Our tour focuses on Singapore’s historic heart, where the island’s cluster of colonial monuments stands across the river from its modern glass giants. We’ll also take in the city’s more recent developments around Marina Bay and offer a quick glimpse of its dominant ethnic group at one of its holy sites. Along the way we’ll recount the story of Singapore’s dramatic rise to prosperity, from its humble beginnings as a fishing village to a dynamic, global business hub.
Avoid the Crowds
Allows you to explore without having to be shoulder-to-shoulder in a large tour group
Written by a travel writer with a Master of Arts in Arab & Islamic Studies
Easy-to-follow GPS directions to get you from one point to the next on your tour
Victoria Theater, Merlion and Yueh Hai Ching Temple
Remote Tour Included
As with all our tours, a remote tour is included that can be enjoyed from home
- Raffles’ Landing - We’ll begin our tour by paying homage to the city’s numerous founders, among them Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles and Sang Nila Utama, the Prince of Palembang, who preceded the British by around 500 years. We’ll also recount how, but for chance, the island could just as well have become a Spanish colony.
- Arts House at the Old Parliament - Singapore’s oldest colonial structure, this grand building was the former Supreme Court in the British era and the first Parliament House of independent Singapore.
- Victoria Theater - The original Raffles statue stands before this eye-catching monument, completed in 1909, its grandiosity reflective of a Singapore on the rise around the turn of the 20th century.
- Singapore River/The Fullerton Building- Ducking south to the river, we’ll continue tracing the development of Singapore, using as reference points its historic bridges and the striking Fullerton Building.
- Lim Bo Seng Memorial - In a British-built park filled with war memorials, this is the only monument to honor an individual. Here, we’ll recount his bravery as well as the struggles faced across the island during the difficult years of occupation during WWII.
- Padang - Once bisected by the beach, this field has been witness to numerous key events over the years, from British victory parades to Mr. Lee’s proclamation of Singaporean independence.
- Esplanade–Theatres on the Bay - Providing a glimpse of Singapore’s modern side, this impressive center for performing arts – along with the bay around it – stands entirely on land reclaimed from the sea, a practice Singapore has perfected.
- Merlion - Here we’ll introduce this venerable icon of Singapore, while scanning the futuristic bay over which it looks out, taking in – among other modern marvels – the three towers of the Marina Bay Sands Hotel, itself now an icon of the city.
- Boat Quay - In the shadow of Singapore’s tallest buildings on the curved south banks of the Singapore River, we’ll continue to trace the prosperity of the island state – from independence to the present day.
- Yueh Hai Ching Temple - This hidden remnant of a more humble era is one of the island’s oldest Chinese temples. Here we’ll introduce the most dominant of Singapore’s many ethnic groups, leaving you in good position to explore historic Chinatown on your own.