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Merlion Park
Photograph: Kashmira Kasmuri

Things to do in Singapore today

Fill today's schedule with the day's best online and offline events including concerts, exhibitions, and more

Written by
Time Out Singapore editors
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New day, new things to do – online and offline. Singapore is nothing short of amazing, with plenty of nature spots to explore, art galleries to check out some attention-grabbing masterpieces, and virtual festivals to keep you busy. Need some inspiration for today? Here are some exciting events to get you started.

Plan your week and weekend from Thursday to Sunday in advance with our handy guides. Filling next month's dates already? Check out the best things happening in the Lion City each month.

RECOMMENDED: The definitive guide on things to do in Singapore

  • Things to do
  • Film events
  • Raffles Place

Dive into the world of alternative cinema with Perspectives Film Festival. The student-led event returns with more thought-provoking indie titles and lesser-known gems for its 14 edition from October 21 to 31. Largely hosted on The Projector Plus, this year's edition includes one physical screening too. This year's lineup features nine international films under the theme of 'WHAT THE..?!'. These award-winning titles – such as the bizarre musical Annette, and lighthearted indie set in 2035 Strawberry Mansion –defy traditional filmmaking; they make elicit a bewildered scratch of the hand, some exclamation and exasperation, but help you to see beyond technical, narrative and moral conventions.  

 

 

  • Art
  • Raffles Place

We love going to art exhibitions, but sometimes we want to get to know the people behind it. Rub shoulders with artists, designers, curators, critics and more at Walk Walk Don't Run, an island-wide open studio happening over four Saturdays from October 23 to November 13. Over 30 artist and design studios as well as arts and crafts spaces will be opening their doors to members of the public, who can step in to for a casual conversation about personal projects, works in progress, and any topic under the sun. Studios include Comma Space & Sai Studio, The Bee's Knees Press, Jalan Besar Salon, The Made Agency, Silly Goose Studio and many more. Check out the official website for suggested routes, and get ready for some spontaneous, quality conversations. 

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  • Things to do
  • Quirky events
  • City Hall

Get ready for some super spooky fun at SuperPark Singapore this Halloween. Singapore's largest indoor activity park is transforming its space into a terrifying themed zone, with eerie decorations and a chilling cast of characters inspired by the British Occupation of Singapore.

On Fridays and weekends from October 22 to 31, head down for SuperSpook Halloween Themed Nights for fun activities that will have you facing familiar phobias. Try to escape the mysterious Horror Maze – here you'll encounter a series of chilling events from the British Occupation while trying to navigate a tight space in pitch darkness. Next, pedal through Devil's Bend while dodging the spirits of drivers killed while attempting its treacherous hairpin bends. Finally, head to the Haunted Playground, an abandoned playground that was once a burial site to see what hair-raising experiences are in store for you. 

Keep a lookout for the residents of SuperSpook too, including The Nun, the Killer Bride, the Wicked Witch, the Clown and the Zombie. Take a picture with them for the 'Gram if you dare – otherwise, you're free to roam the rest of the 40,000 sq ft SuperPark with more than 20 sports-centric activities, which will be fully decked out in Halloween regalia. 

Catch the early bird sales from now till September 30, and get 15 percent off your regular tickets with the promo code EARLYSPOOK15. Otherwise, standard tickets are going for just $39.90, inclusive of SuperPark full-grip socks priced at $3.50. Eager to get the Halloween festivities going at SuperPark? Visit superpark.com.sg to get your tickets now. 

  • Comedy
  • Kallang

As The Projector puts it, we deserve a bloody good time this Halloween. And delivering the goods are our favourite local drag queens Vanda Miss Joaquim, ElNina, Lychee Bye, as well as host Becca D'Bus. Happening over Sundays and Mondays in October, expect thrills, laughs and lots of commotion in the Blue Room. 

