Chinatown - Abbey Travel, Ireland

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Welcome to Chinatown


Chinatown is set against the backdrop of Singapore's modern infrastructure and the prosperous financial district. It is a crowded and colourful network of streets and alleyways contained by Upper Pickering Street, Cantonment Road, New Bridge and South Bridge Road. The area is a receptacle of traditional Chinese customs that were carried by the communities in Chinese Junks from the provinces of Guangdong and Fujian to Singapore in the early 19th century. Temples, terraces, markets and shops still provide a glimpse of the old ways but much of its original character has been lost in the redevelopment of the past 30 years. Yixing Xuan's Teahouse provides a fascinating insight into the ancient, ritualistic art of tea-making while a visit to the Thian Hock Keng Temple leaves one in awe of Chinese traditions of worship and symbolism. The streets of the district offer traditional healing practices. Here snake skins are blended with herbs and spices to produce powerful potions for various ailments. Brightly coloured exotic fruit interject the marketplace with lively displays of Rambutan, Durian and Mangosteen. The streets are a delight for bargain hunters looking to buy kimonos, jewellery, t-shirts, pottery and traditional crafts. Tanjong Pagar is the area best known for its traditional crafts such as painted masks, paper umbrellas, clogs and kites. Electronic goods, luggage, textiles and other more conventional products can be found in Chinatown's modern section located at the intersection of Cross, New Bridge Road and Eu Tong Street.

Information & Facts

Singapores official languages are English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil. A patois called Singlish, or Singaporean English is widely spoken. It is the by-product of mixing English, Chinese and Malay syntax and idiom.

Singapore's currency is the Singapore Dollar (SGD), which is divided into 100 cents. The US and Australian Dollars, Yen and British Pound are also accepted in the larger shopping centres. Major credit cards are accepted in hotels, shops and restaurants. ATMs are widely distributed and banks advance cash against the major credit cards. Travellers cheques can be cashed at banks or licensed moneychangers and at selected hotels. Banks are open daily, but some do not do foreign exchange on Saturdays.

Local time is GMT +8.
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