As a port and the crossroads of Asia, Singapore sees plenty of cargo pass through its shores. Travelers who visit the city-state discover that some of those goods tempt them into some Singapore shopping.
New York has Fifth Avenue, Hong Kong has Nathan Road, and Singapore has Orchard Road. Named after the nutmeg orchards that used to line it n the 1830’s, the central area is now one of the world’s great shopping streets with malls having the “everything under one roof” mentality. Mandarin Galley, Far East Plaza, The Paragon, and DFS Galleria are just some of the places you won’t forget. Don’t go shopping on Sunday, when it’s most crowded. The standard GST (Goods and Services Tax) make luxury goods more expensive here than at other shopping destination in Asia.
One of the luxe shopping malls on Orchard Road, ION Orchard draws in crowds with its digital Media Facade, an MRT stop in the basement, and high-end international brands like Louis Vuitton, Prada, Cartier, Giorgio Armani, and Valrhona Chocolates. For a break, head to level 56, 218 meters into the sky, for sweeping 360 views of the city at ION Sky, a free observatory. Look through the BEHOLDTIM telescopes to magnify and get info about what you’re seeing.
The opposite of the super huge shopping malls are the small streets with local shops of Chinatown. A good place to start is the Chinatown Complex near the Buddha Tooth Relic Temple, which is worth a visit. There are many local shops selling souvenirs, clothes, and other kinds of goods. Go up and you have colorful hawker stalls selling plenty of local food. All stalls have clearly labeled health ratings, so stick with the “A’s.”
Little India gathers all kinds of Indian shops where you can buy gold, clothing, shoes, produce, books, CD’s, etc. As you walk along, you will be greeted by the beautiful smells of incense and Indian music. Expect to bargain. Don’t forget to try some of the snacks; you never know what you will taste although their common features are sweetness. On Tuesdays and Fridays, the Hindu gods are honored with simple strands of flowers. You can find vividly colored flower shops full of garlands and fresh flower.
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about shopping in Singapore.