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  • Art
  • Painting
  • City Hall

If you're in need of some quiet contemplation, head down to Pan Pacific Singapore's Public Art Space on level 2 of the hotel to take in the paintings and prints of artist Tsuyumi Miwa. Titled Fleeting Moments, this exhibition from October 16 to January 31 seeks to evoke thoughts and memories of its audience through moments captured from everyday life. Over two weekends in October, you'll also get the chance to meet the artist – to complement the hotel's signature Japanese-inspired afternoon tea, Miwa will be live calligraphing patrons' names in Japanese on a card featuring one of her works. 

  • Art
  • Installation
  • Rochor

You've probably seen artist Wei's neon light installations around town, be it HDB void decks in Jalan Batu or most recently, the Merlion Park. Called 'Very Momentary Exhibition', the movement is a series of "momentary" installations that take over void decks of heartlands. This October, you get to appreciate designer and installation artist Wei's masterpieces for even longer. The artist will be illuminating the facade of the Malay Heritage Centre with his signature neon light installations in conjunction with World Mental Health Day. Get your cameras ready to capture the show every night from 6pm to 10pm until November 31.  

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  • Things to do
  • Raffles Place

Even if we can't get on a plane to Japan, we can still get on a train to do so – in a fashion. The Japan Rail Fair by Japan Rail Café is back to bring passengers on a virtual journey to the land of sushi and sakuras this autumn. On October 16, 17 and 23, take part in free and ticketed live programmes that will whisk you away to prefectures such as Akita, Kagoshima, Kanagawa and more, to immerse in their sights, sounds, food, drink and culture. Go on a foodie tour with lively train conductors, pick fruits with adorable Akita Inu dogs, attend culture talk sessions, and more to satiate your wanderlust this October. 

  • Things to do
  • Festivals
  • Raffles Place

The biennial Singapore Garden Festival (SGF) is back this year with the SGF Hort Show with a slew of exciting virtual and in-person events. From October 9 to 31, flower and garden enthusiasts can catch rare and beautiful orchids and show plants at the Horticultural Competition and Orchid Competition displays, held at the Singapore Botanic Gardens and Jurong Lake Gardens. Other competitions include the Bonsai Competition, Nano Tank Aquascaping Competition, Balcony Competition and more. Those who prefer to stay at home can also catch a range of online activities throughout the month, including Facebook Live sessions, Zoom webinars and videos on gardening, floral arrangement, aquascaping and more. 

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  • Attractions
  • Parks and gardens
  • Marina Bay

It's been two long years since we got to enjoy the popular Tulipmania showcase at Gardens by the Bay's Flower Dome. Now it's back as Tulipmania – Its Wild Origins, with a special focus on the tulips' start as wild flowers in the mountains of Central Asia. With the option to enjoy the showcase both onsite and at home, expect a good dose of Kazakhstan flavour through culturally inspired installations amongst a wide variety of colourful tulips sourced from New Zealand. 

  • Things to do

As we approach the ghoulish month of October, thrill-seekers or anyone looking for interesting experiences in the city can expect to mark these two hair-raising Halloween events on the social calendar. Sentosa has a dark history of duelling pirates who fought to their deaths – which makes it the perfect setting for these events. 

Set sail on the spookiest cruise ship this Halloween – the four-masted 22-sail luxury tall ship Royal Albatross will be changing it up from its usual luxe vibes to a distressed look, complete with tattered sails – a fitting ode to Sentosa's dark past. The tall ship will also be bringing back the popular Ghost Ship Cruise and The Barkest Night, a Halloween-themed dog cruise this October. In case you're wondering, it is indeed a reference to the Batman movie The Dark Knight in which the Royal Albatross features in for a cameo moment. 

Howl-loween Dog Cruise: The Barkest Night, October 27

Gather all your pup friends and come celebrate the very first Halloween dog costume party on a tall ship happening for one night only. Savour a lavish three-course dinner alongside your dog who will also be digging into a specially prepared fancy feast. All packages include a welcome mocktail, free-flow soft drinks, and a goodie bag filled with treats to bring home. You'll be having a howling good night!

Prices start from $175 per pax, get your tickets here.

