Shopping is one of the greatest pleasures in Singapore. Singapore is the least expensive of 10 major Asia - Pacific cities. Shopping in Singapore is a highly civilized experience.
For an alternative shopping experience, do make time for a trip down to Singapore's ethnic districts - Orchard Road, Arab Street, Chinatown and Little India. Join the throngs of shoppers to sniff out the best bargains from the incredible range of products on offer. You'll be spoiled for choice. Avid shoppers love the annual Great Singapore Sale from May to July, the shopping extravaganza of the year which sees incredible marked-down prices. From designer brands and jewellery to household items, the Great Singapore Sale transforms the island into one big shopping carnival.
Singapore is a duty-free port and most shopping centers and shops are open daily from 10am to 9pm.Singapore is also one of the safest cities in the world, so staying out late should pose no security problems if the usual precautions are taken.
You haven't shopped in Singapore if you haven't been to Orchard Road. This world famous stretch is the favorite shopping belt in the city. Whatever your budget, you can almost always find something you want. Most shopping centers will have an anchor tenant (usually a major department store) and other smaller retailers. Gems for the picking range from designer labels, to mid-range goods, to budget items. Some popular department stores to check out are: Marks & Spencer, Robinsons, Tangs, Ngee Ann City, Wisma, Centre point, Scotts, Plaza Singapura.
Little India is the best place to buy almost anything that is Indian. Handicrafts, Kashmir silk, peacock feathers and flower garlands are examples of some of the things available in Little India. Good buys include beautiful saris (traditional Indian woman's dress), muslin, brassware, cooking utensils and India-designed jewelry. Pop-art posters of Hindu gods and Indian movie stars are available for purchase. You can also choose to visit Serangoon Plaza, an emporium cum department store, which is located at the other end of Serangoon Road.
For all things Chinese, Chinatown is probably your best bet from traditional herbs to textiles to decorative items and antiques. Try the Tanjong Pagar area for traditional teashops, clog and kite makers, painted masks, waxed paper umbrellas, lacquer ware from China, handicrafts and artifacts from all over Asia. Then wander over to Smith Street, Trengganu Street, Temple Street and Pagoda Street where the streets are at their narrowest and you'll find some of the best bargains.
From alleyways to sailors' haunts, Bugis Road has transformed to become a highly urbanized and sophisticated area. Stores have been restored, and new shopping complexes and office tower blocks have been erected, thus making it possibly one of the best known places in Singapore. Although highly modernized, efforts have been made to ensure the area's Old World charms are not taken away. Small shops line the streets selling everything from electronic items to clothes. With the addition of Bugis Junction, a trendy mall, you will definitely enjoy the fascinating mix of old and new cultures blended together.
Kampong Glam & Arab Street
The little streets in this area form the historical focal point of Muslim life in Singapore. Nothing beats the surroundings for bazaar-style shopping with true ethnic character. Here you can browse in hole-in-the-wall shops, haggle to your heart's content and come away with the most delightful purchases at bargain prices. The most visible items for sale are the baskets and other cane, straw, rattan and pandan leaf goods spilling onto the pavements - from baby cradles to floor mats, hanging chairs to serving trays.
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