A Guide to Visiting Kampong Glam in Singapore

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Arab Street, generally referred to as Kampong Glam, has a special attraction. It is a part of a modern city, yet its traditional Malay culture has been maintained to a significant level. Many visitors, both domestic and foreign, come to this location to discover Singapore’s history and take advantage of its attractions.

It offers a combination of Asian history, arts, and culture while maintaining an air of old-world grace and modern influences. Whether you’re searching for trendy locations or have an interest in history, Kampong Glam has plenty to offer everyone.

 

Places of History and Culture

Sultan Mosque

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The Sultan Mosque, built in 1824, stands prominently in the Malay Quarter of Malabar. It’s Singapore’s largest mosque, featuring a majestic dome covered in gold and silver struts, and adorned with intricately designed walls. Beyond its religious significance, the mosque holds a rich national history and architectural beauty that captivates visitors.

 

Malay Heritage Centre

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The Malay Heritage Centre, located in the former palace of Sultan Hussein Shah, is a museum showcasing Southeast Asian Muslim history and Malay culture through engaging exhibits. Currently closed for redevelopment until 2025, it’s a place worth visiting once it reopens.

 

Istana Kampong Gelam

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The Istana Kampong Gelam is a historic palace turned museum that showcases the lifestyle of Malay royalty through beautiful interiors. The museum’s collection includes items of great historical and cultural significance.

 

Gelam Gallery

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For those who love art, Gelam Gallery is a place you shouldn’t miss. It’s an outdoor art gallery filled with murals and artworks painted by Singaporean and international artists. Perfect for Instagram photos, the murals at Gelam Gallery create beautiful backgrounds.

 

Eating Out in Kampong Glam

Kampong Glam Cafe

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This outdoor restaurant offers authentic and affordable Malay food. You can enjoy dishes like nasi goreng or a sweet and hot cup of teh tarik in a relaxed setting.

 

Lickety

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Egglet waffles with ice cream at Lickety offer a fun dessert option on a warm day.

 

Chix Hot Chicken

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At Chix Hot Chicken, spicy food lovers can enjoy Nashville-style fried chicken with different levels of spiciness to choose from.

 

Alaturka Mediterranean & Turkish Restaurant

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Alaturka is a restaurant known for its delicious kebabs and Turkish dishes. Recommended by the Michelin Guide, it brings a taste of the Mediterranean to Kampong Glam.

 

Fika Swedish Café & Bistro

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Craving Swedish food? Visit Fika! This café serves authentic Swedish dishes like meatballs, cold cuts, and desserts. It’s become my favorite place to relax and enjoy since I found it.

 

Best Places for Drinks

Ah Sam Cold Drink Stall

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Looking for something unique? Ah Sam Cold Drink Stall serves cocktails inspired by local coffee traditions. It’s a fun place to try creative drinks.

 

Oriental Elixir

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Visit Oriental Elixir for a special bar experience featuring gin drinks made with unique ingredients. Each drink has its own story, making your night out unforgettable.

 

% Arabica

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Coffee enthusiasts will love % Arabica. This simple coffee shop is famous for its great coffee and stylish decor, perfect for starting your day.

 

Shopping and Gifts

Arab Street

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You can explore a wide variety of fabrics at the shops in Arab Street, known for its textiles. You can also visit perfume stores and mix your own scent.

 

Haji Lane Boutiques

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If you’re into fashion, head to Haji Lane. This trendy street is known for its vintage clothing stores and stylish indie boutiques, attracting fashion lovers looking for the latest trends.

 

Supermama

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If you want beautifully wrapped local products, including their famous Singapore Blue porcelain, Supermama is the place to find charming souvenirs.

 

Things to do in kampong glam

Leather Craft Workshops

Several leather craft workshops have opened in Banda. You can learn to make traditional Ba Zhang/Ketupat pouches using sago palm fiber. It’s a fun activity where you can create something memorable and even take home as a souvenir for friends.

 

DIY Gin & Tonic Classes

Mixologists will show you how to make and enjoy your own Gin and Tonic.

 

Perfume Making at Sifr Aromatics

Choose from three special scents and mix your own custom blend by combining oils on a wooden tray at Sifr Aromatics. You can book in advance for an aromatherapy session using your unique scent blend.

 

Arts and Entertainment

Vintage Camera Museum

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The Vintage Camera Museum offers a journey through photography history. Unlike typical exhibitions, this museum displays a wide range of cameras and uses interactive methods to showcase its collection.

 

Gelam Gallery

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Make sure to visit again soon! The art at Gelam Gallery is always changing. This outdoor gallery features new artwork to enjoy every day.

 

Kampong Glam Singapore

The neighborhood of Kampong Glam offers a rich mix of cultural heritage, food, art, and activities to enjoy.

You can explore historical sites like Sultan Mosque, Malay Heritage Centre, and old palaces, or dine at diverse restaurants serving delicious food from around the world.

There are also unique fashion shops and other stores to explore. But most importantly, the lively streets are filled with people whose energy and warmth make Kampong Glam a special place for everyone who visits.

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