Ghost Ship Cruise 2021, October 29-31

Leave all your mortal worries behind on the mainland and hop on the Ghost Ship Cruise for a night of spooky fun out at sea. The excitement begins as soon as you step aboard the cruise, where you will be greeted by a specially concocted mocktail. Afterwards, pull up a seat and partake in a delightfully ghoulish three-course Halloween-themed dinner. Make sure you come dressed for the festivities because there will be a mystery prize (worth $200!) awarded to the best-dressed partygoer. The Halloween night is not complete without some proper screams and scares – pay a visit to the Haunted Captain's Cabin after hours if you dare. 

Prices start from $195 per pax, get your tickets here.

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  • Theatre
  • Tanjong Pagar

Electrify My World by Nine Years Theatre is a power-charged, original play that will jolt you into seeing Science and Humanity in a new light. The play is set in 1879, when scientific genius Thomas Edison created the world's first practical incandescent bulb. Along came another inventor Nikola Tesla who insisted that his Alternating Current electrical system was superior to Edison's. Get ready for a battle to ensue, as ambitions and aspirations clashed in this "War of Currents". 

 

  • Restaurants
  • Tanjong Pagar

Mezcla isn't your usual Mexican joint. Instead, this modern taqueria pop-up (every Tuesday) borrows Japanese influences from its sister concept, Rappu, to create a line-up of crunchy and over-the-top tacos. Sink your teeth into eight different choices, including Salmon ($12.50) with battered skin as a crispy shell, stuffed with cubes of sake-cured salmon and topped with ikura; the Unagi ($8.50), an easy-to-love seaweed sandwich layered with chipotle-glazed unagi, tamago, and cucumber. Corn tortillas get a twist too – stained with blue or infused with tomato to go with fillings like edamame refritos and pork jowl or grilled chorizo and chicken. Dress everything in one of three homemade sauces, and end your meal on a sweet note with, yes, more tacos – this time dusted with cinammon sugar with smooth vanilla creme and chocolate. 

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  • Things to do
  • Rochor

This Deepavali, the Indian Heritage Centre (IHC) opens its doors once again with Welcoming Light, presenting a variety of cultural activities and a mini light-up installation to mark the occasion. From now till November 14, visit IHC to check out a mini replica of the street light-up along Campbell Lane and a line-up of free drop-in activities and workshops. Learn how to craft paper lamps, create intricate rangoli and kolam designs, and put together colourful paper garlands. Take in the sights and sounds of Little India as it works up a buzz during Deepavali too, with a 15-minute trishaw trail around the precinct. 

  • Dance
  • City Hall

The highly anticipated annual dance festival, da:ns festival is back for its 16th edition with both online and on-site programmes at Esplanade – Theatres on the Bay. During these uncertain times, the festival invites everyone to find new ways to dance during this time of flux, reflection and change. This year's edition focuses on four main themes: Go Local, Through A New Lens, Dance Revolution and Participate. From local contemporary dance and electrifying street dance, to a dance marathon crossing time zones and continents – expect enthralling performances by artists from Singapore, Philippines, Germany and more. 

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  • Things to do
  • Quirky events
  • Rochor

They say don't play with your food but at this instant-noodle wonderland, that's exactly what you should be doing. Slurping Good! is a whimsical themed experience playground brought to you by Invade (the same people behind Eatbox) which features thirteen interactive zones over two storeys dedicated to the ultimate comfort food: instant noodles. 

Explore the vibrant and aesthetically pleasing interactive rooms where you will discover murals, installations, games – and even an indoor slide for both adults and kids – revolving around the ingredients that make instant noodles so good – like egg, meat, seafood, veggies, and even cheese. Some highlights include the 1.7-metre-tall instant noodle cup installation which warrants a pic or two. The installation is in collaboration with instant noodle powerhouse Nissin themselves and in that room, visitors can get creative and share their dream Cup Noodles flavour. 

It's not just photos and a sudden appetite for instant noodles you will be leaving with. All visitors will receive a complimentary tote bag containing a Slurping Good! retail voucher that can be at the merch store, an F&B voucher that can be used at the Soul Good Noodle Bar located in Eatbox, a pack of Nissin instant noodles as well as an instant noodle claw machine tokens to try your luck. The exhibition runs daily from 10am to 10pm until January 22, 2022.

