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Three Reasons to Visit Singapore’s Chinatown Neighborhood


The best thing to do in Singapore’s Chinatown district is eat! There were so many restaurants, stalls, and everything in between. My uncle told us the best place to go was the Chinatown seafood restaurant. We were like, okay, but what’s the name of it? How are we going to find that? Luckily it was right on a busy corner, and weirdly enough, the big red sign did in fact say “Chinatown Seafood Restaurant.” The food was great. Dumplings, fried rice, noodles, all your standard delicious dishes. And because Singapore is right on the water, all the seafood was very fresh.

I also just really enjoyed the architecture of the buildings in Chinatown. It was really cool, the shuttered windows, the street lamps, a great vibe all around.

Shopping at the Chinatown Market

I appreciated the entrance to this indoor market for its cool mural featuring, who else?, Bruce Lee.

yellow wall with white and red bruce lee mural that says singapore chinatown

Inside was aisles and aisles of stalls selling all sorts of things - clothes, lanterns, electronics, shoes, souvenir knickknacks, and more. If you need literally anything while you’re in Singapore, this is probably a safe bet for finding it.

Even if you don’t go to the market, the streets are lined on both sides with shops. There are two or three streets you can explore, and a walk from the Chinatown MRT (the metro) entrance to the Maxwell MRT station entrance is a great way to bisect Chinatown and get a good sense of the neighborhood.

Sightseeing in Singapore’s Chinatown

The Buddha Tooth Relic Temple is the first thing we saw when we got off the metro in Chinatown. It's right next to the Maxwell metro station exit, and it's hard to miss. You can walk through the two rooms, see the beautiful decorations and listen in on the monks mid-prayer.

Final Thoughts

Chinatown was perfect for a mid-day stroll. Stop through and grab lunch before heading onto the next on your list of Singapore sightseeing stops. It definitely wasn't my favorite place we visited, and in terms of neighborhoods, I liked Haji Lane a bit more. But I'm definitely glad I saw it and got to a delicious lunch out of it.


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