ethnic group that’s unique to cities like Singapore, Malacca, and Penang, resulting from the intermarriage of Chinese merchants and the native Malay population. Run by a former private chef, Bonding Kitchen dazzles with solid cooking that would impress a Peranakan grandmother. For an introduction into Peranakan cuisine, order kueh pie tee (crispy pastry tart filled with vegetables), beef rendang (a dry curry), and chap chye (braised vegetable stew).
  • Thien Kee Steamboat Restaurant
    50
    The Hainanese were the last wave of Chinese immigrants to arrive in Singapore, and many worked as chefs for the then-British colonial government. Established in 1952, the old-school Hainanese restaurant, Thien Kee, is—in my opinion—the best place for chicken rice on the island. It’s my go-to comfort meal whenever I’m back from a trip, and also harkens back to a bygone era in Singapore.
  • Por Kee Eating House
    181
    “Zi char” means “cook and fry” in the Chinese Hokkien dialect. It’s a communal and convivial meal shared with friends or family. Por Kee in Tiong Bahru—a quaint residential neighbourhood—serves up some of Singapore’s best zi char. Must-try dishes include champagne pork ribs, cereal prawns, and chili crab. On a cool evening, dine outdoors and soak in the breeze with a chilled Tiger Beer in hand.
  • Mr Biryani
    126
    This homey restaurant in Little India specialises in Hyderabadi dhum biryani—a heady dish of basmati rice and meat that’s seasoned with spices and aromatics, sealed in dough, and slow-cooked. For the most traditional choice, go for lamb shank, but there are also chicken, seafood, and vegetarian options. You can also try other classic Indian dishes like butter chicken and naan.
  • Rumah Makan Minang
    112
    Nasi padang is a meal of steamed rice and cooked dishes that’s originally from Indonesia but has made its way to Singapore and Malaysia. This casual nasi padang eatery in Kampong Gelam—our Muslim Quarter—is a local favourite. Pick four to five dishes to share between two people. My favourites are the sambal goreng (a spicy stir fry), squid in ink, and curry chicken.
  • Fura
    0 reviews
    A wave of trailblazers are pushing boundaries in Singapore’s food and beverage scene, and leading the pack is the dynamic couple behind Fura: chef Christina Rasmussen and mixologist Sasha Wijidessa. Expect a menu that sparks conversation, with food that is plant-forward, and cocktails that are made from ingredients that have a low carbon footprint or are overabundant in the environment, like jellyfish.

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