  • Things to do
  • Quirky events
  • Raffles Place

Get drawn into the eerie halls of Old Changi Hospital to piece together physical evidence and puzzles to solve a chilling murder mystery. Through 360 video footage, flashbacks, and an interactive choose-your-own-adventure format, Murder at Old Changi Hospital is just the virtual escape room activity to dial up the horror this Halloween. Written by award-winning playwright Chong Tze Chien, Murder at Old Changi Hospital invites you to take on the role of paranormal investigators to uncover the events leading up to the alleged murder of a young canteen worker, Farah Aiyah (played by Munah Bagharib) and the disappearance of four Commandos associated with the victim in 1996. Distant cries continue to echo in the abandoned hospital, setting the scene for this augmented reality (AR) and spatial audio surround sound enhanced nightmare.

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  • Things to do
  • Film events
  • Marina Bay

ArtScience on Screen is back this October. This time, ArtScience Museum presents a curated programme of films in conjunction with the Singapore Pavilion at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia. The films are selected as a love letter to cities, celebrating its urban spirit, textures, its people, and how we can all build a more inclusive world. Catch seven feature films and three short films ranging from film festival picks, cult classic and verité-style documentaries. These include Roy Andersson's About Endlessness (2019) and the Southeast Asian premieres of 종착역 (Short Vacation) (2020), Taming The Garden (2021), Moriyama-San (2017). Additionally, three short films will also be screened together as part of Textures Of The City (Shorts)Flags & Debris (2020), Architectural Desires (2016), Membrane (2020). 

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  • Theatre
  • Bukit Merah

Toy Factory Productions is back with the third edition of the biennial playwright mentorship programme, The Wright Stuff Festival. Over three weekends in October, head down to the Gateway Theatre at Black Box to catch three original plays by aspiring playwrights Lim Shien Hian, Jedidiah Huang and Koh Tian Seng. Their plays – The Time Machine, Lion and SKIN respectively – center on the theme of 'Inwards', offering meditations on faith, family and acceptance. 

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  • Things to do
  • Sentosa

Horror junkies, brace yourselves for Universal Studios Singapore's (USS) Halloween Horror Nights, which is back after taking a year off in 2020. This time, instead of the usual haunted houses and scare zones, get ready for a spooky behind-the-scenes look at the past nine years of the annual scare-fest, go trick-or-treating about the park, or indulge in jump scares and ghastly meals after dark. Running from now till November 7, Halloween Horror Nights will showcase what it takes to put together this award-winning showcase. Told through terrifying displays, gruesome props, deadly facts and a line-up of the scare night's scariest icons, this exhibition is still not for the faint of heart – USS warns that it may be too intense for those under 16. 

  • Art

The pandemic has got us more than a little stressed. How do we face these difficult times and emerge stronger at the end of it? ThisConnect: What Am I, If I Am Not grapples with these questions and more. From now till October 31 during World Mental Health Month, and in conjunction with the Beyond the Label Festival, local social artist duo Hunny and Lummy will be showcasing five multidisciplinary fine art pieces at 39A Duxton Hill. Masks of Singapore, No Mud No Lotus, How Much Enough Is Enough, What Is My Truest Self, and Trauma Expression Series explore our relationship with our physical, emotional and mental selves, aiming to expose higher truths and foster greater connection and harmony. 

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  • Art
  • Raffles Place

Whether you're a budding architect or simply fascinated by buildings, Archifest shines a light on the world of architecture – this year with over 100 immersive programmes spread out across the island and online. Organised by the Singapore Institute of Architects (SIA), the annual festival gathers architects and enthusiasts from all over the world, including Singapore, to discover and celebrate design in our everyday lives. Themed 'Evidence Design', Archifest invites all to delve deeper into built environment through five key lenses: arts and culture, community and inclusivity, environment and sustainability, history and heritage, and technology and methods. Happening from October 1 to 31, the programme this year will feature virtual exhibitions, film premieres, outdoor tours, workshops and exciting forums on topics as diverse as urban self-sufficiency and even fengshui. 

 

  • Things to do
  • Festivals
  • Raffles Place

Get your kids dreaming about a better future with UNTAME: Rebooting the World, a learning festival that will open your eyes to the potential of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) subjects. This 3-month long festival brings these topics alive through engaging games, activities, exhibitions and tours in both physical and digital formats. Happening in three phases from now till December 5, UNTAME features educational and sensorial activities to spark a sustainability mindset in children, as well as a digital, mission-based game to get the little ones problem-solving and picking up conscious consumption habits along the way. Science Centre Singapore will also be hosting onsite sustainability-themed activities, a Farmer's Market, and even an after-dark special featuring its most popular exhibits. 

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  • Art
  • Photography
  • Rochor

Head to Objectifs to marvel at the works of emerging local artist Dylan Chan, Fitri Ya'akob, Masuri Mazlan and Vimal Kumar at With You Here Between: Defamiliarizations. These image-based artists depict photography in different, more experential ways, touching on themes of queer identity and the body, spirituality and ecology, a yearning for home and family. A common thread: the celebration of living and thriving in the margins. This exhibition includes an extensive programme comprising opening performances, a curator's tour and artist talk, an open call culminating in a poetry reading featuring five works responding to the exhibition's themes, and three workshops – so don't miss out. 

  • Theatre
  • Marina Bay

Live entertainment is back, and there's no better show to ease back into it than La Clique. Featuring an international cast of performers, this theatrical show screening at Sands Expo & Convention Centre promises to be a night of "sexy circus" – that is, a cocktail of cabaret, new burlesque, circus and contemporary vaudeville. Expect lots of laughs and incredible live music at La Clique, which has performed to sold out audiences in cities such as Edinburgh, Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney, Brighton, Montreal, and New York. It runs from Septebmer 18 to November 7, so there are plenty of tickets for you to grab. 

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  • Art
  • Arts centres
  • Raffles Place

It's a new beginning for The Substation, after moving out of their iconic Armenian Street digs earlier this year. This contemporary arts centre is back with SeptFest 2021 (the second one this year) – this time in a completely digital format. Running from now till October 31, the festival is happening in two parts. This month, revisit SeptFest 2020 through four full-length documentation videos of previously showcased multidisciplinary performances. In October, we delve deep into this SeptFest's theme of Alternative Voice(s) through intimate Sunday Morning Conversations with selected artists on Facebook Live, who will talk about their challenges and accomplishments with supporting alternative voices in the community. 

 

  • Art
  • Raffles Place

Who says that oldies can't have fun? Indulge in a trip down memory lane with Silver Arts 2021, back for a 10th edition from September to December this year. Unlike last year's purely digital format, this year's festival will bring a lively mix of physical and digital programmes – encompassing live music performances, plays, digital workshops and more. This week, join local artist Marc Nair on a tour of Tiong Bahru, bop to the tunes of hit folk songs with Evergreen Symphonic Jukebox, and more. 

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  • Art
  • Outdoor art
  • Marine Parade

'Complex, messy, raw' – that's the Jalan Besar that you're invited to explore on this mini art walk with OH! Open House. During the 90 minute tour, enter the world of transient workers, sunset trades and disappearing clans with artists as your guide. Their works are scattered across the neighbourhood in secret places and trade shops, each giving visitors a new way of approaching and understanding the communities that inhabit Jalan Besar. 

  • Art
  • Marina Bay

ArtScience Museum is celebrating its 10th birthday with Orchestral Manoeuvresfeaturing over 32 artists and composers from eight countries who explore sound through sculpture, installation and music. Curated by ArtScience Museum, this exhibition features some of the world’s leading artists whose explorations of the sonic landscape encourage visitors to listen more closely to the sounds around us. Expect sound art projects, early music notation, experimental scores, noise-making sculptures, video installations and contemporary artworks. One of the key highlights is a presentation of The Forty Part Motet by Janet Cardiff, which will be showing for the first time in Southeast Asia.

 

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  • Art
  • Sculpture
  • City Hall

The Ng Teng Fong Roof Garden perched atop the National Gallery Singapore is now home to a new large-scale installation by Antony Gormley. On display from August 6 to October 30 next year, Horizon Field Singapore (2021) will be exhibited alongside three other sculptures that trace four decades of Gormley's practice: Sense (1991), Close V (1998), and Ferment (2007). Placed at key locations throughout the Gallery, these works form a sequence of what the artist calls “acupuncture points” within the architecture, activating their surroundings and provoking connections with their audience. 

  • Art
  • Digital and interactive
  • Marina Bay

The ArtScience Museum's new VR Gallery launches on July 10 with Hyperrealities, a VR exhibition featuring works from beloved contemporary artists Olafur Eliasson, Marina Abramović and Anish Kapoor. This is the first time some of them are using VR, augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality technologies to present their ideas. Nevertheless, these masters of art have you in for a treat: their multi-sensory artworks will have you gaping at elusive rainbows, feeling the visceral horror of rising sea levels, and taking a trip into – yourself. 

 

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  • Kids

If the kids' got energy to burn, Kiztopia's mega birthday bash Dazzling Nights is just the place to be. In celebration of its second anniversary, the flagship playground's 13 play areas are decked with colourful lights, LED projections and glow-in-the-dark decals – think laser lights, mirror balls, and moving projections of soothing water wave pattern – which are illuminated during the evening play sesssions. Kids can look forward to a new kind of sensorial play when night falls, as well as special LED light performances, stunning magic shows, and a variety of station games.

  • Things to do
  • Exhibitions
  • Jurong East

View the largest collection of Leonardo Da Vinci's discoveries in Southeast Asia at Singapore Science Centre. This special exhibition gives you a glimpse into his genius across art, nature and science over 10 zones in the centre, through more than 50 life-size reproductions of his extraordinary inventions and 15 reconstructions of iconic fine art studies and paintings such as Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. Want to see physics in action? Children, in particular, will enjoy the hands-on and interactive displays that draw on the Renaissance genius's scientific musings and experiments. 

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  • Things to do
  • Exhibitions
  • Tampines

Did you know that we were once affectionately known as "Southeast Asia's Hollywood"? The golden era of Singapore and Malayan cinema was at its peak in the 1950s and 1960s where over 300 masterpieces were shot and produced in Singapore. For a blast to the movie past, the fourth edition of SAM Mini Mobile Museum is taking on three public libraries with Slander! by multidisciplinary artist Jeremy Sharma. The exhibition invites movie buffs to rediscover the films produced between 1958 and 1963 through a choreography of film footages, digitised images, text, objects, and printed matter. Besides being time capsules for life back in the day, these films also reflected a cultural moment when a post-colonial Singapore started rapidly urbanising and shaping its politics.

  • Art
  • Digital and interactive
  • Marina Bay

Videogames are about to level up as they go from the small screen to the big gallery. Set to make its global premiere in Singapore, the multi-sensorial exhibition Virtual Realms re-imagines videogames as a captivating 21st-century art form – one that avid gamers and contemporary art lovers can appreciate together. Taking centre stage are six large-scale, immersive commissions by the world's leading videogame developers and media design studios. You know it’s going to be good when it’s co-curated by celebrated videogame designer – and the brilliant mind behind Tetris Effect and Rez Infinite – Tetsuya Mizuguchi.

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  • Art
  • Public art
  • Raffles Place

Singapore is littered with businesses that have stood the test of time. Behind every business lies a treasure trove of stories we don't often think about when we drop by the neighbourhood tau sar piah shop, or dabao our favourite chicken rice. Working closely with local shop owners with at least 30 years of history in selected precincts, National Heritage Board is co-creating on-site "mini-museums" with historical documents, photographs and artefacts on display to tell the stories and heritage of these shops. Look out for the galleries in Balestier precinct and Kampong Gelam, while those in Little India, Kreta Ayer/Chinatown, and Geylang Serai will be rolled out by 2022. 

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